Coaching Buzz: Gruden, Kelly And Arians

A lot of talk among Eagles fans right now is focused not on the team’s Week 10 game against the Cowboys, but rather on who the next head coach could potentially be.

While we need to acknowledge that there are still eight games remaining, and that Andy Reid is under contract through 2013, it’d be foolish to ignore the buzz about head-coaching candidates that is already building.

Birds 24/7 is, after all, a blog for the people.

So from time to time, we’ll round up links and information about names you should know.

Without further ado…

Tim wrote about Jon Gruden and his praise for Nick Foles yesterday. But there are a couple other links to pass along. The first is from Paul Domowitch of the Daily News. Domo caught up with Ron Jaworski to get his take on Gruden possibly returning. One of the most noteworthy parts of the column focused on how much control Gruden might want from a personnel standpoint:

Talent evaluation isn’t Gruden’s strong suit. Coaching and motivating players is. If you’re an owner, you wouldn’t want to bring him in and make him king. And Jaworski said Gruden wouldn’t necessarily want to be king. All he would want is a general manager who’s on the same page as he is.

“He’s going to want to have someone he can trust and communicate with,” Jaws said. “No question of that. And it’s not just Jon. Any head coach that comes in is going to want to have that good relationship [with a GM].

“Look what happened in Carolina. You could see there was a disconnect there between Ron [Rivera] and [recently fired GM] Marty Hurney. They signed [running backs] DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart and Mike Tolbert, and then they don’t run the ball. That’s the kind of disconnect you can’t have.

“For Jon, it’s not about power. It’s about working in harmony.”

That’s an important nugget, considering the Eagles extended Howie Roseman’s contract back in June. Of course, as others have pointed out, there’s no guarantee that Roseman will return, but it seems more likely than not at this point.

One more note on Gruden: Sources tell Mike Freeman of CBSSports.com that he’s already putting together a skeleton staff of assistants, should the right opportunity present itself.

Another name you’re going to hear a lot about is Oregon’s Chip Kelly. Sources tell Dennis Dodd of CBSSports.com that Kelly is likely to make the leap to the NFL this offseason. Last year, he had the chance to take over the Tampa Bay Bucs, but turned it down. He’ll likely have multiple suitors this time around.

“It’s just inevitable that he will eventually be in the NFL,” [Former Oregon coach Mike] Bellotti said. “Chip is one of the ultimate competitors and he sees that. It actually surprised me he changed his mind [with the Bucs] last year.

“Whether they get to the national championship and whether they win the national championship, I don’t know. To think he’ll stay there when ultimately his idea of top jobs is to get to the Super Bowl, it won’t happen, unfortunately, at the college level.”

And finally, some of you have asked about Colts offensive coordinator Bruce Arians, who currently has assumed head-coaching duties from Chuck Pagano. Daniel Jeremiah of NFL.com said he’s heard Arians’ name mentioned for possible head-coaching opportunities around the league. Arians, who is 60-years-old, previously was the offensive coordinator of the Pittsburgh Steelers, and he was the head coach of Temple from 1983 to 1988.

Jeremiah also recently put together a list of head-coaching candidates, including Broncos offensive coordinator Mike McCoy and Penn State’s Bill O’Brien (although he concedes it’s highly unlikely that O’Brien leaves Happy Valley).

Follow Sheil Kapadia on Twitter and e-mail him at skapadia@phillymag.com.
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