The Eagles interviewed Brian Billick on Monday and consider the former Ravens coach one of the leading candidates, per Reuben Frank of CSN Philly.
According to Jason LaCanfora, the meeting lasted eight hours and the Eagles left “very impressed.”
Billick, currently an analyst for Fox, has been out of the game since 2007. The 58-year-old compiled a record of 80-64 in nine seasons as head coach of the Ravens, which included a Super Bowl championship in 2000.
The Ravens made it back to the playoffs three more times under Billick but never got past the divisional round. He was replaced by John Harbaugh following a 5-11 season in ’07.
Billick served as offensive coordinator of the Vikings from 1994-98. While offense was his specialty, it was the Baltimore defense that carried the team during much of his tenure.
Billick has been a staunch defender of Andy Reid’s, and has maintained that the Eagles will not find a coach better than him. He took his argument to another level back in late December with Mike Missanelli.
“There are going to be some excellent candidates for the Philadelphia Eagles job that have all the right credentials…the guy you get — and he may very well be exactly what the Eagles need — I’m telling you that with all that success, I’m telling you that at the end of the day, however you want to measure it, he’s not going to be play-for-play, game plan for game plan, evaluation for evaluation, a better coach over a 14-year period of time than Andy Reid,” Billick said. “He may have two or three or four Super Bowls and if that’s the outcome he should be admired for it, but I’m telling you that as someone who measures that on a daily basis that [he won’t be better than Reid.]”
Now, there appears to be a chance that he could be the successor.
The Eagles promised to leave “no stone unturned” at the onset, and have stayed true to their word. It appears that they are in a new phase of the coaching search after early pursuit of college coaches Chip Kelly, Bill O’Brien and most recently, Notre Dame’s Brian Kelly.
“There is no question we spent a considerable amount of time and effort looking at who we thought were the best collegiate candidates for our head coaching job. We did so knowing that there was a remote chance that these coaches would leave their current posts,” the Eagles said in a statement. “We understood that going into the process, but we wanted to leave no stone unturned while trying to find the best head coach for the Philadelphia Eagles. We have no regrets about the effort we made in that direction and we will continue to proceed as planned in our search.”
Jeffrey Lurie, Howie Roseman and Don Smolenski are scheduled to meet with Jay Gruden on Monday and Bruce Arians on Tuesday. On Saturday they sat down with Seattle defensive coordinator Gus Bradley, who is reportedly a leading candidate for the job.
With all the focus on the top assistants and college coaches, it looks like they snuck in an interview with Billick as well.