All Due Respect
Belichick: Birds Have NFL's Best Pass Rush
Ahead of the Week 1 matchup between the Philadelphia Eagles and New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium, Patriots head coach Bill Belichick had no shortage of praise for the Birds’ organization in his weekly press conference.
Belichick on Wednesday credited Howie Roseman, Eagles executive vice president of football operations, for his ability to build a complete roster as the key factor behind the team’s success over the past decade.
“There has been a lot of success in Philadelphia,” the six-time Super Bowl champion coach said. “They have had a lot of different coordinators, head coaches, and quarterbacks, but the one guy that has been there through it all is Howie. You look at the way he has built this team. He has done a tremendous job with that organization and putting this team together. This is a very well-balanced team, good in all three phases of the game.”
Roseman’s roster construction is something the Belichick dealt with first-hand.
His Patriots lost Super Bowl LII, 41-33, to an Eagles roster loaded with talent.
Just four years later, Roseman built another Super Bowl team with an almost entirely new squad, with the exception of some long-time players in the trenches and special teams.
While almost every position earned a shoutout from Belichick – even long snapper Rick Lovato! – his highest praise went to the team’s ferocious pass rush, which flirted with an NFL record in sacks last year before finishing with 70, a franchise record.
“Defensively, their front is a very dominant front, the best pass rushing front in the league by quite a bit…They have a great combination of power and speed.”
Credit was also given to the many quarterbacks that have seen success for the Eagles, although Belichick conveniently omitted Nick Foles, the MVP of the 41-33 upset victory in Super Bowl LII.
“[They have had success with] Multiple quarterbacks from McNabb to Wentz for most of the year, obviously Hurts now.”
Although the Eagles are entering 2023 with new coordinators on both sides of the ball, Belichick didn’t seem to think much would change schematically from what the Eagles put on tape last season.
“It seems like there is a lot of carryover with the new coordinators and what they have done in the past,” Belichick added.
Overall, Belichick concluded, the Eagles are “a really solid team from top to bottom.”
“You can see why they were so successful last year,” he added. “It’s a good opportunity for us and a big challenge.”
– Benjamin Paul is a staff writer for InsideTheBirds.com
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