Jason Kelce: At no point was anything from me or anyone else confrontational

NFL: JAN 03 Washington Football Team at Eagles
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Jason Kelce made headlines a few weeks ago when he made an impassioned statement against the idea of tanking in the NFL. So after head coach Doug Pederson benched Jalen Hurts for Nate Sudfeld in Philadelphia’s Week 17 matchup with Washington, there’s been natural curiosity as to what the Eagles’ veteran center thought about the decision.

Those hoping for more fuel to the fire running back Miles Sanders started by saying “nobody liked the decision” may be a bit disappointed.

In a three-slide post on his Instagram, Kelce explained he knew Sudfeld was prepared to play at some point. But the exact game situation caught him a little off guard.

“Thought I would clear the air just to clarify and more accurately depict what happened during the game on Sunday,” Kelce began. “At the end of the third quarter, I was told on the bench that Sudfeld was going in the game. I went up to Doug and asked him if he was taking Hurts out, he said, ‘Yes, I think Nate’s earned the right to play.’ I said, ‘Everyone else is staying in?’ He said, ‘Absolutely.’ I then went to find Suddy. Started taking snaps on the sideline with him, called the other linemen over and had them listen to his snap count to make sure everyone was on the rhythm of his cadence, and then went out for the next drive.

“At no point was anything from me or anyone else confrontational. We all knew leading into the game that Sudfeld was told to be ready to play, and that Doug wanted to see what he could do in a game situation. All of us during the week leading up were excited for Nate, a guy that has been with us for four years to get an opportunity in a real game to show the world what he can do. We all have complete confidence in Nate as a player, there’s a reason he’s been here this long, and a reason the team brought him back. And that’s because we feel like Nate is a guy we can win with.

“I understand the optics of how it looked, and I’d be lying if I wasn’t a little surprised given the circumstances that the move happened when it did, but every one of us did our best, and all of us believe we can win with Nate Sudfeld. It was a difficult situation be be put into, especially when you have a 10-year veteran center who doesn’t snap the ball accurately on your second drive of the game. I know we can win games with Nate because I know Suddy can play. It didn’t work out Sunday, but as always, that’s not just on him.”

Kelce’s lengthy statement cuts against the report from Jeff McLane of the Philadelphia Inquirer that “many Eagles players and coaches were shocked and outraged” by the decision to remove Hurts and insert Sudfeld. It also helps justify Pederson’s choice from a player’s perspective that hadn’t really been publicly expressed.

Regardless, the Eagles seem to have a lot to sort through as they continue into the early stages of the offseason.

32 responses to “Jason Kelce: At no point was anything from me or anyone else confrontational

  1. He threw a bucket of water on the gossips of sports media. The optics were terrible though, including Kelce’s body language. The Eagle’s situation is a mess, though, and moving on from players like Alshon, Desean, Carson etc. will at least calm down their drama a little.

  2. This is all much ado about nothing. Once the team starts preparations for next season, this whole “controversy” will be long forgotten.

  3. Hurtz was playing poorly. He was 7/20 with an interception.
    Pulling him was a no-brainer.
    I’d have put Wentz in rather than Sudfeld.
    But pulling Hurts was ok.

  4. It’s called situational football.
    Nate did not give you the best chance to win at that point.
    Bad decision.

  5. If you have a chance to knock someone out of the playoffs YOU DO IT ! Forget this “he earned the right to play” garbage. That was a chicken crap decision by Pederson and his players know it but won’t say anything. That sends the totally WRONG message to your players.

  6. I don’t know. That’s really not how it looked live. At all. Whatever. What’s done is done

  7. The thought that Doug Pederson is some kind of evil, plotting villain (like Bill Belichic) is comical. Eagles fans who follow the team on a daily basis and listen to his press conferences know that he is more of a bungling buffoon. He wanted to get Nate “Rudy” Sudfeld some snaps as a reward for 4 years of service, and he ended up starting WWIII because of the clumsy way he handled it. Dan Shaugnessy was on Philly radio this morning saying this was worse than Deflate Gate. Please. This is a giant Nothing Burger and will blow over as soon as the next NFL scandal comes along. Get over yourselves and get off of your high horses, all of you self-righteous purveyors of integrity.

  8. yeah.?.nah. It would’ve been best if Kelce politely declined when management/coach asked him to comment. A bad call was made to put Sudfeld in resulting in more bad things. All this nonsense to move up a couple picks? C’mon man! You don’t see how a 3rd string will do during week 17 of the regular season – geesh!

  9. Everyone get over this, yes we did not play to win either did Pitt, and KC. Unless the Eagles screw up the Draft and don’t draft DaVonte Smith, when he starts scoring TD’s like he did at Alabama , people will forget and agree we did what we had to do

  10. If Wentz could remain the starter for three long months, you could stick with Hurts for three rough quarters.

    I’d have been more interested to see if he could respond from adversity and pull out the W in the 4th quarter.

