Jim Caldwell wants back in the game, this year if possible

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Last week, before he was fired by the Lions, Jim Caldwell said his coaching future depended on “what the Lord has planned for me.” And bringing his kids and grandchildren to his final postgame press conference last week did little to stifle the image of a guy preparing to be finished.

But Caldwell apparently wants to coach again.

According to Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press, Fritz Pollard Alliance chairman John Wooten said Caldwell wants to get back into the game as a head coach in 2018.

“It’s a wide-open thing,” Wooten said. “There’s quite a few openings right now and you never know who’s going to look at what and see how it goes. But he still has interest.”

Frankly, there should be more interest in the 63-year-old Caldwell, based on his resume and his setting.

He went 36-28 in four seasons with the Lions, a .563 winning percentage. He also went to the playoffs twice. But the Lions franchise has an all-time .448 winning percentage, and had just one winning season in the 13 years prior to his arrival, when coaches Jim Schwartz, Rod Marinelli, Dick Jauron and Marty Mornhinweg led them to a 60-148 record (.288).

So while Caldwell might not give good press conference, or inflame passions of fans (at least in a positive way), the bottom line is he’s pretty good at coaching football, and some of the places with vacancies should consider him.

29 responses to “Jim Caldwell wants back in the game, this year if possible

  1. Some will, and I agree that while Detroit may not have been a good fit (who is a good fit for Detroit) he has skills. His winning percentage is better than Gruden’s and he is he most sought after candidate in the NFL right now, apparently.

  2. Maybe a coordinator position, but to many attractive candidates out there for Caldwell to get a HC job.

    There should me more candidates on the staffs of the WC teams as well that we haven’t even heard about since nobody can interview them.

  3. Over 4 years, a 4-23 record against teams which were above .500 or made the playoffs.

    Over the past 2 years, 1-12 record against teams which were above .500 or made the playoffs. The lone win occurred against Minnesota and was largely due to the loss of Dalvin Cook on a play in which he fumbled.

    In 2015, against GB at home, while everybody in the stadium knew a Hail Mary was coming, Caldwell was apparently the only one who didn’t and thought a lateral type play was going to happen. That’s why there were more Packers in the endzone than Lions and, of course, the infamous Fail Mary.

    In 2017, in a tight game at home against the Steelers where points where at a premium and neither team was scoring TDs, Caldwell has an opportunity to kick a very short FG to go ahead 15-13. Instead, a horrible run play is called to a RB who hadn’t accomplished anything. 10 men on the field against the Vikings in the rematch on Thanksgiving. 9 men on the field for a key play against the Ravens. The complete failure to show up against the Bengals.

    Jim Caldwell, thank you for your service and enjoy your retirement.

  4. Caldwell reminds me of Norv Turner-A very good coordinator who can be a good Head Coach-but he just can’t bring his team over the top.

  5. He is absolutely NOT “pretty good at coaching football”. He is pedestrian at best, which his time with the Lions showed. Is he better than some of the hacks around the league? I guess, but he’s not “good at coaching football”.

  6. Seriously, they had 9 men on the field for a 3rd down play. Players losing their cool and getting ejected from games hurt too. It’s as if Caldwell lacks discipline and his players follow suit. This is why Matt Patricia, who wouldn’t put up with any of that BS, is a frontrunner for the Detroit job.

  7. This guy has a career winning record as an NFL coach. Players love him. Is he going to win a super bowl? No. But if you’re the Chicago Bears, maybe you hire him, he’s done good work with QB’s; in 2 years when the Bears are 9-7 and Trubisky has grown under the tutelage of Caldwell and his calm demeanor, you move on and find a coach who can help your team take the next step.

    Many of the teams with coaching vacancies have no shot at the playoffs, let alone a Super Bowl in the next year. May as well bring in a coach who is a good influence on the young players while they develop.

  8. He’s 62-50 and 2-4 in the playoffs while having 2 of the top 10 best QB’s in the past 10 years. Hell, maybe 2 of the top 5 QB’s.
    Sorry, this guy is not a good coach. You give an average coach those QB’s and I guarantee you they win more often.

  9. Lions fan-

    Caldwell seems like he was a good mon- sat coach, he just made too many bad calls managing the game.

    Top Notch person though, good leader of men. When he took the Lions over they were a mess in the locker room and off the field- he got all that under control FAST.

    If the NFL were smart they would hire him at the league level and create him a position where he works with players off the field, Like the player life coach or something. That is really the best use of his talents.

  10. Great coach! I’m hoping the Bears stay away from him, and he ends up in the AFC. In other words, where the Lions see the least possible of him.

    If we can’t have him(I wanted to keep him), it’s better to not get reminded of his firing from my team too often.

    The clock is now ticking for Bob Quinn to get a coach that can improve the team from the Caldwell baseline. If he screws that up, it’s pitchfork time.

  11. As Lions’ coach his winning percentage is slightly above .500, he has 0 playoff wins in 4 years, and is 4-25 vs. teams with a winning record. If you have no Superbowl aspirstions, hire him as your head coach.

  12. It was worth a try. The “they were worse before he got here” argument has worked for Marvin Lewis for 15 seasons and counting.

  13. I agree with those who support hiring Caldwell to help pull a bad team together and make them competitive, but not to expect championship caliber coaching.

  14. I’m struggling to understand how the coach who led the Lions to a better-than-.500 record, and whose team won 9 comeback wins last year, is somehow considered garbage and not good in the clutch.

  15. If Quinn had hired Caldwell, then Caldwell would still be the coach of the Lions. Quinn wants his own guy. Caldwell is a solid coach and deserves another HC job.

  16. Questionable move. Winning coaches are hard to find.
    Hope the Lions know what they’re doing, because we can
    easily be looking back at this move years from now
    and say what dumb move that was.

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