The Eagles coaches are back to work on Monday, and head coach Nick Sirianni spoke to reporters and gave some injury updates, as well as talked about how to coach through a slump like they’re experiencing. He also talked about having Jeff Lurie’s support, and how they’re very conscious about the challenge of changing a defensive play caller mid-season.
When asked if he would be making any changes to the offensive or defensive play calling, Sirianni was direct and succinct, “No.”
Here’s what else the head coach had to say:
Sirianni confirmed that Sydney Brown will miss the rest of the year, after the safety posted as much earlier in the day. He said his heart breaks for guys like Brown and Nakobe Dean who are out for an entire season.
“I have sympathy for them because I know how hard that is when you want to be out on the field with your brothers playing, and you can’t be because your body won’t let you. That really is a tough thing.”
The head coach also said that they’ll have to see as the week progresses as to whether they’ll have DeVonta Smith, Cam Jurgens and/or A.J. Brown against the Bucs on Monday night.
“We need all hands on deck to do the things we want to do. We’ll see how the week progresses. Hopeful on everybody.”
He was also asked about Jalen Hurts going back in the game after dislocating his finger, and how the QB thankfully avoided a fracture and more significant injury.
“I was watching him closely when he came out of the tent and watching him throw. He looked at me and he said, ‘I’m going,’ got his helmet, picked it up, and that gives you goosebumps to think about one of your best players doing that and fighting through for his teammates.
And so yeah, we’ll see. We’ll see as the week progresses, but I know he’s going to be sore. There’s no doubt about that, and I know that finger is going to get stiff and he’s going to have to go through hard work to make sure that he’s ready to go. But I have no doubt that he’s going to do everything he can do to do that, and that he’ll be able to play through his bumps and bruises because I’ve seen him do it.
I’ve seen him do it over and over and over again. And, you guys can ask him more about that question when y’all talk to him, but, man, I can’t say enough for how tough he is, and he’ll do everything he can do to play and play at a high level this Monday night.”
On Jeffrey Lurie’s support
“Ever since I’ve been here, whether it was we started off 2-5, whether it was that we won 16 games last year, whether it was we started off 10-1, whether it was that we’ve lost five of our last six because we’ve been through ups and we’ve been through downs, and he’s been nothing but supportive towards me the entire time I’ve been here. Through any tough decision I’ve ever had to make, through any personnel, anything like that, anything with a game decision.
Mr. Lurie has been nothing but completely supportive and willing to do anything in his power to help us win football games. And that’s what I respect so much about him. And so, man, I couldn’t thank him enough and be more grateful to have him as our owner and the leader of our organization.”
On coaching through adversity
Sirianni said that anyone can lead when times are easy, it’s when times get hard that you see what you’re made of. He looks at leading this team through the slump as a challenge, but one he’s confident will be sweet at the end because of the guys they have in the locker room.
“Anybody can lead in times of great joy. What’s inside you and what can you do in times of trials and tribulations? And so, I look at it as a challenge, and I’m damn for sure up for that challenge.”
The head coach knows that the adversity that he and the entire team has faced in their lives has led them to being in this moment, and they know how to respond.
On changing DC’s mid-season
Sirianni was asked about how he was confident making the shift from Sean Desai to Matt Patricia mid-season and with so little time to turn acclimate to a new play caller and scheme. He explained that they’re not completely changing things to adjust to Patricia’s philosophy, but rather he’s doing things to fit the defense currently in place.
“So, to me, that’s not what the issue is going on.”
Still, Sirianni admitted that they are doing some new things and different things, but that’s true of the whole team as the year progresses. They’re very conscious of the fact that when they put something new in, there will be details to iron out, so all of that is done with thought in mind.
“We’re being conscious of how much we’re changing and what we’re doing because it is hard to change. To say, ‘hey, we’re going to run a completely new defense at this point in the year,’ when Matt took over, and that’s why we’re not doing that.
We’re just making some adjustments, some different things that we’re doing when we’re going through defense, and hey, has it been good enough these last couple of weeks? No, but we’re still working like crazy to get it better.”
- Sirianni acknowledged that as the game against the Giants went on, and the as the Dallas game became one-sided, they started pulling guys, including Jordan Davis. The head coach noted the DT is a really important part of what they’re doing, alongside Fletcher Cox, and they’ll need those guys to be as fresh as possible next week.
- He took responsibility for their struggles against the blitz, noting there are many different ways they can do against it, and they picked the wrong ways on Sunday. Sirianni said simply their plan wasn’t good enough, but he’s confident they can get that sorted out this week.
- The head coach agreed that defensively there have been some communication issues, but said nothing huge, and that hasn’t been their only problem, citing getting schemed up on, missing some fits, missed tackles, and other things that add up.
- He talked up their support of Quez Watkins, noting the WR did some nice things when asked to step up against the Giants. Sirianni wanted to specifically explain that they’ve never lost confidence in Watkins, and he’s always been someone that can affect the game.