  11. roughingthepasser, what you are forgetting is that Hurts also had 2 rushing TDs. By the way, the 7 for 20 also had to do with numerous dropped passes. Let’s stop trying to make excuses here. When Ben was stinking it up against Washington, Bills, and even the lowly Bengals, he was never benched. Hurts was benched to get a better draft slot.

  12. Words cannot overwrite what my eyes saw. The team (including Kelce) appeared to be very dejected on the sideline and it was blatantly obvious in their body language. No one can know the true impact of the events from that game until we have more information on how they plan on proceeding forward with QB position.

  13. Kelce is a leader on this team, a warrior and one of the most respected in that locker room. I am sure deep down he wasn’t happy. He said last month tanking wasn’t an option. This was the only offensive starter to play all 16 games. He stood up when Wentz was benched, said it was wrong to blame one guy, the team also has failed…and he is right. Kelce himself had a bunch of bad snaps this year that were unlike him. Everything was a huge mess. One of my favorite Eagles and I hope he doesn’t retire. This team needs leadership like his.

  14. Just a bad way for the Eagles to end the season! Right or wrong it was a stupid move on the coach to do what he did. He’s been there 4yrs and you decide to put him in this really important game? Really? What a buffoon decision! Just terrible.

  15. john baxter, Hurts since taking over has a 41 comp %. He hasn’t completed over 56% of his throws in any game. vs Washington he had a 25 passer rating, 35 comp %, 7/20, 72 yards, 0td/1int. Our passing offense with him since the 1st quarter of the Dallas game: 1td/3int, 2 fumbles. Shutout 7 straight quarters. YES he did have 2 rushing TD but he is a QB, a passer. The passer isn’t doing anything. Outside of his performance vs Arizona (3td/0int) he has 3td/4int, 2 fumbles. The biggest concerns pre-draft for Hurts was his accuracy. Like most run first QB, his running masks his major weakness and that is passing. Michael Vick sucked as a passer. Great athlete/runner. His passing however held his teams down.

  16. Jason Harshman says:
    January 6, 2021 at 10:39 am
    Kelce is a leader on this team, a warrior and one of the most respected in that locker room. I am sure deep down he wasn’t happy. He said last month tanking wasn’t an option. This was the only offensive starter to play all 16 games. He stood up when Wentz was benched, said it was wrong to blame one guy, the team also has failed…and he is right. Kelce himself had a bunch of bad snaps this year that were unlike him. Everything was a huge mess. One of my favorite Eagles and I hope he doesn’t retire. This team needs leadership like his.
    ———————————————————————————————-
    Leaders don’t blatantly call teammates a liar in public just to suck up to the coach and the fans . Kelce can spin it all he want’s but playing Wentz until the season was all but lost and then putting Sudfeld in Pederson has lost this team .

  17. The changing of QB would have been puzzling if Hurts had been tearing it up, which he wasn’t. With nothing to lose the Eagles made the decision to replace Hurts, so what! As for the Giants, you NEVER want to put yourself in a position where you have to depend on somebody else doing your job, ie: winning a game. Why didn’t they beat Chicago, Dallas or Philadelphia early in the year? The EAgles did what they thought was best for their team!

  18. The whole thing just looked bad all around, and Kelce defending it just makes it worse. He looked just as dumbfounded as anyone else on that sideline when Hurts was yanked.

  19. For the fools who keep bringing up hurts stats it has no bearing how he would play in the 4th the fact is the redksins scored zero points the second half all hurts had to do was score more than 3 points in the 4th and eagles win. Hurts scored 2 touchdowns in the second quarter so he showed he can do it he beat the saints and Threw for 360 yards vs cardinals

  20. Hurts would have won the game many qb have had poor games and respond in 4th quarter hruts already beat the San isn’t and made huge plays in his 4 games is he easily could have scored in 4th quarter

  21. I could have sworn after a lifetime of living, that doing your best, always, was the right and only way to live. Guess not.

  22. Everyone knew Sudfeld was going to play, the team and reporters said as much. It looked bad but only because people didn’t pay attention beforehand

  23. Damage control. Nothing more. And, if I’m being honest, what annoys me most about this situation is that my team is too stupid to tank.

  24. He admits to being surprised by the move made in that situation. He didn’t get asked in follow up, but I’m sure he thought, like most of us, that it would not be made with the game on the line. I would rather he had given Suddy the second or third quarter to show off his skills, whereas the team played for the win in the 4th quarter.

  25. justin7556 says:
    January 6, 2021 at 2:22 pm
    Sudfeld was only supposed to play if eagles were in a blowout

    —————————

    Oh and Pederson had stated leading up to the game that Sudfeld was going to play regardless of the score.

  26. Playoffs? Playoffs? What’s it say when you’re 6-10 and whining about deserving the playoffs?

    Bar is low for the legendary giants these days…. wonder what coach belichick would say about the playoffs at 6-10

  27. justin7556 says:
    January 6, 2021 at 11:58 am

    Fact is hurts would have won game

    ————————-

    A hypothetical supposition is not a “fact”

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