Three days after identifying Nick Sirianni as their new head coach, the Philadelphia Eagles have selected their next defensive coordinator. The Eagles have come to terms with Jonathan Gannon to become the team's new defensive coordinator, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport.
Gannon spent the past three seasons as the Indianapolis Colts' defensive backs/cornerbacks coach. Before coming to Indianapolis, Gannon spent four seasons with the Minnesota Vikings as a defensive assistant/quality control coach. Gannon served in a similar role during his two seasons with the Tennessee Titans during the 2012-13 seasons. Before that, Gannon spent three seasons as a member of the Rams' scouting department.
This past season, Gannon was lauded for his work with the Colts' relatively young secondary. He was also praised for his work with Xavier Rhodes, who enjoyed a solid first season in Indianapolis after being waived by the Vikings after the 2019 season. Rhodes had previously stated that Gannon was one of the main reasons why he signed with the Colts last offseason.
"Xavier had a heck of a year. He really bought into what we were doing. I give Jonathan Gannon a lot of credit for that," Colts general manager Chris Ballard recently said, via Jim Ayello of the Indianapolis Star. "He had a relationship with Xavier coming in from Minnesota. Xavier worked and bought into everything we were doing."
Gannon will overlook an Eagles' defense that finished 20th in the NFL in scoring, 15th in passing, 23rd in rushing, seventh in third down efficiency and 26th in red zone efficiency in 2020. The Eagles' defense was led by Pro Bowlers Brandon Graham (eight sacks, 13 tackles for loss) and Fletcher Cox (6.5 sacks, nine tackles for loss). The Eagles' also enjoyed solid seasons from fellow defensive linemen Josh Sweat (six sacks, three forced fumbles), Derek Barnett (5.5 sacks) and Javon Hargrave (4.5 sacks).
The secondary was arguably one of the Eagles' worst position groups last season. While Darius Slay is still a solid No. 1 cornerback, Philadelphia is expected to spend a high draft pick on a cornerback that could complement Slay.