Eagles DC Jim Schwartz to step away from coaching

Long-time NFL coach Jim Schwartz is taking a break from the game.

The Philadelphia Eagles defensive coordinator issued a statement on Thursday announcing that he is stepping away from the “day-to-day of coaching for the time being.”

Schwartz’s announcement comes five days after NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero reported the 54-year-old coach planned to allow his contract to expire at the end of the 2020 season and take a year off from coaching.

“I would like to express my gratitude to Jeffrey Lurie, Coach Pederson, and Howie Roseman, as well as the entire football staff and the many coaches and players I had the honor of working with. This has been an incredible five-year run and I relished every moment of it,” Schwartz said, via the team’s official website. “I feel especially indebted to guys like Fletcher (Cox), BG (Brandon Graham), Rodney (McLeod), and Jalen (Mills), who I had the privilege of coaching all five seasons, as well as Nate (Gerry), DB (Derek Barnett), Vinny (Curry), and many others who I celebrated a Super Bowl Championship with.

“I enjoyed working for this organization and coaching in the City of Philadelphia. I have given my heart and soul to the game of football, not just over the last five years here, but throughout my 32 years as a coach. Although my passion for the game remains strong, it is best for me to step back from the day-to-day of coaching for the time being. I have too much respect for the game and for everybody involved to compromise the level of commitment that I believe is necessary to do the job.

“I don’t know what my future holds, but I am willing to do anything I can to help this organization in any way. Thank you again to the City of Philadelphia and to the Eagles for an incredible five years. My family and I will never forget our time here.”

The 2020 campaign ended in disappointment for Schwartz and the Eagles after the team finished 4-11-1 and missed the postseason.

A member of Philly’s coaching staff since 2016, Schwartz turned one of the NFL’s worst defenses into a formidable unit to be reckoned with. The season following his arrival, Philadelphia went on to post a 13-3 record, its best since 2004, and finished the year with a victory over the Patriots in Super Bowl LII.

Prior to that, Schwartz served as the Buffalo Bills DC in 2014, and the head coach of the Detroit Lions from 2009-13. He led the Lions to a playoff berth in 2011 following a 10-6 season, and compiled a 29-51 record over five seasons.

Twenty-eight of Schwartz’s 32 years among the coaching ranks have been spent in the NFL, and includes stints serving in various roles with the Browns, Ravens and Titans.

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