Maybe it won’t be so bad… Maybe the Philadelphia Eagles won’t have the hardest time in the NFC East next year. Maybe it was an overreaction to say that the Washington Commanders were in a good spot to guarantee themselves a resurgence during the 2024 season.
A couple of weeks ago, the Commanders looked like they were in a great spot as a franchise. They own the second overall pick in the coming NFL Draft. It's believed that they'll pursue a top-tier quarterback.
There's also a new ownership group, one with limitless amounts of cash. Most importantly, all of that potentially made their head coaching vacancy one that was very attractive.
We're talking about the Commanders though. If anyone could screw this up, it was them. Guess what? They did!
Rest easy Eagles fans. The Commanders laughably settled on Dan Quinn as their new head coach.
The theories were all over the place. It seemed like Washington had their sights set on Ben Johnson, the Detroit Lions offensive coordinator. He was a candidate who had been a hot name in NFL circles for a couple of years because of the success that he’s had with the Lions’ offense.
This one screamed ‘perfect match’. All we had to do was wait for Detroit’s season to end. The hire would be finalized. That's what we expected. That certainly isn't what happened.
Johnson determined he'd rather remain in Detroit because “he wants to win a Super Bowl” which is an objectively hilarious insult to the Commanders.
Johnson is super smart. He, in essence, called Washington losers, but if you add Dan Campbell’s comments after their NFC Championship Game loss, it becomes violently insulting.
Campbell told his team that it would be twice as hard to get back to that game next year and that, “this may have been our only shot.” SHEESH.
Ben Johnson knew the Lions had an uphill battle on their hands next season AND STILL decided he'd rather be there than with the Commanders. That alone should tell you Washington is a mess of an organization.
Where do you go from there? Bill Belichick was still out there. Maybe you could go after him? We know that there’s been a connection between the two sides. Nope! Washington decided to go another route.
The Commanders hired Dan Quinn. Yes... Dan Quinn... The same Dan Quinn that lost as the Atlanta Falcons head coach to Bill Belichick in Super Bowl LI. Yes... Those same Atlanta Falcons that blew a 28-3 lead. That’s the Dan Quinn that they hired.
They saw ‘Head Coach of a Super Bowl LI team’ on a resumé and never checked which name was attached to it. That had to have been what happened.
Here's what that also means. Dan Quinn, a defensive head coach, is going to play a part in the development and success of a rookie quarterback. Yes, whoever the Commanders/Quinn choose for their offensive coordinator is going to play a much bigger part in that development, but Quinn and his decisions will directly or otherwise, affect that rookie. Think about that for a second.
Washington isn’t the only team affected by this hiring. Quinn is leaving his post as the Dallas Cowboys’ defensive coordinator. That’s also awesome because the Cowboys have had a pretty great defense during Quinn’s tenure. From 2021 to 2023, the Cowboys’ defense ranked in the top-5 in defensive DVOA every year.
We heard Jerry Jones is "going all in" this year (which makes it the 20th consecutive season he has gone all in by our count. of going all-in). We, as Eagles fans, know firsthand how teams perform with new defensive coordinators... They lose in the first round of the playoffs.
That's nothing new for the Cowboys, given that early playoff exits are as just as much of a Dallas tradition as jean shorts, Yankees hats, and an inability to comprehend frozen precipitation. The important thing to remember is Quinn's absence neuters the Eagles’ most dangerous rival.
While we’re in a ‘wait and see’ mode while thinking about the Eagles’ new coordinators, we can look at the rest of the division and laugh at their early offseason failures. Things might not be looking up for the Birds (in the minds of some anyway), but the rest of the NFC East is also in deep water. We have to embrace every shred of joy we can enjoy.