ALAMEDA, Calif. -- Two of the top three coaches who received votes in our NFL Nation anonymous poll -- Which head coach would you most like to play for? -- are coaching in the biggest game of the year this weekend, the Super Bowl.
Seattle's Pete Carroll led the ESPN.com poll of more than 320 players with 71 votes (22.5 percent) while Denver's John Fox was third with 26 votes (7.8 percent). Pittsburgh's Mike Tomlin, who stepped on the field to, ahem, help his team defend a kick return, was second with 44 votes (13.8 percent).
In fact, 29 coaches received votes in the league-wide poll, which was conducted by all 32 of our NFL Nation reporters by asking 10 players on their respective beats, meaning three coaches did not garner a single ballot in their own locker room.
The rest of the top nine, then, after Fox: the New York Jets' Rex Ryan (23 votes), New England's Bill Belichick (23), Kansas City's Andy Reid (22), New Orleans' Sean Payton (21), the San Francisco's Harbaugh (16) and Baltimore's John Harbaugh (10).
And at least one NFL player initially voted for Jon Gruden, though the Monday Night Football analyst was not eligible since, well, he is not coaching at the moment.