Q. Is T Lane Johnson back with the team and will he be practicing today? (Eliot Shorr-Parks)
NICK SIRIANNI: He’s not here today. He’s still dealing with a personal matter. Really not going to go any more further into that, I’m still going to respect his privacy. But he is not here today.
Q. Do you expect him to play this week? (Reporter)
NICK SIRIANNI: Again, he’s not here today. That’s as far as I’m going to go this week. And we’re going to respect his privacy.
Q. How about T Jordan Mailata? Is he going to return to practice? (Dave Zangaro)
NICK SIRIANNI: He will be limited today. He’ll be limited today. So we’re excited to get him back out there and get moving around. So look forward to seeing him here in walk-through in a little bit and then what he can do with his limited reps there today in practice.
Q. We’ve seen a lot of plays designed to get the ball to WR Jalen Reagor. Can you call those against any defense? Can you have them in the game plan every week? (Dave Zangaro)
NICK SIRIANNI: Yes and no. There are some plays like — it depends on which plays you’re talking about. I get what you’re saying. So sometimes it’s dependent on the defensive line techniques. And sometimes it’s dependent on the secondary techniques. And so you can – there are different kinds of variations of that. You can’t have them all in each week, again, because there’s just a lot of different reps. But, yeah, we want to sprinkle creative ways to get him the football because we know he’s a creative play maker.
Q. In game planning and in game situations, do you ever worry about over correction? For instance, if you see a disparity of shots on the field or disparity of run plays, do you ever worry about in your brain saying, ‘Hey, I need to run the ball more or pass the ball more?’ (Mike Kaye)
NICK SIRIANNI: Again, everything I do is just what I think is best to do to win that football game. And so that’s going to look different each and every week. Some weeks, it’s going to look like there’s a lot of RPOs. Some weeks there’s going to be gadgets. Some weeks there’s going to be shots down the field. Some weeks it’s going to be dink and dunk.
We know there’s many different ways to win the game. And we do have a scheme. And we do fit — we do have players that fit our scheme and vice versa. We try to fit our scheme for our players. And that just changes. That’s why I just don’t get too caught up in all that.
Knowing that our plan and the way we kind of attack — and even if it’s a certain play, like maybe we’re running this certain play, but we get to it a little different way with a motion or with a shift or with a different personnel grouping. So, I don’t get too wrapped up into that. It’s just whatever we need to do that week to win the game because — it is. To say you’re going to go out and just run a certain play every single week or certain just plays every single week, I just don’t think you’re putting your players in position to truly succeed if you’re doing that.
Q. This time last week you were very hard on yourself, critical of yourself looking back at some things. As you now get ready for this game and you look at the penalties, how much of all the things that you guys have struggled with are the penalties ticking you off? And what in the world can you guys do to fix that right here right now? (Jeff Skversky)
NICK SIRIANNI: Yeah. The penalties are a big problem. And we’re still ticked off about them. And we’re still working like crazy to get those fixed. And that’s — everything that you see on this football field has my name on it. Right? I’m the head football coach. I know my responsibility. I know what I’m responsible for. And every product out there is my responsibility.
And so, we’re working like crazy to get it fixed. And we need to get it fixed because, again, when you’re — I’ll speak on offense here quick for a second. When you’re creating the explosive plays that we’re creating and you’re moving the ball up and down the field like we’re doing, right, you want more to show for it with the points. Because that’s all it’s about is scoring points. Having more points than the other team.
So those things, those negative plays that put you behind the chart, those are what stall drives out. Those are what create field goals or, you know, those are what create a punt or whatever it is. And the pre-snap penalty is no different.
And then on defense, too, you want to keep the offense in the second and long, and you want to keep them out of second and manageable and third and manageable. But a product of the Chiefs having — one of the reasons the Chiefs had a high third down conversion is because we’d have them in third and 7. And then they were in third and 2. And that happened a couple times.
