Fans pay to see players, not coaches

Former GM Randy Mueller tackles questions on "superstar coaches," Darrell Russell, the Falcons and more.

Updated: November 4, 2003, 2:31 PM ET
By Randy Mueller | NFL Insider
Each week, former NFL general manager Randy Mueller will answer questions from Insiders. To send in a question, click the link beneath his byline.

It's talked about all the time, how the NFL has increasingly become a coaches league and somewhat less of a players league. And when you look at the difference Bill Parcells, Bill Belichick and Jon Gruden have made in their franchises, it's easy to see why. The Bengals without Cory Dillion still have Marvin Lewis' intensity, for example. How important do you think this consideration is in relation to the concept of the indispensable player? Thanks.
-- Jerod

You bring up some very valid points. You can count these types of coaches on one hand. The components that these guys bring to the table are what is the key. Their ability to lead, communicate, motivate and adapt to the changes of the business are elements that separate the great ones from the good ones. I think the key to any franchise is its leadership at the top. It starts with an owner who knows his own strengths and weaknesses and trickles down to its GM and head coach. Having said this, though, I still believe it's a players league and that's why the fans pay their money. The great throws, the great catches, the big hits, all are made by the players and not the coaches. That's what makes the NFL the best thing going. It's the ultimate team sport and coaches are giant part of the "team".