NFC North Q&A: Who is on the hottest seat in the division?

Jim Caldwell, who has an 18-15 mark in two seasons with the Lions, has to impress a new GM this season. AP Photo/Matt Dunham

Today’s question: Which player, coach or general manager is on the hottest seat in the NFC North?

Rob Demovsky, Green Bay Packers reporter: Teddy Bridgewater: The Vikings have just about everything a Super Bowl-contending team needs: Playmakers on all three levels of their defense, a seemingly unstoppable running back and a master tactician as a head coach. But do they have the quarterback? Entering his third season, Bridgewater has yet to answer that question in the affirmative. His career numbers -- 28 touchdowns, 21 interceptions and a 7.2-yard average per attempt -- suggest he might never be anything more than a game-manager. The Vikings might need more from him than that.

Jeff Dickerson, Chicago Bears reporter: Jim Caldwell. Honestly, I’m surprised Caldwell is still the Lions' coach after owner Martha Ford fired team president Tom Lewand and general manager Martin Mayhew. New Detroit general manager, Bob Quinn, wants to hire his own guy, and that likely isn’t Caldwell. From a record perspective, Caldwell is 18-15 in two seasons in Detroit. That is commendable. But the life expectancy for head coaches when the team changes general managers is a short one. Just ask Lovie Smith. The third-most successful coach in Bears’ franchise history, Smith was fired one year into Phil Emery’s tenure as Chicago’s general manager, despite Smith’s team finishing 10-6 in 2013. Be careful, Jim. There could be another Marc Trestman lurking around the corner in Detroit.

Minnesota Vikings reporter: Caldwell. The Lions might have saved their coach’s job by winning six of their last eight games last season, but after an awful start that forced the team to change offensive coordinators in the middle of the season, Caldwell will have to put a steadier product on the field this year. He’ll have to do it without Calvin Johnson, and he'll go on the road three times in the first four weeks with a team that lost its first four away from Ford Field last season. He has to impress a new GM this season, not to mention an ownership group that’s hungry for a winner. There is little doubt it’s a make-or-break year for him.

Michael Rothstein, Detroit Lions reporter: I’d be a little stunned if this isn’t the across-the-board answer with my colleagues, but it has to be Caldwell. Quinn spent a week after he was hired in January evaluating Caldwell before choosing to keep him. So it has to be win-or-else for Caldwell in 2016, considering Caldwell was not the guy Quinn hired and this is a team transitioning out of the Calvin Johnson era, with quarterback Matthew Stafford likely due a big extension before the 2017 season. If Caldwell wins and Stafford progresses, Caldwell will likely be in good shape. But if he doesn’t win this season, the Lions could go a different coaching direction in 2017.