So, obviously, those are things that are easier for an offense to do when they’re in third and short. So, yeah, we’ve got to fix that. And we know the why behind why we’ve got to fix it. And we’re working like crazy to do so.
Q. How do you specifically go about fixing it? Do you have to change your approach to players? What do you specifically have to do? (Jeff Skversky)
NICK SIRIANNI: My approach with players has been the same for the entire time. It’s like we’re going to correct the mistakes that we see and just — the tone changes every once in a while, you know. It’s not the same, like, delivery every time. But we’re always correcting the mistakes. Right? Because if we let a mistake go, then we’re saying that’s okay. So that’s one thing is obviously just to correct it.
But then there are some things that we need to do better as far as technique goes. And what I mean by that is when you get a couple things like illegal men down field, you’ve got to change the blocking technique a little bit, so you don’t put your guys at risk for being down field.
So, you know, there’s things — it’s one aspect of it — because there’s just a lot of different variations here. One aspect of it is the corrections to the player. One of the aspects is fixing a technique. Another aspect is us fixing our coaching style of what we’re asking them to do on certain plays that are getting penalties.
So everything — we’re not willing to accept any 5-yard penalty or any 10-yard penalty or any 15-yard penalty. Do they happen? Sure, they’re going to happen. But there’s a standard. And we hold ourselves to that standard. And we correct to that standard with everything that we do.
Q. Not just Jalen Reagor, do you think as a coach there are manufactured touch players, for lack of a better term, guys you have to get the football to at certain times, not singling anybody out but just in general? (John McMullen)
NICK SIRIANNI: Sure. Yeah. I think everything is always players’ plays formation. That’s the same thing I’ve been thinking from the beginning. So, yes, you want to manufacture it, but you also — I think I know where you’re leading into this with the RPO game. Like you want to manufacture it sometimes, but sometimes when you manufacture it, you put your offensive line in a bad position on the backside where they can’t get the cutoff because you’re just handing the ball off. That’s not to say we don’t run a lot of — we run a lot of just called runs. And they’re not all RPOs, you know what I’m saying. But, yeah, you just always want to think about players first.
But then again, you just don’t want to — I know I’m kind of answering it yes to both. But you just don’t want to put them in a bad spot, the offensive line in a bad spot either in those things.
Q. With T Lane Johnson’s status uncertain, what’s the approach with G/T Jack Driscoll this week? Will he be playing tackle? Will he be playing guard? (Zach Berman)
NICK SIRIANNI: I think that, again, is a competitive advantage for us not to say where we’re going to play guys, especially with [T] Jordan [Mailata] back in the mix. And there’s more elements into it this week with some guys back, particularly Jordan, obviously. So, competitive advantage for us that we’ll keep close to the vest for right now.
Q. With RB Kenny Gainwell from the pre-draft process, what kind of stood out to you? Was there a moment watching tape where you recognized that he would be kind of a fit for you guys? And what is it about him that’s a fit for this offense? (Tim McManus)
NICK SIRIANNI: Yeah. You know, we were looking for that type of back that we’ve had a lot of success with in this offensive style, dating back to [former Chargers RB] Danny Woodhead with the San Diego Chargers and then [Colts RB] Nyheim Hines with the Indianapolis Colts. And we kind of saw Kenny’s tape and we looked at it. And we were like, ‘Man, that’s the guy. That’s the guy that kind of fits that role of plays we’ve kind of schemed for guys like that who have had good success.’
And then you got to watch the tape and while you’re watching the tape, you see those pass plays that he made. And then you see how strong he was with the ball in his hands. Like he’s a strong dude. And he can break tackles. He’s just got good lower body strength, good balance. And you saw that not only did he have that ability to make the play within the pass game but also in the run game.
Q. How has RB Miles Sanders reacted, I mean, their touches are about even over the last couple of weeks, how has Miles reacted to that situation? (Reuben Frank)
NICK SIRIANNI: I’ve seen Miles just be the same guy every single day. Put in the work every single day to get better. Does he want the football? Of course he does. And that’s any good player, any player in general. And that’s the same way it’s going to be in the receiver room or the tight end room or the running back room. They all want the ball.
