Chip Kelly is the head coach. No word yet on the offensive coordinator. There are some good defensive coordinator rumors.
Howard Eskin says the team will talk to Todd Grantham (DC at Georgia). UGA is trying to keep him with a contract extension. We’ll see how that goes. Eskin also listed Kirby Smart as a candidate. He’s currently the DC for Nick Saban and Alabama. Kirby has a limited NFL background (one season with the Dolphins), but has been the DC at Bama now for 6 years. A lot of that defense is Saban, but Smart is no figurehead. He’s a very good coach. I’d be open to a guy like him. My preference is someone older and with more experience, but working as Nick Saban’s DC for 6 years is pretty darn impressive.
There are also some interesting developments on the NFL front. Bruce Arians got the HC job in Arizona. He will reportedly hire Todd Bowles as his DC. This may seem nuts to some, but Bowles played for Arians at Temple in the 1980s and they worked together on the Browns staff about a decade ago.
So what happened to Ray Horton? Reportedly he had a heated exchange with GM Steve Keim and demanded to be let out of his contract. Horton tried for the HC spot, but didn’t get it. Coaches who go for the top spot and fail generally leave that team. Sometimes they take not getting the job personally. Other times the coach feels his credibility will be hurt by not getting the job.
If Horton is on the market, you’d hope that is someone that Chip Kelly calls right away. There is one downside to Horton. He wants to be a HC and might be a very short term hire. If you go for him, you better have someone on the staff who could potentially succeed him or you’re chasing after a new DC as early as next January. That risk might be worth the reward.
There is also the possibility that Smart might leave for a HC job in a year or two (at the college level).
Eskin reported that the Eagles hired Oregon’s DL coach, Jerry Azzinaro. Another report says that Matthew Harper, Greg Austin, and Todd Lyght are leaving Oregon for Philly. These aren’t key assistants. Lyght’s name might seem familiar. Former Notre Dame star and NFL DB.
I think Eagles fans will like Azzinaro. Check this out.