The Eagles finally have their defense coordinator in the fold thanks to the hiring of former Browns linebackers coach Billy Davis.
The 47-year-old Davis, who previously served as a defensive coordinator with the 49ers and Cardinals, may have inspired the confidence of head coach Chip Kelly and the team’s brass during his interview, but fan reaction of the hire has been tepid.
Many took to social media to question why the team ended up with two former Browns staffers to fill both vacant coordinator positions. Furthermore, Davis never coordinated a defense in his four seasons in that role that finished in the top ten of yards per game or points allowed.
Walter Cherepinsky, of popular football website WalterFootball.com, offered this assessment of the Davis hiring:
I don’t understand what the Eagles are doing this offseason. First, they bring in a head coach who has never been affiliated with the NFL – a maneuver that has seldom worked throughout league history. Then, they announce they’re moving to a 3-4 when they don’t have the personnel for it. Now, they hire a defensive coordinator with an abysmal track record despite the fact that someone like Romeo Crennel was available.
Billy Davis has been a defensive coordinator for four years in this league. In 2005, his 49ers were dead last in points and yards allowed. They improved to 29th and 27th the following year. He was fired after that. He resurfaced in 2009 with the Cardinals, who were 12th and 17th in points and yards allowed that season. Unfortunately, they regressed in 2010, dropping to 31st and 32nd in the respective categories. He once again once axed.
Based on that rationale, it’s somewhat surprising he gave the move a “C-”.
Of course, there are many coordinators who have failed in previous posts who have went on to successful stints elsewhere.
From this perspective, I don’t know how some fans can so emphatically hate a hire they know nothing about. I know it’s 2013, but it’s OK to reserve judgment now and then.