Comcast is Reporting that Reid Will Be Fired, Players say Team didn’t Buy into Reid’s System
By Chris Murray
For the Chris Murray Report and the Sunday Sun
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J.–The Andy Reid era in Philadelphia Eagles football mercifully ended not far from Exit 16W off the New Jersey Turnpike with a beatdown your mama or daddy used to give you when you really screwed up.
After all the talk last week of playing the role of spoiler and winning for Reid by Eagles players, the Giants ended the competitive portion (and we use that term loosely) of this game early, jumping out to a four-touchdown lead at halftime.
For the record, the final score was a resounding 42-7 rout of the hapless Eagles at MetLife Stadium by the Giants, who were eventually eliminated from playoff contention when the Chicago Bears defeated the Detroit Lions.
“It was embarrassing, I don’t think I’ve ever lost like that high school or college,” said Eagles wide receiver Jason Avant. “It was definitely embarrassing. I hate to see Coach Reid go out with a performance like that which was totally inexcusable, definitely lackluster. Just bad.”
Of course, the only thing suspense left in this game is the time of Monday or Tuesday’s press conference announcing Reid’s imminent firing. Reid has put together an outstanding record during his 14-year tenure in Philadelphia, but his time has apparently run out.
Comcast SportsNet is reporting that the decision has already been made, but the team has yet to confirm it or announce a press conference.
“Either way, I understand,” Reid said after the game. “So that’s how it is, this is the business that I’ve chosen. I’ve been very fortunate to have been here as long as I have and if I’m here again, I’ll love every minute of it. If I’m not, I’ll understand that, too.
The Eagles were awful on defense as Giants quarterback Eli Manning blew up the Eagles weak secondary with five touchdown passes while throwing for 208 yards on 13-of-21 passing. The Birds defense couldn’t stop the pass or the run as the Giants scored on five of their first six possessions.
On offense, Michael Vick showed the rust of not playing since Nov. 11. Against a swirling wind, Vick, at times, overthrew open receivers including a pass to tight end Brent Celek on the game’s first possession that was intercepted by safety Giants Stevie Brown.
Vick, who was presumably auditioning for other teams around the league, didn’t necessarily play the game of his life, completing 19-of-35 passes for 197 yards, one touchdown and one interception.
Inside the locker room after the game, the Eagles came as about as close to pointing fingers at each other than at any time during Reid’s tenure as head coach. During his post-game press conference, Vick didn’t openly throw his teammates under the bus, but the implication was there.
“It’s frustrating, it’s difficult because me, I leave it out there on the field, I give it everything I got.” Vick said. “I wish I could play other positions, but I can’t. You do the best you can and that’s all you can ask of yourself.”
Later in the press conference, Vick said that his teammates should feel the kind of anger and embarrassment that he felt about the season and in this last game against the Giants.
“I’m not saying my teammates gave a lack of effort and I noticed it, I just know that we can play better, “Vick said. “You’re down 21-0 and the first quarter is not even over, what is that? We don’t know. I just notice that it is a big difference than what we were going through last year and the year before. It shouldn’t be that way.
“If I had to sit here and be candid right now, if every guy were to come up to this podium, they should say the same thing I said verbatim.”
Avant took it even further and said players weren’t buying into Reid’s system and that the team needs to find players who are willing to follow to coaches orders regardless of who’s coaching the team.
“It’s not a Coach Reid thing, it’s definitely a player personality and characteristic problem,” Avant said. “One thing that I do know is that we need guys that will buy into a system no matter if it’s Coach Reid’s system or anything else. I’m hoping and praying that it’s Coach Reid.
“But if that’s not the case, you’re still going to have the players to be responsible and accountable—not to allow the amenities of the NFL to distract them from what this game is about which is playing hard for a team and playing hard for the city of Philadelphia.”
Avant said that when he first came here as a rookie in 2006 there were stand up guys like Brian Dawkins, Brian Westbrook and Jeremiah Trotter that set a good example to give their best effort for the team under any circumstance.
“When you have a younger team, there has to be a maturity level that previous coaches had to have taught them,” Avant team. “This team will be better, but the young players have to mature as well.”