Sean McDermott was formally introduced as the new defensive coordinator for the Eagles today at the NovaCare Complex. The secondary coach, who had carried the interim tag since May, replaces long-time coordinator Jim Johnson.
Johnson is currently in a battle with cancer and had taken a leave in May just after the draft. The 68-year-old coach, who had guided the defense under head coach Andy Reid since 1999, hovered over the news conference.
"Both Sean and I are both sensitive to this situation with Jim and the battle that he is continuing with melanoma," Reid said. "I have been contact with both Jim and Vicky [Johnson's wife]. They fully support this situation with announcing Sean."
McDermott, a local product of La Salle High School, has been with the organization since 1998 when he held the scouting administration coordinator position. The next year he was promoted to assistant to the head coach. He became a defensive assistant in 2001 and worked his way up the chain of command under Johnson's tutelage.
"What haven't I learned from Jim?" the 35-year-old McDermott said. "He's been a significant influence in my life both on and off the field."
Asked what the most important piece of advice that he had received from Johnson was, McDermott's response should please fans accustomed to Eagles' aggressive defenses.
"Blitz and blitz again," McDermott said.