The Cleveland Browns are hiring Minnesota Vikings offensive coordinator Kevin Stefanski as their new head coach, according to a report from NFL insider Ian Rapoport.
This news is relevant to the Philadelphia Eagles since defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz interviewed for the Browns’ job last week. With no remaining head coach vacancies left in the NFL, Schwartz is on track to return as the Eagles’ defensive coordinator in 2020. Doug Pederson confirmed as much in a SportsRadio 94WIP interview on Friday morning:
ANGELO CATALDI: The news conference raised some questions about Jim Schwartz. Can you clarify in our mind your working relationship with Jim?
DOUG PEDERSON: Jim and I have a great working relationship and I was excited to see that he had an opportunity to become, or at least interview for, a head coaching position. I think what he’s done with our defense and, really, the job he’s done for the four years, has been tremendous. So, he and I have a great relationship, and the other thing is, if he doesn’t get that job, he’s definitely my defensive coordinator moving forward.
Schwartz is hardly flawless but he’s one of the better defensive coordinators in the NFL. The Eagles have allowed the fifth fewest points per game in the league since Schwartz became Philly’s DC in 2016. Here’s a look at how his units have ranked each year:
Schwartz Defenses (DVOA Rank - Cap Spend Rank from Spotrac)— Brent Cohen (@EaglesRewind) January 8, 2020
2019: 12th - 21st
2018: 15th - 23rd
2017: 5th - 8th
2016: 4th - 12th
Schwartz’s worst defensive DVOA finish was still slightly above average and it came in a year where the Eagles had the second most injured defense in the league, per Football Outsiders’ “adjusted games lost” metric.
The Eagles could do a lot worse at defensive coordinator.
Now that the Browns have reportedly hired Stefanski, it’ll be interesting to see who they hire for their general manager vacancy. Eagles vice president of football operations Andrew Berry is reportedly expected to interview for the job. But he’s not the only GM candidate in the mix:
With the #Browns filling their head coaching job by the coming hire of #Vikings OC Kevin Stefanski, they may look at Minnesota respected assistant GM George Paton as a possible GM. Andrew Berry and Ed Dodds already have requests.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) January 12, 2020
We’ll soon see if the Eagles will be keeping Berry or not. For now, we know Schwartz is back for his fifth season in Philly.
Browns requested permission Saturday to interview Eagles’ VP Andrew Berry for their GM job. He is a favorite to be matched with new HC Kevin Stefanski.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) January 12, 2020