Nick Sirianni has been the Head Coach of the Philadelphia Eagles for a week. He’s brought along Jonathan Gannon as his defensive coordinator.
Sirianni has a history as a position coach. He’s coached both, quarterbacks and wide receivers, in addition to being the offensive coordinator for the Colts.
Gannon’s background has been in coaching defensive backs. Gannon worked as an assistant DB coach for Vikings Head Coach, Mike Zimmer and the DB coach for Colts defensive coordinator, Matt Eberflus.
I believe there are a few players on the Eagles roster that will benefit heavily from the presence of both, Sirianni and Gannon.
After a hot five game start where he averaged 87 yards per game, 5.8 catches per game and an average of 16.76 yards per catch, Fulgham crashed down to Earth, struggling with both drops and even, just getting on the field.
Luckily for him, Nick Sirianni is reported to be very big on wide receiver play and will push both the players and coaches to improve.
Fulgham’s athletic profile is comparable to Michael Pittman Jr and he could look to have a similar role in Sirianni’s offense. Pittman Jr plays the “X” receiver in the Colts offense and I envision Fulgham being able to solidify himself at that same spot. Furthermore, the Colts started to move Pittman around including the slot where they threw a lot of quick screens, we could see Fulgham get some similar looks, making for easy yards and not forcing him to win one on one battles all the time.
I think it’s easy to see how Jalen Reagor and his explosiveness get a boost from Sirianni’s offensive philosophy of mainly playing to player’s strengths, but Quez Watkins is another speedy wide receiver who will have a lot to gain.
I could see Quez growing into the “Z” role where his skill set is similar to TY Hilton’s. Of course, the skill LEVEL is much different, but Watkins can provide big plays when given the opportunity. He, like the other receivers, could see increased helpings of quick passes, screens, and crossing routes to get the ball into his hands quickly and let his speed take over. He also maintains the ability to get up over the top of defenses which can also be schemed up to create big plays.
Wallace had a tough time seeing the field last season under Jim Schwartz, who, as we know, usually doesn’t give much burn to rookies (unless you’re able to get in good early like Jalen Mills). However, the potential switch to more two high coverages under Gannon bodes well for Wallace. It gives him an opportunity to be successful in deep coverages without having to cover the entire field. He will most likely play strong safety and be the one to roll down when they decide to go into single high coverages.
Another rookie that did not get to see the field much and even when he did, it wasn’t pretty. The rough transition was expected seeing as how Taylor has not played much football in his career or much traditional linebacker at all. Taylor’s stock is up however. This is because this style of defense has had success with players of his athletic profile. Eric Kendricks, who shares a similar athletic profile, was able to grow into a nice middle linebacker in this system. I think Taylor will likely see snaps at weak side LB, meaning he will likely be used in coverage, able to run and chase, and play more in space which would benefit him greatly.