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Coughlin to Philly would make the NFC East even better

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The NFC East could soon look a little like the AFC East.

With cross-pollination becoming the norm among the Patriots, Dolphins, Bills, and Jets, the notion that former Giants Tom Coughlin could become the next coach of the Eagles is even more fascinating than the nonexistent prospect of the Gruden brothers going at it twice per year in Philly and Washington.

When the Eagles fired Chip Kelly five days before the season finale and conducted their Rooney Rule interview of running back coach Duce Staley last Saturday, some sensed that the Eagles entered the process knowing who they wanted — and planning to move quickly. The sudden emergence of Coughlin as a candidate, five days after he was pushed out by the Giants, suggests that, even if the Eagles had an idea where they may be leaning, they’ve opted to change it up on the fly and consider a guy who has won a pair of Super Bowls.

As Mike Garafolo of FOX Sports notes, owner Jeffrey Lurie’s quest for a guy who will open his heart to players (i.e., the opposite of Chip Kelly) may have landed on Coughlin once images emerged of an emotional quarterback Eli Manning, lips quivering in the hopes of preventing a full-fledged meltdown, at Coughlin’s final Giants press conference on Tuesday.

Several factors could get in the way of what would be a great combination. First, Coughlin may not be comfortable with the perception that he’s sticking it to the Giants, his apparent diss of co-owner John Mara notwithstanding. Second, Coughlin (who had half a season with Kurt Warner and then the rest with Eli Manning in New York, and Mark Brunell in Jacksonville) may not be thrilled with the Eagles’ options at quarterback. Third, executive V.P. of football operations Howie Roseman will have to feel comfortable with Coughlin as a guy that Roseman can work with. Fourth, the Eagles will have to be willing to buck the longstanding culture of age discrimination in the NFL.

Last year, Mike Holmgren said the 49ers told him that they were hoping to hire a younger guy, after Holmgren expressed interest in the job that eventually was filled by a coach whose only attribute in common with Holmgren was choice of facial hair. In most other American workplaces, that kind of admission would constitute prima facie evidence of age-based bias. In the NFL, it’s no big deal because no one has been willing to file a lawsuit over the league’s habit of choosing younger candidates for high-profile jobs.

But for the intense saber-rattling of Cyrus Mehri and the late Johnnie Cochran regarding minority hiring practices for key jobs that was nearly as abysmal as the NCAA’s still are, the Rooney Rule never would have been crafted. The requirement that all coaching (and now G.M.) searches include at least one minority candidate came not from a desire to get it right, but from a strong interest in not getting sued.

Absent the threat of litigation for what otherwise are clear violations of state and federal employment law, things won’t change. Unless and until an owner like Jeffrey Lurie realizes that Tom Coughlin is the best candidate for the job — despite the fact that he’s 69.

Meanwhile, let’s see if the other teams with vacancies now realize that Coughlin at least merits an interview.

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37 Responses to “Coughlin to Philly would make the NFC East even better”
  1. coltzfan166 says: Jan 9, 2016 9:35 AM

    Yes he has two SB rings, but the Giants had losing records in his last three seasons. Why would it be any different with the Eagles? Coughlin has accomplished a lot in the past, but he’s getting too old for this

  2. realfootballfan says: Jan 9, 2016 9:40 AM

    All of these teams should be all over him. Well, minus the Browns because nobody wants to work there. He had some failings last year in the 4th quarter of games with being on top of details, but his track record is excellent with rings to go with it, and a change of scenery might be just what he needs.

  3. alpo3744 says: Jan 9, 2016 9:40 AM

    The NFC east is terrible

  4. jolly1234 says: Jan 9, 2016 9:42 AM

    I hope he doesn’t take the job. He is far too good of a coach/person to be eviscerated by the Eagles organization and fan base.

  5. weepingjebus says: Jan 9, 2016 9:44 AM

    Wasn’t he just in the NFC East when he was forced into “refirement”?

  6. duanethomas33 says: Jan 9, 2016 9:48 AM

    Why aren’t the Browns all over this guy? Guess it makes too much sense.

