The ugly loss on Monday night ended after 11pm and a late night would soon be even later. When the season spiraled into an abyss after a defeat at the hands of the Seattle Seahawks, several Eagles leaders hung around to meet.
Sources say that captains and team leaders such as quarterback Carson Wentz, defensive end Brandon Graham, and center Jason Kelce, among others, still stayed for an impromptu meeting. Chief coach Doug Pederson is also present. They preached accountability and took responsibility for their actions, how urgent the situation became and how necessary it was to turn it around.
Can the Eagles do this against the Green Bay Packers? This is where it all stands:
Despite winning a Super Bowl three years ago with a backup CB, leading up to the divisional round the following year and winning the division just last year, Pederson finds himself on the hot seat with his future in doubt, sources say. There is no guarantee that he will return in 2021 despite his record, and the struggles of Ventz – and the lack of answers – would be part of that.
The public began speculating about Federson’s future, and some in the building did the same, fearing that Pederson’s work was on the line. They may feel the tension, frustration, disgust and search for a resolution.
Pederson said this week that he had not received any assurances about his future from owner Jeffrey Lurie, which is also frustrated and was much less this year than in previous years (which may also be related to the COVID-19 protocols). Lurie also did not attend the Week 11 loss to Cleveland, a rarity, though a team spokesman said it was because he was careful health-wise as he planned to see his mother for Thanksgiving.
Among the changes the coaches have tried to make it return: Pederson has given up some play-calling duties, the team leaders organized a player-only meeting on Wednesday to find answers, and the week of practice, especially Friday, was described. As competitive and spirited.
It stands in contrast to a few weeks ago when Lurie left early in the morning after watching a special pedestrian 7-on-7 drill to tend to other business.
Pederson is on the hot seat but he is not alone.
There have already been three coaches fired this season, with two GMS being sacked as well. When the Lions moved from coach Matt Patricia and GM Bom Quinn, it was another indication of how active this offseason will be in the coaching world.
And although nothing was firmly decided, Jacksonville Jaguars coach Doug Marrone and New York Jets coach Adam Gase – with one win between them – also face an uphill battle to keep their jobs.
The case of Chargers coach Anthony Lynn is more interesting. Inside the Los Angeles building, Lynn is widely respected as a leader and a very good coach, someone who was 21-11 in his first two seasons in the middle of relocation and won a road playoff game after an AFC best 12-4 two Years ago.
However, the last two seasons have been struggling, with some in-game situations not meeting his usual standard and four losses with three points or less. It did not work.
It is fair to say that his status is in doubt.
The organization has not fired a coach in the middle of the season since 1998 when it moved from Kevin Gilbride. And the Chargers remain committed to supporting Lynn with hopes of beating the New England Patriots today.
However, last week’s issues – two running plays without timeouts on the goal line with the clock running – could loom large. There are many other factors involved late in games, but ultimately it falls on the head coach.
Can the chargers make a change if more in-game issues arise? Potentially. The hope of all involved is that it may not come to this.
After a month of the season, the coaching carousel is only beginning to take shape.