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NFL Coach of the Year Odds: Can Belichick Win Without Brady?

New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick is pictured on the sidelines after the Titans scored their final touchdown of the game in the fourth quarter.

When it comes to the four main North American professional sports leagues, no coach has as much impact on the game as a head coach does in the NFL. That’s why winning the NFL Coach of the Year Award as the league’s best coach is a significant honor.

Sizing up the odds on which bench boss will garner the hardware in the 2020 season, some familiar faces are at the top of the list.

Bill Belichick and Bruce Arians are the +1000 co-favorites to win the award, with Mike McCarthy (+1300), Kevin Stefanski (+1400) and Kliff Kingsbury (+1500) listed as the next likeliest candidates.

2020 NFL Coach of the Year Award Odds
Bill Belichick+1000
Bruce Arians +1000
Mike McCarthy+1300
Kevin Stefanski+1400
Kliff Kingsbury+1500
Kyle Shanahan+1600
Frank Reich+1700
Sean McDermott+1800
Andy Reid+1900
Brian Flores+1900
John Harbaugh+2000
Mike Vrabel+2200
Mike Tomlin+2500
Sean McVay+2500
Sean Payton+2500
Vic Fangio+2500
Doug Pederson+2600
Mike Zimmer+2800
Anthony Lynn+3000
Matt LaFleur+3000
Dan Quinn+3500
Ron Rivera+3500
Matt Rhule+4000
Bill O’Brien+4000
Joe Judge+4000
Jon Gruden+4000
Matt Patricia+4000
Adam Gase+5000
Doug Marrone+5000

Odds as of September 10 at Bovada

Can Belichick Win Without Brady?

Tom Brady’s decision to leave the Patriots after 20 years in favor of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers sent shock waves through the NFL. With Brady and ex-Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski teaming up in the Sunshine State, the Pats were left with a massive hole at the QB position.

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The 2020 NFL season will be interesting for a variety of reasons, but the storyline of how Belichick and the Patriots are going to fare without Brady under center will be a major one. After the NFL draft, the Pats signed undrafted Michigan State QB Brian Lewerke to join Brian Hoyer, Jarrett Stidham and Cody Kessler on the depth chart.

In late June, the Pats shocked the NFL by signing ex-Carolina Panther and 2015 NFL MVP Cam Newton to a one-year, $1.75-million deal. Belichick hasn’t officially committed to Newton as the starter, but it would be a major surprise to see anyone other than the 31-year-old under center in Week 1 given his wealth of experience.

Newton has struggled to stay on the field due to a litany of injuries in recent years, but if he can remain healthy, he could be a major difference-maker for the Pats.

While the Patriots lack offensive weapons, the defense should once again rank as one of the top units in the league. If New England dominates in the regular season and gets back to the playoffs without Brady, Belichick should be a shoo-in for Coach of the Year, an award he has already won three times.

Why is Stefanski Listed So High?

The Cleveland Browns have long been the doormat of the NFL, and the 2019 season was an utter disappointment for the long-suffering Browns fan base.

Cleveland revamped its roster last offseason by bringing in the likes of Odell Beckham Jr., Kareem Hunt, Sheldon Richardson and Olivier Vernon, but the Browns didn’t live up to the hype and failed to make the postseason with a 6-10 record.

Following the season, the Browns fired coach Freddie Kitchens and general manager John Dorsey left his post. Cleveland brought in Stefanski, the former Minnesota Vikings offensive coordinator, to fill the vacant head coaching position.

The Browns haven’t made the playoffs since 2002 and are behind the Baltimore Ravens and Pittsburgh Steelers in AFC North odds, so expecting Cleveland to make a splash in 2020 is a big ask. Still, if Stefanski is the man to finally guide the Browns to an elusive playoff berth, I can see him getting Coach of the Year votes.

Arians Has the Tools to Succeed in Tampa

With an offense that now includes Brady, Gronkowski, Leonard Fournette, Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, OJ Howard and Ronald Jones, the Buccaneers look ready to take flight and end the franchise’s 12-year playoff drought. That means Arians could be worth a look at his current odds to win the Coach of the Year Award in the upcoming campaign.

A few factors are worth noting before penciling the Buccaneers in as Super Bowl contenders, though. Brady will be 43 when the season starts and is coming off one of the worst statistical seasons of his career. Gronkowski will likely have some rust after his one-year retirement, and the Buccaneers still have some work to do to shore up a defense that struggled at times in 2019.

Still, I think Arians is the best bet for this prop. The 67-year-old is one of the top coaches in the NFL and is in a prime position to put the league on notice, even in the competitive NFC South.

Tampa Bay is +1200 to win the Super Bowl for a reason, and Arians is the right man to guide this team as it climbs out of the basement of the league and into relevancy.