The Philadelphia Eagles have added themselves to the list of teams looking for a new head coach, as Doug Pederson has been fired.
Pederson met with Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie on Monday to discuss his future with the franchise, and Tom Pelissero of NFL Network reports that the coach has been let go.
While it recently became obvious that Pederson was on the hot seat following a tough season, the move is still a surprise. The 52-year-old led the Eagles to a Super Bowl win over the New England Patriots just three years ago.
A report prior to Week 17 claimed the Eagles were planning to bring Pederson back, but that game may have changed things. Pederson benched Jalen Hurts in favor of Nate Sudfeld late in Philly’s loss to Washington. While the Eagles were already eliminated from playoff contention, some felt they were tanking in order to improve their draft position. Players were said to be furious about it and needed to be restrained from going after Pederson.
One Eagles veteran defended Pederson’s decision to play Sudfeld, while another was highly critical of it. It’s possible that situation led to a locker room divide, which made Lurie’s decision easier.
Pederson finishes his career in Philadelphia with a regular-season record of 42-37-1 and playoff record of 4-2.
The Philadelphia Eagles had an ugly 2020 season that fittingly ended with a tanking controversy, and now there is talk that they could wind up searching for a new head coach.
ESPN’s Chris Mortensen reported on “Sunday NFL Countdown” that Doug Pederson’s status as head coach of the Eagles is “not firm.” Mortensen said he and ESPN colleague Tim McManus were told Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie is concerned about the current state of the franchise.
“Pederson could be out if owner Jeffrey Lurie is not confident about Pederson’s vision going forward after the two meet again soon,” Mortensen said. “Lurie’s concerns extend well beyond Carson Wentz.”
This is not the first time this season that we have heard that Pederson is on the hot seat. The coach even acknowledged it early in the year, though a report prior to Week 17 claimed the Eagles are planning to bring him back.
Of course, we still don’t know exactly what happened in that Week 17 game. Pederson benched Jalen Hurts in favor of Nate Sudfeld late in Philly’s loss to Washington. While the Eagles were already eliminated from playoff contention, some felt they were tanking in order to improve their draft position. Players were said to be furious about it and needed to be restrained from going after Pederson.
One Eagles veteran defended Pederson’s decision to play Sudfeld, which could indicate there is a locker room divide. If that is the case and Lurie feels the issues can’t easily be resolved, he could decide to bring in a new head coach.
The Philadelphia Eagles are getting creative with Tyree Jackson and hoping it pays off.
The Eagles are signing Jackson to a futures contract and moving him from quarterback to tight end, NFL Media’s Tom Pelissero reported on Thursday.
Jackson was a quarterback for Buffalo in college. He passed for 28 touchdowns and 12 interceptions as a junior in 2018. He was among the quarterback prospects in the 2019 NFL Draft but went undrafted before signing with the Bills.
Jackson spent time with the DC Defenders in the XFL last year before that season was shut down.
Some apparently see the 6-foot-7, 250-pounder as a comparison to Logan Thomas.
Jackson has been a quarterback throughout his career, so this would represent a big change.
Photo: All-Pro Reels/Flickr via CC-BY-SA 2.0
Jim Schwartz shared a statement on Thursday in which he said he was stepping down as Eagles defensive coordinator. The announcement came as the team made several changes to its coaching staff.
Schwartz, 54, served as the team’s defensive coordinator since 2016. His defense was No. 4 in points allowed in 2017 but slipped to No. 20 this season.
Here is the statement Schwartz released:
Eagles reporter Jeff McLane says Schwartz was unlikely to be retained if he did not step down. The Eagles are also not bringing back offensive helpers Rich Scangarello and Marty Mornhinweg, per McLane.
Schwartz’s defenses typically rank among the top half of the league, so it wouldn’t be a surprise if he landed a gig with another team.
All the changes are no surprise given the Eagles had one of their worst records in years at 4-11-1.
Photo: Kevind810/Wikimedia via CC-BY-SA 3.0
One of the best backups in NFL history defended the Philadelphia Eagles for giving Nate Sudfeld an opportunity to play in Week 17, which differs from the chorus of critics.
Kurt Warner, who came from the Arena Football League, played in NFL Europe in 1998 and won NFL MVP a year later. He shared just how valuable it was for him to throw 11 passes in the Rams’ final game of the 1998 season.
Warner went against the narrative that the Eagles were doing something wrong by playing Sudfeld in the fourth quarter of their game against Washington.
Warner also made the argument that Sudfeld deserved the chance to have some playing time in Week 17.
Warner offers some great points and argues the other side quite well. The issue is it wasn’t a meaningless game; there were playoff implications. The rest of the Eagles players all were busting their rears. And you could argue that Doug Pederson and the Eagles owed it to their players and the rest of the NFL to give it their best shot at winning. If the Eagles felt Sudfeld gave them a better chance of winning than Jalen Hurts, then Sudfeld would have been starting over a month ago.
The timing of the quarterback switch did not dictate a change. Philly was only down by three. And by the same argument, did Hurts not deserve the opportunity to see if he could pull off a comeback? These are all reasons why some players reportedly had to be restrained from going after Pederson.
