Add another intriguing name to Eagles’ defensive coordinator search


The Eagles have interviewed former Wisconsin coach Jim Leonhard for their vacant defensive coordinator position, ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler reported.

Leonhard, 40, was most recently the Badgers’ defensive coordinator and interim head coach but was not retained on Luke Fickell’s staff.

While he has never coached at the NFL level, Leonhard played a decade in the league for several different teams after making his way as an undrafted defensive back. Leonhard played 10 seasons in the NFL with 142 games and 73 starts under his belt with the Bills, Jets, Ravens, Browns and Broncos.

After he began his career as a defensive backs coach at Wisconsin in 2016, he quickly began to work his way up the ranks, becoming the defensive coordinator in his second season as a coach at his alma mater.

Leonhard was the Badgers’ defensive coordinator until midway through the 2022 season when Paul Chryst was fired. Leonhard then took over as the interim head coach. Leonhard had a 5-3 record as the interim coach.

Eagles linebacker T.J. Edwards played under Leonhard at Wisconsin. Edwards is a pending free agent.

The Eagles are looking to replace both coordinators this offseason after both DC Jonathan Gannon and OC Shane Steichen were hired away any the Cardinals and Colts, respectively.

The top candidate to replace Steichen is quarterbacks coach Brian Johnson. It’s expected that Johnson will be promoted.

But the defensive coordinator job is a little more in question. The top candidate might be an internal promotion of DBs coach Dennard Wilson, but the Eagles are clearly looking around.


In addition to the Leonhard interview, the Eagles were also reportedly interested in interviewing Seahawks associate head coach Sean Desai and former Cardinals DC Vance Joseph.

Meanwhile, Gannon is hiring former Eagles linebackers coach Nick Rallis to be his defensive coordinator in Arizona.

Subscribe to the Eagle Eye podcast

Apple Podcasts | Google Play | Spotify | Stitcher | Art19 | Watch on YouTube