Head coach Nick Sirianni is in full-on Super Bowl mode. He hasn’t broken out the mean mug yet, but he was laying on the charm and sass thick during his first media availability of the most important week of his Philadelphia Eagles tenure. Sirianni came away from it as a smooth operator.
The 41-year-old commanded the microphone with ease as journalists from all over the world, including those rapscallions from Germany, hurled absurd questions at him. When one clueless reporter asked Sirianni if Sunday’s matchup against Kansas City – the contest to determine the champions of professional football – was a must-win game, he wrapped up the perfect amount of honesty and subtle shade in a one-word dagger: “Yeah.” News flash: the Eagles want to win the Super Bowl.
Nick Sirianni Calls Philly ‘Best Sports Town in America’
Sirianni has never hid his affection for his adopted new hometown. He has embraced the “It’s a Philly thing” mentality whole hog and wears the blue collar as a badge of honor. He could easily pass for your cranky neighbor in South Philly who parks his car in the middle of Broad Street.
On Monday, Sirianni described the moment he first knew the fans in Philly were different. It happened during a 35-0 drubbing at the hands of the New England Patriots in his second preseason game.
“I think I’ve shared this story before, maybe it was our second preseason game,” Sirianni told reporters, “and everybody had been talking like, ‘Hey, this is going to be – this is last year, right? – this is going to be a rebuilding year, it’s a rebuilding year, it’s going to take some time, this and that, and we kind of got beat up in our second preseason game there and it was halftime and they were booing us, and I remember getting into my car … my wife and I are in the car, and I’m like, ‘We’re in the second preseason game and they’re booing us.’ And she said, ‘Well, what did you give them to cheer about?’ And so, I appreciate that about the fans. We got great fans.”
Ironically, Sirianni met his wife – Brett Ashley Cantwell – in Kansas City where Sirianni was serving as an assistant coach for the Chiefs under Todd Haley. She is a native of Springfield, Missouri, which is close to the Arkansas border. That is where the couple was married in 2013.
First Impressions Aren’t Everything, Right?
Sirianni was lambasted for his introductory press conference in Philly where he rambled on while nervously pulling sips from his water bottle. The awkward scene quickly turned into an internet meme and his critics used it as fodder to bash him after a disappointing 2-5 start in 2021.
Well, who is laughing now? Sirianni has the Eagles in the Super Bowl. He was a finalist for NFL Coach of the Year. And, most importantly, his press conference demeanor is polished and effective.
“I wasn’t good enough in the moment,” Sirianni recalled of his first presser. “But I feel like I’ve gotten better, haven’t you?”