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#pounditTuesday, June 22, 2021

Ron Rivera shares thoughts on Eagles seemingly laying down for Washington

Ron Rivera

The Philadelphia Eagles made a mind-blowing decision to play Nate Sudfeld over Jalen Hurts late in their loss to Washington on Sunday night, but Ron Rivera rejects the idea that his team got a free pass into the postseason.

Rivera was asked on Monday about Eagles head coach Doug Pederson pulling Hurts with Philly trailing 17-14 late in the second half. He defended Washington’s road to the playoffs and said he’ll never “apologize” for winning a game. Rivera also mentioned how the Cleveland Browns clinched a postseason berth against a Pittsburgh Steelers team that rested several starters.

“I’m not going to apologize for winning … Nobody complained when Pittsburgh did what they did against Cleveland,” Rivera said, via ESPN’s John Keim. “We got in the playoffs. You apologize for losing in the playoffs, but you don’t apologize for getting in. it was a hard road for us.”

Rivera is right. It’s fair to wonder what Pederson was thinking, as he claims he was “coaching to win.” Bringing in Sudfeld and leaving him in when he struggled is not coaching to win, and Pederson knows it. That doesn’t mean Washington had control over any of that.

Rivera’s story is easily one of the most remarkable of the 2020 NFL season. He battled cancer during the year and was visibly struggling to get through some games. He should feel a great sense of pride about leading his team to the playoffs no matter which quarterback was under center for the Eagles.


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