Eagles' search to date: Folly and fumbles

Defensive coordinator Sean McDermott (left) and Eagles coach Andy Reid in December. McDermott was fired this month.
Defensive coordinator Sean McDermott (left) and Eagles coach Andy Reid in December. McDermott was fired this month.
Posted: January 26, 2011

Eagles defensive coordinator time line:

Jan. 9: Eagles lose wild-card playoff game, 21-16, to Packers, with defense allowing at least 20 points for 12th time in 17 games and finishing with a red-zone success rate (no points allowed) of 1 for 46.

Jan. 10: Head coach Andy Reid, asked if Sean McDermott will return as defensive coordinator says, "Yeah," adding, "You're dealing with a guy that's a tremendous worker and is a very smart individual. And so I look at it a little bit different than what you do in that I've seen him work with young guys. I've seen him work through injuries. I've seen him stay positive through those situations and still put us in a position to win football games. And [I] know that he's going to do nothing but improve as a coach, just like all of us, with experience. I've got a lot of respect for him and the way he does business."

Jan. 12: Reid fires McDermott.

Jan. 15: Jeff McLane of The Inquirer and Chris Mortensen of ESPN, in a fabulous postseason Twitter showdown, report simultaneously that McDermott was fired, reports that are quickly confirmed by the Eagles. Internet screen grabs confirm the initial ruling that McLane's finger hit the "send" button just before his knee touched the ground.

Jan. 16: Turns out they fired defensive line coach Rory Segrest, too, but no one noticed.

Jan. 17: McDermott hired as defensive coordinator in Carolina by new head coach and former Eagles assistant Ron Rivera. Reid leaves on Caribbean vacation, thus depleting rayon supplies throughout the Lesser Antilles.

Jan. 18: Former Atlanta and Seattle head coach Jim Mora, rumored to be a candidate for defensive coordinator jobs in Philadelphia and Denver, interviews with the Broncos.

Jan. 19: Billy Davis, former defensive coordinator in Arizona, is said to be among names on the Eagles' candidate list. Eagles hire Tennessee defensive line coach Jim Washburn to replace Segrest. So, yeah, guess he was fired. Washburn, more than 20 years ago, served three months in halfway house and three years probation for allegedly supplying college players with steroids. No trouble since, of course, because there are no drugs in NFL.

Jan 20: ESPN reports Eagles request permission to interview Baltimore linebackers coach Dean Pees. Eagles immediately say Pees porridge is not hot with them, but don't deny report on Davis, whichever one he was.

Jan. 21: Eagles defensive backs coach Dick Jauron hired as defensive coordinator in Cleveland. Mora removes name from consideration for Denver and Philadelphia jobs. Leaves door open to becoming ambassador to France. Tanned and rested, Reid returns to Philadelphia.

Jan. 22: Eagles sources indicate that they do, too, know what they're doing. They have a list and everything. Add that Jauron was never a serious candidate for their job and, as for Mora, ha-ha, it is to laugh. Reid and general manager Howie Roseman interview New Orleans defensive backs coach Dennis Allen. Give him T-shirt and send him home.

Jan. 23: Green Bay and Pittsburgh advance to Super Bowl, meaning that if Eagles are targeted on an assistant from either team, they must wait until Feb. 7 for interview. Hot rumor is Green Bay D-line coach Mike Trgovac, a man of few words and fewer vowels. Story breaks that Steelers defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau is fresh out of years on his contract. Quizzed by Jonathan Tamari of the Inquirer following win over Jets, he says, "If I'm going to be in the state of Pennsylvania, I'm going to be in Pittsburgh." Former political writer Tamari informs LeBeau that Pennsylvania is a commonwealth, not a state.

Jan. 24: Denver hires Allen as defensive coordinator. Reid opts not to attend Senior Bowl in order to concentrate on coordinator search from Philadelphia. McLane and Daily News beat writer Les Bowen, who took 4 a.m. cab from downtown Chicago in order to get to Mobile, Ala., are not amused. Wanted to hear snorkeling stories.

Jan. 25: NFL Network reports that Eagles will not extend expiring contract of linebackers coach Bill Shuey. The Eagles had a linebackers coach?

Jan. 26: Trgovac, interviewed by reporters in Green Bay, says he's only thinking about beating the Pittsburgh Steelers and won't comment on anything other than the game. "There's no 'I' in Trgovac," he says, but won't divulge what happened to the "u" and the "e."

Jan. 27: Reid leaves for quick jaunt to Barbados, where he lands record tarpon. McLane and Bowen arrive in Bridgetown after connecting through Atlanta, Miami and San Juan, but the coach is already gone. "He say no 3-4," fishing guide tells reporters.

Jan. 29: Mora indicates he will consider CEO position at Microsoft.

Jan. 30: Michael Vick is MVP at Pro Bowl in Hawaii. Cornerback Asante Samuel was selected to roster, but doesn't play because of lingering injury. Jay Cutler on Twitter: "U kid'n me? Sam got to man up, dog!!"

Feb. 2: Media Day at Super Bowl. Trgovac denies he is Mike Trgovac. "I think that might be him over there," Trgovac says.

Feb. 4: Allegedly unhappy with housing market in the Charlotte area, McDermott abruptly resigns as coordinator of the Panthers.

Feb. 5: Reid returns from lunch trip to Martinique, calls 5 p.m. news conference and announces the new defensive coordinator is . . . Sean McDermott. "We looked around and he's still our guy," Reid says. "I know that he's going to do nothing but improve as a coach, just like all of us, with experience. I've got a lot of respect for him and the way he does business."


Contact columnist Bob Ford at 215-854-5842 or bford@phillynews.com. Read his recent work at http://go.philly.com/bobford.

 

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