Photo: John Trainor/Flickr via CC-BY-SA 2.0
Carson Wentz is facing an uncertain future with the Philadelphia Eagles after he was benched for his poor play this season, but the former first-round pick has not yet decided if he wants a fresh start elsewhere.
Wentz is hopeful he can work things out with the Eagles, Rob Maaddi of The Associated Press reports. The 28-year-old is planning to take some time away from the team to think things over, but it sounds like any talk of him asking for a trade is premature.
According to Maaddi, Wentz has yet to discuss his future in Philadelphia with Eagles officials. While the relationship between the two sides is strained, Wentz seems open to continuing his career with the Eagles.
Of course, the team’s vision will have a lot to do with Wentz’s plans. If he meets with team officials and they tell him they view Jalen Hurts as their starting quarterback going forward, Wentz almost certainly will want a trade.
Chris Mortensen of ESPN reported on Sunday that the relationship between Wentz and the Eagles is “fractured.” He says Wentz is planning to ask for a trade.
If Wentz and the Eagles do decide to part ways, it’s possible they could work with an interested team to lessen the salary cap hit. Wentz may already have a preferred destination in mind if that happens.
Philadelphia Eagles players were said to be unhappy over the way the team handled Sunday’s game against Washington, and star running back Miles Sanders has now gone on record expressing his displeasure over the situation.
During an appearance on SportsRadio 94WIP on Tuesday, Sanders confirmed that Eagles players were unhappy with head coach Doug Pederson playing Nate Sudfeld instead of Jalen Hurts late in the 20-14 loss to Washington. Sanders said he is unsure whose decision it was, but it left the team “confused.”
“Man if I’m being honest, nobody liked the decision, nobody,” Sanders said, per Eagles insider John McMullen. “That’s all I can say really. I don’t know who was the main person behind that decision. All I know is that a lot of people on the team was confused.”
The Eagles were trailing Washington 17-14 in the fourth quarter and had a chance to win the game. Pederson then benched Hurts, who was 7/20 passing to that point but had two rushing touchdowns. Sudfeld, who is ordinarily the team’s third-string quarterback, turned the ball over twice and did not give Philly a chance to win.
The belief, of course, is that the Eagles tanked. By losing, they improved their draft position three spots from No. 9 to No. 6. Not surprisingly, players didn’t care about that. Some of them reportedly had to be restrained from going after Pederson.
NBC’s announcers also called the Eagles out for the questionable decision to play Sudfeld. Joe Judge, whose New York Giants needed a Washington loss in order to qualify for the playoffs, ripped the Eagles.
Players never want to feel like they’ve been put in position to lose, and that’s exactly what happened with the Eagles on Sunday. You can understand why Sanders and others were unhappy.
Playing Nate Sudfeld on Sunday night may have helped the Philadelphia Eagles’ draft position, but it apparently did not sit well with many of the team’s players.
The Eagles were trailing Washington 17-14 in the fourth quarter and had a chance to win the game. However, head coach Doug Pederson benched Jalen Hurts, who was 7/20 passing to that point but had two rushing touchdowns. Sudfeld, who is ordinarily the team’s third-string quarterback, turned the ball over twice and did not give them a chance to win.
Perplexed by the team seemingly tanking midgame, many Eagles players reportedly were upset.
The Philadelphia Inquirer’s Jeff McLane reported on Monday that many Eagles players and coaches were shocked and outraged by Pederson’s decision. Two offensive starters reportedly approached Pederson to question him about the move. McLane says two defensive players had to be restrained from approaching Pederson.
NBC’s announcers called the Eagles out for the questionable decisions. Joe Judge, whose New York Giants needed a Washington loss in order to qualify for the playoffs, ripped the Eagles.
Losing the game improved the Eagles’ draft position by three spots from No. 9 to No. 6. Maybe that was all the motivation the Eagles needed to make the quarterback switch.
New York Giants coach Joe Judge did not hold back when alluding to the Philadelphia Eagles’ effort against Washington on Sunday night.
The Giants needed the Eagles to beat Washington to give New York the division title, and the game was close throughout. However, Philadelphia was widely criticized for benching quarterback Jalen Hurts in favor of Nate Sudfeld in a game the Eagles were only losing by a field goal. Some outright accused the Eagles of tanking in a game with major playoff implications.
Judge seemed to agree with those accusations. In a lengthy speech Monday during his news conference, Judge talked about all the sacrifices that players and their families had gone into to ensure that the season happened during a pandemic. Then, without explicitly mentioning the Eagles, he made clear that he was furious with their effort, and the Giants would never do such a thing.
“To disrespect the effort that everyone put forward to make this season a success for the National Football League, to disrespect the game by going out there and not competing for 60 minutes to doing everything you can to help those players win — we will never do that as long as I’m the head coach of the New York Giants,” Judge concluded.
It’s pretty clear that Judge thinks the Eagles did disrespect the game by how they handled the season finale. Doug Pederson tried to defend how he coached, but few are going to buy it. Frankly, Judge has a point, and his players probably agree with him. Could they have won more games and handled their own business? Of course. And the Eagles have the right to handle their personnel the way they want to. But it’s an awful look when a team gives off the impression that it’s not playing to win in such a meaningful game.
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.