players being happy isn't all that matters. results are all that matters. winning is more important. you can be on a team with a great guy for a coach and still be losing, but hey...if the players are happy then its all good.
oh...and rivera knowing his job on the line or feeling the pressure won't make him better at his job. i mean it can, but it can also make him paranoid about making mistakes to the point that he suffers from paralysis from analysis and has no confidence in his playcalling and game management and he coaches scared and plays it safe or tries to instead of being bold when he should.
for a person who is prone to making bad decisions, putting the pressure on him may just make those decisions worse or compound the problem. i think he'll work hard, just like the rest of the coaches, but working hard doesn't always equal performing well.
I think the irony of Rivera and everything you're saying is this:
He admitted to reporters, that maybe he should have hired some one with head coach experience. Obviously he said this, due to his myriad on field and off field failures (Read Option emphasis with Chud; staying with non-producing vets; poor time, game, situational decision making, while coaching scared or not to lose most of the year, etc.).
Nonetheless, he hires an OC (and fills his SP coach), with someone with no HC experience, though two of his top candidates did. So now Rivera feels he's fit, ready for the job in 2013?
He's either very confident; very stupid; quite forgetful; knows something we don't know, or set up to fail (by Gettleman)?