For about 12 minutes there today, Jeffrey Lurie really had the NovaCare auditorium audience going. The chairman was mad as heck, and it sounded like he wasn't going to take it any more. Words like "unacceptable," "ludicrous," "unfathomable," and "frustrating" issued forth from the standup wooden podium, a different staging from the one Andy Reid uses for his news conferences, held in the same spot.
Then, in the 13th minute, Lurie made it clear he was sticking with Reid, that he felt a 14th season with Andy was the Eagles' best chance to bounce back and make the playoffs next season. But there apparently will be no contract talks, with two seasons left on Reid's latest deal. The chairman made it sound as if he gave his coach a stern talking-to at the end of the season, which he described as the most disappointing of Reid's tenure.
Lurie said defensive coordinator Juan Castillo's fate will be left up to Reid. Reading the Lurie tea leaves there was tricky -- on the one hand, he called Castillo an "incredibly impressive man," and hinted that it wasn't Castillo's fault that he might have been put in an impossible situation early in the season, trying to run a revamped defense with little offseason work and no pro training as a defensive coach. On the other hand, Lurie made official what has been hinted at -- that Reid had a whole list of Sean McDermott successors he went through before settling on Castillo. Lurie also cautioned against reading too much into the season-ending four-game win streak, calling it "fool's gold." Castillo seemed all but officially fired before his defense allowed just 46 points in the final four games.
Lurie made it clear that team president Joe Banner and general manager Howie Roseman will remain.
Reid is expected to speak to reporters later in the week. It will be interesting to see if he heeds Lurie's call to be less opaque and dismissive in his interactions with the media, an outgrowth of what Lurie said is Reid's protective nature toward his players.
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