New Coach intangibles


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Dec 3, 2011
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Considering there seems to be a never ending list of new coach threads, I was a bit reluctant to start another one. The reason I am, is because the intangibles that a new coach brings is kind of discussed in other threads but only slightly piggybacking off of names, schemes etc.

What I really think John Schneider is looking for in a new coach is someone who he can have a good working relationship with. John was hired as GM by Pete. From most accounts they hit it off right from the start. The two of them seemed to work as one in many situations. I can’t think of any real dust up between JS and PC. Or at least none that were ever leaked to the public.

Can JS replicate the kind of relationship he had with Pete? There are lots of guys who share similarities in scheme, philosophy, Xs and Os, etc. Leadership varies between individuals and can be hard to differentiate in interviews, especially if one is looking at a potential HC with no experience. The easiest thing to determine in an interview setting usually is a connection with the person you are interviewing.

John most likely has his list and has it prioritized. His top candidates on paper very easily might not meet his expectations of connectedness. I feel very strongly that a connectedness between him and any potential HC candidate outweighs any other characteristics or intangibles a prospect might bring.

I come to this conclusion based on many years of hiring people for different positions. The last thing you want to do is hire someone with all the tools that is basically a tool themself. A potential hire doesn’t have to love the GM but they do need to have a good working relationship. Pete and John had that from the get go. I just don’t see JS saying, He’s a dick but let’s hire him anyway.”

If, as it appears, that they are planning to go with the old traditional model of an NFL front office where John the GM is clearly in charge of everything including player acquisitions, and the HC is directly under the GM in the corporate structure, then it’s paramount that the two have the best working relationship possible.

Based on this supposition, I think we are probably looking at a young up and comer. Whoever that is.


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May 10, 2009
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1. INNOVATIVE- must be able to constantly evolve to stay ahead of the curve.
2. CULTURE ORIENTED - must have a clear vision of all aspects of desired culture. Must have education and experience in Organizational Culture and a full toolbox of methods and skills to implement and guide it.
3. COMMUNICATOR - must be able to clearly communicate all concepts to "non-football people" and "football people" alike. Having an innovative vision is one thing, making others understand it is another.
4. EVALUATOR - must be able to evaluate coaching talent, to include their organizational culture fit and experience, their ability to inculcate and guide players in team culture, their ability to communicate schemes to players, and their ability to develop player skills in a supportive and educational manner. In the case of Coordinators, they must be able to perform all of these functions at a very high level in relation to their subordinate coaches.
5. PRIORITIZES WELL - must believe in his bones that the highest priority is the Seahawks. Loyalty to the team must take priority over loyalty to coaching staff or players.
6. NETWORKED - should have a multitude of contacts across the NFL to assist in evaluatinf and acquiring top-level coaching talent. JS has a network that will be useful, but any addition to this network by a HC candidate would be a valuable asset.


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Sep 4, 2010
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Cockeysville, Md


Those two things are the enemy John will be looking to correct through the strength of his next guy.

John wants a strong culture guy, someone he can work with, and a guy that through his own personality and the coordinators he brings in, runs a tight ship that can manage big, aggressive personalities.

This offseason, he was quoted saying that the mistake they made in drafts past was not getting guys with swag and with attitude. That profile was one that literally made the LOB, and thereafter was almost entirely absent. I'm sure that when it came to Pete, he embraced the culture he created (he's praised it again and again) but un doubtedly was frustrated at a team that became soft and undisciplined. Whether it was to appease Russ and his fragile confidence, or to not create potential criticism of Pete in the lockerroom (that Pete wouldnt stomp out by shear 'Man- Will') we just lost it. John wants that back.

You don't even have to read between the lines to see that.

And I woukdnt at all be surprised if he wants someone younger that HE can groom in the roll. Though I don't think it's a key factor, sitting under papa Pete for 14 years may have him itching to reverse the role.

Or he could just want someone who knows their sh!+, who he can work with and can get the job done, regardless of age.