Friday Night Lights: Coach Taylor’s Greatest MomentsPublished on December 16, 2015. Updated September 17, 2019
Friday Night Lights was a hard show to catch on to because of low viewer ratings, which caused a switch in networks and constant threat of cancellation, but fans who stuck through the show know it gave us one of television’s best characters, Coach Eric Taylor. Kyle Chandler made Eric Taylor much more than just another character on a show, and while the show as a whole may have struggled, it was not for lack of quality thanks to the realness of characters and the energy the actors put in them. In 2011 Chandler won the Primetime Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series and for good reason, he was amazing. Over the course of five seasons, Coach Taylor shared some of the best life advice and was the best coach, husband and father imaginable, and here are 10 of his best moments on Friday Night Lights.
10. Grammar Lessons
Coach Eric Taylor never had time for people not saying what they mean and his straightforward nature made some things awkward, especially when his daughter was dating his team’s quarterback, Matt Saracen. This also led to some hilarious interactions, including a grammar lesson for Matt.
Matt: “Look, I don’t want this whole thing to be awkward.”
Coach: “You don’t want what to be awkward?”
Matt: “This whole thing between Julie and I.”
Coach: “Julie and me.”
Coach: “It’s ‘Julie and me.’ It’s a common mistake. Go ahead.”
Matt: “Right. It’s just. Well, look, I’m kind of sensing that… I’m sensing that you have a problem with it.”
Coach: “You’re sensing right.”
9. His Daughter Dating
Before Matt and Julie became serious, Coach Taylor really didn’t seem to think too much of it, and in fact was just happy her romantic interests didn’t lay elsewhere.
Tami Taylor: “Well, I’m just saying, I think it’s becoming a thing. And you know what thing it is? It’s that think that we always knew was gonna happen to our little girl. It’s that think. That thing is happening now!”
Coach: “At least she’s not interested in a serial killer…or one of the Riggins.”
8. Building Character
Through his career, Coach Taylor had to deal with difficult kids who had their own difficult situations, but somehow he always knew how to get through to them.
Vince Howard: “Coach my dad just got out of prison. He’s staying with me in my house and I can’t stand him. My mom, she asked me to forgive him, to be better. And you’re asking me to be better. I don’t know how to be better because he never taught me how. He never taught me how to be better. He’s not around, and I’m supposed to be better.”
Coach: “Listen to me, I said you need to strive to be better, I didn’t say you needed to be better than everyone else. But you gotta try. That’s what character is. It’s in the trying.”
7. Being Champions
Coach Taylor firmly believed you have to work hard and earn your way, something he impressed upon his players, especially after they became complacent.
Coach: “If you think you’re champions because you wear the Panther uniform, YOU’RE WRONG! If you think you’re champions because they give you a free slice of pie at the diner, YOU’RE WRONG! You’re not a champion until you’ve earned it! Champions don’t complain! Champions don’t give up! Champions give 200%!”Source: NBC
6. Boys and Girls
While Coach Taylor showed a lot of tough love to his team, he was usually more sensitive when it came to his daughter, Julie Taylor. Some topics, however, need a straightforward delivery, and Eric Taylor will always tell you like it is.
Coach: “If you’re wondering if a boy is thinking about you, he’s not. He’s thinking about sex or he’s hungry. Those are the only two options.”Source: NBC
5. Any Moment With Tami
Tami: “Honey, are you jealous?”
Coach: “No I’m not jealous. I’m just asking a question.”
Tami: “That is adorable that you’re jealous.”
Coach: “You like that?”
4. On Losing Yourself
As a coach, Eric Taylor prided himself in forming his players into proper men, not just proper football players and as such, looked beyond simply winning and losing and always found an opportunity to offer words of wisdom.
Coach: Every man at some point is gonna lose a battle. He’s gonna fight and he’s gonna lose. But what makes him a man, is that in the midst of that battle he does not lose himself.”
3. Helping Tim
Dealing with Tim Riggins was particularly difficult for Coach Taylor, but he always knew how to help him in the best way possible, and what to say, especially following Riggins’ best friend Jason Street’s terrible accident on the field.
Coach: “It was an accident. It was not your fault. Look at me. I want you to let yourself off the hook, son.”Source: NBC
2. Helping Matt
One of the most perfectly scripted and acted episodes in the whole series was the season four episode, “The Son.” Both Zach Gilford and Kyle Chandler gave incredible performances, and one scene in particular is without a doubt one of the best moments for each character.
Matt: ” You don’t care about me! You left me for a better job! Your daughter left me for a better guy! Carlotta left me for Guatemala! My dad left me for a damn war! Everybody leaves me! What’s wrong with me?”
Coach: “There’s nothing wrong with you. There’s nothing wrong with you at all.”
1. Life’s Motto
Of course, there is the everlasting line that has stuck with fans forever.
Coach: “Clear eyes, full hearts, can’t lose.”Source: NBC