Former NFL general manager Mike Lombardi made headlines earlier this week when he he called Philadelphia Eagles head coach Doug Pederson “less qualified to coach a team than anyone I’ve ever seen in my 30-plus years in the NFL.”
Pederson responded to Lombardi’s criticism on Monday by taking the high road.
Eagles CEO and Chairman Jeffrey Lurie, who spoke in an impromptu press conference on Thursday, was a little more blunt when asked about what Lombardi had to say.
First of all, those comments, I kinda ... you guys call it “clickbait” or “hot takes”? That’s how I saw that.
Lurie’s not wrong. As someone who is well trained in both subjects, I would know (wink).
Lurie went on to praise the Eagles’ head coach.
Think about this. Doug took over a team that had some locker room issues with the previous head coach. Lost his starting quarterback 10 days before the start of the season and was asked to use our young third string quarterback.
Had to put together a coaching staff, and my personal evaluation of the coaching staff that he put together or inherited, but was open to inherit, is outstanding. I mean really outstanding. That’s a huge credit because quarterback analysis, locker room chemistry, and the ability to put together a top notch coaching staff. Those are three real key ingredients. And I think he aced them all.
Yes, there are going to be growing pains with any first year head coach. We had it with Andy [Reid], we had it with Chip [Kelly], we’ve had it no matter who it is.
I see him as someone who can keep improving. He’s a listener. He’s a collaborator. I think he has terrific relationships with the players. The future is in front of him and it’s there for the taking.
While Lurie showed confidence in Pederson, he also said he expects the Eagles to improve this year. The pressure is on the second-year head coach to deliver.