D Coaches Speak Out

Posted: May 30th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 16 Comments »

And say very, very little.

The Eagles defensive coaches met with the press yesterday in some casual sit-down interviews.  I was hoping we’d get some good nuggets (with honey mustard please) or hear something at least interesting.  Didn’t really happen.

Juan Castillo spoke again about hard work and effort, but didn’t offer up any information that was worth really getting into.  There was his quote about taking a bullet for Andy Reid.  That’s already played out and it is just a day later.  Juan did himself and the staff/players a dis-service with one comment he made.

Asked what he thought was the biggest thing he learned last season, Castillo answered in true form, “That when you work hard, and you believe in something, and you don’t change no matter, that good things do happen.”

Hard work?  Belief?  No changes?  Juan juggled the lineup all year long and finally found the right combination of players late in the year.  He figured out how to use everyone.  The players finally delivered.  Keenan Clayton and Casey Matthews became good Nickel LBs.  Phillip Hunt was effective as a pass rusher.  Nate Allen had some good games.  Trevor Laws played his best ball.  And so on.  Hard work was a big part of that success, but so was making adjustments until everyone figured things out.  Had the Eagles not adjusted, the team would have finished 6-10 and could have drafted Fletcher Cox…oh wait, we got him anyway.

* * * * *

Jim Washburn is confident in the D-line.  He thinks having OTAs will greatly benefit his players, since they had to learn the scheme on the fly last summer.   Remember, Wash’s first work with the Eagles was up at Lehigh.

We’re so much farther ahead, it’s ridiculous, he said. “I didn’t even know who they were (last spring); they don’t even know who I was this time last year.

Wash loves the depth of the DL, but says you won’t really know who can play until the pads go on up at Lehigh.

It is entertaining to hear him speak, but none of what he said is anything close to news.  Just good to hear it from the horse’s mouth.

* * * * *

Les Bowen wrote about LB coach Mike Caldwell.  I think the key take-away from this is something from the end of the column…the need for stability.  Players were shuffled all over last year.  That was hard on them.  This year the situation will improve if a great deal if DeMeco is the answer at MLB, Mychal Kendricks plays SAM, and either Rolle or Chaney can hold down the WLB spot.

* * * * *

Domo must have won an office pool.  He got to talk to Todd Bowles, who was Mr. Personality compared to the others.

Bowles said some stuff I wanted to hear.  He stressed the importance of keeping things simple so that players stay on the same page.

“People try to make football harder than it is sometimes,” he said. “It’s blocking and tackling. It’s been like that for a hundred years. It’s not going to change much. You’ve just got to teach the guys to see what you’re seeing on the field. That’s basically it. We’re all trying to get on the same page.”

Bowles didn’t care about moving from the 3-4 to the 4-3 or the fact his players were behind the Wide-9.

“It doesn’t affect anything we do,” he said. “The 4-3’s been around a long time. Jim might move [his defensive ends] an inch wider. But the wide-nine isn’t a scheme. It’s an alignment. I don’t see how it affects my guys any. They’ve got the front, we got the back.”

Clearly the Wide-9 does affect DBs in some regard, but I love the mindset that he’s got.  Don’t look for excuses.  This is football.  Go do your job and it will all work out.  Last year there was too much confusion.  This year Bowles wants to eliminate that and keep the DBs focused.

We know that the defense is going away from a heavy mixture of zone and man to a predominant press coverage system.  That will make things easier on DRC and Nnamdi.  Zone will be mixed in.  Some exotic coverages will be mixed in.  They will just be a part of the package rather than a lot of it.  The more players think, the slower they play.  This year we want clear heads and fast DBs.  I really do like what I hear from Bowles.

* * * * *

Jason Babin is back in town.  His excuse for missing last week…”My trip to Alaska got caught in bad weather and we couldn’t make it out.  Wind.  Cold.  Icy.  I’m scared.  Blah, blah, blah.”  I’m paraphrasing, of course.

Listen, Babin.  I once dug holes for fence posts in frozen clay on a day when it was -20 with the wind chill.  Then I went home and watched “The Catch”.  Then I wrote 100 sentences (punishment for talking too loud to Kim McCallum on the previous Friday).  I manned up and got the job done.

Am I saying that I’m tougher than Babin?  Absolutely (give or take 98.3 percent).  It is possible I just wanted to mention my crazy weekend from January 1981.

Either way, it is good to have Babin and Cullen Jenkins back with the team.

* * * * *

The Eagles released RB Graig “Don’t call me Craig” Cooper and WR Aaron Pflugrad.  The team is down to 87 players on the roster.

* * * * *

Jason Kelce is quickly becoming one of my favorite Eagles.  The team went and helped work on a playground today.  That meant a variety of things, including some painting.  I don’t know how it happened, but Jason decided to do more than just help paint.

Must see picture.

Make sure you follow Jason on Twitter.

* * * * *

Our good buddy Jimmy Bama has some good news.  Buried in a post, with some stuff worth checking out, is this nugget:

– New gig for me writing about the Giants/NFCE at SNY.  Should be writing about an article or two per week there.

