Eagles reboot coaching search after Chip Kelly rejection

Fire up the coaching search. Again.

Chip Kelly will not be the one to succeed Andy Reid after the coach decided to return for his fifth season at the University of Oregon. Kelly, who was the Eagles’ top candidate, has turned down NFL offers in each of the past two offseasons.

One week after losing their season finale to the Giants, the Eagles are still without a coach. The team has interviewed Falcons defensive coordinator Mike Nolan, Falcons special teams coordinator Keith Armstrong, who satisfied the NFL’s Rooney Rule requirement, and Broncos offensive coordinator Mike McCoy.

The Eagles have also asked permission to speak with Seahawks defensive coordinator Gus Bradley, Colts offensive coordinator Bruce Arians and Bengals offensive coordinator Jay Gruden. The team had shown interest in Doug Marrone, but the Syracuse coach inked a deal to be Buffalo’s coach.

Why not us?

If we were the Eagles’ front office, we’d get these guys on the phone immediately.

Vic Fangio, 49ers defensive coordinator

If anyone has watched the 49ers play defense over the past two seasons, you know why this name is here. Fangio’s unit plays a smart, aggressive style and was ranked No. 1 in the NFC in total defense this past season. Fangio’s defense also limited opponents to a 33-percent conversion rate on third down.

Mike Zimmer, Bengals defensive coordinator

The Eagles are pursuing the wrong Cincinnati coordinator. Zimmer has been among the best and brightest over the past five seasons. In 2012, his unit registered 51 sacks — third-best in the entire NFL — and Cincy ranks Top 10 in every pertinent defensive statistic. Plus, his fiery attitude would be a perfect fit for Philly.

Ray Horton, Cardinals defensive coordinator

The Cardinals stumbled down the stretch, so Arizona’s rankings slipped. But don’t be fooled. Horton, a Dick LeBeau disciple who runs a 3-4, has proven he deserves a shot over 28 years in the NFL as a player and coach. Mike Vick is still trying to figure out where that goal-line blitz came from when the Birds were clobbered out in the desert.

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