Eagles Lose DeFilippo
PHILADELPHIA (973espn.com) - Hours after the Eagles' victory parade ended at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Super Bowl attrition began.
Doug Pederson's highly-regarded quarterbacks coach, John DeFilippo, is leaving the Super Bowl LII champions for the opportunity to become the new offensive coordinator of the Minnesota Vikings.
The Vikings, who were routed by the Eagles in the NFC Championship Game, needed a replacement for Pat Shurmur, the PFWA Assistant Coach of the Year who got the top job with the New York Giants.
Minnesota had interviewed its own QB coach, Kevin Stefanski (son of former Sixers GM Ed Stefanski, as well as New Orleans assistant head coach Dan Campbell, former Seattle OC Darrell Bevell and Houston QB coach Sean Ryan but dragged its feet waiting to talk to DeFilippo, who has been given credit for helping in the rapid development of Carson Wentz and get Nick Foles up to speed once Wentz went down with a torn ACL and LCL during Week 14.
“He’s a grinder,” Foles said when asked about DeFilippo prior to the Super Bowl. “He barely sleeps and is always working. He's just about the fundamentals, giving us the game plan, giving us all our checks. Tests us to make sure we are ready. He's extremely detailed and I’m grateful to have him. He’s done an amazing job.”
An ambitious man with head-coaching aspirations, the Vikings offered the better path forward for the 39-year-old DeFilippo to accomplish those goals because Minnesota's head coach, Mike Zimmer, is a defensive-minded mentor, meaning DeFilippo will get full control of the Vikings offense.
In Philadelphia, even if current OC Frank Reich gets the top job in Indianapolis and DeFillippo was promoted, the offense would remain a Doug Pederson production and rightfully so.
Shurmur is believed to want Stefanski for his OC with the Giants but if he can't pry him away from Minnesota, an NFL source told 973espn.com that Eagles running backs coach Duce Staley would be next on Shurmur's list.
Staley would also likely be in line for a promotion to OC with the Eagles if Reich gets the Colts' gig.
Todd Bowles wanted to hire DeFilippo as his OC with the New York Jets last season but the Eagles were able to block it because DeFillippo was still under contract.
This time around, his deal was set to expire next Wednesday so Philadelphia allowed Zimmer and Vikings GM Rick Spielman to talk with DeFilippo and the two sides were able to hammer out a deal very quickly.
Last month DeFilippo interviewed for the Cardinals' and Bears' head coaching vacancies and had been an offensive coordinator previously in 2015 with the Cleveland Browns. Prior to that, DeFilippo was a QB coach for the Raiders, Jets and San Jose State Spartans.
While speaking last week Spielman said his new offensive coordinator would play a major role in determining the Vikings’ quarterback situation moving forward.
Minnesota’s three top quarterbacks -- Case Keenum, Sam Bradford and Teddy Bridgewater -- are all set to become free agents although there is a chance Bridewater's contract tolls due to his injury issues over the prior two seasons. There is also the obvious connection to Foles, the Super Bowl MVP who could be put on the trading block.
-John McMullen covers the Eagles and the NFL for 973espn.com. You can reach him at email@example.com or on Twitter @JFMcMullen