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  • Brian Baldinger


Brian Baldinger - On the Eagles

And they were in Palm Beach, Florida, at owner's Jeffrey Lurie's compound trying to find a replacement head coach for Doug Pedersen, who they recently fired.

Not just any coach.

NO No! Barely three years removed from bringing the only Super Bowl Trophy to a championship-starved Philadelphia Eagle Franchise

Mr. Lurie, Howie Roseman, Andy Weidl and others with a list of candidates to interview to lead this proud franchise out of the dungeon that saw them go 4-11-1 in one of the worst divisions that anyone could remember.

Arthur Smith showed up and in a short period of time he blew them away. Son of a military father who just happens to be the founder of FedEx.

Arthur Blank, owner of the Atlanta Falcons and the founder of Home Depot, was not going to be denied from hiring his No. 1 target to replace the fired Dan Quinn. What would the Birds Brass do next?

There was Brandon Staley who was the NFL's version of the Boy Wonder, taking the LA Rams defense and in one year as the new defensive coordinator who had to replace legendary, Wade Phillips turned the Rams into the No.1 defense in the NFL.

Nick Sirianni - Eagles new head coach. Photo from the Philadelphia Eagles

He was very much in demand and once again the Eagles were very enamored by Staley. He had strong Midwest roots growing up in Perry, Ohio and attending Dayton, the same school that saw John Gruden play quarterback there as well.

But when the other team in Los Angeles came calling, who just happened to have the hottest rookie quarterback in Justin Herbert, the Chargers offer was too attractive for the newest Boy Wonder.

The Eagles meanwhile were diligently conducting their search, Other names were flown in to the Palm Beach compound and many discussions were had with many other candidates.

And then they made the call to Nick Sirianni.

He just happened to be vacationing in South Florida after the Colts were bounced from the playoffs.

He didn't even have a suit. So when the call came, he said he would be happy to come to Palm Beach for a visit but it would have to be in casual clothes. It's all he had.

It was within the first few hours that I think everyone was in agreement that they had found their guy

You see, all Nick Sirianni has ever known is football and coaching.

His Father, Fran, coached him at Southwestern High School in upstate NY. Both of his older brothers became coaches.

His oldest brother, Jay, became the coach at the aforementioned high school, while his brother Mike is the current coach at Washington and Jefferson College just outside of Pittsburgh. You see, all he has known is coaching.

After graduating and playing for three years at Mount Union, he would go straight from graduation to becoming the defensive back coach for the Purple Raiders.

Another stop later and after a summer friendship struck up with the Kansas City Chiefs Head Coach, Todd Haley pulled him straight from the small college ranks to a coach with the Chiefs.

You see, all Nick Sirianni has ever known is coaching.

So when Lurie and Roseman and the gang were sitting in the mellifluous calm of Palm Beach, everything that was coming out of Sirianni's mouth was from almost four decades of being around coaches and more specifically, football coaches his whole life.

Not that dissimilar to Bill Belichick or John Gruden or countless other sons of football coaches.

It is in their blood and they are never happy unless they have a group of men who want to be coached, taught, and lead.

And that's what Nick Sirianni is...A coach. A teacher. A leader. And that is the new coach of the Eagles.

He has spent over a decade in the NFL around quarterback's like Trent Green,, Andrew Luck, and Phillip Rivers. He sees how they respond, and the importance of the position.

He has watched how Frank Reich went from a backup quarterback to a relatively young assistant coach to a head coach with a firm grasp in how to build and lead a football team.

But he isn't Frank Reich. Frank is laid back, reserved, calm under pressure, and mild mannered.

Sirianni is wild, passionate, loud and madly passionate.

The opening press conference wasn't his best moment. Not many lifelong coaches want to take questions from the media. Andy Reid never wanted to do it.

Doug Pedersen meandered around and most often said more than he needed.

I think we will all come to see what Mr Lurie saw at his Palm Beach Mansion on a February afternoon. I think we are going to see a passionate, smart, organized football coach that will lead the Birds out of the depths of a 4-11-1 season

You see; all Nick Sirianni wants to do is be a football coach. His time is now

Welcome to Philadelphia Nick. *

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