CBS Sports points to Eagles OC Brian Johnson as team’s biggest offensive X-factor entering 2023
With the exception of two starters (RB Miles Sanders and RG Isaac Seumalo), the majority of the Eagles high-flying offensive attack from last year will return for the 2023 season.
Throughout the offseason, Howie Roseman did a solid job replacing both Sanders and Seumalo. After Miles inked a four-year, $25.4M contract with Carolina, the Eagles brought in Rashaad Penny and D’Andre Swift for the combined price of roughly $2.9M for this year. Without Seumalo in the fold, the team already had last year’s second-round pick, Cam Jurgens, in line to take his place, along with drafting OG Tyler Steen in this year’s NFL Draft for good measure.
You’d be hard pressed to find any holes on the Eagles offensive depth chart. From the line to skill position players, Philly is loaded with talent.
The only legitimate question mark for the Eagles offense is with their new offensive coordinator, former QBs coach Brian Johnson. Once Shane Steichen left to become Indianapolis’ new head coach, Johnson was promptly promoted to OC duties, and HC Nick Sirianni didn’t waste any time naming him the offensive play caller as well.
Johnson is, without a doubt, the team’s biggest offensive x-factor entering the 2023 season. CBS Sports’ Jared Dubin agrees. After looking at all 32 teams and pinpointing each team’s biggest offensive x-factor, he pointed to Brian Johnson as the Eagles primary x-factor.
Dubin on Johnson being the Eagles’ biggest offensive x-factor:
“In 2021, the Eagles’ offense took off when then-new head coach Nick Sirianni gave up play-calling duties to focus more on holistic game management, allowing Shane Steichen to take over. The pivot to a run-heavy attack allowed the Eagles to build an efficient offense, which propelled them to the playoffs. Last year, Steichen helped Jalen Hurts evolve as a passer, and the offense hit even higher heights. Johnson was the quarterbacks coach during that run, and he obviously played a significant role in Hurts’ development. Now, though, he’s the coordinator and the play-caller. And that’s a new wrinkle. If he hits the ground running, things will run smoothly. If not, there may be some kinks to work out throughout the season.”
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We know what we’re going to get from nearly every player on the Eagles offense; we can’t say the same for Johnson right now.
There are going to be some growing pains right off the bat, but given the fact that Johnson has been here since Sirianni came to town should help. While Steichen gets a lot of credit for developing Jalen Hurts into an MVP candidate – and Justin Herbert before him – Johnson certainly played a role as well as Hurts’ positional coach.
Even though the Eagles offense was putting up record stats in 2022, their offensive attack wasn’t overly complicated. Steichen did a great job of playing into each of his players’ strengths, which has been the mantra for the Sirianni-led Eagles ever since he became the head man. This philosophy won’t change under Johnson; even if the offensive schematics look a bit different.
It’s also important to note that Johnson and Hurts have a longstanding relationship that dates back well before their days with the Eagles. Johnson understands what Hurts can do effectively, and he likely has a vast understanding of how to get the most out of QB1.
Johnson’s success as the Eagles offensive coordinator is not a full-out guarantee, but he’s in a great position to succeed here with the talent as his disposal.
Mandatory Credit: ESPN