With many NFL head coach vacancies now filled, attention has focused on the opening with the Philadelphia Eagles. The Eagles started their search later than other teams after taking time to review the position of former head coach Doug Pederson. The latest names to come to the forefront in Philadelphia are Josh McDaniels and Nick Sirianni, both of whom PFN Insider Benjamin Allbright discussed on the January 19th edition of PFN Weekly.
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The Eagles head coach role has been a rollercoaster story since the season ended
In the build-up to Week 17, the stories coming out of Philadelphia were that Eagles head coach Doug Pederson was safe. However, following their primetime Sunday Night Football game and the discussion that followed, Pederson’s role came back under sharp review.
A week after the Eagles’ regular season game, stories began to circulate that if Pederson’s meeting with owner Jeffrey Lurie did not go to plan, that Pederson could be out as head coach. That is exactly what materialized, and Pederson was fired on January 11th.
The coaching search for the Eagles has not been smooth
The Eagles have requested interviews with a wide range of potential head coaches. However, not everything has been smooth in the past couple of weeks, and Allbright discussed on PFN Weekly.
“The Eagles were hoping to land Arthur Smith, but knew that the Falcons were gonna be standing in the way. The Falcons got their guy the whole way so no surprise there.”
Once the Eagles’ interest in Smith became public knowledge, the Atlanta Falcons moved quickly to secure their target. Additionally, recent reports indicate that another top name in recent head coaching searches, Brian Daboll, voluntarily dropped out of the running for the role.
Who is in the frame to be the next head coach of the Philadephia Eagles?
Allbright also went into more detail about who the Eagles have pivoted towards recently in their head coach search.
“They’ve pivoted a bit on their search. They had an extensive interview with Josh McDaniels. Nick Sirianni I think is, I don’t want to say the frontrunner, but certainly one of the favored candidates there.”
It’s no surprise to hear that the Eagles are looking towards offensive-minded coaches. The organization wants a coach who believes he can help “fix” Carson Wentz, who the team has invested heavily in. Both of these coaches have long histories mentoring great quarterbacks in the NFL.
Josh McDaniels’ experience coaching Tom Brady will stand him in good stead
Allbright mentioned that the Eagles’ head coach interview with Patriots OC Josh McDaniels was extensive. McDaniels has been a candidate in nearly every NFL head coach hiring cycle in the past decade because of his work with the Patriots. In 12 of his 13 seasons with New England, the team has had a top-10 scoring offense.
Granted, Carson Wentz isn’t Brady. However, McDaniels has been regarded as a coach who will be tough on QBs. According to reports, that is what Carson Wentz needs the most.
There are several ties between Eagles’ owner Jeffrey Lurie, Eagles’ GM Howie Roseman, and Josh McDaniels. McDaniels has been highly regarded for over a decade around the league. He’s an unpopular candidate among fans, but the league seems to love how he coaches.
Nick Sirianni has worked with both Andrew Luck and Philip Rivers
Sirianni was not one of the most popular names in head coach circles, but there is support behind him, and the Eagles appear to have taken note. His time with the Colts under Frank Reich has produced some excellent offensive game plans. He’s helped shape the Colts’ identity on offense. He’s been an excellent positional coach in the past, including helping develop Keenan Allen into one of the game’s best receivers with the Chargers.
If Sirianni does end up as the Eagles’ head coach, he has plenty of connections to build a great staff with him. At just 37 years old, Sirianni is viewed as one of the game’s brightest offensive minds. If hired, he will likely draw plenty of comparisons to Rams’ head coach Sean McVay.
Whenever Sirianni has coached Philip Rivers, whether in a Chargers or Colts uniform, Rivers has enjoyed career years. Sirianni helped Andrew Luck return to the field after injury and helped guide Philip Rivers to a bounce-back season this year. If a team is looking for a young coach who has a track record of developing quarterbacks, Sirianni should be their guy.
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