Former NFL players Hines Ward and Bobby Engram are “being considered” for the Philadelphia Eagles’ wide receivers coach opening, according to the Inquirer’s Paul Domowitch. The Eagles officially dismissed previous wide receivers coach Carson Walch last week.
Ward obviously had an accomplished 14-season playing career with the Pittsburgh Steelers. He won two Super Bowls (plus one Super Bowl MVP award) in addition to four Pro Bowl selections. Ward worked with the Steelers’ wide receivers as a training camp intern in 2017 but wasn’t hired to a full-time coaching role until becoming an offensive assistant for the New York Jets last year.
Domo specifically notes Eagles assistant head coach/running backs coach Duce Staley has spoken with Ward about the opening. The two overlapped in Pittsburgh from 2004 through 2006. (Side note: perhaps this is a sign the Eagles are promoting Duce to offensive coordinator?)
Engram also played for 14 years in the NFL. He actually finished his career with more total receptions but fewer yards and touchdowns than Ward did. Engram began coaching as an offensive assistant with the San Francisco 49ers in 2011. He then coached wide receivers at Pitt for two years before becoming the Baltimore Ravens’ wide receivers coach from 2014 through 2018. The Ravens moved Engram to tight ends coach in 2019.
It seems hard for me to believe the Eagles would hire Ward given his inexperience. The team sort of went down that road with Greg Lewis in 2016 and he only lasted one season in Philly.
As for Engram, well, he doesn’t have the most inspiring track record. 2015 first-round pick Breshad Perriman failed to develop under his watch and has since improved away from Baltimore.
It’s good to see the Eagles showing interest in external candidates but it feels like there have to be better options out there.