The Philadelphia Eagles fired Doug Pederson on Monday, and former Eagles linebacker Seth Joyner wasn’t all that surprised.
“I think Doug contributed to the situation – this year particularly with his play-calling,” Joyner said on Tiki & Tierney. “He just refused to change. If you look at their run-ass ratio, they were 2-to-1 or greater pass-to-run. When your quarterback is struggling, the best thing that you can do, you can protect him two ways. You either protect him with great offensive line play; we knew that wasn’t going to happen because four-fifths of the offensive line was out for the majority of the year. Or you protect your quarterback by running the football and utilizing play-action passes, bootlegs, misdirection – all those things that allow him to get out of the pocket or you buy him extra time. Doug refused to do those things.”
Wentz completed 57.4 percent of his passes for 2,620 yards, 16 touchdowns and 15 interceptions this season. He was sacked a league-high 50 times despite playing just 12 games.
Eventually, Pederson benched Wentz for rookie quarterback Jalen Hurts.
“He had a hand in his own demise,” Joyner said. “But I also think Doug was put in a precarious situation.”
Pederson replaced Chip Kelly as head coach in 2016. Kelly, Joyner reminded listeners, was given a lot of control over the organization and relegated Howie Roseman “to the back office.” Roseman didn’t give that same level of control to Pederson.
“I’ve always felt for him,” Joyner said of Pederson. “I always felt like there were decisions being made and moves being made and Doug Pederson was always thrust out to the front to have to answer for what was being done, even if he wasn’t on board with it. He was the fall guy. So no, I don’t believe he deserved to be fired, but he kind of knew going in what the circumstances were going to be.”