NFL Announces Team Nominees for 2017 Don Shula NFL High School Coach of the Year Award

NFL Communications

NFL Announces Team Nominees for 2017 Don Shula NFL High School Coach of the Year Award

Social Responsibility and Community Relations 2017 Regular English





The NFL announced today the high school football coaches nominated by the 32 NFL teams for the Don Shula NFL High School Coach of the Year Award. Representing the best at the high school level, these coaches were nominated for the national award, named for the winningest coach in NFL history, by NFL teams for their character and integrity, leadership and dedication to the community, commitment to player health and safety and on-field success.

"High school football coaches serve as role models for young athletes and their impact goes well beyond the playing field," said NFL Commissioner ROGER GOODELL. "We are proud to honor this year's nominees who embody the character, integrity and spirit of Coach Shula. Their commitment to improving the lives of students and developing young men of character is commendable."

Don Shula Award nominees from all 32 NFL teams will be invited and recognized in special ways during the NFL's week-long celebration of football at the 2018 Pro Bowl in Orlando. The coaches will participate in a special coaches' clinic, enjoy a VIP visit to Pro Bowl practices and attend the USA Football National Conference.

Two finalists will each receive $15,000 from the NFL Foundation, $10,000 of which will go to their high school's football program. The Don Shula Award winner will be announced during the 2018 Pro Bowl, airing Sunday, Jan. 28 at 3 PM ET on ESPN and ESPN Deportes and simulcast on ABC. The winner will be recognized and walk the red carpet at NFL Honors, a two-hour primetime awards special to air nationally on Feb. 3, the eve of Super Bowl LII, at 9 PM (ET and PT) on NBC. NFL Honors will be taped earlier that evening at the Cyrus Northrop Memorial Auditorium at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis.

The winner is selected by a panel of distinguished individuals which includes:

  • Pro Football Hall of Famer, Coach DON SHULA – the winningest coach in NFL history
  • 2016 Don Shula NFL Coach of the Year Award Winner RANDY ALLEN
  • Pro Football Hall of Fame President DAVID BAKER
  • Former Dallas Cowboys Personnel Director and contributor GIL BRANDT
  • Pro Football Hall of Famer, former Indianapolis Colts Coach and current NBC analyst TONY DUNGY
  • Executive Director of USA Football SCOTT HALLENBECK
  • 2x Super Bowl Champion (XLI, 50) PEYTON MANNING
  • Former Secretary of State, Senior Fellow on Public Policy at the Hoover Institution and faculty member at the Stanford Graduate School of Business CONDOLEEZZA RICE
  • Pro Football Hall of Famer, Super Bowl XLII Champion and Good Morning America correspondent MICHAEL STRAHAN
  • Aplington-Parkersburg High School Principal and son of the school's late football coach, Ed Thomas, AARON THOMAS
Below is a full list of the 2017 Don Shula NFL High School Coach of the Year nominees. For more information on the NFL Foundation, visit or follow @NFLFoundation on Twitter. ​

Arizona CardinalsSaguaro High SchoolJason Mohns
Atlanta FalconsNorth Gwinnett High SchoolBill Stewart
Baltimore RavensHarford Technical High SchoolTimothy Palmer
Buffalo BillsWest Seneca West High SchoolMike Vastola
Carolina PanthersClinton High SchoolAndrew Webb
Chicago BearsRochester High SchoolDerek Leonard
Cincinnati BengalsCovington Catholic High SchoolEddie Eviston
Cleveland BrownsBay High SchoolRon Rutt
Dallas CowboysFrisco Lone Star High SchoolJeffrey Rayburn
Denver BroncosPueblo South High SchoolRyan Goddard
Detroit LionsWarren De La Salle Collegiate High SchoolMike Giannone
Green Bay PackersKimberly High SchoolSteve Jones
Houston TexansOak Ridge High SchoolBrian Fitzgerald
Indianapolis ColtsBen Davis High SchoolMike Kirschner
Jacksonville JaguarsBartram Trail High SchoolDarrell Sutherland
Kansas City Chiefs* (Missouri)Staley High School Phil Lite
Kansas City Chiefs* (Kansas)DeSoto High School Brian King
Los Angeles ChargersCrenshaw High SchoolRobert Garrett
Los Angeles RamsMission Viejo High SchoolBob Johnson
Miami DolphinsAmerican Heritage SchoolPat Surtain
Minnesota VikingsSouth St. Paul Chad Sexauer
New England PatriotsDennis-Yarmouth Regional High SchoolPaul Funk
New Orleans SaintsWest St. John High SchoolBrandon Walters
New York GiantsNewton High SchoolMatt Parzero
New York JetsFranklin K. Lane Campus High SchoolJason Mollison
Oakland RaidersKennedy High SchoolGeorge Jackson
Philadelphia EaglesDownington High SchoolMichael Matta
Pittsburgh SteelersQuaker Valley High SchoolJerry Veshio
San Francisco 49ersGilroy High SchoolJubenal Rodriquez
Seattle SeahawksRoyal High SchoolWiley Allred
Tampa Bay BuccaneersCitrus High SchoolNate Varnadore
Tennessee TitansBrentwood AcademyCody White
Washington RedskinsDinwiddie High SchoolBilly Mills

*Indicates team has more than one nominee

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About The NFL Foundation: The National Football League Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to improving the lives of those touched by the game of football – from players at all levels to communities across the country. The NFL Foundation represents the 32 NFL clubs and supports the health, safety and wellness of athletes, youth football, and the communities that support our game. For more information on The NFL Foundation, visit:

About Play Football: Play Football is a year-round initiative celebrating youth and high school football. Play Football works to shape the football experience, advocate for safety, promote football values and connect football communities.  For more information, featured football stories, best practices and resources aimed to create a positive playing experience, please visit or follow @NFLPlayFootball. Join the conversation on social media using #LetsPlayFootball.

Media Contact:

Ana Blinder, NFL

Ellie Mills, FleishmanHillard