Bill Parcells, in 19 seasons as a head coach in the National Football League, experienced just five losing seasons. Four times he took struggling teams and turned them into winners. Parcells-led teams have finished in either first or second place in their division 11 times.
In 1983 Parcells assumed the head coaching reins of a New York Giants team that had just one winning season in its previous 10 years. After a 3-12-1 season in his first year, the Giants made the postseason as a wild-card team the next two years. Each time the eventual Super Bowl champions eliminated the vastly improved Giants from the playoffs. In 1986, however, the Giants finished 14-2 and capped the year with a victory over the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl XXI.
After a two-year absence, the Giants returned to the playoffs in 1989 as NFC Eastern Division champions. In 1990 the team captured its second Lombardi Trophy with a dramatic 20-19 victory over the Buffalo Bills in Super Bowl XXV.
Parcells, citing health concerns, left the sidelines for a two-year stint in television. He returned to coaching in 1993 when he took over the struggling New England Patriots who were fresh off of a 2-14 record and were on a four-year skid of losing seasons. Within two years Parcells coached the team to a 10-6 mark and its first playoff game in eight years. Two seasons later the Patriots posted an 11-5 record and won the AFC championship to earn a berth in Super Bowl XXXI.
Parcells’ third head coaching job came in 1997 with the New York Jets who had gone eight seasons without a winning record and had a 1-15 mark in 1996. The team, with Parcells improved to 9-7 in his first season at the helm. The following year he guided New York to a 12-4 record and the Jets advanced to the AFC championship game. It was the Jets first division championship since 1969 and the best two-year turnaround of an 1-15 team in the history of the NFL.
His final stint as a head coach in the NFL came with the Dallas Cowboys from 2003-06. He led the team to playoff appearances twice during that tenure.
Parcells compiled an overall record of 172-130-1 in the regular season and 11-8 in the playoffs. He was named NFL Coach of the Year in 1986 and 1994.
1986 New York Giants (NFC Eastern Division, NFC, Super Bowl XXI champions)
1989 New York Giants (NFC Eastern Division champions)
1990 New York Giants (NFC Eastern Division, NFC, Super Bowl XXV champions)
1996 New England Patriots (AFC Eastern Division, AFC champions)
1998 New York Jets (AFC Eastern Division champions)
1986 NFC – New York Giants 17, Washington Redskins 0
1990 NFC – New York Giants 15, San Francisco 49ers 13
1996 AFC – New England Patriots 20, Jacksonville Jaguars 6
1998 AFC – Denver Broncos 23, New York Jets 10
Super Bowl XXI – New York Giants 39, Denver Broncos 20
Super Bowl XXV – New York Giants 20, Buffalo Bills 19
Super Bowl XXXI – Green Bay Packers 35, New England Patriots 21
(at time of his retirement following 2006 season)
Super Bowl Records
• [Tied for 3rd] Most Games, Winning Team – 2 (XXI, XXV)
NFL Coach of the Year
• 1986 (PFWA, AP, SN, PW)
• 1994 (PFWA, AP, PW, MX)
AFC Coach of the Year
• 1994 (UPI)
NFC Coach of the Year
• 1986 (UPI)