Having arrived in Minnesota Sunday night, the Eagles are readying to try to win their first NFL championship in almost 60 years. To do it, the players not only need to overcome the defending champion Patriots, but also, not get too caught up in everything that can overwhelm you in the “big game.”
This also goes for the coaching staff in Philly, too.
However, if you think their second year head coach, Doug Pederson isn’t ready for this, then you don’t know enough about him or his background in these situations.
Yes, Pederson was journeyman QB throughout his 12 years in NFL career, where he had two stints with the Dolphins and the Packers, playing for a total of six teams.
However, in that time he has been part of some big moments, previously.
He was a backup with the Don Shula-Dan Marino Dolphins, when they played in the 1992 AFC Championship Game and lost to the Bills. And, Pederson, actually was the winning QB in November of 1993 (Marino was out for the year) for Don Shula’s record breaking 325th all time NFL coaching win.
That win came, ironically against the same Philadelphia Eagles that he now runs.
And, most importantly, Pederson has Super Bowl experience, too and even, a ring with the Green Bay Packers.
You see, he served as Brett Favre’s backup on the 1996 team that won Super Bowl XXXI that year in New Orleans. And that win? It came, again ironicially, against the New England Patriots, who had a defensive coordinator named Bill Belichick.
So Pederson, knows all about the hype, glare, media attention and pressure that goes into preparation and playing this game.
And, now, after getting the Eagles back in the Super Bowl for the third time in franchise history, there will be considerable pressure to deliver, questions about how to beat the seeming unbeatable Patriots, etc.
The media spotlight will be unlike anything that most of the Eagles and staff have seen or experienced, except, for Pederson.
How will this translate into helping Nick Foles keep perspective and remain calm Sunday night? Will he be able to help their defense against Hall of Famer Tom Brady, who’s already won this game five times? Those are tougher questions.
Still, for a first time head coach at the highest level, who’s only in his second year, the Eagles could have drawn a lot worse than what they have.
Doug Pederson will be ready from the first questions asked, right up until kickoff of Super Bowl LII.
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