The Los Angeles Rams have been fortunate enough to maintain Thomas Brown on the coaching staff for as long as they could. His name has been linked to head coaching openings (Miami Dolphins after 2021 season) and offensive coordinator gigs for 2022.
The assistant coach was most recently interviewing for the previously vacant Tampa Bay Buccaneers offensive coordinator position as reported by CBS NFL insider Jonathan Jones on Wednesday, February 15. That spot, though, has since gone to Dave Canales as reported by Mike Garafolo of the NFL Network. Jones adds the Carolina Panthers, who have a former coaching co-worker of Brown’s in defensive coordinator Ejiro Evero, are interviewing Brown Thursday.
But Brown’s name was mentioned as a possibility for another prominent opening Wednesday…and one that involves one of the Super Bowl 57 representatives: The Philadelphia Eagles, who are seeking a new offensive coordinator after Shane Steichen accepted the Indianapolis Colts head coaching job.
Heavy on Eagles reporter Mike Greger wrote Wednesday how “The Eagles could look outside the organization for candidates, too.” Which means potentially looking away from the favorite to land the offensive coordinator job Brian Johnson, who’s the NFC champs’ quarterbacks coach. Greger mentioned three names but included Brown.
“He has been Sean McVay’s right-hand man in Los Angeles where he coached running backs before moving over to tight ends and then assistant head coach in 2023. He was a stud running back in college at Georgia and a sixth-round pick of the Falcons in 2008. Brown is another rising star assistant, plus he’s a Rooney Rule candidate,” Greger said.
Brown Has Expertise in 2 of the Strongest Areas on Eagles
Brown, again, would be considered an outside-the-box hire for Eagles head coach Nick Sirianni. However, the popular Rams assistant could win over the Eagles off his area of expertise in two position groups considered a strength for the NFC champs.
For starters, Brown is a distinguished running back developer. He got Cam Akers, even after missing time from the Rams due to personal matters, to deliver career-highs in all three major rushing categories of carries (188), yards (786) and touchdowns (seven) — all in just nine games. Akers additionally closed out the 2022 season with three straight 100-yard games. And Akers’ surge came when Brown went back to helping the RBs. But before Akers, he coached a Heisman Trophy runner-up in Melvin Gordon while at Wisconsin and twice, coached Sony Michel at Georgia and during the Super Bowl 56 run.
The Eagles gashed opponents with the ground game while on their way to ranking fifth in yards and also led the league in rushing touchdowns with 32. Brown, if he were to come over, will walk into a loaded backfield room featuring 1,000-yard rusher Miles Sanders and saw Boston Scott, Kenneth Gainwell and quarterback Jalen Hurts all join Sanders in averaging more than four yards a carry.
Brown’s other area he specialized in is tight end. That was where he helped get Tyler Higbee to deliver his first 70-catch season of his career this past season. The Eagles here have Dallas Goedert establishing himself as a perennial 50-catch tight end.
Brown Staying Put Will be Huge for Rams
Time will tell if the Eagles make contact with Brown for their OC opening. He does have the body of work and a past Super Bowl ring, which could persuade Sirianni and company to make a push for him.
But right now, only the Panthers pose as a latest possibility to land Brown. The native of Tucker, Georgia grew up less than four hours from Charlotte and less than three hours from the Panthers’ training camp site of Spartanburg, South Carolina. Again, Carolina has former Ram Evero on the 2023 staff and has Ex-Rams Austin Corbett and Johnny Hekker. Jonathan Cooley was also lured in from the Rams to coach the Panthers secondary and cornerbacks.
Still, in the event Brown decides to remain in the “Rams House,” it becomes the latest coaching win for Sean McVay and the staff after defensive coordinator Raheem Morris wasn’t hired away during this head coaching cycle.