  7. Stiller43 says: Jan 9, 2016 9:56 AM

    Even better? Well, I guess it couldnt get much worse…

  8. 700levelvet says: Jan 9, 2016 10:02 AM

    The Eagles and Giants first met in 1933… Coughlin remembers it fondly…

  9. cowboyfan45 says: Jan 9, 2016 10:19 AM

    If I’m Tom Coughlin, I’d wait until after today’s Bengals game because if the Bengals lose once again in the first round of the playoffs, if I’m the Bengals owner and GM, I’m firing Marvin Lewis and hiring Tom to get the team over the hump!!

  10. therealtrenches says: Jan 9, 2016 10:23 AM

    Coach Pop Pop in midnight green, huh?

    I hope Jeffrey didn’t throw away Chip’s sleep monitors just yet. He’s gonna need his rest with this bunch of finger pointers and carpers.

  11. nachofacefakeindian says: Jan 9, 2016 10:33 AM

    How does a boiler room lawyer who never played sports in his life get taken seriously? Hail to the Redskins lemming.

  12. bengalsofthenorth says: Jan 9, 2016 10:37 AM

    Me to the NFC East would probably make it better and I’ve never coached or played football. That division stinks.

  13. grandpoopah says: Jan 9, 2016 11:06 AM

    I would love Coughlin as HC, but I fear that it’s just a smokescreen while they hire some doormat like Pederson. Why not just let that sycophant Roseman coach the team too? Isn’t that where we ultimately are headed?

  14. floratiotime says: Jan 9, 2016 11:09 AM

    Enjoy it Eagles.

  15. paulieorkid says: Jan 9, 2016 11:14 AM

    If Philly athlete felt that Chip Kelly’s approach was too much to bear, then they’d absolutely lose their mind over Coach Coughlin’s demanding style.

    It’s probably a key factor in why Philadelphia is O-for-whenever in Super Bowl victories – and their last NFL Title came while Dwight Eisenhower was the leader of the free world.

  16. myeaglescantwin says: Jan 9, 2016 11:18 AM

    what do you guys feel about NYG then having the edge against the eagles as far as coaching tendencies??

    It’s obvious the eagles had some clear leads on how to defeat Coughlin.
    I personally believe his old team would carry the same sort of edge

  17. purplengold says: Jan 9, 2016 11:21 AM

    It’s easy to use age bias as a factor in any employment decision.

  18. thetooloftools says: Jan 9, 2016 11:40 AM

    This is without a doubt the best move the Eagles could make. Too much upside to list.
    But do they have the guts?

  19. qbarrel says: Jan 9, 2016 11:43 AM

    Even better? The NFC East bites, plain and simple. It makes me livid that we have to suffer through so many prime time matchups of teams that will never make the playoffs.

  20. charger383 says: Jan 9, 2016 11:53 AM

    all teams with an opening should have to interview Coughlin so owners can see a coach

  21. jimmysee says: Jan 9, 2016 11:53 AM

    The only place the NFL does not favor younger guys is in the owner’s box where its Geritol on tap and Depends in the restroom.

  22. dirtdawg54 says: Jan 9, 2016 12:24 PM

    Oh great, can’t wait for the Coughlin rule where you have to interview at least one old crotchety guy. Teams will be interviewing Dennis Green all the time to satisfy both the Coughlin rule and Rooney rule.

  23. wferg1121 says: Jan 9, 2016 1:01 PM

    As a Giants fan I hate the idea, I felt the last 4 years the offensive line was a joke, and really the Eagles fans had front row seats on that issue.. The defense has been a joke. If Reagan can run the country at 77, and Trump is 70, Sanders is 73, yet no one is complaining that these old guys could potentially start WW3. I think Coughlin can still coach a football game.
    If I am a Eagles fan this is what I want, Coughlin has a wealth of knowledge; his players loved him and he still demanded the most from them… He will attract coordinators like a Spags, and McAdoo that could be viable successors, and obviously with a hiring like this it means the Eagles are in a win now mode, and they plan on working with Coughlin to get the pieces he wants, which is what the Giants failed to do the last 4 years.

