Saban doesn’t know why anybody would think he has unfinished business in the NFL


So how is Nick Saban dealing with the large spot on the hood of the NFL car that he wasn’t able to completely and properly wash? By acting as if it’s not there.

Appearing on Wednesday’s edition of The Dan Patrick Show, Saban addressed the assumption that he has unfinished business in the NFL.

“Well, I don’t know why anybody would assume that,” Saban said. “I think that there was a time for me, and that’s when I went to the Miami Dolphins, left LSU. Because I’d been in the NFL before I wanted to be a successful college coach and sort of the pinnacle of success would be to go to the NFL and try to win a championship in the NFL.

“I did that and learned a lot about myself and some of the things that are difficult to change in the NFL. I’m talking about systematically in terms of whether it’s salary-cap issues that you inherit or draft picks, whatever it might be. Where in college it seemed like you can control your own destiny a lot better by working hard at recruiting, have a good recruiting staff, do a good job of developing players. Which I felt my impact was a little more significant as a college coach because you could do those things a little easier than the rules of parity in the NFL. So I’ve been happy doing that. I think my wife’s happy doing that, being a part of the community here. We don’t have the urge right now to do anything other than be here at Alabama.”

Actually, Saban’s answer shows why anybody — and everybody — would assume that Saban has unfinished business in the NFL. He calls winning in the NFL the “pinnacle of success,” and he concedes that he was unable to achieve that “pinnacle of success” because of issues like the salary cap and parity.

The average football fan views Bill Belichick, one of Saban’s mentors (even though Saban is older), as a more successful coach because he has won at the NFL level. And Belichick has won at the NFL level because he got lucky with the 199th pick in the 2000 draft.

For Saban to return, he’d need something more than luck in the NFL’s annual player lottery. He’d want to coach a team that already has its Tom Brady.

The Buccaneers currently have a guy who could become one of the best quarterbacks of his generation, and Saban surely likes Jameis Winston to Alabama. After all, Saban tried to recruit him to Alabama.

Saban prefers college football because, put simply, he can use his recruiting skills to stack the deck. In the NFL, the deck is stacked by having a great quarterback and building a team around him.

So many assume Saban would return to the NFL if he could do it with a stacked deck — especially since he admitted in September that he’d still be coaching the Dolphins if they’d signed Drew Brees in 2006.

35 responses to “Saban doesn’t know why anybody would think he has unfinished business in the NFL

  1. i am putting the over under for his NFL jump at ten days. thumbs up for under, down for over

  2. In other words, it’s easier to circumnavigate all of those clumsy recruiting rules than it is that darn salary cap.

  3. Bottom line is that he is staying at Alabama regardless of whatever the media will be speculating. He will get more National Championships and go down as the coach with the most.

  4. He keeps blaming the medical staff about choosing culpepper over brees. how about the biggest bonehead choice of picking Ronnie Brown over Aaron Rodgers which was completely his doing.

  5. Saban’s comments seemed self-explanatory, but then I’m not trying to read something else into them. I like a guy who knows he has nothing else to prove … no matter what the raging pack of hounds has to say.

    As for Belichick … I believe his success involved a little more than luck with the 199th pick of the 2000 draft. Dan Marino was a great QB, too, but it takes more than a skilled QB to win championships. And physical attributes aside, Jameis Winston is as close to being another Tom Brady as Vince Young is … or was.

  6. …besides, you have to admit Saban can make as much money (or more) coaching college, and have a great deal less responsibilities. It takes a wise man to know when he has what he wants and not push to get what everyone thinks is better. I wonder how many hours he had to work in the NFL (per year) than he does at Alabama. Saban actually gets to see his wife most nights coaching in college. How many NFL coaches can say that?

  7. Coaching matters in college. In the NFL it doesn’t. It is almost all on who your QB is and the general manager.

  8. Sounds like he will be back as a HC in the NFL….Now; when will that happen????? Probably in the next five years and certainly if he were to win two more National Titles and pass Bear Bryant’s record of 6 titles……

  9. Belichick may have been lucky to get Brady with the 199th pick in the 2000 draft, but how many first-year coaches would have kept an unheralded rookie on the roster as the fourth QB for the entire season. That took cojones. And that’s why Belichick and Brady are once again in the Super Bowl discussion this year.

  10. If he was gonna make the jump, Tampa would be the spot.

    Jameis Winston, 54 million in cap space, a top 10 pick, no state income tax.

  11. He can be king of all he sees in a college gig, or just another NFL coach constantly under the gun.

    Given how much the colleges will pay him I see zero upside for him returning to the NFL.

  12. Its stunning to me that he admits he likes college football more because its easier to put together a good team. Thats essentially what he is saying if you translate into laymen’s terms. “In the NFL, everyone has to play by the same rules where as in College, its easier to win because I can bring in the best players just with my name and Alabama’s prestige.” I mean, we all knew this but he comes right out and says it. You would think someone as competitive as him would crave the challenge of the NFL. He also leaves out the crucial point, that if his eye for talent was better and signed Brees over Culpepper, he might have a Superbowl right now.

