Eagles should look at these nine potential replacements for Jim Schwartz

NFL: DEC 29 Falcons at Buccaneers
TAMPA, FL – DECEMBER 29: Atlanta Falcons head coach Dan Quinn during the first half of an NFL game between the Atlanta Falcons and the Tampa Bay Bucs on December 29, 2019, at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, FL. (Photo by Roy K. Miller/Icon Sportswire)

With the news that Jim Schwartz will be leaving the Eagles after this season to take a year off, it’s time to think about who should replace him.

I’ve been heavily critical of Schwartz, but truth be told, he was decent. He worked with Howie gave him, which wasn’t much. But his scheme became extremely predictable and easily solved by even the simplest offensive concepts.

It’s time to move on.

Who should you keep an eye on as candidates? Let’s take a look at in-house, outside the organization, and college.

Eagles Promotions

Marquand Manuel

Newcomer to the Eagles in 2020, Marquand Manuel had to develop a plethora of corners and safeties due to injuries. Manuel has always been a player favorite due to his ability to empathize with his players, and his energy with the Eagles this season seemed to have been infectious throughout the DB room.

He has defensive coordinator experience, as he was the DC for the Falcons in 2017 and 2018.

Matt Burke

Jim’s best friend will most likely get the largest look of the internal hires. Burke came to the Eagles in 2019 as a defensive assistant and was promoted to defensive line coach in 2020 following the firing of Phillip Daniels. This season, the defensive line already has more sacks than they did in 2019 with one more game to go.

Burke was defensive coordinator for the Dolphins in 2017 and 2018. Prior to becoming the DC, he was a long time LB coach.

Outside the Organization

Dan Quinn

Quinn was fired in the middle of the 2020 season as head coach of the Falcons after a 0-5 start. Despite coming from the Legion of Boom in 2013 and 2014, his defenses weren’t reminiscent of those days while he was with the Falcons. 2017 was the only year the defense was within the top ten, registering in the low teens or 20s every other year.

He has familiarity with Marquand Manuel, but it remains to be seen if any assistants stay on.

Quinn runs a 4-3.

Wade Phillips

Longtime NFL coach Wade Phillips would bring a whole lot of experience to the Eagles. Prior to taking off in 2020, Phillips was the defensive coordinator for the Rams. While the Rams defenses were never top tier, they were a very opportunistic bunch in fumble recoveries and interceptions.

Phillips was extremely successful in Denver and Houston, his two stops prior to the Rams.

He runs a 3-4.

DeMeco Ryans

Former Eagles linebacker should be a top the list of candidates. Ryans is currently the inside linebackers coach for the 49ers and he has been with the team since 2017. The 49ers linebackers have been one of the strongest units in the entire league under his tutelage, something the Eagles desperately need.

He knows what it takes to play in Philly, especially at a high level, and his energy would be a huge addition to the defensive side of the football.

The 49ers run a 4-3.

Aaron Glenn

The Saints have been able to develop some superb talent in the secondary over the last few seasons, and defensive backs coach Aaron Glenn is a big reason why. The former NFL cornerback is extremely fiery with his players and is an avid participant with the players in drills.

Developing 2017 rookie of the year Marshon Lattimore, and safeties Marcus Williams and C.J. Gardner-Johnson should be huge reasons why Glenn gets a look from the Eagles.

The Saints run a 4-3.

College

Jim Leonhard

The Wisconsin Badgers have been one of the most feared defenses in college football under Leonhard. Leonhard, a former NFL safety, has his defense ranked fifth in the nation in yards allowed per game. This isn’t new, as the program has been top five in that category every year of Leonhard’s caching career.

It’s farfetched that Leonhard will leave, as Wisconsin will probably open the bank for him. But he’s just the young, bright mind that the Eagles need.

Jon Heacock

Move your body like a cycloneeee

Sorry.

Heacock utilizes both 3-4 and 4-3 styles to help slow down the high-powered offenses of the Big 12 and he has had great success with it. The Cyclones’ defense has regularly finished in the top five in the nation in scoring defense prior to 2020, they are 29th in 2020 but only allowing 21.8 PPG.In 2019, the Cyclones had its’ third-best mark for tackles for loss (85) in school history.

Brent Venables

The defensive coordinator of two National Championships, which included current Eagles’ safety K’Von Wallace, should be a hot candidate for all vacancies in the NFL.

Venables has led Clemson to a 19th ranked 20.17 PPG, 15th ranked 326.8 yards allowed per game, t-8th most interceptions in the nation, and 16th ranked 116.7 rushing yards allowed.

Clemson has steadily been one of the top defensive teams in the country, Venables has built a strong program. He’s turned down other positions before to stay with Dabo Swinney, but 2021 may be the year he decides to make the jump.

Photo by Roy K. Miller/Icon Sportswire

 

More from our Sister Sites