The Atlanta Falcons are 1-5 in their last six meetings against the New Orleans Saints, and they're about to have a seventh go in the offseason, according to multiple reports that former St. Louis Rams head coach Steve Spagnuolo is the leading candidate for defensive coordinator in both cities.
Spagnulo was thought to be a high-priority target for the Philadelphia Eagles, but not so, says Les Bowen of the Philadelphia Daily News. His report that Andy Reid isn't in much of a rush to address the Eagles' issues on defense (he's been on vacation, which always goes over well with fans!) mentioned that Atlanta and New Orleans are the two strongest suitors for Spags, and either would be a better fit:
It's easy to see why those might be more attractive opportunities. For one thing, going back to a former team as an assistant after flopping as a head coach is less than exciting and new; why not start fresh? For another, you have to figure what Spagnuolo really wants here is to maximize his chances of being a head coach again. New Orleans and Atlanta were playoff teams this season that are good bets to be back in the postseason next year. That's the kind of visibility that gets you back into the head-coaching discussion.
Bowen goes on to use the example of current Giants defensive coordinator (Spagnuolo's old job) Perry Fewell, who went from goat to a potential head coaching candidate by virtue of New York's two playoff wins against Atlanta and Green Bay. Falcons fans would likely be eager to trade a here-then-gone coordinator if it means Atlanta has some hardware to show for it.