The flight time from Philadelphia to London is roughly seven hours. That doesn’t account for the brutal jet lag and the need to adjust sleep schedules for NFL players hopping the pond to play football in a foreign land. The league’s desire to expose the world to America’s favorite game has many detractors.
The Green Bay Packers are set to battle the New York Giants at London’s Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on October 9. And while quarterback Aaron Rodgers talked about experiencing the culture, like “going to a pub to have a Guinness,” not all his Packers teammates share that enthusiasm.
Cornerback Rasul Douglas expressed his hatred for making the trip when he did it as a member of the Philadelphia Eagles in 2018. It ruined the Super Bowl champ’s routine as the grueling travel itinerary made it impossible to enjoy anything outside of football.
“It f****** sucked,” Douglas said, via Packers News. “You don’t get to do nothing over there. You just f****** get on a plane, get over there and f****** practice, and then you play a game. You get back on a plane and travel f****** 8 hours somewhere else.”
His brutal assessment sounds harsh but he’s not alone in feeling that way. Mercedes Lewis agreed with Douglas, adding that he has survived previous London trips thanks to “melatonin, a good meal, and some neo soul tunes.” The Packers and Giants will get things started on Sunday at 9:30 a.m. on NFL Network.
Zach Ertz Ready to Face Eagles for First Time
Zach Ertz will forever be beloved as a Super Bowl hero in Philadelphia. He remains the only player in franchise history to catch a game-winning touchdown: his 11-yard touchdown put the Eagles up for good at 38-33 in that game. He’ll be enshrined in the Eagles Hall of Fame one day in what should be an emotional retirement ceremony at Lincoln Financial Field.
Right now? Ertz is preparing to face his old team. His Arizona Cardinals take on the Eagles in Week 5. Kickoff is slated for 4:25 p.m. at State Farm Stadium.
“You spend a long time in one place, you get comfortable, you get a routine,” Ertz told reporters, via ESPN’s Josh Weinfuss. “And I loved playing there, obviously. I think everyone knows that. But I was excited for the next challenge. When I kind of came to grips with that it wasn’t a real possibility, it was, ‘OK, let’s figure out what situations would be great for me,’ and Arizona was at the top of the list and this was even before the start of last year.”
Nick Sirianni Reflects on Ertz’s Hard Work
Eagles head coach Nick Sirianni only spent half a season with Ertz. He was traded to Arizona on October 15, 2021 in a move that had been predicted since training camp. The franchise was ready to turn the starting tight end duties over to Dallas Goedert. It was time for a fresh start for both sides, but Sirianni appreciated Ertz’s veteran presence in their limited time together. His leadership and work ethic were “contagious” and rubbed off on his adoring teammates
“Zach is a really classy guy. He works his butt off. So my memories of Zach is the hard work he put in every single day to be at his best,” Sirianni told reporters. “I thought that you saw that every day at practice. You saw that every day at a game, that he worked his butt off to maximize his potential. Obviously, he’s still playing at a very high level. When guys work like that, that’s contagious and other guys see it, and obviously, Dallas was able to see that.”