Thursday, December 25, 2014

Avoiding Eagles, Mora Less

All right. You are Jim L. Mora (never Junior; dad is Jim E. Mora) and it is apparent you were able to choose among at least a couple of options for a new defensive coordinator job.

Avoiding Eagles, Mora Less

(Clem Murray/Staff file photo)
(Clem Murray/Staff file photo)

All right. You are Jim L. Mora (never Junior; dad is Jim E. Mora) and it is apparent you were able to choose among at least a couple of options for a new defensive coordinator job.

Let's say it came down to a choice between Denver and Philadelphia as you re-enter the job market following unsuccessful stints as head coach in Atlanta and Seattle.

The Eagles are a playoff team -- sort of -- a team that could have easily won 11 games. The Eagles have an exciting offense and a defense, if you accept the spin, that merely needs a little good health and a little fine-tuning to return to prominence.

The Broncos were a 4-12 team this season, just a train wreck. The defense was ranked 32nd in the league, allowing the most yards/game (390.8) and points/game (29.4) in the NFL.

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OK, which job do you want?

The story, as Mora chooses to go to Denver, is that he doesn't want the move for his family to be too much of an upheaval. It's a good story. Maybe there's some accuracy there. Seattle and Denver are 1,000 miles apart, but whatever.

And maybe Jim L. Mora is different from every coach who has ever lived and doesn't go nomadically around the country to the job he prefers. Fine.

But it's worth considering that for someone who studies defenses for a living, the Eagles are attractive enough. Maybe it isn't the injuries. Maybe it isn't whatever failings Sean McDermott apparently displayed. Maybe the Eagles don't have any players. And it's worth noting that Reid was a lot more involved with the defense this year, at least as far as stomping onto the field and yelling at the players.

When McDermott was fired over the weekend, I gave the dead horse a few more whacks in this column. You know the drill by now. When 9 of 11 starters by the playoffs came into the league either as undrafted free agents or 7th-round picks, that's not a formula for winning.

Some correspondents turned quickly on McDermott and praised Andy Reid for making the right decision in firing him, not bothering to address the flip side of their argument, which is that Reid would necessarily have made the wrong decision in promoting McDermott.

It didn't take long for McDermott to get another job, as defensive coordinator for new coach Ron Rivera in Carolina. Rivera has said he will run the defensive side of the ball, so McDermott will be a little insulated this time, and also won't get the credit if the defense there improves.

As for the Eagles, it seems like Dick Jauron is going to be the DC here -- if he wants it. No word from the NovaCare bunker, of course. Reid is on vacation. Don't know if he's fishing again with Brad Childress. We know one thing. He won't be reeling in Jim L. Mora.

Bob Ford Inquirer Sports Columnist
About this blog
Bob Ford has been writing about Philadelphia sports since 1981, and is still trying to figure it all out. A former beat writer covering the Phillies and the 76ers, Ford became a general sports columnist for the Inquirer in 2003, following in and occasionally falling in the deep footsteps of Bill Lyon, Frank Dolson and many distinguished others. He comes to the Philly.com blogosphere after award-winning success as designer/editor of the fabulous Pen & Pencil Club softball blog. Likes: Palestra, inside-the-park home runs, sunny days. Dislikes: phony people, cloudy days, rewrites. Reach Bob at bford@phillynews.com.

Bob Ford Inquirer Sports Columnist
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