What was recently rumored to happen has become official: the Indianapolis Colts hired Philadelphia Eagles offensive coordinator Shane Steichen to be their new head coach.
Steichen joined Nick Sirianni’s original coaching staff in 2021. He played a signicant role in the team’s second half turnaround that season since he took over play-calling duties. Steichen retained that role in 2022 as he oversaw a prolific Eagles offense that ranked second in offensive points per game, third in EPA per play, and third in DVOA. There’s some level of credit to be attributed to Jalen Hurts’ incredible development.
The Eagles losing Steichen is not ideal. But having desirable assistants comes with the territory of being a team that’s good enough to make the Super Bowl.
It remains to be seen how the Birds will handle Steichen’s departure. There’s thought that quarterbacks coach Brian Johnson will be promoted to offensive coordinator. Johnson previously held combined OC/QB coach roles in the college ranks at Florida (2020), Houston (2017), and Utah (2012-2013). It also doesn’t hurt that Johnson has a close relationship with Hurts.
Eagles passing game coordinator Kevin Patullo, who is Sirianni’s right-hand man, is another internal candidate to replace Steichen. Remember that Patullo was set to serve as interim head coach one time when it looked like Sirianni might miss a game due to COVID (didn’t actually happen).
Former Colts offensive coordinator Marcus Brady, who directly replaced Sirianni in Indy, joined the Eagles this season. He might be a candidate as well.
It’s always possible that the Eagles will consider some external candidates. But Johnson seems like a prime in-house option. He is reportedly receiving interest for multiple OC openings elsewhere in the NFL.
Steichen might not be the only Eagles coordinator on his way out of Philly. Defensive coordinator Jonathan Gannon stayed in Arizona after the Eagles’ Super Bowl loss to meet with the Cardinals. We’ll see if he ends up getting that job or not.
We’ll also see if Steichen and/or Gannon take any Eagles assistants with them.
Entering his third season in Philly, Sirianni finds himself in a position to work against an inevitable brain drain.