Game of ‘Gotcha’ Doesn’t Mean Eagles Need Veteran Backup for Foles
PHILADELPHIA (973espn.com) - It's not exactly breaking news that there is plenty of "coach speak" in press conferences around the NFL and some of it is often contradictory.
Yet some in Philadelphia are using Doug Pederson's own words to make a case that a veteran quarterback like Colin Kaepernick or Robert Griffin III should be brought in as the backup to Nick Foles in the wake of Carson Wentz's ACL injury.
The offending language came earlier this week when Pederson was addressing moving forward with Foles, a top-tier backup with significant starting experience in the NFL.
"If you don't have a backup quarterback that's played and had snaps in this league, it's tough,” the coach admitted when discussing the merits of Foles.
Later in the conversation, Pederson was then asked about Nate Sudfeld, who is now the backup and you guessed it, has never taken a snap in the NFL to date.
"Nate's done a really good job," the coach said. "That's part of the reason why we brought him up earlier in the year. Teams were interested in Nate, and we feel really comfortable with him."
'Gotcha' -- Pederson said you need a backup QB who has played or it's tough yet somehow he's "comfortable" moving forward with a caddie who has no experience.
Never mind, one of the reasons the Eagles are 11-2 this season can be traced to the way Pederson has managed his personalities, perhaps you would have liked the media to have pinned the coach down and injected some truth serum.
In that was the case you would have gotten the honest feelings, that the margin of error gets painfully small with the move from Wentz to Foles and like any other team the Eagles would be screwed if they were forced to go to option No. 3.
But at least Sudfeld has been here and understands the offense as opposed to bringing in a bigger name off the street who hasn't played or practiced this year in Week 15 and expecting that player to perform.
The only game of 'Gotcha' here is pointing out the utter absurdity of the latter scenario.
The litmus tests for NFL teams isn't the name your friends might recognize, it's the guy who they have invested time, energy and resources in.
And that's why Nate Sudfeld moves up in the pecking order.
"Right now we're very comfortable and confident with the guys we have," Pederson said Friday. "Listen, it's tough. I've been on teams where even you bring in a guy, whether it's a veteran guy or not, this late in the year, to learn our system and to get caught up to speed, is tough. It's tough on that player.
"And whether that person would even be in a position to help at that position, where we've got two guys that have been here all season. They have been in the meetings. Coach Flipp [Quarterbacks Coach John DeFilippo] has coached [QB] Nate [Sudfeld] just like he's coached Nick and Carson. So we are very comfortable with that and confident that they can get the job done."
-John McMullen covers the Eagles and the NFL for 973espn.com. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @JFMcMullen