Duce Staley asks to leave Eagles after promotion snubs

Duce Staley Eagles
Duce Staley (left) has joined the Detroit Lions’ coaching staff.
Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Philadelphia Eagles assistant head coach/running backs coach Duce Staley has asked the team to release him from their current contract, according to NBC Sports Philadelphia’s John Clark.

Staley once again was passed over by the Eagles during their head-coaching search, opting to hire former Indianapolis Colts offensive coordinator, Nick Sirianni, instead. The 45-year-old has “several options” on the table that he will explore, including the Chicago Bears and Detroit Lions.

Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie revealed that Staley would be up for consideration for the head-coaching job shortly after Doug Pederson was fired.

“He’s a great representative of the Eagles and knows our values,” Lurie said at the time. “I would expect him to be part of the search as well.”

Staley also had the backing of assistant coaches along with veteran and former players stemming from his extended time with the organization. He played under Andy Reid before working with Chip Kelly and most recently, Pederson.

Those recommendations fell upon deaf ears, however, despite interviewing well. It was the second time that Staley was rejected for the job, having lost out to Pederson in 2016.

Initial speculation suggested that Staley would be coaxed into staying in Philadelphia if he was given the reigns to the offense as top coordinator, but his desire to leave only confirms that he won’t be given that option.

Reports on Sunday disclosed the Eagles are interviewing Curtis Modkins and Shane Steichen for the offensive coordinator role.

Modkins is currently serving as the running backs coach for the Denver Broncos and has worked in the NFL since 2008. The 50-year-old has served as the offensive coordinator for the Buffalo Bills from 2010-2012 and the San Francisco 49ers in 2016.

Steichen is 15 years younger than Modkins but has already held roles as an offensive coordinator, holding the role with the Los Angeles Chargers in 2020 after performing under the interim tag in 2019. He has been with the Chargers organization since 2011, taking a one-year break in 2013 to work with the Cleveland Browns as an offensive quality control coach.

His work with rookie passer Justin Herbert helped elevate his status around the NFL this year. The Chargers rookie passer posted 4,336 yards, 31 touchdowns, and 10 interceptions for a 98.3 passer rating.

That immediately provides promise that he could either help turn things around with Carson Wentz or maximize the potential of Jalen Hurts.

Sirianni will be the man calling the plays on Sundays in Philadelphia, allowing the new offensive coordinator to focus solely on getting the most out of the roster.

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