Philadelphia Eagles coaching candidate profiles: Jay Gruden, Bengals OC

Frank Victores-US PRESSWIRE

This is the latest in our series of profiles on prospective Eagles coaching candidates. For others, click here.

We are profiling all the likely candidates for the Eagles head coaching position in 2013. For the rest of the series, check out this hub.

Next up is Jay Gruden, offensive coordinator, Cincinnati Bengals.

Resume

Nashville Kats (1997)
(Offensive Coordinator)
Orlando Predators (1998-2001)
(Head Coach)
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2002-2008)
(Offensive Assistant)
Orlando Predators (2004-2008)
(Head Coach)
Florida Tuskers (2009)
(Offensive Coordinator)
Florida Tuskers (2010)
(Head Coach/General Manager)
Cincinnati Bengals (2011-present)
(Offensive Coordinator)

Why he could work

To be honest, this section and the "why he may not be the guy" section will probably look a lot alike, because much of what you think about Gruden depends on how you view his career.

Looking over his resume, you may not recognize a lot of those teams. It's because they're not college or pro squads... they're Arena league and UFL teams. That is where most of Jay Gruden's experience lies, both as a player and coach.

Gruden was a good QB in college at Louisville and went on to "star" in the Arena league, winning 4 titles and being named league MVP once. He then became a head coach in the league and did well there too, winning 2 more titles.

Gruden would later move on to become head coach of the UFL's Florida Tuskers. So he does actually have about 8 years of head coaching experience. That's more than any other candidate the Eagles have been connected to this offseason.

His NFL experience started with a couple seasons as an offensive assistant under his more famous brother John in Tampa. He actually continued to coach in the Arena league at the same time. His first big NFL job came last year when he was hired as offensive coordinator of the Bengals.

His arrival in Cincy coincided with the drafting of Andy Dalton in the second round. Gruden helped guide him to a Pro Bowl in his rookie season.

Why he may not be the guy

All that stuff above about Gruden's experience... that can go here too. He does have a lot of head coaching experience, but it's in the Arena league. Does that count? In some ways yes, he's still managing a staff and a team. However, they're barely even professional players, the rules of the game are very different and let's be honest... the stakes just aren't the same at the NFL or college level.

Looking at his NFL experience, its kind of hard to see how Gruden is even viewed as a hot, up and coming assistant. In his first season, the Bengals finished 20th in total offense and this year slipped back to 22nd.

And while his work with Andy Dalton in the QBs rookie year is likely what got the league's attention, his work with Dalton this year has to bring some doubt. He's rarely played very well against good teams and has been downright awful in 2 straight playoff games.

Gruden's offense as a whole has really been terrible in the postseason managing just 23 points in two games.

Final thoughts

I really have to wonder whether he'd even have gotten a shot to be an offensive coordinator in this league if his last name wasn't Gruden. I just don't see how he's suddenly a guy every team wants to talk to. The Cincy offense isn't bad. They don't move the ball great, but they do score points.

Still, when you see guys like Gus Bradley doing outstanding things with the Seattle D and Mike McCoy doing outstanding things with the Denver O... why is Jay Gruden and his mediocre Bengals offense getting so many NFL interviews? Is his Arena league coaching record really that impressive?

I said the other day that while I have my favorites, I'd be pretty much on board with almost anyone who the Eagles hired. After all, there is no formula to finding a head coach. Good ones can come from anywhere and maybe that includes the Arena league... but I can't say I'd be very happy if Jay Gruden is who the Eagles ended up with.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Bleeding Green Nation

You must be a member of Bleeding Green Nation to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Bleeding Green Nation. You should read them.

Join Bleeding Green Nation

You must be a member of Bleeding Green Nation to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Bleeding Green Nation. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9341_tracker