EAGLES

NFL makes decision on punishing Eagles for tanking

EAGLES

Remember when the Eagles' fourth quarter against Washington, and not a runaway coaching search, was the biggest talking point about this football team? Me too.

Former head coach Doug Pederson's decision to pull Jalen Hurts in the fourth quarter and play Nate Sudfeld, and the team's general malaise with the game on the line, spurred accusations and general hand-wringing over the Eagles tanking the game for a better draft pick.

But after looking into the events, the league has decided not to punish the Eagles, according to the Associated Press.

Two people with knowledge of the league's decision told the AP that "it couldn’t be determined the Eagles intentionally tried to lose the game."

By losing to Washington instead of winning, the Eagles wound up with the No. 6 overall pick in this year's draft instead of the No. 9 overall pick.

Calling what Pederson did in the fourth quarter "tanking" always felt a bit like a reach, even if the optics weren't great. The Giants were angry because the Eagles losing cost them a playoff spot. Some football fans were angry because intentionally losing "goes against the integrity of the game", whatever that means.

Teams constantly rest players in Week 17, protecting guys' health while either preparing for the playoffs or for the offseason. It's not some hush-hush secret, either. So pretending like what the Eagles did was some abhorrent, "you've crossed the line"-style moment was always dumb.

 

Thankfully the league has come down on the side of logic here.

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