Todd Bowles was introduced as the Eagles new defensive coordinator yesterday and pretty much answered questions about all defensive issues. First and foremost was how a Todd Bowles defense would differ from a Juan Castillo defense?
"The only way it can be different is on the scoreboard, so hopefully if we come up with wins it'll look different all itself in the end," he said. "The main goal is to get the victory however we've got to get it. We're going over self-scouting right now and we'll tweak things, depending on the game we're playing, that we need to tweak."
It's kind of a canned answer, but Bowles really isn't a position to make wholesale changes at this point. As the guy taking over, he pretty much has to work within the framework the team spent all summer (and the better part of 2 years) building. Still, as he said, he can "tweak."
One tweak that won't happen is the ditching of the wide nine.
"Yeah, it's staying intact. I mean we run a wide nine, that's what we do. But gameplan-wise, it depends on whether we do other things along with it."
Bowles also said that while he will call the plays for the line, Jim Washburn will continue to coach them. This continues the same set up under Juan Castillo.
Taking over midseason is nothing new for Bowles. Last year he was elevated to head coach of the Miami Dolphins in mid-season. He says that was a bigger shock than this.
"Last year probably was the biggest shock. So, coming into this year - it's a similar situation as far as it happening in-season, it kind of prepares you not to get too high or too low, to just be professional and do your job. And then if something happens, you're ready to do everything else also."
Bowles brings an interesting perspective as a guy who had a 7 year NFL career. As a former player he says he can relate to the current team in a unique way.
"Well being a player you can put yourself in the same situations because you've been in them so when a guy is coming to you with problems, you can refer back to your playing days. You don't have to agree with them. You say, ‘This is why you're doing this, so this is why they're doing this to you.' It just helps the relationship go a lot better."
One of Bowles most influential mentors is Bill Parcells, who he coached under in Dallas and worked for in Miami. He talked about what lessons he learned from the two-time Super Bowl winning coach.
"Bill kind of taught me how to see the whole game and how to see the team as a whole. He always wanted me to learn more than my position. The biggest thing he taught me was, at the end of a game of a loss, the people who take the loss the hardest are the coaches. The players can forget about them in two or three days, the head coach has to move on and stand in front of you guys, but the defensive coaches are pissed off because they know what really happened. You have to keep your coaches up to keep your players up."