Coaching Styles: A Winner and A Loser

I don’t try to tell people how to do their jobs, especially something a difficult and intricate as coaching a professional football team. Last Sunday, though, I watched two men ply their trade and could not have been more struck by the contrasts between the two. I was among the 60,000 or at Reliant Stadium so who witnessed the basic average ability Patriots send the basic upper ability Texans to their tenth straight loss 34-31. As he always does, Texans head coach Gary Kubiak stood off by himself on the sidelines with his glossy “IHOP menu” play chart calling plays and almost never mingling with his players. That is his style.

By comparison, I scanned the sidelines for Bill Belichick and had trouble finding him at first. At I searched closer I finally discovered him kneeling by the bench completely surrounded by his defensive players. He wasn’t even watching his offense. He was clearly knee deep in making adjustments directly with his players.

Throughout the game, he would repeat the process. He would watch the Texans’ offense, make notes, and then gather the defense when they came off the field. Do you suppose he was actually engaged in the overt act of coaching? That is his style.

You can decide which style seems to work better.     

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