June 23, 2024

Top 10 Highest-Paid NFL Coaches in 2023-24

top ten highest-paid NFL coaches 2023-2024 bar chart
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It goes without saying that behind every great American football team, there’s a great coach. Many of the ten coaches on this list represent what it means to be a great NFL mentor and are remunerated accordingly. Let’s learn more about them.

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10. Mike Vrabel

Earnings, 2023: $9.5 million

The first salary touchdown on our list is scored by the Cleveland Browns consultant Mike Vrabel. Although he’s currently working with the Ohio team as a coaching and personnel consultant (as of March 2024), Vrabel was previously the head coach for the Tennessee Titans for five years (2018-2023).

He was named AP Coach of the Year in the 2021-2022 season but was fired by the Titans in January 2024. Although Vrabel failed to get the Titans to the Super Bowl as the coach, he was on the winning team three times as the New England Patriots linebacker in 2002, 2004, and 2005.

Despite his exit from the Titans in early 2024, Vrabel earned a substantial sum of $9.5 million in 2023. He has a reported net worth of $12 million.

9. Josh McDaniels

Earnings, 2023: $10 million

In ninth place, we’ve got the New England Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels. McDaniels has been in coaching since graduating college. He worked with the Patriots (2001-2008 and 2011-2021), the Denver Broncos (2009-2010), the St Louis Rams (2011), and the Las Vegas Raiders (2022-2023). He was fired by the Raiders in November 2023 and received very negative ratings by the NFLPA.

Despite these negative ratings, McDaniels brought the Patriots to six Super Bowl wins during the 14 non-consecutive seasons when he was the offensive coordinator. He’s reported to have made $10 million in 2023 and has an estimated net worth of $6 million.

8. Kyle Shanahan

top ten highest-paid coaches
Source: Sportico

Earnings, 2023: $10 million

Another coach on our list who went into coaching rather than playing American football is the San Francisco 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan. Shanahan started his career as an assistant coach for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2004 and subsequently became a WR coach for the Houston Texans in 2006.

Following that, he went on to coach the Washington team in 2010 and then be the offensive coordinator for the Cleveland Browns in 2014, the Atlanta Falcons in 2015, and the head coach for the 49ers in 2017. Shanahan is contracted to be with them until 2027 after signing an extension to his contract in 2023.

Shanahan’s 2023 salary is on par with Josh McDaniels’ – he made $10 million that year. His net worth is believed to be $16 million.

7. John Harbaugh

Earnings, 2023: $12 million

Number seven on our list comes from a dynasty of American football coaches, which includes his father and twin brother. John Harbaugh began his coaching career as an assistant for the Philadelphia Eagles team coach in 1998 and, after several promotions, went on to become the Baltimore Ravens head coach in 2008. He’s with them to this day, having signed a contract extension in 2022 until 2025.

According to Statista, Harbaugh earned $12 million in 2023, and he currently has an estimated net worth of $40 million.

6. Andy Reid

NFL coaches who won the most games bar chart
Source: Statista

Earnings, 2023: $12 million

The sixth coach in our ranking is currently in charge of the team that has won the last two Super Bowls. Kansas City Chiefs head coach Andy Reid started as a college player but transitioned to coaching as the Green Bay Packers’ Assistant in 1992.

He went on to coach the Philadelphia Eagles from 1999 to 2012 and then took the job with the Chiefs in 2013.

Reid’s income in 2023 was on par with Harbaugh’s, amounting to $12 million. He is reported to have a net worth of $35 million.

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5. Mike Tomlin

Earnings, 2023: $12.5 million

Kicking off our top five highest-earning NFL coaches is the youngest head coach to ever win the Super Bowl. Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin led his team to victory in Super Bowl XLIII, in addition to two final appearances.

Prior to joining the Pennsylvania franchise in 2007, Tomlin was the defensive backs coach for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2001-2005) and defensive coordinator for the Minnesota Vikings (2006)

In 2023, Tomlin’s earnings were around $12.5 million. According to Sportskeeda, his net worth is approximately $16 million.

