Two Birds' Candidates in Playoff Spotlight

Denver Broncos offensive coordinator Mike McCoy, front, looks on during drills at the Broncos' NFL football rookie minicamp at the team's training headquarters in Englewood, Colo., on Saturday, May 12, 2012. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

Two of the Eagles’ announced coaching candidates will be in the spotlight this weekend, as the playoffs churn forward. Denver offensive coordinator Mike McCoy, whom the Birds interviewed last week, will be tested by the visiting Ravens Saturday. Then Seattle defensive coordinator Gus Bradley has a Sunday date against the Falcons in Atlanta, where the Eagles’ brass is expected to travel to interview him.

Some people have inferred that because the Eagles didn’t meet super-long with McCoy, as they did with Bill O’Brien and Chip Kelly, and they didn’t let it be known there would be another meeting, as they did with Brian Kelly, that McCoy definitely is off the list. That’s hard to believe, given that of the remaining candidates, McCoy seems to most closely personify what many observers felt team chairman Jeffrey Lurie was looking for when he laid down his criteria for the next Eagles coach. McCoy, 40, is a young offensive innovator, a guy who has built successful attacks around Jake Delhomme, Kyle Orton, Tim Tebow and Peyton Manning. Hard not to envision him doing good things with Nick Foles.

Bradley sometimes gets discounted because he’s a defensive guy in a league that is forever bending its rules to favor offense, but he has an extraordinary record of success, and seems to really inspire his players, which just might be an important part of this here coaching business.

Of course, just as you can say of McCoy that anybody could look like a good offensive coordinator with Peyton Manning running the show, it’s hard to ignore that Seattle’s rise has been mainly because of head coach Pete Carrol, who arrived in 2010, the year after Bradley. The Seahawks utilize Carroll's defensive concepts, with players he helped bring in.

See more on this in Sportsweek tomorrow.