It’s already been an interesting offseason in the AFC East division. The New York Jets and Buffalo Bills made head coaching changes. The Miami Dolphins hired a new executive vice president in Mike Tannenbaum, while the New England Patriots are one game away from the Super Bowl.
With that in mind, here is my updated head coach rankings in the division:
No. 1: Bill Belichick
Team: New England Patriots
Career record: 211-109
Analysis: Is there really any doubt? Belichick is not only head and shoulders above the division's head coaches, he’s also one of the greatest coaches in NFL history. His latest feat was leading the Patriots to four straight AFC title games with Sunday’s win over the Baltimore Ravens. Belichick always gives his team a chance to win a Super Bowl, and three times the Patriots won it all. They have a solid chance to win a fourth title in February.
No. 2: Rex Ryan
Team: Buffalo Bills
Career record: 46-50
Analysis: Ryan is an elite defensive mind who got fired in New York due to offensive inconsistency. Still, Ryan led the Jets to the playoffs twice in 2009 and 2010, and both years he made it to the AFC title game. Another strength of Ryan is his charisma. Players love playing for Ryan, which is not always the norm in the NFL. Ryan is limited offensively and he failed to develop a quarterback. That was his downfall with the Jets. So, Ryan needs to make sure he puts together a strong offensive staff in order not to repeat history in Buffalo.
No. 3: Joe Philbin
Team: Miami Dolphins
Career record: 23-25
Analysis: Philbin has been "Average Joe" in Miami after posting back-to-back 8-8 seasons. Philbin hasn't been great nor awful. But the Dolphins' inconsistency over three seasons is wearing thin on Miami fans and owner Stephen Ross, who expects big things in 2015. Philbin enters the season on the hot seat. He must improve his game-management skills, which seems to lack too often in close games.
No. 4: Todd Bowles
Team: New York Jets
Career record: 0-0
Analysis: The Jets hired Bowles this week to replace Ryan. The primary reason he's ranked last in the division is due to lack of a track record. But Bowles has potential. He was 2-1 as an interim head coach for the Dolphins at the end of the 2011 season. Miami let him go and now Bowles is back in the division. The Dolphins hope that decision doesn't come back to haunt them.