Mike Lombardi: ‘I think I know what a good coach looks like'


Mike Lombardi, who recently created a stir with strong criticism of Doug Pederson, defended and explained his comments Tuesday.

Lombardi, a former NFL executive who has worked for the Patriots, 49ers, Browns, Raiders and Eagles, ripped Pederson's qualifications to be a head coach.

"Now, everybody knows Pederson isn't a head coach," Lombardi, now with The Ringer, said. "He might be less qualified to coach a team than anyone I've seen in my 30-plus years in the NFL. Pederson was barely a coordinator before he became a head coach!"

So, what was behind the remarks?

"I just voiced an opinion — it's not a hot take by no means," Lombardi said on CSN's Tuesday edition of Philly Sports Talk. "I've studied the Eagles, I've studied the NFL for 35 years, I've been to four Super Bowls, I've won three. I've been around Bill Walsh, I've been around Bill Belichick, I've been around Al Davis — I think I know what a good coach looks like. I just don't see Doug being able to be ready for the job that they [have] given him, and I think that's the challenge."

Pederson on Monday had little to say when asked about Lombardi's critique.

"I haven't seen the article," he said. "I'm not sure what you're talking about. So I don't pay attention to that.

"Listen, I'm confident in what I do. He's not in the building. I coach our coaches and coach our players. And I think if you ask any one of our players or our assistant coaches, I think they would maybe say something a little different. I have not read the article so I can't respond to it."

Safety Malcolm Jenkins came to the defense of his head coach, even providing a glimpse into Pederson's coaching style and strengths. As expected, Lombardi's take didn't sit well with the fan base.

"A lot of Eagles fans, they take it personally," Lombardi said. "Look, they have great pride in their team, I understand it.

"The things that you look for in a coach are [do] mistakes get better, does the team improve — records are meaningless. I mean, Bill Walsh wrote a book called 'The Score Takes Care of Itself.' He's right, you don't need to look at the score, you watch the games, how they're managed, how they're handled within close point, and you see how it comes.

"The Eagles were 26th in the National Football League in first-quarter points. That means your game plan that you started out with isn't really working. And then when you break down the season, and you go through the first eight games and then you look at the second eight games, everything they did offensively got worse — everything. It went down hill."

Lombardi also used other stats such as special teams penalties and how the Eagles fared in close games — which you can hear all in the video above — as evidence behind his claims on Pederson, who is entering his second season as Eagles head coach.

"My point is this, Doug applied for the job, he was [three] years in Kansas City as the offensive coordinator, but he's not because Andy (Reid) called the plays," Lombardi said.

"I think the NFL is a challenging place to learn on-the-job training. That's my point. I think it's not a friendly league, and I think when you look at the close games and you look at the record down the stretch — I've been around some really good coaches, and I just don't see that coming out. The symptoms that I see don't register in terms of being a great coach."

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