Coaches from around the NFL who have worked with new defensive coordinator Juan Castillo are positive that he can make the switch from being a long-time offensive coach to a defensive mastermind.
Former Eagles linebackers coach and current Carolina Panthers head coach Ron Rivera: "I'm really excited about this news and very proud of Juan being named defensive coordinator of the Eagles. First of all, Juan is one of the smartest and most dynamic coaches in the NFL. If anyone could cross over to the dark side (of defense), he's the guy. Seriously, if anyone can do it, Juan Castillo is able to do it. I don't know if I have seen anyone any more committed as a coach in this league than him. I was able to call on him so many times to understand how certain offenses worked and attacked. His knowledge of the game is very, very extensive and I consider him a mentor of mine in Philadelphia while I was working under Jim Johnson. He prides himself in his work ethic, which I know he got from his mother. More importantly, he's a dedicated father, husband and friend and just a top-notch person."
Former Eagles defensive backs coach and current Minnesota Vikings head coach Leslie Frazier: "I have a strong affinity for Juan going back to our days spent together in Philadelphia. I can remember Jim Johnson and our defensive staff putting our game plans together and we'd always get together with Juan just to make sure they were sound in terms of pressures and blitzes. Sometimes, I felt like he was on our defensive staff. And to do this day, he and I talk every week during the season to talk about other offenses in the league. That's how much respect I have for him as a coach and how well he is able to understand the defensive schemes. I'm so excited that's he's going to be able to put those ideas to work for himself as the defensive coordinator in Philly. Andy Reid made a great choice."
Former Eagles linebackers coach and current St. Louis Rams head coach Steve Spagnuolo: "Great move by Coach Reid. Juan is a football junkie who has always studied the entire game. He's a detailed, aggressive, and passionate football coach - all attributes vital to coaching defense. I wish him all the best."
-- Posted by Chris McPherson, 4:42 p.m., February 2