NFL Head Coach rumors: Will Jonathan Gannon and Shane Steichen be leading candidates this offseason?

PHILADELPHIA, PA – AUGUST 02: Philadelphia Eagles offensive coordinator Shane Steichen is interviewed during training camp on July 29, 2022 at the NovaCare Complex in Philadelphia PA.(Photo by Andy Lewis/Icon Sportswire)

The 2022 regular season has come to an end and with it comes the opening of the Head Coach carousel. There are already a few job openings as an NFL Head Coach, with more likely to emerge in the coming weeks and months. But has either of the Eagles’ coordinators earned that kind of promotion elsewhere?

Shane Steichen

Of the two Eagles coordinators, Shane Steichen is the easiest one to make a case for due to the fact that the Eagles offense was one of the most dominant units in the NFL both statistically and on tape. His resume has improved drastically over the past few years and his work as a QB coach for Phillip Rivers has clearly paid dividends as far as Jalen Hurts is concerned.

The Eagles ended the year with franchise-records in points (477), touchdowns (59) and rushing touchdowns (52). Those 52 rushing scores are the fourth most in NFL history. They are also the only team in NFL history to have 25+ rushing touchdowns in back-to-back seasons.

Miles Sanders enjoyed a breakout year when he needed it most, both star wideouts passed the 1,000-yard mark, the rushing offense was once again one of the best in football, and Jalen Hurts turned into an all-star.

What’s even more impressive is we know with absolute certainty that Steichen was calling the shots offensively. This is huge as it adds an extra layer to his skills tree that not every offensive coordinator will have. For instance, Doug Pederson only called the second halfs of Chiefs games in the final few before the end of the season before he was hired as a Head Coach. Steichen has nearly two years worth of experience, a glowing resume, and a set of offensive values that align with the modern NFL.

I’d be surprised if he wasn’t being eyed up for a Head Coaching role.

Jonathan Gannon

Make no mistake, the numbers speak volumes. Depsite rarely ever blitzing, the Eagles became the only NFL team to have four different players register 10+ sacks in the same year, and each player also recorded a career-high.

Where the concerns lie Are within the scheme itself. All too often has this Eagles defense folded under the weight of ‘bend but don’t break’ play-calling. Whether it was 3rd & 30 against the Cowboys or just drives spiraling out of control with arm-bar tackling, there was a lot that Jonathan Gannon had to be accountable for this season, and his lack of adjustments hardly helped matters.

In 2021 the Eagles were pummelled by any half-decent quarterback. The story changed this year, but one could argue it very much should with Darius Slay being joined by Chauncey Gardner-Johnson, James Bradberry, and a revitalized linebacker group that supported a rampant pass-rush.

I understand that Jonathan Gannon’s ascension to coaching this defense has been impressive, and the numbers certainly don’t lie. But I could also very much see a scenario where a team like the Bills are able to carve up a secondary that just allows so much open space down the seams.

If an NFL team wants to take a chance on Jonathan Gannon as their new Head Coach, they’d be doing so with a litany of red flags that would need to be addressed first.

Photo by Andy Lewis/Icon Sportswire