NFL

How Good Was Doug Pederson as a Football Player?

Doug Pederson is in his fifth season as the head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles. While his team struggles to a 1-4-1 start to the 2020 season, Pederson has certainly had success as a head coach in the NFL. In just his second season with the Eagles, he guided the team to a Super Bowl victory over the New England Patriots. Pederson played 10 years with four different teams in the NFL as a quarterback. How good was he as a player?

Doug Pederson has had success as an NFL coach

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Doug Pederson began his coaching career right after his playing days were over. He began coaching at the high school level before heading to the NFL. In 2009, Andy Reid hired Pederson to the offensive quality control coach for the Philadelphia Eagles. Reid was an assistant coach for the Green Bay Packers when Pederson was playing for the team.

Reid promoted Pederson to quarterbacks coach in 2011. When Reid was let go by the Eagles and hooked on with the Kansas City Chiefs, Pederson followed to become the team’s offensive coordinator. Three years later, Pederson was hired as the Eagles’ head coach after Chip Kelly was fired.

Pederson is in his fifth season with the Eagles and has compiled a record of 39-30-1. In just his second season with the team, Pederson guided the Eagles to a 13-3 record and defeated the New England Patriots in Super Bowl 52. Pederson’s lone losing season with the team was in his first year when the Eagles finished 7-9.

Pederson’s college football career

Doug Pederson played his college football at Northeast Louisiana University, now known as the University of Louisiana-Monroe. During his college career, he threw for 6,602 yards and 33 touchdowns. His biggest game statistically came against Stephen F. Austin when he was 46-of-71 passing for 619 yards and threw five touchdowns.

“We threw the ball a lot that day,” Pederson said to Chiefs.com. “It felt like 7 on 7, but the sad thing is their quarterback threw the ball all over the place too. There were like 1,200 yards passing combined. At the time, for two teams, it was the most passing yards in a game. There was no pass rush. It was crazy.”

Pederson left school second on NLU’s all-time list for passing yardage. Despite his success, he went undrafted. “My intention and my goal was still to play in the National Football League,” he said. “I would have gone anywhere to play.”

Pederson’s NFL career

Doug Pederson, after going undrafted out of college, signed with the Miami Dolphins as a free agent in 1991. He was waived before the season began. In 1992, Pederson was drafted by the New York/New Jersey Knights of the World Football League. He played one year for the Knights and then re-signed with the Dolphins, a team that had already cut him twice.

Pederson was like a ping-pong ball getting bounced around everywhere. He was selected by the Carolina Panthers in the 1995 expansion draft. He made his way back to the World Football League with the Rhein Fire that same year. Also in 1995, he worked out for the Green Bay Packers when backup Ty Detmer got injured. For the rest of 1995 and 1996, Pederson backed up Brett Favre and Jim McMahon with the Packers. He earned a Super Bowl ring when the Packers defeated the New England Patriots.

Pederson remained the third-string backup in Green Bay in 1997 and was Favre’s backup in 1998. In 1999, he got his first starting gig, signing with the Philadelphia Eagles under Andy Reid, who was just named head coach. The team had just drafted Donovan McNabb, so Pederson knew his time was limited. He went 2-7 in nine starts before being released. He then started eight games for the Cleveland Browns in 2000, going 1-7. Pederson spent the last four years of his career back in Green Bay backing up Favre. His career record in the NFL is 3-14 with 12 touchdown passes and 19 interceptions.