Spagnuolo speculation starts
As your faithful Eagletarian reported in today's Daily News, the people making decisions for the Eagles aren't talking yet. But that doesn't stop people in far-flung NFL outposts from speculating on what they're going to do when the season ends.
Eagles fans have been wondering for weeks what will happen if/when former Eagles assistant Steve Spagnuolo gets fired as head coach in St. Louis. Having Spagnuolo return to the Birds as defensive coordinator would be ideal, given his tie to the Jim Johnson-defense Eagles. Today, the San Diego Union-Tribune (yes, really) reports, as an aside about Chargers GM A.J. Smith possibly ending up in St. Louis, that Spagnuolo is "all but certain" to come back to the Eagles to run the defense. "League sources" are cited.
Yesterday, Eagles blogger Tommy Lawlor posted a well-thought-out piece that speculated the Eagles might make Sapgnuolo some sort of assistant head coach/defense while keeping hardworking, loyal Juan Castillo as the titular defensive coordinator. Made a lot of sense.
Today, ESPN.com's NFC East blogger, Dan Graziano, attempts to make sense of the Spagnuolo speculation, and does a fine job of it. Graziano's key point: Spagnuolo likely will have options when he gets bounced in St. Louis. Given the high regard he is held in after keying the Giants' Super Bowl win four years back, it's conceivable he gets another chance as a head coach.
Personally, I wonder if a demotion that requires going back to a place you've already been is high on Spagnuolo's bucket list. That would have to be a little painful. It isn't like Spags, with that Baaahhstan accent, grew up dreaming of working for the Eagles, twice.
But my key point is this -- all due respect to fine Union-Tribune Chargers writer Kevin Acee -- I can't think Spagnuolo coming back here is "all but certain" at this point. Maybe there have been back-channel feelers, Spagnuolo's agent is Bob LaMonte, longtime agent for Andy Reid. But this isn't the sort of thing that gets worked out in advance. Let's wait until the season is over. Spagnuolo is still coaching the Rams. Next week, it'll get interesting.