Opinion: Jalen Hurts' impact in Philly, Tua's signs of growth, Kyler Murray handling pressure
Jalen Hurts’ athleticism and decision-making also helped alleviate pressure on a battered line that struggled to protect Carson Wentz.Hurts delivered some truly dazzling moments, passing for 167 yards and a touchdown and rushing for 106 yards on 18 carries. Under his direction, the Eagles’ offense looked better than it had all year. Philadelphia boasted great balance, and the added dimension of Hurts’ mobility added a level of unpredictability and greater explosiveness.
Doug Pederson was resolute in his expressed belief that he can fix the Philadelphia Eagles' problems by returning as head coach in 2021.
That began Monday morning on his weekly radio show on SportsRadio 94 WIP, when he said he's "fully confident" he'll return.
Later, in his Zoom news conference with the media, Pederson pointed to the fact that the Eagles have made the playoffs three times in five seasons, including a Super Bowl victory three seasons ago.
"I know exactly how to get things fixed," Pederson said. "We’ve won a lot of games around here. We’ve gone to the postseason in three out of the five years I’ve been here, (won) a championship and all that. I’ve seen it, I’ve done it. That’s where my confidence lies."
Opinion: QB Dwayne Haskins seems to be out of chances with the Washington Football Team
Washington lost a very winnable game 20-13 and now needs a win at Philadelphia to clinch the division next week.Haskins had endured a week of tumult -– albeit self-inflicted -– yet received the perfect opportunity to begin to repair his reputation as Washington needed only to defeat the Carolina Panthers at home to pull off its improbable quest of winning the NFC East and a playoff berth for the first time since 2015.
But the Eagles have regressed each season since that Super Bowl and will miss the playoffs this season. They're 4-10-1 following their 37-17 loss to the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday.
The Eagles will close out their season against the Washington Football Team on Sunday night.
"It’s very disheartening," Pederson sad. "I just sit here today and have to apologize to the fans. This is not what we expected. It’s not what I expected back in training camp and the early part of the season."
Of course, the plethora of injuries has become a yearly occurrence for the Eagles, something Pederson made a point to acknowledge in defending his record. The Eagles, by the way, are 22-26-1 since the Super Bowl season.
NFL announces TV schedule for Week 17: Eagles vs. Washington will be Sunday Night Football game
Eagles vs. Washington Football Team will cap NFL's regular season, the league revealed Sunday night when it announced its Week 17 broadcast schedule.The capstone game probably wasn't what the league envisioned, but the matchup of the Washington Football Team (6-9) and Philadelphia Eagles (4-10-1) will still decide the NFC East title even though Philly has already been eliminated from playoff contention. A WFT victory gives D.C. its first division championship since 2015.
"You look at our team (against Dallas), and there are so many new faces out there, so many players out there playing," he said. "It’s been that way the last couple of seasons. That’s the part that’s the most challenging to deal with."
When asked why the Eagles have dealt with so many injuries, Pederson replied: "Football is a rough sport, man."
But if Pederson is going to be a part of the Eagles' solution, then he and management have to address the quarterback position. Pederson said rookie Jalen Hurts will finish out the season against Washington and Carson Wentz will sit out for the fourth consecutive game.
Hurts threw for 342 yards against Dallas, his second consecutive week topping 300 yards. But Hurts turned the ball over three times – all in the fourth quarter – with two interceptions and a lost fumble.
As for the future at the position, Pederson said: "We’re not there yet as far as answering all those questions. Things can obviously change. We’ll answer that at a different time."
Fantasy football sizzlers, fizzlers for 2020: Justin Jefferson leads rookie receivers
Fantasy teams struck gold with Vikings wideout Justin Jefferson and Jaguars running back James Robinson, who raised their stock considerably for 2021.Sizzlers
There are several different scenarios at quarterback.
The Eagles can hold a competition between Hurts and Wentz for the starting job in the spring practices and training camp.
There's also the possibility of trading one of them. That could be the case especially if the Eagles are drafting high enough. It's possible they could end up as high as No. 3 in the first round or as low as No. 10. They're currently at No. 6.
If they're in the top five, they could draft someone like Ohio State quarterback Justin Fields or BYU's Zach Wilson. That's assuming Clemson's Trevor Lawrence goes first or second to either the Jacksonville Jaguars or New York Jets, respectively.
Pederson said the return of health to the offensive line will make a big difference next season. Starting left tackle Andre Dillard and right guard Brandon Brooks missed the entire season. Right tackle Lane Johnson, left guard Isaac Seumalo and left tackle/right guard Jason Peters will end up missing at least seven games.
Injuries were also a factor at wide receiver, the secondary and at other positions. But so was poor play.
Carson Wentz expected to request trade over 'fractured' relationship with Eagles, per report
Philadelphia Eagles QB Carson Wentz is expected to request a trade after the season, according to a report by ESPN.Mortensen, speaking during a segment on ESPN's "NFL Countdown," said Wentz's relationship with the Eagles "is all but fractured. In fact, it is fractured.
"I would say we have the pieces," Pederson said. "We have the makings of a foundation of getting things back on track. Let’s add some new pieces to it – the draft picks, the free agents – and have an offseason, have a training camp and develop all of this, and then go play again next season."
Pederson was then asked if he wants a bigger say in personnel decisions. That has always been the domain of general manager Howie Roseman since Pederson became the head coach in 2016. And here, Pederson kind of answered it both ways.
"You get into this position because you love being around the players and you love teaching football," he said. "I want to be a part of the solution. I want to be a part of the evaluation process. I want to be a voice that’s heard. I want to have that collaborative communication with Howie and his staff, and be a part of that process."
Then he added: "I don’t necessarily want to cross that line because it takes you away from doing your job as the head football coach. And I like being on the football side of things as a former football player, and obviously now as a coach that’s where my passion lies."
We'll find out if he gets that chance soon enough.
Contact Martin Frank at email@example.com. Follow on Twitter @Mfranknfl.
Carolina Panthers cornerback Donte Jackson breaks up a fourth down pass intended for Washington Football Team wide receiver Antonio Gandy-Golden in the end zone late in the fourth quarter at FedEx Field.
Buccaneers tight end Rob Gronkowski (87) high fives with backup quarterback Blaine Gabbert (11), who replaced starter Tom Brady in the third quarter with Tampa Bay comfortably ahead, after scoring a touchdown against the Detroit Lions.
New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees (9) gestures after running back Alvin Kamara (41) scored his sixth rushing touchdown of the game -- to tie an NFL record -- against the Minnesota Vikings. The Saints prevailed 52-33.
Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Justin Jefferson (18) stretches but can't quite make a one-handed catch during a 2-point conversion attempt in the fourth quarter as New Orleans Saints cornerback Marshon Lattimore defends.
New Orleans Saints running back Alvin Kamara (41) jumps into the end zone between defenders Minnesota Vikings Anthony Harris (41) and Eric Wilson (50) duriing the second half at Mercedes-Benz Superdome.
This article originally appeared on Delaware News Journal: Philadelphia Eagles coach Doug Pederson is 'fully confident' he'll be back despite disaster of a season
Ranking NFL's seven open head coaching jobs in 2021, including Philadelphia Eagles, from worst to first .
Intriguing opportunities for the latest cycle of coaching hires, especially with Philadelphia joining the list, and QBs could be significant selling points.But in the case of the Eagles' Doug Pederson, "Black Monday" came a week late, his vision for a team picking up the pieces from a catastrophic 2020 campaign apparently misaligned with the outlook of owner Jeffrey Lurie.