The Philadelphia Eagles haven’t hired a defensive coordinator yet. It may be that the Eagles are waiting for the Super Bowl to end, since they can then hire San Francisco 49ers defensive backs coach Ed Donatell. But a new candidate may be working for the 49ers’ Super Bowl opponent.
According to the Philadelphia Inquirer’s Jeff McLane on Jan. 27, the Eagles are starting to consider Baltimore Ravens linebacker coach Ted Monachino. Two NFL sources told McLane that the Eagles are thinking about him, and that the buzz has “worn off some” on Donatell.
However, Donatell has past experience as a defensive coordinator, unlike Monachino. He worked under Baltimore’s coordinators for years, then became the outside linebackers coach in 2010 before getting promoted last season. But a lack of experience has never been a deal breaker for the Eagles this past month, as Chip Kelly’s hiring proved.
Patience was also a virtue for the Eagles in landing Kelly, and it looks like they are waiting around by choice again. At the least, if they are choosing between Donatell and Monachino, the Super Bowl will be a major final statement for both of them. Yet Philadelphia’s decision probably wouldn’t just come down to whoever wins the Super Bowl.
McLane did point out that when the Eagles had to hire a defensive coordinator two years ago, they were expected to choose an assistant from the Green Bay Packers or Pittsburgh Steelers -- but chose Juan Castillo instead. However, that controversial, ultimately unsuccessful decision was made by Andy Reid, and he isn’t around anymore.
Kelly is supposed to represent a new way of thinking, so he likely wouldn’t hire an offensive line coach/friend to a big defensive position. But will he wait another week for the Super Bowl to end, and if so, which team will he poach from?
If he can’t wait for Donatell or Monachino, then the Eagles could turn to former assistant Steve Spagnuolo, Georgia Bulldogs coordinator Todd Grantham, or some other mystery candidate. If not, then the Super Bowl may be worth watching for the Eagles and their fans after all.