11 possible replacements for Jim Schwartz in 2021

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Dave Zangaro
·4 min read
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11 possible replacements for Schwartz in 2021 originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia

Jim Schwartz is going to let his contract expire and will take a year off from coaching in 2021.

That means the Eagles will need to find a new defensive coordinator soon.

Here are 11 possible candidates:

Matt Burke: If the Eagles want to keep some consistency, Burke would be the obvious internal hire. He’s a Schwartz protege and you have to remember that the Eagles have a ton of money invested in their defensive line. Burke joined the Eagles in 2019 as a special assistant and promoted him to DL coach/run game coordinator for this season. He has previous DC experience with the Dolphins from 2017-18.

Marquand Manuel: Another potential in-house promotion. Manuel joined the Eagles as their DBs coach in 2020 after two seasons as the Falcons’ defensive coordinator. Manuel played for nearly a decade in the NFL before working his way up in the coaching world from Seattle to Atlanta.

Cory Undlin: We wanted to get to the potential in-house candidates first and Undlin almost qualifies. He was the Eagles’ DBs coach from 2015-19 but took the Lions’ DC job in 2020. Undlin will be out of work soon after Matt Patricia got fired during the season. Had Undlin stayed in 2020 he would probably be viewed as a more likely in-house candidate.

Gus Bradley: Everyone back on the Gus Bus! Bradley is the Chargers’ DC but there are serious questions about the future of the staff in LA, so he’s a top name that might be available very soon. Bradley was a popular name back in 2013 when the Eagles hired Chip Kelly as their head coach, but Bradley ended up with the Jaguars. He was a top candidate that year coming off an impressive four-year run as the Seahawks’ DC.

Raheem Morris: Right now, Morris is the Falcons’ DC and interim head coach. But if they don’t hire him as their head coach, he’ll likely be available. Morris actually replaced Manuel as the DC in 2020. Morris has DC and head coaching experience in the NFL.

Dan Quinn: Morris replaced Quinn as the interim head coach after Quinn was fired this season. Quinn was the Falcons’ head coach from 2015-20 but is unlikely to find another head coaching job.

Kris Richard: It wasn’t that long ago that Richard was a really hot name in the coaching world but he’s been out of the league in 2020 after he wasn’t retained when the Cowboys moved on from Jason Garrett. That Dallas defense has completely collapsed without him.

Steve Wilks: He’s been out of the league in 2020 but Wilks was most recently the Browns’ defensive coordinator in 2019 and was the Cardinals’ head coach for one year in 2018.

Clint Hurtt: You’ll notice that a lot of these names have been in Seattle with Pete Carroll, so let’s just go right to the source. Hurtt is the Seahawks’ assistant head coach/DL coach and has held that role since 2017. He was previously with the Bears as their OLBs coach.

Wade Phillips: I refused to put together a list of DCs that didn’t include Wade. He’s 73 now but hasn’t been shy about wanting to return to coaching since the Rams didn’t bring him back after the 2019 season. Wade’s been around forever and was the Eagles’ DC from 1986-88; that was many stops ago. Yes, Phillips likes the 3-4 but it’s still a really aggressive front.

DeMeco Ryans: The former Eagles linebacker appears to have a bright coaching future ahead of him. He’s the 49ers’ inside linebackers coach and has held that position since 2018. But even during his playing days there was no question Ryans was destined to be a coach. If Robert Saleh gets a head coaching job and Ryans doesn’t get promoted in San Francisco, getting him back in Philly might be an option.

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