Earlier today, Joe Banner had a very frank and revealing interview on PFT Live and we talked about both his decision to leave the Eagles and his future plans. However, he also had some very interesting insights from behind the scenes that I wanted to mention as well.
First, he was asked about his biggest regret? This one will surprise you.
"There were times when the true appreciation of our players didn't show when it should have."
Banner said that Brian Dawkins immediately came to mind. He says that team always had great affection for these guys, but they failed to show that in the course of some of their dealings both directly with the player and to the fans. We saw that when Dawkins retired that he was still kind of upset at the way things ended here and while he ultimately decided to bury the hatchet and retire as an Eagle, he did seem to still harbor some sense of betrayal. This seemed to affect Banner, who we always saw as the cold negotiator.
Banner did not appear to have a lot of regrets over the way they handled the Terrell Owens fiasco, saying that the two sides had a "chance for a win-win situation," but the impression was that one side just went off the rails. He also said that he thinks its a long shot that TO signs with an NFL team this year.
Finally, this may have been revealed before but I never heard it, Banner talked about the process he and Lurie went through in buying a team and said that they were close to buying the New England Patriots. They'd went through the entire process before the deal fell through. They then had to repeat the entire process when the Eagles came available. This was all in the context of him pursuing another NFL team and going through this process again.