Andy Reid gave embattled defensive coordinator Juan Castillo a perfunctory vote of confidence Monday, a day after Castillos defense squandered a fourth-quarter lead for the third time in three weekssomething that had never happened in the franchises 79-year history.
The coaches are going to stay intact, and then well go from there, Reid said Monday.
Reid also said Castillo will continue to make all the defensive calls.
Castillo, promoted from offensive line coach to defensive coordinator after the Eagles fired Sean McDermott, has come under fire the last few weeks as his defense has blown fourth-quarter leads to the Falcons, Giants and 49ers.
The Eagles, 1-3 and in last place in the NFC East, rank 30th in the NFL in rush defense, 23rd in points allowed, 25th in yards per play, 31st in rushing yards per attempt and 24th in takeaways.
Castillo had never coached defense above the high school level before Reid named him defensive coordinator in February. He was the Eagles highly regarded offensive line coach from 1998 through 2010 after serving as tight ends coach in 1997 and offensive assistant in 1995 and 1996.
His last job coaching defense came from 1986 through 1989 at his alma mater, Kingsville High School, in Texas. Castillo played linebacker at Texas A&M-Kingsville and professionally with the San Antonio Gunslingers of the old USFL in 1984 and 1985.
On Sunday, the 49ers recorded their highest yardage total in seven years, piling up 442 yards289 of them in the second halfin upsetting the Eagles. They entered the game averaging only 214 yards per game.
Asked directly about Castillo Monday, Reid said this:
Listen, I think Juans doing some good things, Reid said. If you ask me the same question about myself or the other coaches and players, theres some good things were all doing. There are a lot of things we need to work on, so thats what were doing. But Im telling you, its not one person. Its all of us pulling this thing together and doing our jobs a little bit better.
Im going to tell you, if I could point to one thing, its a tough thing to do. Weve all got to do our jobs better. Thats what we need to do. I think we have the players here and the coaches here to do that. And now weve got to do it.
A midseason change in coordinators would be unusual but not unprecedented. The last time the Eagles did it was in 1998, when then head coach Ray Rhodes demoted offensive coordinator Dana Bible in favor of offensive quality control assistant Bill Musgrave six games into the season with the Eagles averaging just 13 points per game.
Bible had replaced offensive coordinator Jon Gruden after the 1997 season when Gruden became the Raiders head coach.
Ironically, Musgrave is now Donovan McNabbs offensive coordinator with the Vikings.
If Reid does decide to strip Castillo of his defensive coordinator duties, a logical successor would be cornerbacks coach Johnnie Lynn, who played eight seasons with the Jets and is the only coach on Reids staff whos been a defensive coordinator.
Lynn was the Giants defensive coordinator in 2002 and 2003 under Jim Fassel. The Giants were ranked third in points allowed in 2002 but 29th in 2003.
Despite four big-name additions on defenseJason Babin, Cullen Jenkins, Nnamdi Asomugha and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartiethe Eagles have allowed an NFL-high 10 touchdown passes this year, and opposing backs are averaging 4.9 yards per carry, which projected over a full season would be the highest mark against the Eagles since 1986.
Castillo is the Eagles third defensive coordinator in four years. Legendary Jim Johnson held the post from 1999 through 2008 before his tragic death after a battle with cancer. McDermott coached the Eagles defense in 2009 and 2010.
E-mail Reuben Frank at email@example.com