East Rutherford, NJ (CBS) — In August, they appeared poised and vibrant and possibly even taking some of the Super Bowl for real. On Sunday at MetLife Stadium, as the Eagles were packing up after their 7-9 finish by beating the lowly New York Giants, there was a palpable collective anxiety.
This is a team that doesn’t know its future and where it may be going. Obviously much will depend on what happens the next month when Jeff Lurie, Don Smolenski and Howie Roseman begin looking for a new coach to succeed the vanquished Chip Kelly.READ MORE: Jalen Hurts, Eagles Can't Overcome Mistakes In Loss Against New York Giants
“You don’t know what’s going to happen and thinking about what’s going to happen isn’t going to do any good,” Eagles’ center Jason Kelce said. “At this point, all we can do is use the offseason to train and improve what your weaknesses are as a player. You wait for whoever comes in and if you’re a part of it, you’re are, and if you’re not, you’re not. I think you always want a leader as the head coach. You always want a guy that has the motivation and ability to connect to lots of people. You want someone who can organize a locker room to play for one another, and manage a team. I think Chip Kelly did a great job of that, to be honest. We faltered at times. Above and beyond, that’s the main job as the head coach to make sure everyone is on bard and manage the ball club.”
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Doug Pederson was one name broached in the coaching search, the other is possibly Sean Payton, who according to FOX is scheduled to meet with General Manager Mickey Loomis on Monday to discuss the coach’s future.
One Eagle who wouldn’t mind seeing Payton come to Philadelphia is safety Malcolm Jenkins, who was drafted 14th overall by Payton in the 2009 draft and played on the Saints’ Super Bowl championship team.
“The reality of our situation is that the only thing guaranteed to us was this game,” Jenkins said. “That wasn’t even guaranteed. That’s what we rallied around, because starting tomorrow, everything will change. All we have was this moment in time and use this time to see the same guys in the locker room the last time. We wanted to go out and have fun and play together.”MORE NEWS: Philadelphia Police Asking For Public's Help To Find Suspects As City Hits 503 Homicides
As for Payton, “he’s had a lot of success in this league, he knows what it takes to win, he has a Super Bowl, and really for a big stretch, from 2006 up until his suspension in 2012,” Jenkins said. “He built a winning culture, a team from the ground up. We built a solid unit that stood the test of time. He’s a very good coach that’s been brought up by other very good coaches. He knows what he’s doing. He’s one of the bright minds and knows offensively how to put people in the best matchups and situations. If he’s available, he’s going to be on everybody’s list because he’s got the resume and his play-calling ability is special in this league. He was a fun coach to play for. I really enjoyed my time in New Orleans.”