Philadelphia Eagles coach Andy Reid told reporters Monday that he expected all of his coaches to return in 2011, but apparently he's changed his mind. Reid has fired defensive coordinator Sean McDermott, according to ESPN's Chris Mortensen.
The Eagles' defense gave up 31 touchdown passes and the pass-rush disappeared down the stretch. But even with those dismal numbers, you figured Reid would show some patience with McDermott based on how many injuries occurred on that side of the ball. The Eagles finished the season with rookies starting at safety and middle linebacker. Both Kurt Coleman and Jamar Chaney were taken in the seventh round. And it's not like McDermott had a lot to work with at cornerback either.
The Eagles made the curious decision to view Ellis Hobbs as a starter and he eventually played his way out of the lineup before suffering a season-ending injury. At one point, McDermott had Dimitri Patterson, Joselio Hanson and rookie Trevard Lindley seeing significant time in the secondary.
McDermott had the unenviable task of having to follow the late Jim Johnson as defensive coordinator. The Eagles made the playoffs during both of his campaigns, but they were bounced in the first round. Reid could promote from within with veteran coach Dick Jauron, but it's more likely he'll try to bring in another voice.
By waiting a week to make this move, the Eagles have missed out on some candidates. But former Dallas Cowboys defensive coordinator Dave Wannstedt, who's had head-coaching stints with the Dolphins and Bears, is still available. And he's a believer in the 4-3 scheme.
You expected the Eagles to make a lot of changes to their roster, but McDermott's firing comes as a surprise.