When a football team like the Eagles are 12-1, most if not all of their top assistants will be favorites for head coaching jobs for teams around the league that are looking to emulate their success.
Philadelphia is well-versed in that thought process. After the team won the Super Bowl in 2017, both their offensive coordinator and quarterback coach left the team for promotions elsewhere. A big reason why the Doug Pederson era faltered, later on, is that he couldn’t find the perfect coaches to fit and replace those who had gone.
In 2022 though, the Eagles could be having a similar problem in the offseason. With Jalen Hurts playing like the NFL MVP, and the Eagles’ defense putting up top-10 numbers, it should not come as a surprise that both Jonathan Gannon and Shane Steichen could be in line for head coaching jobs in the foreseeable future.
Unlike their past history, the Eagles are in much better shape than they were five years ago when their coaching staff was pillaged. There are three reasons why.
One of the key differences between Nick Sirianni and Doug Pederson is that Sirianni has more connections around the league. Pederson wanted to continue to promote from within the staff only because he had known the guys he’s worked with for years. Pederson moved from the playing ranks to the Andy Reid coaching tree and didn’t move. That limited his connections and trust around the league.
Sirianni on the other hand has coached with several different staffs. If Steichen and Gannon were to head off for promotions elsewhere, the Eagles have a coach with plenty of connections to keep the train moving on offense and defense.
Could Brian Johnson, the quarterback coach in Philly, be in line for a promotion outside of the city? Absolutely. His work in getting Hurts to become a top quarterback in football has been incredible and could line him up for a head coaching job as well.
But if he were to stay, Johnson not only would have a sure-fire promotion to offensive coordinator, but he also would have a golden opportunity to try his hand in calling plays as well: something that Steichen has done an impeccable job of doing.
The Eagles have Steichen’s replacement lined up and ready to go should he leave. That alone should continue to have Jalen Hurts’ stock climb even higher.
Unlike past seasons, it seems like a foregone conclusion that the Eagles will be without their defensive coordinator because of a promotion. If/when Gannon leaves, even if fans will be happy, the Eagles’ defense will be much different.
Luckily, they have a disciple of Gannon’s scheme waiting in the wings as well. Dennard Wilson has done an excellent job in getting the Eagles’ secondary up to scratch. In reality, after decades of futility against the pass, Philadelphia’s defense has been among the best in football through the air.
Vic Fangio could be an easy replacement for his former disciple, but the Eagles have plenty of smart and ready coaches who can be promoted internally as well.
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