Eagles Head Coach Nick Sirianni (Post-Game Transcript)
With somebody like QB Marcus Mariota who has been around the league and won NFL games, but clearly has struggled in these two games here, how do you balance that? (Jeff McLane)
NICK SIRIANNI: It’s also us finding out what he does well too. What he sees well, what looks good to him. I know he didn’t play the way he wanted to tonight. I wouldn’t say he struggled the last game. You guys might have said that. I didn’t say that. He ran around and made some good plays and moved the ball really well with him in there against Baltimore.
So tonight, yeah obviously not up to his standard, but it’s about us finding what works for him. And that’s just us learning him. That’s us working together to figure that out
How are WR Tyrie Cleveland and DT Moro Ojomo? (Tim McManus)
NICK SIRIANNI: We’ll get you all that information. [SVP, Communications] Bob [Lange] will give you some information on that here in a little bit, but I haven’t talked to the doctors yet, but it sounds like they are moving around. I don’t know anything else besides that.
It was an atypical night though in terms of the amount of injuries. What was it like on the sidelines with all those injuries? (Zach Berman)
NICK SIRIANNI: You never want to see that. Your heart goes out to everyone that gets hurt in a game because they are working so hard to make the team. That is tough for the team, for myself, for the coaches because you care about these guys and want them to succeed. Then to have injuries, it’s always tough.
A lot of guys playing a lot of plays. It was a long game with a lot of plays. We’ll hope that they are not too long term and hopefully they get back and better.
QB Tanner McKee just said one of the things he likes about the offense is there are a lot of answers given to the quarterback. With an offense like that though, you have receivers that have to break off routes based off coverages and they have to have some kind of chemistry to be on the same page. So there is a lot for him to know. Are you surprised that he’s so far advanced at this point? (Jeff McLane)
NICK SIRIANNI: No, we did our homework on him. We knew how sharp he was and we really liked the way he threw the ball.
And so, no. And you see it in practice, right? So, we’re not surprised by it because we treat the practice like a game. We felt really good about how he looked in practice to this date. Pleased obviously with how he played. I think he was what, 10 of 18, but there were some drops there.
I don’t know. You guys would know better than me. Maybe three or four, four or five. So, the ball was going where it needed to go. It was accurate. Some really nice throws into some tight coverage.
You have been around a lot of young quarterbacks over your time. Is he ahead of schedule when it comes to processing getting the football out? To me, to the naked eye, it seems that way. (John McMullen)
NICK SIRIANNI: I think what you’re seeing — now, are the defenses a little different now pre-season than in the regular season? Of course. People are going to play more basic and safer.
So, what I would say is, again, I would see the ball consistently going to the right spot on time — that’s what you want for your quarterback — with accuracy so he can make all the throws. He can see it.
So, he’s been doing good. To compare him to anybody else based off two pre-season games, I don’t want to go there, but am I pleased with how he’s looked and what he’s doing? Of course.
You seemed pretty amped up when LB Nakobe Dean made his play near the goal line, what was behind that? (Tim McManus)
NICK SIRIANNI: Yeah, just excited for him. He’s our guy, and excited for him that he was able to get out there and not being able to play last game and go out there and make a game-changing play.
So that’s why we drafted him. That’s what we anticipate him being. We’re going to need him to do that to play like we want to play on defense.
Haven’t spoken to you since the joint practices, what did you think about the performance on Tuesday versus Monday? (Jeff McLane)
NICK SIRIANNI: I thought defense was good on both days. I did.
And then I didn’t think it was up to our standard on Monday as an offense. Like I said, credit to Cleveland. They’ve got some really good players, but definitely a better day offensively the next day.
So, I was just pleased with the way the guys responded. Why do you respond like that? Because you have great leaders on this football team, starting with [QB] Jalen [Hurts] and [C] Jason Kelce and [T] Lane [Johnson] and [DE] Brandon [Graham] and Fletch [DT Fletcher Cox]. They just really got everybody going.
That was exciting to see. You’re going to have ups and downs through a season and adversity. We treated it like, hey, here is the first half. We didn’t play up to our standard in the first half. Let’s go out in the second half and play.
Hopefully those lessons can carry you through a long season.
I know you’re big on competition. Does Tanner have a shot of earning the No. 2 job or we’re way too early? (Tim McManus)
NICK SIRIANNI: Way too early on this. Marcus is our backup, and pleased with the way Tanner is playing.
You had I think 11 penalties today. I think five or six pre-snap. A lot of backup players obviously. Where is your concern level? (John McMullen)
NICK SIRIANNI: Those will drive you crazy as a coach. They’ll drive you crazy as a team, right? And so I wouldn’t — again, like you’re always concerned when you have — you never want to have things that — we always talk about this: Master the things that require no talent. So pre-snap penalties, we believe that that’s one of those things.
And so, we got to figure out what happened. Was it the cadence? Was it [QB] Tanner [McKee]? What was it? We’ll figure out what happened. There are early talks obviously because you’re trying to get it fixed during the game, but you never want to see those.
And then going into the field goal, now the guy missed the one again, but, I mean, those are just penalties that — those are things that get you beat.
So great opportunity for everybody, the guys that played and the guys that didn’t play, to learn from that. But we’ll spend a ton of time talking about that.
Master the things that require no talent so your talent can shine. We have to get those little minor things fixed because they become big things.
You said you were going to get to see these linebackers play. What have you learned about that group this week? (Zach Berman)
NICK SIRIANNI: I like that group. I do. I like that group. I think they’re battling. I really like what [LB] Nakobe [Dean] looks like. I really like how [LB] Zach Cunningham played tonight. [LB] Nick Morrow, [LB] Christian Elliss, [LB] Myles Jack. Really looking forward to letting that continue to play out.
I just think especially with Zach and Myles, they’re just learning the system and you’re seeing them be able to make more plays, so I’m excited about that group.
RB Trey Sermon’s run tonight, did he help himself a little bit at running back? (Chris Murray)
NICK SIRIANNI: I was really happy with Trey, the fact that he bounced back. Fumbled the ball on the screen. A guy made a good play on it, but we weren’t quite right enough with our ball security right there and he played the next play. The worst thing you can do is put your head down and sulk in the play that you didn’t make.
All you can do is really play the next one. So that was a great lesson for him and great lesson for our team to keep going. Couple really nice runs that he had, so, yeah, that’s good momentum for Trey.
Obviously, he would want to have the fumble back, but good momentum from him to finish out this pre-season with.
What went into the decision to start Zach Cunningham at linebacker? Is it just an indication of how far he’s come since he’s been here? (Ed Kracz)
NICK SIRIANNI: Yeah. And so, like I said, they’re all still battling. We wanted him, Zach, to be in with a guy that he didn’t have to make the call, so Nakobe was a good guy to be in with where Nakobe can make all the calls.
Yeah, Zach has played well. One of the reasons why he was in there today, because he’s played really well. Really excited about where he is. He got a couple hands on balls. Thought he made some nice plays tonight, and also thought he made some nice plays in the joint practices getting some hands on the football.
He’s long, right? Going back to when we would go against him when we were in Indy and he was in Houston, he was a body you had to throw around because it was hard to throw over top of him because of his length.
We saw that in the joint practices where I think [S] Reed [Blankenship] had an interception off one of them and somebody else did. Reed had both of them off the tip. Yeah, really like how he dissects plays and gets to the ball. Yeah, he’s making good strides.