Pros and Cons of 8 Head Coaching Candidates Interviewed by Eagles

The Eagles could be narrowing their focus to just thee or four on this list with a decision as to who will replace Doug Pederson coming this weekend
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Of the 10 coaching candidates interviewed by the Eagles, eight remain.

Off the table are Robert Saleh and Arthur Smith, both of whom were hired right after talking with the Eagles’ hiring committee.

Now there are eight.

At the start of the week, a source indicated the Eagles could have a new coach in place before the weekend.

Well, the weekend is nearly here.

Thursday will be Day 10 and it could be decision day.

Here are the “Elite” Eight with pros and cons and current odds from


Pros: He’ll make sure Carson Wentz does things his way…Comes from a dynasty program in New England…Has shown the ability to run multiple schemes through the years, adapting his offenses to suit the players around him and not the other way around with him forcing players into a preconceived system.

Cons: Too much like Chip Kelly, with perceptions of arrogance and an inability to manage relationships in an “emotionally intelligent” way like Doug Pederson, and that can destroy an organization…Trustworthiness. Just ask the Colts…Trouble developing outside receivers in New England, outside of Randy Moss, who was already developed upon arrival…Personnel decisions such as moving up to draft Tim Tebow as the head coach in Denver, and reportedly he was the one who wanted the Patriots to draft N’Keal Harry, who has been a disappointment after being taken in the first round of the 2019 draft.


Pros: Unilaterally loved by Eagles players past and present…Like McDaniels, he wouldn’t let Wentz get away with running his own show…Strong leader…Has played the game, so understands locker room culture the way Pederson did.

Cons: Maybe too closely tied to the previous administration…Would want to call plays and he’s never done it…Has not generated any buzz for any of the other six head coaching vacancies, leaving the impression that he may not be as good of a candidate as some may think.


Pros: Was instrumental in LSU’s 15-0 record in 2019, developing quarterback Joe Burrow into a first-round pick as well as receivers such as Justin Jefferson and Ja’Marr Chase, expected to go in the top 10 of this year’s draft…As Carolina’s first-year OC he had two WRs go over 1,000 yards – the last time an Eagles receiver did that was Jeremy Maclin in 2014 – and playing most of the year without Christian McCaffrey, he helped scheme Mike Davis to 642 yards rushing and 353 yards passing while Curtis Samuel, one of the receivers over 1,000 yards, also had 40 carries for 200 yards…Obviously an offensive innovator with more experience than his 31 years indicates, with stops at Penn State as a graduate assistant for two years and the New Orleans Saints as an offensive assistant for two seasons.

Cons: His age could be viewed as making him too big of a risk since he would become the youngest coach in the NFL.


Pros: Considered to be a star on the rise after a standout eight-year run as a linebacker with the Patriots career as a player which saw him make the Pro Bowl twice and first-team All-Pro once…Became the defensive unit’s play-caller for Bill Belichick in his first year as the linebacker coach in 2019…Considered a strong leader who quickly earned the respect of his players.

Cons: Not much of a coaching resume, with just two years of experience…Would the Eagles break tradition and hire a defensive-minded coach?


Pros: Familiar with the Eagles’ front office structure having worked as their secondary coach in 2012 and interim defensive coordinator after Juan Castillo was fired…When he became Tampa Bay’s defensive coordinator in 2019, he inherited a unit that was ranked 27th in the league, improved it to 15th then boosted that to sixth-best this year…Has had one of the best run-stopping units in the league, an area of the game the Eagles prioritize on their defense.

Cons: Familiar with the Eagles’ front office structure having worked as their secondary coach in 2012 and interim defensive coordinator after Juan Castillo was fired…Won 10 games in his first season as the Jets head coach but only 14 games over his next three years to finish with a 24-40 record in New York…Would the Eagles break tradition and hire a defensive-minded coach?


Pros: In three years with the Colts, the offense has ranked 10th, ninth, and 12th, and never blinked after Andrew Luck retired and had to turn to Jacob Brissett then Philip Rivers…Was the WRs coach in 2013 with the Chargers when Keenan Allen was a rookie and put up 71 catches for 1,046 and eight touchdowns and was a quality offensive control coach for the next two years with the Chargers…Could be just what the Eagles need to “fix” Carson Wentz given his history with QBs in Indy.

Cons: Worked in the shadow of Frank Reich and reportedly didn’t do much play-calling…Is his track record enough to make the considerable leap to head coach?


Pros: The Cowboys were hammered with injuries this year, including losing QB Dak Prescott early in the year, but Dallas’ OC still had them ranked 12th in yards and 16th in points scored. A year ago, he had them first in total yards and sixth in offense…Would take away a key member of the Cowboy’s staff by hiring him.

Cons: Relatively new to coaching. At 32, he is in just his third season on the sidelines after starting as the Dallas QB coach in 2018 before being elevated to OC.

DENNIS ALLEN (off the board)

Pros: In the last four of his six years as the Saints’ DC, he never had his defense ranked outside the top 15. It finished fifth this season…In each of his six years, his defenses have always had more than 20 takeaways, including 26 this year.

Cons: The Saints were ranked first in defense when they visited the Eagles and got run over on the ground, allowing both Jalen Hurts and Miles Sanders to top 100 yards each…As the head coach of the then-Oakland Raiders, he went 8-28 from 2012-14…Would the Eagles break tradition and hire a defensive-minded coach?

Ed Kracz is the publisher of EagleMaven. Check out anything you may have missed pertaining to the Eagles by going to and please follow him on Twitter: @kracze.