The Eagles announced that the team interviewed running backs coach Duce Staley for the head coaching position on Friday.
Staley, otherwise known as D-U-U-C-E during his seven-year playing career in Philadelphia, has spent the past six years serving in numerous coaching capacities. He first joined the Eagles in 2010 as a coaching intern and was promoted to special teams quality control for the 2011 and 2012 seasons. When Chip Kelly took over in 2013, Staley was one of the coaches kept from Andy Reid's staff and named the running backs coach.
Staley played an instrumental role in the development of LeSean McCoy, the franchise's all-time leading rusher. In 2014, McCoy finished third in the league in rushing with 1,319 yards and second in rushing attempts with 312, en route to his second consecutive Pro Bowl berth. McCoy also broke Wilbert Montgomery's 30-year-old franchise rushing record of 6,538 yards late in the season.
Darren Sproles doubled his previous career high in rushing touchdowns with six on the year, while Chris Polk added four touchdowns on only 46 carries in 2014.
In his first season coaching the team's running backs in 2013, Staley was part of an offense that helped set franchise records in points, total net yards, touchdowns, passing yards and fewest turnovers. With assistance from Staley, McCoy earned first-team All-Pro and Pro Bowl honors for the second time in his career after leading the NFL in rushing yards (1,607) and scrimmage yards (2,146), while setting Eagles single-season records in both categories. In addition, McCoy became the first Eagle since Steve Van Buren in 1947 to lead the league in both rushing and yards from scrimmage.
A third-round pick in the 1997 NFL Draft out of South Carolina, Staley gained 4,807 yards rushing during his tenure with the Eagles, which stands as the fifth-highest total in franchise history. He also ranks sixth in the Eagles' record books with 7,305 yards from scrimmage. He was named the Eagles' Offensive MVP three times in his career. He joined the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2004 and won a Super Bowl with them in the 2005 season.
Staley was inducted into the South Carolina Athletic Hall of Fame in 2012 after gaining 1,852 yards rushing between 1995-96. During his playing days, Staley was very active in the community as he worked with the Special Olympics and First Steps Early Childhood Education Program, and launched the Catch 22 Foundation to assist single mothers. In 2003, Staley also traveled to Iraq, Kuwait and Qatar as part of the USO to greet U.S. troops stationed abroad.