A missed assignment or turnover here, a penalty or dropped pass there, and finally Nick Sirianni had enough.
Day 3 of Eagles training camp wasn’t going the way he wanted, so the rookie head coach halted the sloppy practice and summoned his team to the middle of a field, where he addressed the players for a few minutes.
We’ve seen coaches stop practice and re-run plays or even start a drill over. We’ve seen coaches bark and scream at their players when things got sloppy. But no Eagles coach in recent memory has actually called a team meeting in mid-stream to address a particularly bad practice.
“He’s just like, ‘Man, this is adversity, this is the game of football,’” Boston Scott said. “There’s going to be some days where you feel like everything’s going right, there’s going to be days where you feel like nothing’s going right, but it’s about how you respond to that, not letting it drive you into the ground, not harboring all your mistakes but being in the present, being in the now.
“It’s not about necessarily how you start but it’s even more important to finish with a W, to finish strong, and that’s what that was right there. And kudos to him, major respect to him for being able to gauge the day and the team and the demeanor of guys and the body language and bring us all together like that. … You could definitely tell guys were feeding off that.”
Practice quickly resumed and it seemed like the players had a little extra bounce in their step for the final 25 minutes or so.
"It worked," Darius Slay said.
For the sake of context, consider that most of the team’s older veterans had a maintenance day Friday.
Fletcher Cox, Jason Kelce, Zach Ertz, Ryan Kerrigan, Slay, Lane Johnson and Brandon Graham all had the day off, and with Brandon Brooks, Rodney McLeod and Isaac Seumalo out with injuries, that left Sirianni with only a handful of veteran starters on the field.
So with a handful of established veterans joined by dozens of rookies, younger players fighting for roster spots and newcomers, it wasn’t surprising that it wasn’t the most efficient practice ever.
Slay, watching practice from the sideline, said everybody got Sirianni's message and no feelings were hurt.
“One thing we know about this team and the coaching staff, they already harped on us, is that, ‘Man, don’t take it the hard way,’ because they’re doing it out of love, they're doing it out of respect,” Slay said. “So when coach pulled us up like that, we don’t do anything but respect him and try to go to work as hard as we can for him.”
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