Q. What was your message to the team to try and keep them focused with the two extra days going into this game? (Sal Paolantonio)
NICK SIRIANNI: Control what you can control. It felt like a couple of our practices, the Thursday and our Friday practice wasn’t up to our standard. And so, I looked at it as, hey, we’ve got two extra days now to get it to our standard, and we practiced much better.
Now I know it didn’t reflect that in the opening moments of the game, but I was glad that we got that extra bit of practice to clean some things up. And again, if you spend all your time being upset about something you can’t control, you’re putting unnecessary energy in there.
So, we talked a lot about that; that we’re a team about the process and getting a little bit better each day, and it gave us two extra days to get a little bit better, and that’s what we focused on instead of the things we couldn’t control.
Q. You mentioned the early start. How did you overcome those two turnovers there? (Josh Tolentino)
NICK SIRIANNI: I think we just settled in. Again, you never want to start like that, and it was rusty. It was really rusty, and you never want to start like that. Give them credit, too. They did some good things too — I know they were in the right place with the drop, and they got pressure on [QB] Jalen [Hurts] on that. That’s a good defense, and so we just — I just give the guys credit for having a dog mentality. We were down 10-0 and they just kept playing and they played a really good game the rest of the way out.
It was big when the defense held them to three and we were only down 10-0 and the offense came alive and it was a good team win. As disappointing as the slow start was, you saw a lot of guys contribute today and that was just a great team win.
You saw [WR] Jalen Reagor contribute in a big way today, and I was really excited about that because he works his tail off at practice and he’s got a lot of talent. I was happy for him to make some big plays. [DE] Tarron Jackson on defense, you saw it was a full team win of guys making plays. So started off rusty, but they bounced back because that’s the type of team we have, resilient, dog mentality, next-play mentality.
Q. The camera caught you having maybe a spirited message for QB Jalen Hurts after the fumble. Can you give us an understanding of that? (Jeff McLane)
NICK SIRIANNI: Sure, Jalen and I — Jalen’s dad coached him hard and my dad coached me hard, so I think Jalen responds to tough coaching. He likes tough coaching, and I wasn’t going to back down on him. I thought he was careless with the football, and I let him know that and we are just honest with each other. Sometimes it comes off as we’re just talking through it and sometimes I’ve got to deliver the message a little bit different.
But what a great job by him having that mentality just to — he had two turnovers early and the first one is not his fault. He played a great football game today. One of the best football games I’ve seen him play and so what an unbelievable job by him of — what did he say? Flush it, don’t look at it, flush it, and then move on.
So awesome job by him and when you have a good relationship with your quarterback, you’re able to have those tough conversations like that. We moved on and he played a great game from there on out.
Q. Could he have played Sunday? (Jeff McLane)
NICK SIRIANNI: Yeah, we were anticipating him playing Sunday as well.
Q. How did he respond in the moment to that tough coaching and what did you see from him after? (Dave Zangaro)
NICK SIRIANNI: Like I said, I think that’s how — I know that his dad was tough on him, and I know Coach Saban [University of Alabama Head Football Coach Nick Saban] probably didn’t shy away from yelling at him at all. So, I just think Jalen’s able to take tough coaching, and again, like I said, obviously he responded great because he played a phenomenal game from there on out.
Q. How much did his ankle affect the game plan tonight? Were his marching orders to try to run a little bit less? (Bo Wulf)
NICK SIRIANNI: Without going into detail for competitive advantage reasons, we did things to help him out and I’ll just keep it at that.
Q. How did he do in the passing game tonight, overall, 296 yards? (Chris Murray)
NICK SIRIANNI: The ball was going where it was supposed to go. When he needed to run, he ran. The ball was accurate. And it wasn’t — my college coach always taught me that in a little bit of that drizzle, right, and when the field is a little bit wet like that, that’s a great day to pass. And here is why, I know that’s kind of the opposite, but the defensive line rush slows down because the ground is wet. The wide receivers know when they are breaking, the tight ends know when they are breaking, the defensive backs don’t and so the fact that he handled that wet ball, too, now it just takes a little bit more concentration to catch the ball and throw the ball, but he did an unbelievable job in some weather that required it.
So awesome job led by Jalen and really good job by our skill guys and unbelievable job by our offensive line protecting.
Q. You got some extra time as well, not only the bye but the extra days, and you got CB Darius Slay in that little tweak on offense. (John McMullen)
NICK SIRIANNI: [Jokingly] He goes by Slay. Big Play Slay.
