National Football League

Who Is Nick Sirianni?

January 21

Another NFL head coaching vacancy is off the board, this time in the City of Brotherly Love.

The Philadelphia Eagles are hiring 39-year-old Nick Sirianni to take over for the departed Doug Pederson, who was let go this offseason after Philly finished last in the NFC East at 4-11-1.

After being connected to multiple well-known candidates, New England Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels among them, the Eagles opted for a decidedly more under-the-radar hire in Sirianni. 

So, who is the man the Eagles have tasked with turning around the franchise?

FOX Sports' Jay Glazer has the inside scoop on the hire.

Sirianni joins the Eagles from the Indianapolis Colts, where he worked for three seasons as the offensive coordinator under a name familiar to Philly fans: Frank Reich. 

Reich held the offensive coordinator position with the Eagles under Pederson during their Super Bowl-winning run in 2016-17. He then left to join the Colts, where he brought on Sirianni as his offensive coordinator.

Despite Sirianni's age, he does have a lengthy coaching resume dating back to 2004. After starring at wide receiver for Mount Union ⁠— an NCAA Division III school in Alliance, Ohio ⁠— Sirianni began coaching the defensive backs at his alma mater the year following graduation. 

Sirianni moved on to coach wide receivers at Indiana University of Pennsylvania for a few seasons before making the jump to the professional ranks as an offensive quality control coach for the Kansas City Chiefs in 2009.

He held a variety of offensive coaching positions with the Chiefs until 2013, when he joined the then-San Diego Chargers. Sirianni spent one season as an offensive quality control coach before coaching quarterbacks from 2014-15 and wide receivers from 2016-17.

Then, Reich and the Colts came calling.

With Sirianni as offensive coordinator, the Colts finished in the top 10 in both points scored and yards gained in two of his three seasons with the team. 

One of the biggest challenges Sirianni inherits in Philadelphia is figuring out the quarterback conundrum.

Franchise quarterback Carson Wentz is coming off of arguably his worst season as a pro, while a four-year, $128 million extension is set to kick in for the No. 2 overall pick in the 2016 NFL Draft.

Rookie quarterback Jalen Hurts was called upon to start Philly's final four games of the season after the decision was made to bench Wentz, leaving the Eagles mired in a bonafide quarterback controversy for the 2021 season.

Emmanuel Acho, a former Eagles player and co-host of Speak For Yourself, offered some insight as to why he thought Philadelphia opted for a candidate who's unproven at the head coaching level.

Acho raised his eyebrow at the hire to start, but said, to him, it came down to Eagles management preferring to hire a coach they can control.

"The Eagles fired Doug Pederson to hire his understudy's understudy. ... Somebody's gotta make that make sense for me, Marcellus. ... [Eagles management] want to be able to control the situation. ... You know who Eagles management can control? They can control a coach with no head coaching experience ... with a limited resume ... with a minimal name."

FOX Sports NFL analyst Geoff Schwartz also echoed that sentiment with his reaction to Thursday's hiring. 

It's clear that Sirianni will have to win over more than a few doubters, but at least one of Sirianni's former charges sees the move as a positive one for Eagles.

He'll have his work cut out for him, too. In addition to the quarterback issue, the Eagles also have a bleak salary-cap situation.

The Eagles are staring at the second-worst salary cap figure in the league for 2021, one that is projected to be more than $51 million over the league's cap, according to Spotrac.com.

Time to see what the newcomer has up his sleeve.


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