- James Walker, ESPN Staff Writer
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The AFC East blog continues its series ranking the top players and coaches. On Sunday, we take a look at the top head coaches in the division.
No. 1: Bill Belichick, New England Patriots
Skinny: There is really no debate. Not only is Belichick the best coach in the AFC East, he's one of the best of all time. Belichick has three Super Bowl rings as a head coach. He's also been to two other Super Bowls, but came up just short against the New York Giants. His ability to game plan and also adapt on the fly is unmatched in the NFL.
No. 2: Rex Ryan, New York Jets
Skinny: Some are put off by Ryan's brash personality, but there is no denying he can coach. Few people know defense as well as Ryan, who grew up in a football family that focused on stopping offenses. Ryan's schemes have worked at every stop, including Baltimore and New York, and players love playing for Ryan. His first two years he led the Jets to back-to-back AFC title games. That is impressive.
No. 3: Chan Gailey, Buffalo Bills
Skinny: Despite his vast experience in the NFL and college, Gailey remains a bit of a mystery. He had two decent years in Dallas, but was abruptly fired. He got his second chance in Buffalo, but is just 10-22 his first two seasons with the Bills. A case can be made that Gailey hasn't had much to work with in Buffalo. That's fair. But the Bills have done a lot to improve the roster this offseason, and I think we will find out how good Gailey is as a head coach in 2012.
No. 4: Joe Philbin, Miami Dolphins
Skinny: Philbin is another mystery, because this is his first year as a head coach. But I've been impressed with his presence and organization so far. The job doesn't seem too big for the longtime assistant. But the key for Philbin is whether can he jump-start Miami's offense. Philbin is installing a new West Coast scheme, and much of his job in the first year will be graded on how well he manages that side of the football.
3dField Yates and Rich Cimini