Great news, Mr. Bama.  Well deserved.

* * * * *

Vikings CB Asher Allen told the team he is retiring today.  He’s young, but had a couple of concussions in the last 2 years.  No official word that the concussions are the main cause, but you’d have to think that’s probably why.

I mention this because the Eagles really liked Allen in the draft a few years back and were disappointed when MIN took him.


16 Comments on “D Coaches Speak Out”

  1. 1 Eric Weaver said at 3:42 PM on May 30th, 2012:

    I liked the interview when Derrick Gunn asked Wash about his linemen and he said something about how they are all good and he ended it with “now that’s not company speak either.” Gotta love him.

  2. 2 TommyLawlor said at 4:02 PM on May 30th, 2012:

    Yeah, that was good. He used that line a couple of times.

  3. 3 Cafone said at 4:50 PM on May 30th, 2012:

    Too bad for Asher Allen that he didn’t get drafted by the Eagles where he could have avoided hits/concussions in Castillo’s defense.

  4. 4 TommyLawlor said at 5:05 PM on May 30th, 2012:

    You mean if he had studied tackling under the great Asante Samuel.

  5. 5 Davesbeard said at 5:09 PM on May 30th, 2012:

    Did you see the comments from Zordich? He expected the eagles to pick up another safety and also wasn’t exactly effusive in his praise of Nate, Kurt and JJ

  6. 6 TommyLawlor said at 5:21 PM on May 30th, 2012:

    Yeah, I read that. Didn’t want to make too much of his comment because I didn’t know the context. Did he mean that he expected a veteran to be added for competition? Did he mean that he expected a veteran to be added to be the SS?

    If you read Roobs column, it comes across as if Zordich has confidence in the young guys. http://www.csnphilly.com/football-philadelphia-eagles/eagles-talk/Zordich-confident-in-Birds-starting-safe?blockID=716350&feedID=692

  7. 7 Davesbeard said at 9:42 AM on May 31st, 2012:

    Hmm interesting, that does indeed put a very different slant on his words.

    This article not so much.


    “I thought that was going to happen, too,” the Eagles’ safeties coach said Tuesday. “I did. But I think when you reflect back and look at the whole year and the growth that happened with these guys, I know I’m very comfortable with them.”

    Kinda reads as “I wanted more, but we’ll have to make do with what we have. I’m happy now (because I have to be)”

    I’m pretty high on our top three safeties so I’m not trying to be too negative, just interesting words from their coach. Would like to see the video as text is never truly representative.

  8. 8 D3Keith said at 6:20 PM on May 30th, 2012:

    Bye bye Graig is just one more slight indication that the Eagles like Bryce Brown, Dion and Polk (High. “I once scored 4 TDs in a game” … that should be his nickname, Polk High)

    Bye, Dawk = self-made journalist. Nice. Writing is more funner when you get paided, but there’s preshure to be good add it now.

    That Kelce pic is tremendous.

    I like Bowles so far too. Him + Wash sounds like a lot of fun in the meeting room.

  9. 9 D3Keith said at 7:18 PM on May 30th, 2012:

    This is awesome, from the Babin link:

    After OTAs are over and before training camp, Babin has another adventure planned, he said. He wants to run with the bulls in Pamplona, Spain. Babin doesn’t think he’ll get gored.

    “Bulls can’t turn the corner on cobblestone. As long as you’re on the inside, you’re going to be all right,’ he said. “I broke the tape down like game film.”

    Read more: http://www.philly.com/philly/sports/eagles/155725905.html#ixzz1wOjXpmd3

  10. 10 Alex Karklins said at 7:43 PM on May 30th, 2012:

    Did he also scout out the hordes of drunk American frat boys that will clog the streets of Pamplona? I guess he can’t wait for retirement to do something so stupid and faux-macho, huh? If he injures himself, he’ll have to answer to ME!

  11. 11 A_T_G said at 11:12 PM on May 30th, 2012:

    I wondered what the shorthand for ” gored by a bull” is on the injury report. GBB, maybe? Or maybe STUPID.

  12. 12 D3Keith said at 12:44 AM on May 31st, 2012:

    In a rare upset, some of the Philly.com comments on this are funny. “Typical roid rager,” “The Big Brown Bear he wanted to shoot was Andy” and “How is this any different from dog fighting?”

  13. 13 TommyLawlor said at 1:11 AM on May 31st, 2012:

    Those are actually pretty funny. Don’t tell me the Philly.com guys have been in an offseason program of their own.

  14. 14 T_S_O_P said at 1:46 AM on May 31st, 2012:

    “That when you work hard, and you believe in something, and you don’t change no matter, that good things do happen.”
    If you believe in something (Andy’s belief in Juan) and you don’t change (fire) no matter, that good things happen (I’m still the DC or watch our D this year).

  15. 15 Miami_Adam said at 5:35 AM on May 31st, 2012:

    To be fair, I think Juan meant that if you work hard and believe and don’t change those two things that good things will happen, not that he isn’t changing anything in his scheme

  16. 16 A_T_G said at 6:08 AM on May 31st, 2012:

    Fair? But this is the Internet.