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Knowing how specific NFL head coaches approach the preseason is crucial for bettors at this time of year. Some coaches prefer to use the games to evaluate their depth while keeping their starters on ice, and others prefer to get their top players more live reps in preparation for the regular season.

Some care about winning preseason games, others couldn’t care less.

It’s also important to look at how the coaches do in specific weeks of the preseason. The third game of the preseason has traditionally been the “tune-up” game where the starters play much of the first half, with some going into the third quarter. Meanwhile, it’s not uncommon for starters to play just a drive or two, if at all, in the first two weeks of preseason.

This article shows the records of every current NFL head coach (excluding first-timers) in every week of the preseason for their entire careers. Using this information, we can get a better idea of how coaches approach these three weeks and place our bets accordingly. 

Keep in mind this is the second season in which there are just three preseason games instead of four. 

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Head Coach Preseason Betting Records

Coach ATS Record Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4
Bill Belichick 43-39-6 (52.4%) 12-7-3 12-10 9-12-1 9-10-2
Andy Reid 41-42-4 (49.4%) 8-11-2 12-8-1 11-11 10-10-1
John Harbaugh 37-15 (71.1%) 12-1 7-6 9-4 9-3
Pete Carroll 36-20 (64.2%) 7-7 8-6 11-3 9-4
Mike Tomlin 28-29-1 (49.1%) 7-6-1 6-8 7-7 6-7
Dennis Allen 4-8 (33.3%) 1-2 1-2 1-2 1-2
Mike McCarthy 26-28-2 (48.1%) 6-8 10-4 6-7-1 4-8-1
Josh McDaniels 3-5 (37.5%) 1-1 0-2 1-1 1-1
Ron Rivera 19-19-1 (50.0%) 6-4 4-6 3-6-1 6-3
Todd Bowles 8-8 (50.0%) 3-1 1-3 2-2 2-2
Sean McDermott 10-5 (66.6%) 2-2 3-1 2-2 3-0
Sean McVay 8-6-1 (57.1%) 1-3 3-0-1 3-1 1-2
Frank Reich 7-3-1 (70.0%) 1-1-1 2-1 2-1 2-0
Kyle Shanahan 7-7-1 (50.0%) 2-2 1-2-1 3-1 1-2
Mike Vrabel 4-6-1 (40.0%) 2-1 1-2 0-2-1 1-1
Zac Taylor 3-4 (42.8%) 1-1 2-0 0-2 0-1
Robert Saleh 2-1 (66.6%) 1-0 1-0 0-1 0-0
Lovie Smith 21-22-2 (48.8%) 3-8 7-3-1 5-6 6-5
Brandon Staley 2-1 (66.6%) 1-0 1-0 0-1 0-0
Matt LaFleur 2-5 (28.5%) 1-1 0-2 0-2 1-0
Kliff Kingsbury 2-4 (33.3%) 2-0 0-2 0-1 0-1
Doug Pederson 8-8 (50.0%) 1-3 3-1 2-2 2-2
Kevin Stefanski 2-1 (66.6%) 1-0 0-1 1-0 0-0
Dan Campbell 1-2 (33.3%) 0-1 1-0 0-1 0-0
Matt Rhule 1-1-1 (50.0%) 0-0-1 0-1 1-0 0-0
Arthur Smith 0-3 (0.0%) 0-1 0-1 0-1 0-0
Nick Sirianni 1-2 (33.3%) 0-1 0-1 1-0 0-0

NFL Coaching Preseason Records

Baltimore’s John Harbaugh and Buffalo’s Sean McDermott stand out immediately as the only coaches in the league with a winning percentage against the spread of more than 70 percent. 

Harbaugh-coached teams have been a virtual lock in Week 1 of the preseason, with a 12-1 record speaking to how ready his teams are for their first action. He is also a very strong 9-4 in the crucial third preseason game.

As for McDermott, while his record is impressive, it should be noted he is just 2-2 in the third preseason game and 3-0 in the “meaningless” Week 4 preseason game that no longer exists. Take his record with a grain of salt when betting on the NFL preseason this year.

 

At the other end of the spectrum, longtime head coaches Bill Belichick and Andy Reid don’t seem to put much stock in the preseason. Neither coach has a particularly sparkling record overall and they are .500 or worse in the Week 3 preseason tune-up.

Pete Carroll is another interesting study here as his record is average in the first two weeks of the preseason and then spikes to 11-3 in Week 3.