A Look at Some Potential Head Coaching Candidates for the Eagles
The Philadelphia Eagles need a new head coach.
After parting ways with Doug Pederson on Monday, the team begins a coaching search for the first-time in five seasons. Eagles chairman and CEO Jeffery Lurie said Monday that the Eagles will take their time in finding Pederson's replacement.
"I just want to say, there will be no rush here," Pederson said. This notion of an NFL team making a very important decision for itself and its fan base and rushing to a decision is unlike any in business, and I just don't think that's warranted.
If we find a head coach soon or it's early February, it's totally great. If we're the last team picking a head coach, that's great, too, because then you have all the opportunity in the world. There's no rush. There's no pressure. There's nothing that should drive you from a decision based on just rational thought and careful analysis and getting to know the person as best you can."
We'll be keeping track of potential names to watch for as the next coach of the Eagles, Lurie did indicate that he might prefer an offensive mind.
"I think you all know me – I put a heavy emphasis on wanting to have an elite offense, and I feel like defense has variables, variations throughout the year," explained Lurie.
"But if you want to be a dominant team, you need to be a top offensive unit."
That being said he didn't rule out a defensive minded coach.
"You can hire somebody really steeped in offense or you've seen great offenses coached by head coaches coming from the defensive side," said Lurie. "I don't think there's any predilection for one over the other, but I do think somebody that is constantly curious of where the league is headed and what you need to do to have really good units and again, without a really good elite offense, I tend to err on that side. But not that side of the ball for head coach. Doesn't matter."
Lurie also said that he will lead the search for the teams next head coach, and will do so with the help of Eagles team president Don Smolenski and Howie Roseman.
"I think multiple people will be working with me to lead the search. I'll be leading the search. I always do," stated Lurie.
It will be multiple people involved in it but it's -- and we have relationships with different people to get information about any candidate that we probably want to look into. So it's a multiple -- multi-pronged process."
Here are a list of possible candidates to replace Doug Pederson as we discussed on Monday with ESPN's Sal Paolantonio.
Todd Bowles — Former Jets head coach, current Tampa Bay defensive coordinator
ESPN’s Sal Paolantonio told us on The Sports Bash that he would be surprised if the Eagles former interim defensive coordinator and secondary coach Todd Bowles wasn't considered.
"They have an interest in Todd Bowles," Paolantonio said on The Sports Bash. He used to be here under Andy Reid. I'd be shocked if they didn't interview Todd."
Bowles, 57, was fired by the Jets after posting a 24-40 record in four seasons.
The Jets gig was Bowles’ first as a head coach.
Bowles is known as an defensive mind and is the current defensive coordinator for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and also served in that role with the Arizona Cardinals for the 2013-2014 seasons.
He has met with the Lions and Lions.
Eric Bieniemy — Chiefs offensive coordinator
The minute Pederson and the Eagles parted ways, Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy name came up.
He will be a hot name this offseason and with seven head coaching openings there will be a lot of competition for his services. He has meet with Lions, Jets, Falcons, and Jaguars.
Bieniemy has led a Chiefs offense that has bee one of the best in the NFL during his tenure with the team in points, yards, yards per play and passing touchdowns under head coach Andy Reid.
Mike Kafka — Kansas City quarterbacks coach
Kafka is a former Eagles draft pick and was a candidate for the teams offensive coordinator position last offseason.
He moved up the ranks quickly in Kansas City, starting as a offensive quality control coach in 2017, and was promoted to be the teams quarterback coach for the 2018-2019 seasons. He is currently the teams Quarterbacks coach and passing game coordinator, working closely with Patrick Mahomes.
Kafka, 33, was a fourth-round pick by the Eagles out of Northwestern in 2010.
Jim Caldwell — former Lions and Colts head coach
Caldwell interviewed with the Texans a few weeks ago.
The former Detroit Lions (2014-17) and Indianapolis (2009-2011) head coach has plenty of experience and is an offensive mind that Jeffery Lurie seems to be looking for.
Caldwell has a 62-50 career record as a head coach.
Caldwell did not hold an NFL job the past three years, but his rumored to be ready to return to coaching.
He was a candidate for the Eagles offensive coordinator job last offseason after the Eagles parted ways with MIke Groh. The team elected to go without an offensive coordinator, instead going with Rich Scangarello and Marty Mornhinweg as offensive assistants.
They have both since been relieved of their duties.
Josh McDaniels — Patriots offensive coordinator, former Denver Broncos head coach
McDaniels was one of the front-runners to replace Freddie Kitchens in Cleveland last season, but that job went to Kevin Stefanski. This would be McDaniels', second head-coaching job following a two-year stint with Denver from 2009-10. He of course was hired to be the head coach in Indianapolis, and then had a change of heart and returned to New England. That's when Frank Reich was hired away from Philadelphia to lead the Colts.
He has spent most of his coaching career with New England as the teams offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach. He held that position for one season in St. Louis with the Rams, before returning to New England.
During his time in Denver, McDaniels, 44, went 11-17 before being fired after 12 games during the 2012 season.
He joined the Patriots’ coaching staff in 2001 as an personnel assistant before becoming a defensive assistant and then was promoted to quarterbacks coach in 2004.
Lincoln Riley — Oklahoma Head coach
Riley is the one college coach on this list, he was also Jalen Hurts college coach for one season. Riley has been a hot name for the past few season.
Riley, 37, has four years of heading coaching experience in college and compiled a 45-8 record with Oklahoma.
Known as an offensive-minded, young, up-and-comer, Riley would have an interesting decision at quarterback, play Carson Wentz or his college quarterback, Hurts.
Duce Staley - Eagles Assistant head coach & running backs coach
Staley has been with the Eagles organization since his playing days from 1997-2003. He has served as an assistant coach with the team since 2001.
"I would expect Duce Staley to be a candidate," admitted Eagles chairman and CEO Jeffery Lurie on Monday. He's a great representative of the Eagles and knows our values. I would expect him to be part of the search, as well.
Obviously, I've hired an African American as a head coach and proud of it, because he was the right man for the job at the time. There's plenty of possible candidates in this area."
Staley has been a popular name among fans since his playing days and would be an obvious choice if the organization if looking to hire from within.
He also has the support of many former Eagles players like Malcolm Jenkins and Darwin Walker.
Eagles Head Coaching Wins All-Time