  24. NinersRule says: Jan 9, 2016 1:16 PM

    “When the Eagles… conducted their Rooney Rule interview of running back coach Duce Staley last Saturday”

    How come you can say that but when I say its merely a Rooney Rule interview I get deleted?

  25. gka33 says: Jan 9, 2016 1:20 PM

    If the Eagles could play average D, and maybe slow the pace on O, this might work. Coughlin would rid us of the Billy Davis era. Keeping Shurmur for Bradford and they might become a pretty decent team. Glaring needs are o line, Wr, secondary, and LB.

    Almost forgot: Thanks to everyone for their status of the Eagles trophy case. Just genius, wish I could think off those witty comments!

  26. nudderfacelessgenius says: Jan 9, 2016 2:31 PM

    Now send Jason Garrett to the Giants. Then Jerry can realize his dream as being the “official” coach instead of the “puppet master coach” of the cowboys.

  27. jag1959 says: Jan 9, 2016 3:23 PM

    As a Giants fan it would make me ill seeing him in Philly but more to the point as a Coughlin fan the only part of being there that makes sense for him is the commute. It will take longer to repair the damage Kelly did to that roster than it would take a decent GM to plug the holes in the Giants lineup with the cap space NY will have available, they should have canned Reese and kept TC

  28. dlr4skins says: Jan 9, 2016 4:02 PM

    Doesn’t matter. Redskins will own this division for the foreseeable future. It will now be the free agent destination in the division but now ran with a real GM.

  29. thehighhat says: Jan 9, 2016 4:39 PM

    Browns should be after this guy. Give him 3 years to change the culture of sadness with an in house heir apparent!

  30. thehighhat says: Jan 9, 2016 4:41 PM

    Oh, and the Mara’s are classless elitists. No surprise how badly they handled TC’s firing.

  31. famundacheese says: Jan 9, 2016 4:45 PM

    “I want my team ran just like the redskins”

    -no one ever-

  32. lightningbuggs says: Jan 9, 2016 5:23 PM

    Lol. As a REDSKIN fan, I welcome old Tom back to the division. Remind me again, when was the last time he made the playoffs? Guy is terribly overrated.

  33. thesmartestmanever says: Jan 10, 2016 1:57 AM

    The NFC EAST proud owners of more super bowl trophies than any other division in FOOTBALL.

  34. thetruth75 says: Jan 10, 2016 12:31 PM

    Wow, don’t get why anyone would want Coughlin, Spags, or for that matter Macadoo. Coughlin has missed the playoffs 7 of the last 8 years, Spags has been fired 3 times and his defenses are always at the bottom of the eNFL and Macadoo’s offense sucked without Beckham(all 5 games he has missed they’ve been terrible)

    2 improbable runs to the SB does not make a great coach(or QB for that matter). There is way more terrible than good, no sustained success, and he’s 70 years old. Please Philly hire him I love seeing you struggle.

    Now with the Bengals- I actually like that marriage. He’ll bring discipline to a very talented team.

  35. edithpiaf51 says: Jan 10, 2016 11:19 PM

    Personally, I think Tom Coughlin should not take the poste in Philadelphia because it will hurt Eli Manning. Seeing him nearly break down and cry broke my heart. Eli is very attached to Tom Coughlin as his mentor and due to a learning disability,this will be even more challenging for Eli to get over. I really wish Tom Coughlin would reconsider and not do this to Eli. Every time the Giants play the Eagles, it will be very painful for Eli Manning.

    Please Mr Coughlin, reconsider your decision, do not hurt Eli like this.

  36. jag1959 says: Jan 11, 2016 11:13 AM

    lightningbuggs says:
    Jan 9, 2016 5:23 PM

    Lol. As a REDSKIN fan, I welcome old Tom back to the division. Remind me again, when was the last time he made the playoffs? Guy is terribly overrated.

    Shouldn’t be too hard to remember since it was the last time the division brought home a SB championship

  37. jff27 says: Jan 11, 2016 2:02 PM

    The Eagles and Giants first met in 1933… Coughlin remembers it fondly…

    As does Brian Williams.

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