Doug Pederson had his customary day after the game press conference on Friday following the Eagles 24-19 win over the Giants on Thursday Night Football.
As usual, he started with the injuries. The only significant injury was a very serious one: Ryan Mathews has a herniated disc and is out for the Cowboys game and beyond. He will require surgery.
He also answered questions about Carson Wentz, his fourth down calls, and more.
What was Wentz’s job on the reverse?
“He is supposed to block. Most double reverses.... the quarterback is supposed to block if there is a block.”
Pederson said that once he was cleared he had no hesitation on using him and that due to the way it happened he didn’t fear a concussion.
“We can speculate all day I guess, obviously our goal is to win the football game.”
On Wentz’s progression this season
“What you're seeing as the season has gone on is he's really let the game unfold, things are slowing down, he's using his legs, checking the ball down. Last night I was very encouraged to see him using his legs.”
Turning into a gunslinger... with his scrambling?
“I don't want to harness it to the point where he can't be effective using his legs. Like the Baltimore play, there was nothing there and he back door turned it, made a safety miss. Those are things you love to see from your QB. He's getting out of bounds, he's throwing it away, he's sliding. That's part of the maturity you've seen from the beginning of the season.”
Do you evaluate players on a curve with it being the end of the season?
“There's a lot of pride in that locker room. Our season is not over. Whether guys are more relaxed because there's nothing on the line, maybe that's part of it, but these guys want to end strong.”
On Malcolm Jenkins’ outstanding game
“For him to start the season at safety and really feeling comfortable, and then with the injury to Ron Brooks having to play slot corner... it just shows you the type of player he is the type of person he is. He does whatever it takes to help the football team. Time after time keeps making play after play. He's really put together a good season.”
Is the volume of fourth down attempts due to circumstance or is it a game plan?
“Circumstance. We've kind of put ourselves in position that we kind of had to do it. If it benefits our team and we can stay aggressive with it and it's a good decision, I'll continue with it.”
On a Ryan Mathews replacement
Pederson said the team would look around the league over the extended weekend but that Terrell Watson, recently signed to the practice squad (if you haven’t, check out his backstory), was definitely a candidate to replace him on the roster.