On Friday, we heard about the Eagles’ interest in an outside-the-box candidate to become their next offensive coordinator.
This next name is firmly inside the box.
According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, the Eagles are expected to request permission to interview Chiefs QBs coach Mike Kafka for the job.
But there’s a chance, according to the report, that Andy Reid blocks that interview request to keep his quarterbacks coach around. This offseason there was a reasonable possibility that Kansas City’s offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy would get a head coaching job. That didn’t happen but if he were to ever leave, Kafka would be the next guy up. So while Reid has always helped his assistants move up in the coaching world, it would make sense for him to want to keep Kafka around.
Even if the Chiefs win today, the Eagles would still have a window to interview Kafka before the Super Bowl if Reid grants permission.
This was a link that was easy to find early.
Kafka, 32, was one of the first and most obvious names to surface after Mike Groh was fired.
Kafka has been a quick riser in the coaching world and there’s a ton of familiarity between him and Doug Pederson. While they didn’t coach together in Kansas City, Kafka played for Pederson in 2010-11 and his time under Reid means that he came up very much like Pederson did.
The Eagles drafted Kafka in the fourth round out of Northwestern back in 2010 but he didn’t have much of an NFL career. His only action with the Eagles came in 2011, when he played in four games, completing 11 of 16 passes. He bounced around to many different teams in the next few years after that.
When his playing days were over, Kafka became a graduate assistant at Northwestern in 2016 before Reid hired him as a quality control coach in 2017. He has been quarterbacks coach in KC for the last two seasons.
There are two schools of thought for this offensive coordinator job. The Eagles can go with familiarity or they can go with innovation. Either could work but there’s probably a little more risk going with innovation.
The Eagles already interviewed USC offensive coordinator Graham Harrell, a coach who uses the Air Raid offense and could bring a fresh set of ideas to Pederson. But there would also be some obvious benefit in sticking with the safe route and hiring a guy like Kafka, who is also a young and fast-rising candidate.
Either way, the Eagles’ next offensive coordinator will not call the plays. That job still belongs to Pederson.
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