Since the Philadelphia Eagles hired Doug Pederson as head coach, he has helped lead this team to a Super Bowl and become one of the league’s best coaches. Coming off a humiliating Week 1 loss to begin the NFL season, could Pederson be at his limit with the Eagles in just his fourth season?
Since winning Super Bowl LII with backup quarterback Nick Foles, the Eagles have struggled to maintain health and consistency. Coming off an injury-riddled 2019 season, Pederson likely hoped things would be better for Philadelphia after a busy offseason. Unfortunately, things have already taken a turn and it might be taking a toll.
Eagles news: Doug Pederson ‘stressed out’ by Eagles’ job
After losing countless starters to injuries last season, things didn’t get any better for the Eagles this summer. The team lost Pro Bowl guard Brandon Brooks to a torn Achilles, then starting left tackle Andre Dillard suffered a season-ending biceps injury in August. When Pederson’s club took the field in Week 1, it played without several key starters against Washington.
Philadelphia jumped out to an early 17-0 lead midway through the second quarter, with Carson Wentz looking good and the defense executing. Suddenly, everything fell apart with Washington scoring 27 unanswered points and battering Wentz until the final whistle eight sacks and 15 quarterback hits.
On the “NFL Draft Insiders Podcast,” ProFootballNetwork’s Tony Pauline indicated the situation might already be taking a toll on Pederson. There are now rumors around the NFL that the 52-year-old head coach might have reached his limit with the team and is stressed out by the current circumstances.
“There are some rumblings from people inside the league who I spoke with earlier this week who feel that Doug Pederson may have reached his limit,” Pro Football Network’s Tony Pauline said. “Doug Pederson may be stressed out a little bit. Basically, it’s not going to get any better for Doug Pederson.”
This isn’t a question of Pederson’s abilities as a head coach. He boasts a 38-27 career record in the regular season and the Eagles have made the playoffs in three consecutive years. Keep in mind, Pederson has done all of this with his franchise quarterback often hurt and impact players on both sides of the ball sidelined.
He is also very familiar with the grueling lifestyle that comes with being at the highest level. He spent his entire playing career as a backup quarterback, playing for six different organizations.When he transitioned into coaching, it began as a high school football coach (2005-’06) before he got his shot in the NFL with Philadelphia as an offensive quality control coordinator.
Pederson worked his way up the ladder on Andy Reid’s staff, becoming the quarterbacks coach in 2011 and then following Reid to the Kansas City Chiefs to serve as offensive coordinator. While he’s enjoyed plenty of success as a head coach, the job also comes with far more responsibilities and pressure. It’s also not the only thing he has dealt with this year.
Doug Pederson overcame COVID-19
Just over a month before the NFL season began, with his team preparing for training camp, Pederson was diagnosed with COVID-19. Due to his age, he was at an increased risk of suffering from severe symptoms related to the coronavirus.
Fortunately, he made a full recovery. The virus only kept him away from the team for 10 days and he has been back with the players ever since. However, there can still be lasting effects from COVID-19. Players have shared feeling more tired even after their recovery window, being impacted by the virus for even longer than expected.
It would be understandable if a tough offseason and the Eagles’ latest injury woes, have taken a toll on Pederson. However, it’s likely he remains committed to Philadelphia and the organization still believes in him based on his success.