4. Sean McVay

Earnings, 2023: $14 million

The youngest NFL team coach today is number four on our list. The Los Angeles coach Sean McVay, who’s behind the “Sean McVay effect,” is only 38, and he became the head coach of the California team in 2017 when he was only 30.

Although McVay played football in college, he chose to pursue a coaching career, starting off as an assistant WR coach with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2008 and then as WR/quality control coach for the Florida Tuskers.

What followed was an eight-year stint with the Washington team until 2017. In his tenure as the Rams coach, McVay led the team to two Super Bowls and one win.

McVay made a whopping $14 million in 2023. His estimated net worth is approximately $40 million.

3. Pete Carroll

Earnings, 2023: $15 million

One of the oldest coaches on the list is Pete Carroll, aged 72. Before stepping down from his coaching position in January, he served as the head coach for the Seattle Seahawks for fourteen seasons and led them to their only Super Bowl title (XLVIII).

Before joining the Seahawks franchise in 2010, Carroll was the head coach for the USC Trojans for 10 years.

In terms of his earnings in 2023 before his stepping down, Carroll made $15 million. His reported net worth is $50 million.

2. Sean Payton

highest-paid sports coaches, North America
Source: Statista

Earnings, 2023: $18 million

Although he initially announced his retirement in 2022, Sean Payton subsequently took up the head coach role for the Denver Broncos in January 2023. He has had a career spanning many years and clubs, including several seasons with the New Orleans Saints (2006-2011 and 2013-2021) and a few seasons with the New York Giants, Dallas Cowboys, and Philadelphia Eagles.

Payton’s salary for 2023 amounted to $18 million. He is believed to have a net worth of around $24 million.

1. Bill Belichick

Earnings, 2023: $20 million

The highest-paid NFL coach today is Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots. Having been their coach for 24 seasons, Belichick led the team to their Super Bowl titles.

Overall, the coach won eight Super Bowl titles in total during his tenure, six of which belonged to the Patriots and two to the New York Giants. Before the year 2000, when Belichick started working with the Patriots, he spent 11 seasons with the New York Giants (1979-1990), six years with the Cleveland Browns, and three years with the New York Jets.

Belichick is not only the highest-paid NFL coach but also the highest-paid coach for all sports franchises in the US, including the NBA and the NCAAF. In 2023, he reportedly made $20 million. He has a net worth of $70 million.

Who Are the Lowest-Paid NFL Coaches?

top five lowest-paid NFL coaches 2023-2024
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According to a report by Sportskeeda, the lowest-paid NFL coach in 2023 was the Cleveland Browns coach Kevin Stefanski. The Ohio team’s coach joined them in 2020 and only made $3.5 million in 2023.

As you can see from the infographic above, the other relatively low-paid NFL coaches are Mike McCarthy of the Dallas Cowboys ($4 million), Zac Taylor of the Cincinnati Bengals ($4.5 million), Robert Saleh of the New York Jets ($5 million), and Matt LaFleur of the Green Bay Packers ($5 million).

Which NFL Team Pays Their Coaches the Most?

Since Bill Belichick is the highest-paid NFL coach today, we can presume that the New England Patriots pay their coaches the most. However, that can always change, especially given the Kansas City Chiefs’ current winning streak.

Average NFL Coach Salary

According to the analysis by The Sports Geek, an average NFL coach earns $6.6 million per annum.

Although that’s higher than the salary of an average NFL player, an average NFL head coach would have to work for 12.7 years to match the earnings of the richest NFL player of 2023, Patrick Mahomes ($84.3 million).

Final Thoughts

NFL coaches are a big reason for the success and failure of the American football teams. For that reason, their skills and remuneration are a big driving force behind the success of America’s favorite pastime – and the coaches featured in this guide are a true testament to that.

With Bill Belichick as the richest NFL coach, we expect the New England Patriots to have a lot of success in the upcoming NFL season. However, we’re also aware that other teams listed are strong contenders, such as Andy Reid’s Kansas City Chiefs and Mike Tomlin’s Pittsburgh Steelers.

Sources

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