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Steve Spagnuolo Returning to the Philadelphia Eagles...or Not

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Will or won't Steve Spagnuolo return to the Philadelphia Eagles? That is the question. Steve Spagnuolo

A report by NFL Network's Jason LaConfora is making the rounds - one which he asserts that Spagnuolo will be hired by the Philadelphia Eagles by the end of the week.

LaConfora cited unnamed sources and claimed that Spagnuolo will replace Juan Castillo as the Eagles' Defensive Coordinator perhaps not in name, but as the "leader" of the defense.

Then there is an opposing report by Pro Football Talk.com's Mike Florio, which alleges that Spagnuolo may take a year off from coaching.

Florio stated "In a recent interview with Bryan Burwell of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch (via Les Bowen of the Philadelphia Daily News), former Rams coach Steve Spagnuolo mentioned the possibility of taking a year off. His wife, Maria, promptly disagreed. 'I know Steve, and I told him no way,' she said while laughing. 'There’s no way he will be able to sit around for a year doing nothing . . . He loves coaching way too much to sit around idly for a year.'

Florio also states that Spagnuolo may not receive any money from the Rams ($3 million this year) if he gets another coaching job, so it might make sense for him to sit on the sidelines for a year. 

With this said, if Spagnuolo does decide to accept the Eagles' offer and take over their defense, there are issues surrounding their defensive system and personnel. Jim Washburn's "Wide-9" system doesn't mesh with Spagnuolo's philosophy. So that means Washburn is most likely out after one year. Would Juan Castillo then take over for Washburn as a defensive line coach? Maybe, but again this is speculation at best.

Reuben Frank reported that LaConfora's report is just speculation, and that Spagnuolo is only due to come into Philly to meet with the Eagles' braintrust. LaConfora said in an email he meant that Spags was only due to come into Philly and that no deal was in place.

Andy Reid is on vacation until the end of the week and will meet with Spagnuolo upon his return. As they say where there is smoke, there is fire. If the Eagles are bringing Spagnuolo in for an interview, there's a pretty good chance they are serious about hiring him. Where that leaves Juan Castillo is up in the air.

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Contact Dennis Bakay at dbakay@philly2philly.com

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Photo of Steve Spagnuolo from phillysportscentral.com