Eagles Head Coach Tracker: A Look at all 11 Potential Candidates Currently on the Table
Since Doug Pederson was fired nine days ago, the Philadelphia Eagles have gathered a comprehensive list of head coach candidates. Currently there are 11 coaches in consideration for the job. Jeffery Lurie and Howie Roseman are leading the search, conducting their interviews down in Florida. With new candidates popping up left and right each day, I have compiled a full list of who is still in consideration.
Duce Staley (Eagles Running Backs Coach)
The former Eagles running back and current coach is the top choice to promote from within the organization. Several current and former players like Malcolm Jenkins and Brandon Graham have voiced their support for Duce publicly. Staley has been a coach with the Eagles for ten years now, working under Andy Reid, Chip Kelly, and Doug Pederson.
In 2018 Duce was promoted to assistant head coach and helped develop several running backs for the Eagles. If the Eagles want their organization to stay consistent and have the players’ trust, Duce is the top choice.
Eric Bieniemy (Chiefs Offensive Coordinator)
Fans and analysts across the NFL have Bieniemy as a top candidate for vacancies over the league for two seasons now. Another disciple from the Andy Reid tree, Eric is the Chiefs current offensive coordinator and has held the job since 2018.
Bieniemy’s most significant accomplishments are winning Super Bowl 54 and the development of superstar quarterback Patrick Mahomes. Being the play-caller for the Chiefs, Eric helped their offense look virtually unstoppable, ranking first in passing offense in 2020. They’ve had excellent play design and execution with no weaknesses to target. Bieniemy has been a part of the Eagles organization before, playing under Reid back in 1999. Philadelphia has yet to interview Bieniemy, but they have submitted a request to the Chiefs.
Chiefs quarterback coach Mike Kafka was another name tossed around in earlier reports. Since then, his name is no longer mentioned to be a candidate for the head coach job. There are rumblings by some that Kafka could be a choice to be offensive coordinator though.
Josh McDaniels (Patriots Offensive Coordinator)
Arguably the most controversial amongst the fanbase is Josh McDaniels. Josh is considered by many to be the front runner for the job. On Sunday, McDaniels flew down to Florida to interview, and it was reported to have lasted nearly all day. The Patriots offensive coordinator has been with the team since 2012 and previously from 2005 to 2008. In between, Josh was the head coach for the Denver Broncos before being fired for taping a 49ers practice. His most considerable plus is being a quarterback whisperer.
Tom Brady reported to McDaniels for 12 years of his career, with the duo winning six Super Bowls together. Besides Brady, McDaniels helped Kyle Orton and Matt Cassel have career-defining seasons, both throwing well over 3,000 yards under his coaching. In New England, McDaniels helped with Jimmy Garoppolo and Jacoby Brissett’s development while they were backups.
Todd Bowles (Buccaneers Defensive Coordinator)
The Buccaneers defensive coordinator conducted his interview virtually with the team on Monday. Tampa allowed the fewest yards per game in 2020 and led in several other categories. Beforehand, Bowles was the head coach of the New York Jets from 2015 to 2018. During that span, they held a record of 24-40. A Temple graduate, Bowles is yet another coach from the Andy Reid tree. Under Reid, he was a defensive backs coach for the Eagles in 2012.
Nick Sirianni (Colts Offensive Coordinator)
The first coach from the Frank Reich tree? Currently, Sirianni is the Indianapolis Colts offensive coordinator under the former Eagles coach. During their three seasons together, they have undergone drastic quarterback changes. Going from Andrew Luck, to Jacoby Brissett, and now Philip Rivers. Despite that, the Colts have thrived under these two, holding a 28-20 record with a playoff appearance this year. The Eagles conducted their interview with Sirianni yesterday. Some reports have stated that Sirianni’s name has moved towards the top of the list following their interview.
