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January 20, 2021

Eytan Shander: No matter who they hire, the next Eagles coach is being set up to fail

As long as the same power structure remains, Doug Pederson's successor doesn't stand a chance.

Does it even matter? I don’t even care anymore at this point. Just get it over with and put me out of my misery. 

The Eagles won’t hire the right head coach because the right people aren’t hiring the next head coach. It’s really that simple.

The people who have fostered the current culture have made this job the opposite of desirable. Sure, there are "only 32 of these jobs!” and we've see a ton of issues in the hiring process itself. But this isn't that. This is an owner and patsy GM who won’t allow any strong-willed coach to come in and set his own agenda — and the entire NFL knows it.

The secret is out, the Eagles are a laughingstock. What it would take to fix this mess is something the owner would never consider — because he already did it, and it failed miserably. Not because of the theory, rather the person he picked.

Handing the keys of your team over to a strong-minded football coach who has the smarts and ability to draft and communicate with players is a great thing. Doing all that with Chip Kelly, however, was a colossal mistake. But the theory still holds. Find the right person with the right brain in this game, allow them to make all the grocery selections, then don’t hover over them while they prepare the meal.

The level of micromanagement — i.e. Doug Pederson not being able to pick his own staff — is as much of a deterrent in taking this job as anything else on the table — and the entire NFL knows it. Any coach with at least one other option wouldn’t take this job, and I can’t blame him. Anyone who knows Pederson made a call right away to the former Eagles coach and got the full report on just how ridiculous this place is.

That’s why it took Josh McDaniels having his worst year ever as an OC just to be on the Eagles’ radar. They couldn’t get McDaniels after a decent year. This is how bad the Eagles have fallen. They tried to bring Jim Schwartz back and he declined. Pederson is taking the year off after basically ensuring his own exit. People want out!

It’s why I couldn’t care less who they hire. It’s why it won’t matter. The last guy came in and won a Super Bowl, which was STILL not enough to gain enough of the GM and owner's trust to simply to pick his own staff. The new coach will be walking into a minefield at QB — created by the front office — and will be undermined and insulted through media reports if he goes against the already established “culture” in Philadelphia.

What is the bar for the next head coach? The last guy won and was driven out. Is the new bar simply, “sit there and shut up?” It certainly feels that way.

This past week has been a sobering reminder of how bad of a shitshow this team is now — and now the entire NFL knows it. We’ve seen two big things happen that truly illustrate how bad this situation is in Philadelphia. First, the reports surrounding Carson Wentz and how difficult he is to work with. I remember so many people angry with Joe Santoliquito when his story came out right here on PhillyVoice almost exactly two years ago, but in hindsight we see something new come out about Wentz each year – and they're coming from inside the Eagles organization.

The next thing is how the Eagles job opening is nothing more than the least desirable opening. The Texans – who have a more realistic chance of being able to trade their QB and are also run by a bunch of morons — are a better landing spot because there’s nothing to repair with Deshaun Watson outside of his feelings toward the Texans. What a joke.

I won’t hate you for celebrating, won’t judge you for being happy, I certainly won’t come down on anyone for being patient with the new hire. But let me assure you one thing — an inevitability if you will — about what’s going to happen here. It’s something I know will happen because it happened to everyone, including Big Red.

The problem with the Philadelphia Eagles remains in the front office. It remains in the owner’s seat on Sundays. The problem is the warped power structure, the sniping and shots fired behind backs, the smear campaigns on the way out, everything all in one. No head coach is going to change that…

And the entire NFL knows it.

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Follow Eytan on Twitter: @shandershow

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