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Where Are They Now: 1994 New Orleans Saints draft pick Doug Nussmeier

Former Saints quarterback now an assistant with Philadelphia Eagles


By Jim Kleinpeter, special to

Former New Orleans Saints quarterback Doug Nussmeier will be making a homecoming appearance in the Caesars Superdome in November, but if he has his way, he'll be leaving the Saints with a loss.

Drafted by the Saints 30 years ago, Nussmeier will return as the first-year quarterbacks coach of the Philadelphia Eagles. The journeyman assistant coach was hired earlier this year along with offensive coordinator Kellen Moore to reignite an Eagles team that closed the 2023 season with a whimper.

It won't be his first time back in town. He dropped in once with the Rams (2007), once with Alabama (2013 Sugar Bowl) and twice with the Cowboys (2019, 2021).

"Every time I get an opportunity to play in the Dome it's special," said Nussmeier, who played in New Orleans from 1994-97. "I have phenomenal memories, especially the relationships you build. We were in a transition with the passing of (general manager) Jim Finks. I was fortunate to play for Coach (Jim) Mora and Coach (Mike) Ditka. What I remember is the fan base and the passion the people in Louisiana have for the Saints. It's important to them. To play for the organization was a blessing."

Nussmeier was drafted in the fourth round with the No. 116 pick overall. He was the fourth quarterback taken after such notables as Heath Shuler and Trent Dilfer. Stuck behind Jim Everett, he played five games, with two starts. He completed 46 of 82 for 455 yards and one TD with four interceptions.

His memorable moment?

"Getting my first start in the Superdome against the Falcons," he said. "You never take an opportunity like that lightly. It was a tremendous experience."

Nussmeier passed for 171 yards and his only NFL TD pass, a 57-yard throw to Terry Guess, in a 31-15 loss.

A native of Portland, Ore., Nussmeier had a prolific career at University of Idaho where he set career records for touchdown passes, passing efficiency, completion percentage and total offense.

His accomplishments extended off the field as he won the Walter Payton Award as the outstanding player in FCS.

His post-Saints career included one season with the Colts and a short stint with the Broncos. Later, he won a Grey Cup with the British Columbia Lions (2001) in the Canadian Football League. That's where he began his coaching career.

"I always felt like I wanted to coach," Nussmeier said. "I didn't know what level. When my playing career ended, I was presented a unique opportunity with the British Columbia Lions. I was in a transition phase and didn't know what the next chapter would be. The opportunity presented itself. We jumped in and haven't looked back since."


Nussmeier has had notable coaching stops as offensive coordinator at Washington (2009-11), Alabama (2012-13), Michigan (2014-15) and Florida (2015-17). He has since coached at Dallas (2018-22) and the Los Angeles Chargers (2023) before being hired by the Eagles earlier this year. He was also St. Louis Rams quarterback coach (2006-07) before his college coaching days.

He caught on as tight ends coach in Dallas under Jason Garrett and two years later was named quarterbacks coach under Mike McCarthy.

"Nuss is a fantastic person, I love him to death," Garrett said. "I've known him for a number of years before we hired him. I knew guys who had coached him, coached with him and others with different associations and they all really liked him. When we had an opportunity to bring him on board, we jumped on it.

"I can't say enough about him. He's a great father and family guy. He was fantastic for our staff and did such a good job with the players he's coached."

Nussmeier's son, Garrett, is the starting quarterback at LSU, although it will be tough for dad to get to Tiger Stadium to see him play this year. He watched Garrett's first start as a Tiger in the Citrus Bowl on Jan. 1 on television with the Chargers playing in Denver the day before.

"I was fortunate when he was in high school and I was coaching the Cowboys I got to see almost all of his games because they were on Friday nights and I could sneak away," he said. "As far as college, I've been to very few with the way our schedules work. The great thing about today's world is you can see it on TV."

Another quarterback getting his full attention is Eagles starter Jalen Hurts.

"Jalen Hurts is going to benefit from him," Garrett said. "All the things he was able to help Dak Prescott with in Dallas, he'll do the same there. I'm excited to see how that's going to play out."


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