Lovie Smith listed at 50-1 for first NFL head coach fired


The internet is the best (and worst) place for many reasons, but one of the most obvious is the fact that you can bet on almost anything anywhere, and one of the underrated things you can bet on is the employment of other people. Yes, it’s summer in the NFL, kind of dead period, but training camp will be here soon, so it’s time to decide which coach gets fired first!

Courtesy of, here are the current odds where NFL head coach will be the first to be fired OR resign, a designation added after last season when Jon Gruden was the first coach to quit his job, but he was not fired – officially he resigned:

Next NFL Coach Fired/Dismissed:

Matt Rhule 3/1
Mike McCarthy 5/1
Pete Carroll 6/1
Frank Reich 7/1
Ron Rivera 8/1
Dan Campbell 10/1
Kevin Stefanski 10/1
Cliff Kingsbury 12/1
Mike Vrabel 12/1
Arthur Smith 14/1
Robert Saleh 14/1
John Harbaugh 16/1
Mike Tomlin 16/1
Nick Sirianni 25/1
Kyle Shanahan 33/1
Bill Belichick 50/1
Lovie Smith 50/1
Todd Bowles 50/1
Brandon Staley 66/1
Brian Daboll 66/1
Dennis Allen 66/1
Doug Pederson 66/1
Kevin O’Connell 66/1
Matt Eberflus 66/1
Mike McDaniel 66/1
Nathaniel Hackett 66/1
Zac Taylor 66/1
Matt Lafleur 80/1
Andy Reid 100/1
Josh McDaniels 100/1
Sean McDermott 100/1
Sean McVay 100/1

OK, a few pertinent thoughts here about these opportunities:

Lovie Smith is 50/1 to be the first head coach fired, and honestly they should just make it 5,000/1
This time last summer, David Culley was floating around the edge of the top third of the odds board at 16 to 1, and it made sense. He had never been a head coach before and led the worst team in the league, a team that had a quarterback who didn’t want to be there and was sued by 22 women. An implosion seemed somewhat likely. Culley was eventually fired, but it was after the season. Lovie Smith seems to be much stronger at 50 to 1. The fact is, Lovie Smith’s odds can be 5,000 to 1. There’s NO chance that Lovie Smith will be the first head coach to be fired, or even fired at all in 2022. There’s no way the Texans want to go “one and done” two years in a row.

Bill Belichick is 50/1, which is also remarkable
More notable with the same 50 to 1 odds as Smith, New England head coach Bill Belichick has skyrocketed from a misunderstood “no chance” bet to “solidly intriguing.” To be clear, it’s highly likely that Belichick will be the one to decide when Belichick is done coaching, but the last time his chances of being the first head coach to be fired in any given season were slightly less than 100 to 1 probably when Tom Brady was still on his rookie contract.

Do you know who was 50/1 last season? URBAN MEYER!
While we’re on head coaches whose odds are 50 to 1, the winning ticket on this bet last season actually came from Jacksonville’s Urban Meyer, who in June last year… wait for it… 50 TO 1! IN fact, the last two winners both came from the AFC South, as the first head coach to be fired in 2020 was our own Bill O’Brien, whose preseason odds for “first head coach fired” were about 20 to 1. In the last few years, the winning ticket is likely to be struck by someone further down the list than the favorites.

So who’s a decent “long shot” on the board?
Well, if we’re trying to use last season as a kind of template, that’s hard to do, because I don’t think we can really identify a coach like Meyer, who will completely embarrass his employer with idiocy off the field, like the groping a young woman (who is NOT his wife) on camera in Ohio while his team is back in Florida. That said, if I were to throw a sawhorse at a coach whose odds are greater than, say, 20 to 1, let’s go with Dennis Allen from New Orleans (66 to 1). Expectations are high in New Orleans despite Jameis Winston being their quarterback, and the Saints are a team ripe for regression as the roster ages without Sean Payton and two years away from Drew Brees.

Listen to Sean Pendergast on SportsRadio 610 weekdays from 6am to 10am. Also follow him on Twitter and like him on Facebook at