The Eagles are closing in on naming a new defensive coordinator.
The organization has narrowed things down to the finalists — believed to be Seattle associate head coach Sean Desai and in-house candidate Dennard Wilson — and will presumably be making a decision shortly with the NFL Scouting Combine set to begin Tuesday in Indianapolis.
Desai is at the NovaCare Complex today for his second interview, according to NFL Media.
#Seahawks associate head coach and defensive assistant Sean Desai is in the building in Philly today, doing a second interview for the #Eagles vacant DC job, per me and @MikeGarafolo. Desai, a Vic Fangio disciple, is a finalist for the post previously held by Jonathan Gannon.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) February 27, 2023
Meanwhile, both GM Howie Roseman and head coach Nick Sirianni are scheduled to speak at the combine on Tuesday.
The Eagles, of course, are looking to replace Jonathan Gannon, who left after two seasons as Sirianni’s DC to take over as the head coach in Arizona just days after the Eagles fell to the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LVII, 38-35, on Feb. 12. in Gannon’s two years in Philadelphia the Eagles had two top-10 defenses (No. 10 in 2021 and No. 2 in 2022).
Having a DC in place for the combine makes sense because you would want his input on potential draft picks as quickly as possible.
Sirianni, though, noted during his season-ending press conference that getting the decision right was more important than any self-imposed deadlines.
“We want to get it done as soon as we can but not be in a rush,” the coach said. “I think that’s the best way to say that is that we’ll be diligent because we need to be diligent. And if it takes us interviewing nine coordinators, like we did with the running backs to get Jemal Singleton, we’ll do that to get the best person that can help us be a good football team.”
“And, so, timeline – no timeline. Are we working with urgency? Of course. Are we working in a rush? No.”
The Eagles obviously understand what they have in Wilson, who was Gannon’s right-hand man and secondary coach for two seasons.
Wilson was also endorsed by Darius Slay, Marcus Epps, and Chauncey Gardner-Johnson on social media recently.
Desai, who will turn 40 in April, is a former coordinator in Chicago and started his coaching career at Temple University, where he helped coach the defense and special teams from 2006-10.
A Vic Fangio disciple, Desai subscribes to the defensive philosophy Sirianni likes. Much like Gannon, he had a solid pass defense with the Bears in 2021 but struggled at times with the run something baked into the light boxes the Fangio-authored system believes in.
Last year, Desai was an assistant head coach and defensive assistant for the Seahawks next to another great defensive mind in Pete Carroll.