Ex-Eagles Executive Blasts Nick Sirianni Hire: ‘Nostalgic Tour Band’

Howie Roseman

Getty Eagles GM Howie Roseman made the outside-the-box decision to hire Nick Sirianni as the next head coach in Philadelphia.

The Philadelphia Eagles have heard the noise from outsiders claiming to know what’s best for the franchise before. Many people supposedly “in the know” were hypercritical of the decision to hire Doug Pederson in 2016.

Then, the career backup won the organization their first Super Bowl. His most vocal detractor at the time was former NFL executive Mike Lombardi who famously said that Pederson “might be less qualified to coach a team than anyone I’ve ever seen in my 30-plus years in the NFL.”

Well, Lombardi was at it again this week when offering his thoughts on the Eagles hiring of Nick Sirianni. He called it a “mistake” and compared the Eagles to a “nostalgic tour band” in comments transcribed by WEEI 93.7 FM in Boston.

“I think it’s the Eagles’ mistake,” Lombardi told WEEI on Friday. “I mean, they hired a guy who has never called plays. The guy never called plays and they are making him — the Eagles are truly like a nostalgic tour band. They want to go and hire somebody who has reached that 17th season and they can’t get Frank Reich, so they will take a coach who has been with Frank Reich. I mean, I think this is going to be a hard event.”

Lombardi was a long-time scout and personnel director in the NFL who worked in several front offices, including a stint with the Eagles in 1998. He’s a three-time Super Bowl champion as an executive and was last employed by the New England Patriots in 2016. Obviously, Lombardi has a slight bias for Josh McDaniels, his former co-worker and the coach bypassed for Sirianni in Philly.

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Eagles Not Committed to Fixing Carson Wentz

Former Eagles president Joe Banner chimed in with his opinion on Sirianni during his weekly question-and-answer session with the Inquirer’s Paul Domowitch.

He appeared to be cautiously optimistic when discussing the new head coach, saying “there’s reason to be hopeful” while squashing any comparisons to the Eagles’ decision to hire Andy Reid in 1999. Banner called Sirianni a “solid, high-character guy.”

The most interesting nugget from Banner comes when he is describing the situation with Carson Wentz. The common belief was the Eagles hired Sirianni to fix Wentz and reinsert him as the starter. That might not be the case, according to Banner.

I actually think this is neutral or more likely to mean Carson isn’t coming back. I know everybody else is saying the opposite. But Sirianni isn’t a guy that has some broad track record of developing quarterbacks or creating schemes that are really intricate. So it’s not like they would have any great confidence that he’s going to come in and make Carson look like the quarterback he was in 2017.

It could be neutral. They could be where they were before they started the search where they wanted to try and fix Carson but also were willing to consider the possibility of trading him and moving forward with Jalen Hurts.

Former Eagles Player Sticks Up for McDaniels

Former Eagles running back LeGarrette Blount wanted to set the record straight about McDaniels. The retired Super Bowl champion played under him in New England and vouched for his leadership skills.

“I liked playing for Josh. I loved playing for Josh,” Blount told SportsRadio 94WIP. “Josh is an amazing offensive coordinator and game-planner on the offensive side. I’ve never been up under him as a head coach, but I know that he has been a head coach before and he obviously has some leadership skills and a lot of experience in the game.”

McDaniels bombed miserably in Denver during his only head-coaching gig in 2009. Maybe he’s matured since then but the Eagles weren’t willing to chance it. He remains the offensive coordinator in New England heading into the 2021 season.


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