Former Eagles head coach Doug Pederson still hasn’t found a new home after being fired from the Eagles more than over a year ago, but he certainly isn’t lacking any opportunities. According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, Pederson interviewed with the New Orleans Saints Sunday.
Pederson will be going up against former Dolphins HC Brain Flores, Lions DC Aaron Glenn, Saints DC Dennis Allen, and Buccaneers OC Bryon Leftwich for the position. Of the group, Pederson has — by far — the most expertise and hardware to back his success up.
Pederson also nabbed a second interview with the Jacksonville Jaguars that will occur today, per NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo. Along with Pederson, Leftwich, Raiders interim HC Rich Bisaccia, and Cowboys OC Kellen Moore have interviewed.
Rams OC Kevin O’Connell will also interview — and is apparently a key candidate — but he won’t be eligible to talk to the team until after Super Bowl LVI.
However, according to Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer in his Monday Morning QB writeup, Pederson may not be soon keen on joining the Jags given his rough finish in Philadelphia due to organizational disfunction.
“Doug Pederson, I’m told, was lukewarm about the chance to go there, given what he’d gone through in Philly and the structure in place in Jacksonville.”
Is Pederson Playing It Smart, Or Too Risky By Being Picky?
On the one hand, its perfectly reasonable why Pederson wouldn’t want to repeat what he had to go through here with Jeffrey Lurie and Howie Roseman. A few coaches seem to be more than hesitant of the job given that general manager Trent Baalke holds quite a bit of power and has owner Shad Khan’s approval.
On the other hand, you have to wonder if Pederson is being too picky. Fair or not, he’s fighting the growing trend for young, innovative coordinators as prime HC candidates. It’s why O’Connell has suddenly shot up the boards for a number of teams, such as the Houston Texans, and why good friend Jonathon Gannon was also a hot target at one point.
Pederson and Trevor Lawrence would be an interesting pairing. Lawrence desperately needs a changeup after Urban Meyer, and Pederson’s experience with younger QBs could be a big plus in his development.
New Orleans would be the better destination for Pederson. Though their QB situation is in flux and they’re about to be in cap hell, the team possesses a number of star players (Mike Thomas, Alvin Kamara) and carry stability within the organization. They’re a prime choice for a rebound next season, and Pederson would be a very good coach to lead them.