Eagles tried to hire Spagnuolo, Reid says

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Before Steve Spagnuolo chose New Orleans, the former Rams coach was offered an unspecified position with the Philadelphia Eagles. Spagnuolo, a Grafton native, was highly sought-after following his dismissal from St. Louis. Eagles coach Andy Reid wanted his old friend to join his staff and work with current defensive coordinator Juan Castillo. But Spagnuolo picked the Saints over returning to the Eagles, where he served as an assistant coach from 1999-2006.

“When Steve was released from the Rams, I did offer him a spot here to coach, if he needed one, a place to land with open arms,” Reid said yesterday. “And my feeling was that you can have two great coaches on defense, and that’s even better than just having Juan himself, so that’s about as far as it went there. We didn’t talk about titles. We didn’t go into any of that. He had opportunities to look at other places. He wanted to do that, which I completely understand. “And he ended up going to New Orleans.”

Speaking to reporters for the first time since the season finale on Jan. 1, Reid was more candid than he has ever been during his 13 seasons in Philadelphia. He said he understood owner Jeffrey Lurie’s comments about needing to do a better job, and expects more from himself and the team following a disappointing 8-8 season.

“I understand where he’s coming from, and I’m right there with him on that,” Reid said. “He didn’t say anything in there that ruffled my feathers or anything else that I don’t completely agree with. And listen, I know that’s how the fans feel, and I understand that. I completely understand that. And it’s a frustration, I understand that. My point is that we’re going to bust our tail to get it right, that’s where I’m at.” Reid ended his monthlong silence a day after hiring former Dolphins interim coach Todd Bowles to coach the secondary.  His decision to retain Castillo won’t be popular among fans. Castillo was heavily criticized in his first season at a new position after coaching the offensive line for 13 years.

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