Things may (or may not) have gotten a little lax for the Eagles’ locker room lately, but I think we’re far from the utter collapse of the established culture under Doug Pederson.
Through seven games so far this season, the Eagles are 3-4 and haven’t looked good despite having a lot of talent on the roster. Sure, there are injuries — but there are always injuries, and 2017 has ruined the team’s ability to claim that as an excuse — and concerns at certain position groups, but overall there’s plenty of talent for this team to win.
But, they aren’t.
And after losing to their NFC East rival on Sunday night, off-field things have gone from a little noise (anonymous comments, et al.) to full blown accusations.
- Lane Johnson alluded to players needing to be held accountable for their actions, including being on time for meetings and practice. So, who is late? And why aren’t they fully committed?
- Doug Pederson said that the messaging for being on time starts with him. And despite using tardiness as an example, said that wasn’t happening with the Eagles.
- Malcolm Jenkins said that he wasn’t sure what Johnson was talking about, but also that if people were showing up to work late, it wouldn’t be a players responsibility to fix it.
- Brandon Graham didn’t say people were/aren’t showing up late, but did say that Johnson’s comments should’ve stayed internal instead.
Brandon Graham to 94WIP on Lane Johnson’s comment about players being late: “I think Lane should’ve just thought about it a little bit before he went and said it.”— Zack Rosenblatt (@ZackBlatt) October 21, 2019
Also said he loves Lane but that he should’ve brought the issue up internally instead of in the media. #Eagles
Cracks in the culture showed up a little when players started putting out anonymous opinions the past couple of weeks, and players not showing up on time or giving it their all during practice is just the latest ripple.
Pederson, at least publicly, isn’t worried and hasn’t publicly questioned any player’s effort or commitment to getting better, but it sure seems like something is happening inside the organization.
I think we’re far, faaaaaaaar away from the Chip Kelly days, and Pederson is very much a players’ coach, but it looks like they need to address these things. Winning will help a lot — I seriously don’t think there is any group more happy than the Eagles defense when they’re playing fast and well. But winning and a cohesive locker room also go hand-in-hand.