Nick Sirianni’s staff is coming together nicely in the week since he has been hired.
Let’s recap the hires.
Shane Steichen, 35, offensive coordinator: Has the distinction of tailoring an offense for rookie sensation Justin Herbert, who threw for 4,336 yards, 31 touchdowns to 10 interceptions. Hopefully, some of the questionable game management moves, especially against the Buffalo Bills, were indeed the fault of then-Chargers coach Anthony Lynn and not Steichen.
The Chargers won their final four games of the season after losing to the Patriots, 45-0, including a 38-21 win over the Kansas City Chiefs in a regular-season finale that saw Chad Henne and not Patrick Mahomes start at quarterback.
“Shane and I were in every meeting together game planning (during their time together in San Diego),” said Sirianni. “I’ve known Shane for four years. I know Shane thinks about the game the way I think about the game. Shane is a phenomenal offensive mind that thinks about the game the way I do.
“He’s always gotten the best out of his quarterbacks, did a great job with Philip Rivers, did a great job with Justin Herbert this year. Obviously, Shane and I have communicated with each other through this past year of bouncing ideas off each other.
Again, the way we think about the game is so similar, that's going to be an easy transition for us. It's like we're starting on day 15 instead of day one. I've seen Shane at work, I've seen Shane grind, I’ve seen Shane dig for all the little things on the tape to give us the best play possible to put our guys in position to win. I've seen Shane communicate with guys.
Again, just like another four-year interview process that I had with Shane. I think the world of him. I think he's a phenomenal coach. So happy to have him here on the staff.”
Jonathan Gannon, 37, defensive coordinator: Having a defensive backs background can’t hurt, especially for a team that annually needs to repair its secondary. He will keep the Eagles’ 4-3 system in place and that’s a good thing. It’s his first time being a DC, so the inexperience could be something to watch.
“I've been with Jonathan for the last three years (with the Colts),” said Sirianni. You can almost say he's been on an interview with me for three years. But I think his football IQ is off the charts. When I want to know something about a defense, for the last three years, if I've wanted to know something about a defense, he's the first one I've went to every single time.
“…His players play well for him. His players love him. His energy is contagious. He loves football. He loves being around football, loves being on the practice field, loves being in the meeting room. Tireless worker who I truly believe in, his organization skills, to be a very good defensive coordinator in the NFL.”
Michael Clay, 29, special team coordinator: Will be the youngest coordinator in the league and his hiring is a homecoming of sorts after the former Oregon linebacker joined – who else, former Oregon coach Chip Kelly’s staff in 2014 as the Eagles quality control coach. He was a special team assistant under Kelly in 2015 and went to SF with Kelly in 2016 as an assistant special team coach, a position he has held for of his five seasons with the 49ers, with one year as the strength and conditioning coach.
Brian Johnson, 33, quarterbacks. Perhaps the hire people should be most excited about. Being the offensive coordinator for a power SEC program like the Florida Gators at the age of 33 speaks to the ability he brings to his job.
“He's just super sharp,” said Sirianni. “Then on top of that, he gives us the ability to take some things from the college game to make our offense just become a little bit more difficult to defend.”
Jeff Stoutland, 58, offensive line: The lone holdover from Doug Pederson’s staff, as well as Chip Kellys, and well worth the keep.
“When I first got to Indianapolis in 2018, Frank Reich obviously was here in '17 with the Philadelphia Eagles,” said Sirianni. “We watched a lot of Chargers tape where I was coming from and a lot of Philadelphia tape. You just saw his offensive line playing really well over and over again. You could see the fundamentals and technique that his offensive line played with.
“You could see how hard they played. That was noticeable, without even saying a thing.
Then to hear how Frank Reich talks about Coach Stout was unbelievable. He loves him and always talks about him. It was almost as if I knew him right after I took the job because I heard so much about him. Then to chat with him on the phone, it was a no-brainer.”
Jason Michael, 42, tight ends: Has been coaching since 2002, with eight seasons spent coaching tight ends at various stops. Like Gannon, he also came from the Colts.
Tracy Rocker, 54, defensive line: Has coached the D-line for three different college teams since 2014 – Georgia, Tennessee, and South Carolina. His lone experience with the pros was 2011-13 with the Titans. He was a two-time All-American defensive lineman for Auburn and a third-round draft pick of Washington in 1989. He spent three years in the league and was on the all-rookie team.
Dennard Wilson, 38, defensive backs. He knows safety Rodney McLeod from his early coaching days with the Rams when. Wilson was with the Jets the past three years and was their pass-game coordinator for two of those.
It remains to be seen if Sirianni hires a safeties coach to replace Tim Hauck, but the coach is still in the market for a linebacker coach to replace Ken Flajole, a receiver coach to take Aaron Moorehead’s place, and a running back coach with Duce Staley shuffling off to Detroit.
Sirianni could still be in the market for a senior offensive assistant or senior offensive consultant.
Ed Kracz is the publisher of EagleMaven. Check out the latest Eagles news at www.SI.com/NFL/Eagles and please follow him on Twitter: @kracze.