Kellen Moore (Cowboys Offensive Coordinator)
Dallas is usually the last place you would expect the Eagles to go looking for a coach. But for Moore, his resume is impressive. The Cowboys current play-caller has had an impressive track record the last two seasons. Under Moore, Dak Prescott grew tremendously before being hurt earlier this season.
Even with a depleted offense Dallas was still able to effectively function. Their passing game was ranked eighth in the league and their total offense was 14th. For a team missing their quarterback and entire offensive line, that’s impressive. Philadelphia isn’t the only one calling for him though. Boise State called inquiring about Moore last month for their open head coach position. Enticing as it was, Moore turned down the offer and signed an extension with the Cowboys instead. Kellen had his interview with the Eagles yesterday.
John Fassel (Cowboys Special Teams Coordinator)
Kellen Moore isn’t the only Cowboys coach in consideration for the job. According to Marcus Hayes, the Eagles have an interest in their special teams coordinator, John Fassel. Going from special teams to head coach is an often rare jump, but Fassel has done it before. In 2016 with the Los Angeles Rams, Fassel succeeded Jeff Fisher after his firing, going 0-3 to end the season.
Fassel is considered one of the best special teams coordinators in the league over the last decade. If any special teams coordinator were to be considered, it would be Fassel. The Eagles special teams units were downright horrible this season and this would provide a much needed boost. He’s also the son of former New York Giants head coach Jim Fassel.
Joe Brady (Panthers Offensive Coordinator)
The youngest name on this list, Brady has quickly worked his way up the ranks. The 31-year-old made the jump from LSU to the pros this offseason. He joined the Carolina Panthers as their offensive coordinator this summer joining new coach Matt Rhule. Before this, Brady was the passing game coordinator for the Tigers. Joe was a large part of their historic run in 2019. He coached young stars like Joe Burrow, Justin Jefferson, and Ja’Marr Chase. Brady is one of the flashier names, but some think he isn’t ready yet for that next jump just yet.
Jerod Mayo (Patriots Inside Linebackers Coach)
Mayo was one of the first names to be called in to talk with the Eagles following Pederson’s departure. The 34-year-old has been with the Patriots as a player and coach since 2008, playing his entire career there. In 2019 Mayo returned after a four-year absence to coach inside linebackers for the Patriots. Another young candidate, Mayo, has had over a decade of experience under one of the NFL greats in Bill Belichick. While being another exciting name, Jerod has only been a coach for two seasons. With that, he has nowhere near the experience to take over a locker room just yet.
Brian Daboll (Bills Offensive Coordinator)
The Buffalo Bills are in the middle of a dominant run. The Bills are currently waiting to take on the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC championship on Sunday. In the last few years, they possess one of the NFL’s best defenses, but their offense grew drastically this season. Josh Allen put together an MVP season and looks to be amongst the NFL’s best. A large part of this goes to Bills offensive coordinator Brian Daboll.
Daboll has been with the Bills since 2018 and previously was the offensive coordinator for the Alabama Crimson Tide. The Bills OC has over 20 years of NFL coaching experience being the offensive coordinator for four different teams. It looked like Daboll was a lock for the Chargers head coaching job, but LA passed on him for Brandon Staley.
Dennis Allen (Saints Offensive Coordinator)
Another defensive-minded coach, Allen’s season ended on Sunday with a loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The New Orleans Saints’ defensive coordinator has helped put together some dominant groups over the last five years. The Saints defense was ranked in the top five for fewest yards per game in rushing and passing this season. They were also fifth in fewest points per game. Before landing in New Orleans, Allen was the head coach of the Oakland raiders from 2012 to 2014, with an unimpressive 11-37 record. Allen is talking with the Eagles sometime today.
The Houston Texans are the only remaining team without a head coach besides the Eagles. Philadelphia’s list is likely to continue to grow over the coming days. Many have criticized the amount of interviews they’ve held. I see it as a thorough search to make sure they end with the best candidate for the job.
Mandatory Credit: Mark Brown Getty Images