After 17 days of interviewing several candidates, the Philadelphia Eagles finally made a decision and chose Doug Pederson as the squad’s new mentor moving forward.
“We have concluded our search for a head coach,” a spokesperson for the team said on Thursday. “No further interviews are scheduled.”
Pederson, 47, who has already served the Eagles as assistant coach in the past, will fill in the shoes of coach Chip Kelly, who was released by the Eagles in December.
— NFL (@NFL) January 14, 2016
The San Francisco 49ers then hired Kelly as head coach on Thursday.
BREAKING: 49ers hire Chip Kelly as their next head coach. pic.twitter.com/SHmH3ryLdS
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) January 14, 2016
The Eagles reportedly interviewed the new coach after the Chiefs’ victory over the Houston Texans in the AFC wild-card game.
However, the team cannot officially announce Doug Pederson as their new coach until Kansas City’s season is over.
Pederson played quarterback for the Eagles in 1999, and joined the coaching staff ten years later. He started out as an offensive quality control coach, and during the 2011-12 seasons a quarterback coach.
However, the Washington native followed then-Philadelphia coach Andy Reid to Kansas City, where he served as the Chiefs’ offensive coordinator for three years.
Doug Pederson also helped Kansas City’s quarterback Alex Smith as well as running back Jamaal Charles. When Charles met a season-ending injury last year, Pederson helped ease the team’s burden by improving the play of backup running backs Charcandrick West and Spencer Ware.
— Kansas City Chiefs (@Chiefs) April 4, 2014
The return to Philadelphia – this time as head coach – is seen as a move by the team to reclaim the Eagles’ glory days under Reid. As a person who has worked with Reid for a long time, Doug Pederson might be the person to lead them to victory.
A report said that the new head coach will have a lot to work on to improve Philadelphia’s game.
Pederson lifted the Chiefs’ performance as they finished the season with the second fewest giveaways as well as the fewest interceptions thrown. In addition, with the assistant coach’s help, Kansas City led the league in rushing touchdowns and placed third in yards per attempt.
Considering that the undeniable talent of the Eagles’ running backs, Doug Pederson can work wonders with DeMarco Murray, Ryan Mathews, and Darren Sproles in order to improve the team’s performance in the coming season.
Despite the promise that Pederson holds for the City of Brotherly Love, fans are still skeptical about what he can really do for the team.
One tweet mentioned that Doug Pederson will bring to the Eagles the same number of Super Bowls that coach Reid brought to the squad – one. Another said that the Eagles management has chosen the “date your ex’s sister” approach in hiring a head coach.
Doug Pederson? Andy Reid’s assistant? Looks like Lurie is going with the date your ex’s sister approach bold strategy Cotton
— Scott Murphy (@scottym07) January 14, 2016
However, there are fans who aren’t just pissed, but are seemingly without hope when it comes to the fate of the Eagles.
Fortunately, Doug Pederson has a loyal fan in Donovan McNabb, the franchise’s winningest quarterback and all-time passing leader.
When news got out that Pederson was picked to be the Eagles’ head coach, McNabb was all praises for his former teammate.
“I’m happy for Doug. I really am. I learned a lot from him back in 1999. I learned the West Coast offense. I learned how to be a professional quarterback,” he said.
— Jamie Apody (@JamieApody) January 15, 2016
McNabb, 39, was in his rookie year when Pederson played as the starting quarterback for the Eagles in 1999. However, by the time McNabb’s performance improved, Doug Pederson was gone the next season.
While McNabb believes that Pederson is a teacher that can help Philadelphia regain its former glory, he isn’t quite sure that he can do it as the main voice of the field.
— Eliot Shorr-Parks (@EliotShorrParks) January 14, 2016
“But here’s the question can he be a leader of men, and not just the guy in the quarterback room,” Donovan McNabb said of Doug Pederson.
[Image by Streeter Lecka, Getty Images]