The Kansas City Chiefs will face 13 different opponents. Undoubtedly, at least one of those baker’s dozen of teams will move on from its head coach either during or after the season.
Right now, how do those coaches rank when it comes to the hot seat? Could the Kansas City Chiefs put to end a coach’s tenure with his team?
Sure, it seems possible, and there’s one team that may have already made the move before even facing the Chiefs. We’ll get to them toward the end.
On the following pages, I’ve broken down the Chiefs’ 2020 opposing head coaches into four hot seat categories, starting with the coldest seat of the bunch and progressively getting warmer. Only one man occupies the coldest region while three sit together on the hottest seat.
Let’s get to it.
Level One: Cocytus
The phrase cold as hell had always intrigued me. Why do people think that hell, of all places, is cold? In the waning days of my time in law school, I wrote a thesis of sorts that required me to re-read the first canto of Dante Alighieri’s Divine Comedy in which the author travels to the depths of hell.
It’s at the end of Inferno when Dante and his guide, Virgil, reach the ninth and innermost circle of hell, Cocytus, that the phrase makes sense, because this realm, reserved for traitors, is a frozen lake. It’s quite literally the coldest place in the world, and Satan, with the three worst traitors known to man, is trapped in the middle.
Moving the analogy to the NFL’s hot seat rankings, there’s only one coach in all of the league who sits upon a throne of ice. And he coaches the Patriots.
Bill Belichick, New England Patriots
Since 2000, Bill Belichick has coached the Patriots. In that time, he’s gone 237-83 in the regular season and 30-11 in the postseason. His teams have reached nine Super Bowls in that time, going 6-3. Only once have the Patriots finished with a losing record under Belichick (2000, going 5-11), and the team’s only missed the postseason three times since he took over.
This past offseason, the Patriots moved on from longtime quarterback and future Hall of Famer Tom Brady, who entered free agency before inking with the Buccaneers.
Without Brady, Belichick’s never had success. Can he make it without Brady? That question will begin to be answered this season, but owner Robert Kraft will give Belichick an ample amount of time to answer it.
Belichick is the rare breed of NFL coach that won’t be fired. When his time in New England ends, it will be on his terms, whether he decides to retire or head to a different organization.
The man’s hot seat might as well be in Cocytus.