5 things you didn't know about Vic Fangio and Kellen Moore originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia
For the second time in less than a year, the Eagles have two new coordinators. Kellen Moore replaced Brian Johnson, who replaced Shane Steichen. And Vic Fangio replaced Matt Patricia, who replaced Sean Desai, who replaced Jonathan Gannon.
This is the first time ever the Eagles have replaced both coordinators in consecutive years.
With Moore and Fangio beginning their Eagles coaching careers this week, we’d thought we’d come up with Five Things You Didn’t Know about each new coordinator.
Five Things you Didn’t Know About Vic Fangio
1. Fangio grew up in Northeastern Pennsylvania and attended Dunmore High School, just outside Scranton. He attended East Stroudsburg University but didn’t play football for the Warriors. He began his coaching career working with linebackers at Dunmore while still attending East Stroudsburg. After one year, he was promoted to defensive coordinator at his alma mater and after a year coaching at a prep school in Connecticut and a year as a grad assistant at North Carolina – where future Eagles starting offensive tackle Joe Conwell (brother of legendary Tommy Conwell) was on the team – Fangio joined Jim Mora's staff with the USFL Philadelphia Stars, where one of his starting safeties was Mike Lush, who was also an East Stroudsburg graduate. Also on that Stars staff were future Panthers and Texans coach Dom Capers and future Cards head coach Vince Tobin. Capers played college football at Mount Union, so Nick Sirianni is the second former Purple Raider he'll work with.
2. Fangio had a long, productive relationship with New Jersey native Sam Mills, who went from unknown NCAA Division 3 linebacker to Browns castoff and ultimately Hall of Famer. Fangio’s first pro coaching job was as an unpaid volunteer assistant with Jim Mora’s USFL Philadelphia Stars, where he first coached Mills. Fangio would go on to spend 1986 through 1994 with Mills in New Orleans, again under Mora, and 1995 through 1997 with Mills in Carolina with the expansion Panthers. In 1998, when Fangio was Panthers defensive coordinator under Capers and Mills had retired, Fangio brought Mills on as an assistant coach. “I had the pleasure and honor to be with Sam Mills for 15 years,” Fangio said when Mills went into the Hall of Fame. “There was absolutely nobody better than him. He possessed a rare combination of talent, toughness, intelligence, instincts and leadership skills, all of this with an overachiever’s mentality and work ethic that made him the Hall of Famer he is today. The team in Canton got better today.”
3. Not counting his jobs with the expansion Panthers and Texans, every team that Fangio has joined as either a defensive coordinator or head coach improved – most of them significantly – in his first year.
1999 Colts: He took over a Colts team ranked 29th in both yards and points allowed in 1998. A year later, they improved to 17th and 19th.
2011 49ers: The Colts ranked 16th and 13th in 2010 and improved to 2nd and 4th in 2011, his first year in Indy.
2015 Bears: The Bears ranked 31st in yards allowed and 30th in points allowed in 2014. In Fangio’s first year, they improved to 20th and 14th.
2019 Broncos: In his one head coaching job, Fangio inherited a defense ranked 13th and 22ndand in his first year they were 10th and 12th.
2023 Dolphins: In his one year with the Dolphins, Miami went from 24th to 22nd in yards allowed and 18th to 10th in points allowed.
The average improvement was 23rd to 14th in yards allowed and 22nd to 12th in points allowed.
4. In 2018, Fangio was on a Bears staff with a ton of Eagles connections. The head coach was one-time backup quarterback and Andy Reid Chiefs assistant coach Matt Nagy, and others on that staff included future or former Eagles assistants Sean Desai, Brad Childress and Bill Shuey. Mark Helfrich, who replaced Chip Kelly at Oregon, and future Chargers coach Brandon Staley, were also on Kafka’s staff. Jordan Howard, Chase Daniel and Trey Burton were on the roster. That team’s season ended with a 16-15 wild-card loss to the Eagles at Soldier Field – the Double Doink game.
5. After the 2001 season, Colts general manager Bill Polian told Mora, the head coach, to fire Fangio because he wanted a “change in defensive approach.” Mora resisted and insisted on keeping Fangio, who he had worked with since the Stars days nearly two decades earlier. So Polian fired Mora, who never coached again. “There are a number of reasons I got fired,” Mora said. “But the main one is that I was asked by Bill Polian to fire Vic Fangio and I wouldn’t do it. Let me tell you something about Vic Fangio. He’s as good a defensive coach as there is in football.”
Five Things you Need to Know About Kellen Moore
1. Kellen Moore only played three games in the NFL and started two, but in a 34-23 loss to Washington at AT&T Stadium on the final day of the 2015 season, he threw for 435 yards and three TDs. He never played again. Moore’s 435 yards in that game are the most ever by a quarterback in his final NFL game. Tom Brady has the 2nd-most with 351 yards in the Bucs’ season-ending 31-14 loss to the Cowboys in the 2022 wild-card game in Tampa. The Cowboys’ offensive coordinator in that game? Kellen Moore. Only three left-handed quarterbacks have thrown for more yards in a game than Moore’s 435. Boomer Esiason twice, Tua Tagovailoa twice and Steve Young twice.
2. At Boise State, Moore went 50-3, and the 50 wins remain an NCAA record. He threw for 14,667 yards with 142 touchdown passes, 28 interceptions and a 169.0 passer rating. The 142 TD passes are 2nd-most in BCS history, behind only Case Keenum’s 155 for Houston, and his 14,667 yards still rank 9th in BCS history. Among the two QBs ahead of him are former Eagles Timmy Chang (17,072) and Ty Detmer (15,031). Keenum holds the record with 19,217. Moore was a four-time All-Academic
3. Moore’s head coach as a rookie with the Lions in 2012 was Jim Schwartz, who was the Eagles’ defensive coordinator when they won Super Bowl LII over the Patriots after the 2017 season. Moore’s quarterbacks coach in 2014 in Detroit was Jim Bob Cooter, who is currently Colts offensive coordinator under Shane Steichen, who was Eagles offensive coordinator before Brian Johnson, who Moore replaced.
4. Moore is the third offensive coordinator the Eagles have hired since 2016 whose previous job was offensive coordinator of the Chargers. Frank Reich was Chargers offensive coordinator in 2014 and 2015 before joining Pederson’s Eagles staff in 2016, Shane Steichen was Chargers offensive coordinator in 2020 before Nick Sirianni hired him in 2021 and Moore was Chargers OC last year. Reich and Steichen both were part of a Super Bowl coaching staff in their second season before becoming head coach of the Colts.
5. In Moore’s four seasons as offensive coordinator in Dallas, the Cowboys ranked 2nd in the NFL in points per game (27.7), 2nd in yards per game (391), 4th on 3rd down (44.1%), 4th in passing yards per game (264), 7th in rushing yards (126.6) and 3rd in first downs (22.5).