By HCR Staff | Aug. 21, 2018
Between now and the start of the 2018 season, Head Coach Ranking will provide a scouting report on all 32 NFL head coaches. Today, we’ll take a look at Philadelphia Eagles head coach Doug Pederson.
Super Bowl Champion head coach Doug Pederson earned every plaudit he has gotten this offseason. It’s also refreshing to see a former NFL player succeed as a head coach — there just aren’t many left.
We feel much of Pederson’s success is due to his leadership qualities. He was well liked as a player and is popular as a head coach. Other coaches enjoy coaching for him, and this is not to be underestimated.
Pederson also put together a top-notch staff. DC Jim Schwartz was excellent all year, with his unit playing fast and physical all year. Schwartz will be a head coach again soon. Pederson also had OC Frank Reich and QB coach John DeFilippo, two coaches known for their acumen and optimistic natures. Eagles QBs Carson Wentz and Nick Foles performed admirably, perhaps because they were able to come to work every day in a positive, supportive environment led by two former longtime NFL QBs in Pederson and Reich.
Pederson deserves the credit for creating this kind of environment and culture. The ability to create a winning culture is just as important as the X’s and O’s.
Pederson did a wonderful job utilizing his personnel as well. He had to work in a backup QB, a running back in Jay Ajayi acquired during the season, a backup LT after starter Jason Peters was hurt, and his defensive staff integrated the traded-for CB Ronald Darby after an early-season injury. Pederson kept adapting all year no matter, and this adaptability will serve the Eagles well into the future.
In-game, Pederson did make some curious calls here and there as he chose to let analytics guide his decision-making at times. Mostly, his rolls of the dice worked out, but that was last year. It’ll be interesting to track this year.
Pederson did benefit greatly from perhaps the best roster in the league. GM Howie Roseman hit on virtually every acquisition, so Pederson had a lot of depth available to him. Pederson had a margin for error that many other head coaches didn’t have (e.g., Kyle Shanahan, Sean McDermott, etc.).
Pederson earned a well-deserved extension. He brought the franchise and the city glory it had never experienced. He has, however, lost two critical offensive coaches in Reich and DeFilippo, so it will be interesting to watch how this impacts the offense (although Pederson does call the plays).
The Eagles will now experience what it is like to get everyone’s best shot week after week as defending Super Bowl champions. But we have confidence Pederson will have the Eagles ready for the challenge.
Previous HC Previews:
Pete Carroll, Seattle Seahawks
Sean McVay, Los Angeles Rams
Kyle Shanahan, San Francisco 49ers
Steve Wilks, Arizona Cardinals
Mike McCarthy, Green Bay Packers
Mike Zimmer, Minnesota Vikings
Matt Patricia, Detroit Lions
Matt Nagy, Chicago Bears
Dirk Koetter, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Sean Payton, New Orleans Saints
Dan Quinn, Atlanta Falcons
Ron Rivera, Carolina Panthers
Jay Gruden, Washington Redskins
Pat Shurmr, New York Giants
Jason Garrett, Dallas Cowboys