The fallout from TankGate has reached Day 3. As the Philadelphia Eagles look to the future — and a possible rebuilding process — players are speaking out on what happened in the season finale. The latest to enter the conversation: All-Pro center Jason Kelce.
One day after a bombshell report dropped about Eagles players confronting Doug Pederson on the sideline, Kelce took to social media to clear a few things up. For starters, no one was confrontational with the head coach after he decided to pull starting quarterback Jalen Hurts for third-stringer Nate Sudfeld.
Quite the opposite. Pederson had informed the team earlier in the week that Sudfeld would get an opportunity to play. Pederson also told Kelce and other key veterans he was making the move in the third quarter.
“I understand the optics of how it looked, and I’d be lying if I wasn’t a little surprised given the circumstances that the move happened when it did, but every one of us did our best, and all of us believe we can win with Nate Sudfeld,” Kelce said, via NFL.com. “It was a difficult situation to be put into, especially when you have a 10-year veteran Center who doesn’t snap the ball to you accurately on your second drive of the game. I know we can win games with Nate, because I know Suddy can play, it didn’t work out Saturday, but as always, that’s not just on him.”
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Miles Sanders, K’Von Wallace ‘Confused’ on QB Switch
Miles Sanders ripped off the band-aid on the tanking wound on Tuesday when he told SportsRadio 94WIP that “nobody” was on board with the quarterback switch. Sanders, who sat out Sunday with a knee injury, went on to say that Eagles players were “confused” about the decision to pull Hurts. They wanted to win the game.
“Man if I’m being honest, nobody liked the decision, nobody,” Sanders told the radio station. “That’s all I can say really. I don’t know who was the main person behind that decision. All I know is that a lot of people on the team was confused.”
And Sanders wasn’t the only one criticizing the team. Rookie safety K’Von Wallace shared his thoughts on the matter with a subtle jab about Pederson’s “mentality.” Some in the know are questioning whether this bizarre chain of events might lead to the head coach losing the locker room.
Eagles Super Bowl Hero Enters Taking Debate
Former Eagles wide receiver Torrey Smith also threw his opinion into the ring. The two-time Super Bowl champion didn’t come right out and say he agreed with the policy of intentionally tanking but he certainly hinted at it. Smith claimed a lot of former players were “lying” about how they felt.
Pederson attempted to explain the decision during his media availability with GM Howie Roseman on Monday. He apologized for not making the playoffs and lumped the season finale into a conversation about the team’s failures all year.
“It’s just something that — it’s not where any of us want to be. It’s not where our fans wanted us or expected us to be and it’s definitely not where me or Howie or where Mr. Lurie wanted us to be at this time sitting here today,” Pederson said. “We wanted to be playing in the postseason. That’s our goal every season. So, this year, this game, this season, didn’t come down to last night. We were playing for our lives in a playoff game four, five, six weeks ago where every game mattered, and we failed even then.”