Eagles head coach Nick Sirianni spoke to reporters on Thursday, and wouldn’t answer directly about his feelings that Frank Reich was fired by the Colts, but several times noted how much he respects his former boss. Sirianni also talked about preparing for Washington and QB Taylor Heinicke, and why he incorporates a specific catch circuit for WRs and DBs.
Here’s what the head coach had to say:
On Frank Reich being fired
“So, obviously, I’m only concerned about what’s going on [in Philly], and trying to keep my eyes on it — just what the situation is here, and that’s being ready for Washington.
But, as you know, what I think about Frank [Reich] and how much I respect Frank as a person, how much I respect him as a football coach. You can probably imagine how I feel.”
Later on, Sirianni was asked whether he’d considering bringing Reich back to Philly in some capacity.
“I don’t know yet.
That’s not something that’s been — that happened, what, Monday, and my focus has been completely on Washington. So, again, you know how I feel about Frank, and I’m always going to use him as a consultant whether he’s in the building or he’s not in the building. But, I haven’t really thought about that, to be quite honest. We’re just really focused on today, to get ready for Washington.”
On facing Washington
Sirianni was asked how things will change as they prepare for QB Taylor Heinicke versus Carson Wentz earlier in the year.
“They’re doing some different things on offense now, and there’s some things that we gotta be alert for. And that’s going to be different if there’s a different playcaller, if there’s a different quarterback, those are two things — if their top receiver is out, like whatever it is, there’s going to be some differences there.
I like the fact we’ve got some games on him and it didn’t just happen last week, and then we can study our game film against him last year. So, I got a lot of respect for him as a player. He’s a scrappy player that finds ways to get it done, so we’re going to have to be on our game. Any division game, and when you’re playing a quarterback like this, that’s scrappy and finds ways to make plays, you’re gonna have to be on it.”
Sirianni later said that he concerned about the extra time since their Thursday night game in Week 9. He noted that coming back from the bye week, they did things a little differently, but this week wasn’t as long of a delay. The head coach emphasized the need to have really good practices this week, and even though they won’t be tackling to the ground, they need to work on all the fundamentals.
On their practice catch circuit
Earlier in the week, DC Jonathan Gannon mentioned that Sirianni has the DBs go through the same catch circuit as the receivers, which he credits for some of the interceptions they’ve nabbed this season. Sirianni elaborated a bit on Thursday, explaining that it’s a way to get guys practice making catches that they wouldn’t typically need to make.
He tries to put players in difficult situations — high balls, low balls, while getting checked down field — so that when they see them in a game, it’s not the first time they’ve encountered it.
- Sirianni was asked whether the Eagles needed to add a nose tackle, but the head coach said he’s confident in the group they have right now. He said it was a deep room before losing Jordan Davis, but he has a lot of faith in the guys that are still playing.
- At one point he joked about having so many former quarterbacks on the coaching staff that they should have a contest in the off-season to see who is the most accurate passer.