  13. Why on earth would he want to come to the NFL. That would make no sense at all. He has all the money, fame etc. and a chance at the National Championship record. It’s a no brainer to stay where he is.

  14. To say that Belichick has only won because he got lucky when drafting Tom Brady is a huge disservice to his skills as a coach. I am not a Patriots fan – but he did have a successful season by most definitions with Matt Cassel, something many other coaches have failed to do. To say what Belichick would be able to do or have done without Brady is complete speculation, and grossly unfair.

  15. And Belichick has won at the NFL level because he got lucky with the 199th pick in the 2000 draft.
    There is a lot more to it than that. 199 is a large part, but he could have easily washed out elsewhere.

  16. Also he can get more raw talent at Bama than he ever could at Miami. I’m not saying Bama could line up and beat the Fins, but many of his current players will be drafted high and be productive or star in the NFL. If you put together a team entirely from Bama players from his tenure that are currently in the league and were allowed to draft all the coming talent he currently has, you’d have an amazing pro team.
    An offense with Julio Jones and Amari Cooper at WR, then Yeldon, Lacy and Mark Ingram at RB with AJ McCarron as QB really the weakest link.
    Then a slew of stud LB, DB and DL to fill out the D. It would be an excellent NFL team.

  17. “Stacking the deck” os the main reason I am disgruntled with college football. All Nick has to do is promise those 18 year old championships and show them the check stubs of former players when they get to the NF and he can stockpile all the southern talent. There is plenty of course as judged by the number that get drafted every year. He only signs 4 and 5 star recruits, and they probably come to him and wait their turn for a couple of years. It’s good, because we all know Alabama fans will not support losers.

  18. I dont know if agree about Belicheck being lucky with 199th pick. I dont care for him that much but that first super bowl I think they would have won anyways, that D was awesome. Maybe even the first 3 could have won with out Brady. Brady has gotten better and better though. Belicheck also has 2 more super bowls with the Giants with Phil Sims and Jeff Hostetler to.
    I do think the salary cap helps Belicheck though he is really good with marginal players.

  19. There’s a lot of coaches who could have had Saban’s success if they had the same overwhelming talent advantage he has enjoyed most of his time at Alabamer.

  20. I agree with Saban about ‘unfinished’ business in reference to the NFL….why would he return. He failed! He agreed to coach the Miami Dolphins, then left after limited success. In actuality, very little success, if any. Should be, when a Man gives his word – he fulfill his obligation. Just my opinion.

  21. Why do you assume that Saban isn’t telling the truth? It makes perfect sense for him to stay at Alabama. Total control of a dynasty program with no end in sight, coaching kids who have a passion for the game, a fanatically devoted fanbase, and a happy wife and home life. He has seen the NFL: coaching prima donnas who he can’t control or cut from the team; players who laugh, joke and yuck it up after a loss because it means little or nothing to them; having his hands tied by owners, GM’s etc.; fans calling for your head even if you are in the playoffs every year. he is saying quite clearly, been there, done that.

  22. I think Saban called out Florio on his colleagues show regarding that “spot on the hood”. Saban is happy where he is. I don’t like Alabama but I would be a fool to think this guy doesn’t have a couple more titles in his future.

  23. Hes not going. His brand of success wouldn’t work in the NFL. Didn’t work.

    Belichick can do what he does because of #12. High high high level franchise QB and you damn well can cut just about anyone. Bill has had a “no one is safe” pst except Tom approach and it works. Its the “you cant come here” attitude. He has created a franchise where players want to be there so he gets their best.

    Saban can’t do that in the NFL. He’s staying where he’s got the puzzle worked out. Saban pounds it into their heads. Demands perfection. Bill does too but not as fierce. He just cuts players who don’t do well and drafts kids who will. He’s excellent at spotting talent with their personnel group.

    Saban stock piles and lets the best play while drilling it into their heads. Can’t do that with professionals.

  24. “The average football fan views Bill Belichick, one of Saban’s mentors (even though Saban is older), as a more successful coach because he has won at the NFL level. And Belichick has won at the NFL level because he got lucky with the 199th pick in the 2000 draft.”


    It appears then that the ‘average football fan’ isn’t very perceptive about Belichick’s abilities.

  25. He is not leaving. And as far the quarterback issue, he is lying.

    His wife hated the big city in Miami. SHE contacted the boosters at Alabama to get the ball rolling. He said that he wasn’t going to leave publicly, because she did this behind the scenes. The boosters then contacted him, and she gave him an ultimatum. Go to Alabama or I am out of Miami. This has nothing to do with Drew Brees, or any other quarterback. It has to do with the wife wanting to live in a college town.

    For Saban to leave for the NFL, it would have to be in a small market city.

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