After the Eagles' final preseason game against the New York Jets, head coach Nick Sirianni casually dropped a Jim Bob Cooter-bomb.
The former offensive coordinator in Detroit, who was most recently the running backs coach with the Jets under Adam Gase, has been helping Sirianni out this summer, something the rookie head coach revealed when talking about play-calling.
"I was calling the play to [offensive coordinator] Shane [Steichen], Shane did a good job of talking in there — when we’re in two-minute situations, [passing game coordinator] Kevin Patullo was really doing a lot of, ‘Hey, here’s our scenario of what we’re in,’ Jim Bob Cooter is getting all the scenarios for us from the two-minute around the league so we can prepare for it," Sirianni said at the time. "So, I felt really good in those two minutes.”
Cooter is a long-time NFL assistant who started in the league back in 2009 as an offensive assistant for the Indianapolis Colts. From there it was a steady climb for Cooter - quality control in Kansas City, and an offensive assistant gig in Denver before he was named the QB coach in Detroit, which ultimately was the launching pad for the OC job from 2016 through 2018 with the Lions.
Cooter got to know Sirianni with the Chiefs in 2012.
With the 53-man roster cut looming the Cooter news got lost in the shuffle for a few days before SI.com's Eagle Maven circled back and asked Sirianni to better define Cooter's role and ascertain if it will continue into the regular season.
"As far as Jim Bob goes, we brought him in as a consultant," the head coach told SI.com Eagle Maven on Labor Day afternoon. "I've worked with him in the past. He was my assistant wideout coach in Kansas City, so worked with him in the past. Obviously, he's got a lot of experience and he's a great football mind.
"I think very highly of him."
Cooter is and will continue to work on special projects and consulting for Sirianni.
"If I see a play or if we talk about a play that - I just think this is really important," said Sirianni. "When you put a new play into your system that you maybe saw on tape, I think it's very easy for a coach to do that and be like, ‘Oh, I saw that on tape. This looks great. I'm just going to through it my offense.’"
Sirianni explained something like that is not as simple as it might seem because another offense's success with a play could be tied to its talent at a particular position or from something as mundane as an alignment or a communication check.
"Do you know everything there is to know about that play?" Sirianni asked rehtoriclaly. "I'm not saying Jim Bob knows everything there is to know about every play, but what he is able to do is while we're doing something else, he's able to go research that play.
"I've already seen the benefit of that with a couple new wrinkles we have in this offense."
Cooter and his offensive expertise is just another pillar Sirianni can lean on as he prepares for Week 1 in Atlanta.
"I haven't really ever had that on a staff, and sometimes it deters you from putting in a play that you might like," Sirianni said. "So we have really gotten a lot out of him and really excited he's here."
-John McMullen contributes Eagles coverage for SI.com's EagleMaven and is the NFL Insider for JAKIB Media. You can listen to John, alongside legendary sports-talk host Jody McDonald every morning from 8-10 on ‘Birds 365,” streaming live on both PhillyVoice.com and YouTube. John is also the host of his own show "Extending the Play" on AM1490 in South Jersey. You can reach him at email@example.com or on Twitter @JFMcMullen
Ed Kracz is the publisher of SI.com’s Eagle Maven and co-host of the Eagles Unfiltered Podcast. Check out the latest Eagles news at www.SI.com/NFL/Eagles or www.eaglemaven.com and please follow him on Twitter: @kracze.