Nick Sirianni Responds to Claims of Eagles GM Hijacking Gameday Decisions

Nick Sirianni

Getty Eagles head coach Nick Sirianni has taken an extra cautious approach with playing his starters this preseason.

There is a certain Paul Bunyan-esque lore on Howie Roseman’s role and influence atop the organizational flow chart. The Philadelphia Eagles general manager obviously has the final say on the 53-man roster, but what about his input on gameday decisions?

Things like picking the inactives and advising on snap counts have come into question over the years. Roseman was even accused of “criticizing and ridiculing” the coaching staff after losses (and too-close-for-comfort wins). It’s a slippery slope, one that Roseman seems to walk to perfection.

On Tuesday, defensive coordinator Jonathan Gannon caused a mini-controversy when he alluded to Roseman having a say in the gameplan. He made it sound like Roseman was in the meeting room, pulling up a chair alongside Gannon and Nick Sirianni.

“We set up the game plan a certain way and say, ‘Hey, we want to come out of the game kind of looking like this,’ and we do that with the head coach and with Howie,” Gannon told reporters. “We set up a game plan and have a game plan for that, but then that can adjust moving forward.

“That’s why you guys will see all those guys’ snaps — whoever plays for us we feel good about, but those snaps will fluctuate through the year as the year goes within certain games because of how games are played.”

Sirianni Clarifies Roseman’s Role: ‘I Have the Say’

On Thursday – two days after Gannon’s comments — Sirianni attempted to clarify the gameday process a bit. Yes, Roseman is sitting in those strategy meetings. Yes, the coaching staff values his opinion.

They trust him completely to give them critical feedback on the players he scouted, drafted, and traded for. Everyone listens and talks it out. It’s a 100% collaborative process.

“We’re always communicating about the roster, and Howie’s expertise is roster management,” Sirianni said. “We meet with Howie all the time and tell him that we need certain guys up or down. Howie has to make that happen.”

Sirianni wasn’t finished, though. The head coach had to get one major point on record: Roseman is not making the final call on which players are inactive versus active. And the play-calling duties are left solely to Sirianni and his coaching staff.

“We discuss everything, but at the end of the day, I have the say of who is up on gameday and what we need,” Sirianni said. “At the end of the day, Howie is going to say, ‘Oh, you need those three tight ends up because this is what the plan calls for this week? Yeah, no doubt.’ That’s kind of how it goes down.”

Doug Pederson Preached ‘Collaborative Process’

When Doug Pederson was introduced as head coach of the Jacksonville Jaguars last February, he spoke highly of the “collaborative approach” in Philadelphia. The Super Bowl champion could have thrown some major venom at Roseman and the Eagles in that very public moment. He didn’t. In fact, Pederson went out of his way to show love to the organization that fired him.

“The thing I learned just coming out of Philadelphia – and Shad [Khan] has alluded to it, and even Trent [Baalke] – we had such a collaborative approach,” Pederson said. “We have open dialogue and we have tough conversations. That’s why we get put in these positions, right? To make hard, hard choices.”

Pederson went on to seemingly debunk the myth of the Eagles drafting guys (see: Jalen Hurts) against his will. He, much like Sirianni, had “some say” in picking players.

“And that’s what draws you to certain situations, the head coach has some say in picking the ingredients, so to speak,” Pederson said. “And I think that’s important because we’re the ones out there coaching these players and getting them right on game day, and I just love the fact that we can get in a room, and we can dialogue and make these hard decisions.”

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