It increasingly feels like Super Bowl champion Doug Pederson will be an NFL head coach again in 2022. It’s just not known yet where he will land.
After interviewing for the Jaguars’ top coaching spot last Thursday, Pederson is set to interview for the Bears’ opening:
The #Bears plan to interview former #Eagles coach Doug Pederson for their head coaching job, per source.— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) January 10, 2022
It'll be the second interview in this cycle for the Super Bowl winner Pederson, who also is a candidate with the #Jaguars.
One wrinkle that first came to mind when seeing that Pederson is set to interview with the Bears is that Chicago would be going right back to the Andy Reid coaching tree after firing Matt Nagy today. Nagy succeeded Pederson as Kansas City’s offensive coordinator under Reid in 2016 when Pederson left the organization to become the head coach of the Eagles. Chicago hired Nagy in 2018. He won Coach of the Year before he lost, of course, to the Eagles in that season’s NFC playoffs in the iconic Double Doink Game.
The quarterback in that game for the Eagles? Nick Foles, who is still under contract with the Bears through 2022. According to Spotrac, Foles had a cap hit of more than $10.6 million next season. Cutting him would leave Chicago with a dead cap hit of more than $7.6 million. Given the successful relationship between Pederson and Foles, one that saw the Eagles go 4-1 in the postseason over two seasons and win Super Bowl LII, perhaps Foles would agree to take a pay cut and rework his deal in order to remain in a friendly place.
The goal of hiring Pederson, however, is to maximize the development of 2021 first-round pick Justin Fields. Eagles fans saw the leap Carson Wentz made in his second NFL season under the tutelage of Pederson. A franchise like Jacksonville or Chicago would be wise to hire Pederson in order to get the most out of their young quarterback.