Cooking and coaching. The parallels are easy to see. In each your goal is to gather various ingredients and blend them together into a cohesive presentation. In both endeavors you have tiers of excellence with clear delineation. Once a level is gained it must be defended or one days success can easily become the next days failure.
Both careers demand a wide range of skills one must master in order to be considered the best. A true chef has an incredible palate. This is a primary tool they use in order to select the absolute best ingredients they can get their hands on which is a never ending search. Finding assistants is next on the list as Chefs constantly seek those they can work successfully with in the heat of the kitchen. The best also have a vision for their creation. The build their dish with the utmost care and passion. In the end they must put it all together while the clock ticks off seconds. The final result can be beautiful.
Is a NFL Head Coach much different? The good ones know a football player when they see one. “Their kind of guys.” They gather these individuals each year and hold them close. Over the years they build a crew of coaches that share their viewpoints on football and can handle the heat of the game. The best have a clear vision of what they want to create on the field. They also build their creation with the utmost care and passion. On game day they operate under the glare of the lights and the tic of the clock. The final results can indeed be beautiful.
There are common truisms that run through both.
- Get great ingredients/players and let them speak for themselves
- Though a master can do anything the best generally keep it simple
- A good chef/coach can take common ingredients/players and make them better
- A bad chef/coach spoils the flavor/skills of the ingredients/players
When you look at Fisher’s body of work with the Oilers/Titans I’m a huge fan. Steve McNair, Eddie George, the Music City Miracle and an appearance in Super Bowl XXXIV where they lost to the Greatest Show on Turf the (then) St. Louis Rams. Ahh how the worm turns.
The Rams hired Fisher in 2012 and after shepherding the Oilers from Texas to Tennessee he is now the man doing the same for the Rams as he guides the club from St. Louis to Los Angeles. That’s a great storyline but this is a football team and it’s the product on the field that ultimately matters.
Coach Fisher has done a masterful job assembling talent for the club in my opinion. RB Todd Gurley, QB Jared Goff, DL Donald Aaron, Michael Brockers, Robert Quinn, LB’s Mark Barron, Alec Ogletree and a pretty nasty group of DB’s. That’s a lot of talent that doesn’t even count a speedy group of WR’s that should get better now that an actual QB is on the team.
Kudos to Fisher on gathering talent. Not having a winning record since he’s been the Rams Head Coach is what I want to talk about.
Fisher took over a team with little to no direction in 2012 and the makeover was needed. It has gone slower then expected. Having to wait a year to get hard nosed defensive coordinator Gregg Williams didn’t help. Not having a QB that could distinguish between the other teams jersey and their own was to difficult to overcome. I get that.
Nick Foles is in limbo and that’s a good place for him to be. Jared Goff has looked good so far but is still a rookie. Sean Mannion, Case Keenum and Dylan Thompson round out the veterans vying for playing time but I just don’t see them as better options than the rook.
To be frank, it may be another losing season. The defense is scary on paper and could mesh well with a ground first game that protects a rookie QB by not asking them to do much. It may be a lot to ask of a team to eek out a winning season with a rookie QB but that’s the goal for the Rams in 2016.
The prime ingredients are there. The assistant coaches are in the fold. Sure I realize the team is moving cities this year. It’s time to prove Fisher is still a Chef and has not regressed to line cook. He needs to put together a game plan that can allow his rookie QB to shine. He’s done it before with the Titan’s and Vince Young. However 2016 is the year Coach Fisher needs to get his Michelin star as a Rams Head Coach. I think he can do it.
What say you Sports Nation?
Another Left Coast Sports Post: on Twitter – Steven Van Over