That’s a good problem to have that you got guys that want the football. And that’s our job to get it to them. But there is only one football. And when you kind are going up and down the field like we did last week, the guys that got the football last week, it was just a product of what was happening. And so, I think the guys see that.
But, you know, obviously they still want the ball. And we’ve got to do what’s best that week to get the players the ball that the defense is going to allow us and force the issue sometimes as well.
Q. What’s your philosophy with the staff in terms of like hours worked? Is there a time at night when you want to send them home? (Bo Wulf)
NICK SIRIANNI: [Jokingly] I don’t let them leave. I’m just kidding. I actually came in the other day – or this morning, and I said to [Eagles Offensive Coordinator] Shane [Steichen], I said, ‘Did you make it home last night?’ And he said, ‘Yeah, I got home.’ And I’m like, ‘Shoot.’
No. But it’s not set hours. You’ve got to do what you need to do to get done. I don’t make them watch their desk or wait until I leave or whatever. Right? And so, we’ve got to get our job done.
I know we start really early. We start anywhere from between – guys come in at 5:00, 6:00. No one’s in later than 6:00. And then it just depends on the day of when we work till. Monday, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, those are going to be a little later nights. Thursday, a little bit shorter. Friday, a little bit shorter than that. I don’t want to say a set time, but we’re in here, we’re grinding, and the candle is burning pretty long.
Q. What do you like about WR Greg Ward in red zone package? (Mike Kaye)
NICK SIRIANNI: He’s just got good feel, good savvy. That’s really where I like Greg is just his feel for things and finding zones, finding holes. And then he’s got quickness to be able to separate when it is man to man. And he’s sure-handed.
Q. Has there been anything about QB Jalen Hurts that’s kind of surprised you with the way he’s played the first four games? (Martin Frank)
NICK SIRIANNI: No. I mean, when you’re with him at practice every single day, like, you’re evaluating practice like you would a game. So, you’re seeing – nothing is going to catch us off guard in a game that we aren’t anticipating in practice.
Like, that was my message to the guys today. Like, ‘Hey, it’s all about putting yourself in position to be able to win the game on Sunday. And how do you do that? By practicing hard, practicing right.’
The plays we’re going to run this week on Sunday are the ones we’re repping out at practice. The plays that look good in practice we’re going to call in the game, right? The plays that don’t look good in practice we’re not going to call in the game. So, because we have that approach to practice, I don’t think we see things – nothing is really a surprise when we go out there.
What I love about how Jalen is playing is I think he’s playing the position of quarterback well, right? He’s making the right decisions with the football. He’s making accurate throws. When he needs to create, he’s creating. And he’s getting to where we want him to play.
I think he’s playing really good football and he’s turned himself into a good quarterback. And so, we’re looking to just – but part of that is consistency. And we’ve just got to do that each and every week, so looking forward to the challenge we have this week with Jalen and with the Panthers.
Q. Game management question from talking to Eagles Defensive Coordinator Jonathan Gannon yesterday. He mentioned he got caught in that Chiefs WR Tyreek Hill, LB Eric Wilson on him. Now, if he’s in a position where he says, ‘Okay, we’re not in the right defense, I’ve got to call time-out,’ how does that kind of work to funnel that to you? (John McMullen)
NICK SIRIANNI: Particularly in those situations, I’m over on that side of the headset with Jonathan to talk through that. And I don’t know if you can see me on those areas. I wouldn’t expect you to know where I was. But usually when they’re down there in the red zone like that, I usually stand down there. I get to stand away from everybody for that one. And I get to stand down there by the referees. And if we had an issue, I would call a time-out in that scenario.
We were in a zone scheme in that one. I know Jonathan talked to you guys about that one. But that wasn’t discussed on that one. But that’s where we are and that’s how we kind of handled that.