Q. You also tried to draw them offsides on the two points. Are these some of the things you thought about? (John McMullen)
NICK SIRIANNI: We had a lot of time to watch a lot of football.
Q. Because we saw that on the weekend. (John McMullen)
NICK SIRIANNI: Who was it?
Q. I think it was Baltimore. (John McMullen)
NICK SIRIANNI: It was, yeah. See, we learn and we are constantly watching things to make ourselves better. I mean, the part of getting better every day is not just with your own team but learning from others and so yeah, we had an opportunity to sit back and watch some of those things, and learn from them.
So yeah, we were able to implement a couple things and do a couple things and break some tendencies.
Q. You’re the first team in 36 years to have seven straight games with 175 rushing yards. Is that just the offensive line? What does that say about performance? (Mike Sielski)
NICK SIRIANNI: It takes everybody. It does. It always starts with the offensive line, and we’ve got some gritty guys up front. I don’t want to single out — all of them. What a great job by [G] Sua Opeta to step in and play a great game, too, to be able to run the ball like we did and protect like we did against, again, like I said, a really good defense that I have a ton of respect for with some good front guys.
And so it starts there. Our backs, we’ve got a good stable of backs, we’ve got our receivers blocking on the perimeter. [TE] Dallas Goedert is one of the best blocking tight ends in the NFL not to mention what he did catching the football. I think [TE] Jack Stoll is really coming along, and Jalen [Hurts] just gives you another element to the run game that’s hard to stop.
Front side wins games, back side wins championships is what I’ve always been taught. I know that we’re not in a championship mode, but it’s a saying that says back side is so important. When you have a quarterback like Jalen that, really makes the back side, they have to almost respect the back side in case he pulls it.
Q. 7-7 with three games to go, how do you feel about where the team is and what was the message after this game? (Zach Berman)
NICK SIRIANNI: Just good teams win in December, and my message basically was you take care of business in December. You enjoy it for the night and then you move on to the next one and that’s really our message all the way through.
But we’re on to the next one. And so, we enjoyed it because we played a good complimentary football game and played good [in all phases] offense, defense and special teams, and we’ll get back to work tomorrow.
Q. Was there a concerted effort to go up-tempo and if so, why? (Jeff McLane)
NICK SIRIANNI: Again, I won’t go into too much of that with competitive advantage, but we do some tempo stuff and we have been doing that this year, and I think when we looked at our self-scout, we’ve had success in that.
So again, when you looked at our self-scout, we did a ton of different things for our self-scout during our bye week but when you look at that, you want to duplicate things that you’ve been doing well. Tempo has been something that we’ve done well, and so you stay on the offense when you’re going fast and so really good job by Jalen [Hurts] communicating with [C] Jason [Kelce]. Jalen and Jason have done a good job of getting everybody on the same page to be able to do that because that takes great communication and great teamwork just to get that going in a fast setting.
Q. How will you handle this week, four days’ rest, Christmas, how are you going to manage that? (Tim McManus)
NICK SIRIANNI: They are coming in tomorrow to get a lift, and they need — just they need a break from our coaches. They just need a mental break from us. It’s been a long week, as you guys can imagine.
So, I think the best thing that we can do is they can come in tomorrow, get a little break from us and then we’ll get back — that will give the coaches a little bit more time to work on New York. Then we’ll be back with the players as coaches on Thursday. It’s important for our guys — I’ve always been brought up, God, family, football and so with Christmas coming up, we have work to do, and we’ve got to get all our work done.
But I’m going to make sure on Saturday instead of starting at 8:00, we start a little bit later on Saturday to make sure that we’re spending time with our family opening gifts on Christmas.
Q. Will you do anything virtually this week? (Bo Wulf)
NICK SIRIANNI: Still talking through that, obviously just in talking to the doctors to see what’s the best. I think we did a really good job this week and this is a credit to our video department with [Eagles Vice President of Football Technology] Pat Dolan and [Eagles Vice President of Football Operations and Compliance] Jon Ferrari and just so many people. I don’t want to leave anybody out, but there are so many people putting so much work in so that we could stay in person but be separated enough and we have that great indoor [facility] over there to be able to do that.
I mean, again, I talked about everyone contributing. Everyone contributed this week in the building, and we do each week, but it really showed this week with some of the changes that we made to keep our guys safe. So that was good just because it takes all hands on deck to win in this league and so just glad to be part of this great organization.