New Eagles coach Doug Pederson could end up being the next Andy Reid in Philly. Or the next Jim Tomsula.
Not that the Eagles have ever had a Tomsula. But the move feels more like a Chip Kelly palate cleanser than an all-in move toward a Super Bowl run.
The Eagles already know Pederson; he played for the Eagles in 1999 and coached there from 2009 through 2012. Owner Jeffrey Lurie surely likes him. More importantly, executive V.P. of football operations Howie Roseman, who had been neutered by Kelly, surely believes that Pederson will stay in his lane and not try to make a power grab.
Just like Tomsula a year ago in San Fran. He had worked for the 49ers for eight years, and they knew he’d be the anti-Harbaugh. Tomsula was, in the right way and the wrong way.
Pederson’s experience as a coach is limited. A quality-control assistant from 2009 through 2010, he worked as quarterbacks coach in 2011 and 2012 before joining Andy Reid as offensive coordinator in Kansas City as of 2013. That’s three years as a coordinator, two more as a position coach, and two as, essentially, a coaching intern.
Another potential complication comes from the fact that Pederson served as a coordinator on the side of the ball at which his boss was an expert. In those cases, it’s hard to know how much credit goes to the coordinator and how much goes to the head coach. Without Reid, can Pederson run an offense?
All things considered, it’s a risky move for the Eagles, and unless they find a quarterback who can perform at a moderately high level, it could be a short-term arrangement — especially if the losses pile up and the fans and media begin to start asking the kind of questions that are more likely to remain under wraps when the new coach is 0-0 and everyone continues to bask in the glow of the prior coach being gone.