Wade Phillips wasn’t kept on board when the Texans hired Bill O’Brien as their new head coach, and Phillips hasn’t found a new job with any of the NFL’s other 31 teams, either. Phillips is upset about that.
Phillips wrote on Twitter that he is “Disappointed” he hasn’t received so much as an opportunity to interview for a defensive coordinator position. Phillips noted that he has a wealth of experience in the NFL, and the last five times he was hired as a defensive coordinator, the team that hired him made the playoffs in his first year on the job.
So why isn’t anyone calling? Phillips said on SiriusXM NFL Radio that he thinks his age may be working against him.
The 66-year-old Phillips isn’t the first to wonder if age is working against him in the NFL. Two Raiders scouts who were let go after the 2012 draft claimed age discrimination, and two former Rams employees claimed in 2012 that they were victims of age discrimination. Phillips doesn’t sound like he’s interested in filing a lawsuit, he’s just interested in getting an opportunity to show he can still be a good defensive coordinator.
If NFL teams are overlooking Phillips because of his age, they’re being shortsighted. And they’re also overlooking that the 76-year-old Steelers defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau has shown that coaches can succeed in the NFL long after they’re eligible for Social Security.