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What did Chiefs receiver Tyreek Hill first think of Patrick Mahomes? ‘Trash’ – Kansas City Chiefs Blog



Kansas City Chiefs receiver Tyreek Hill already has more touchdown catches this season (13) than at any point during his career. But he didn’t always have confidence in the man throwing him the ball.

In an interview with Showtime’s “Inside the NFL” that aired Tuesday, Hill made it clear he didn’t think much of then-rookie quarterback Patrick Mahomes during Mahomes’ first training camp.

“I thought he was trash,” Hill told Showtime. “I ain’t gonna cap.

“I was like, ‘this is who y’all drafted?'”

Since that first impression, Mahomes has thrown for 12,909 yards with 106 touchdowns. Hill has been the biggest beneficiary, having led the Chiefs’ wide receivers in yards and touchdowns each season that Mahomes has been the starter. This season Hill has 1,021 yards and 13 touchdowns in 11 games played already.

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What the Nick Sirianni hire means for Carson Wentz, Philadelphia Eagles – Philadelphia Eagles Blog



PHILADELPHIA — The Philadelphia Eagles cut against the grain Thursday by selecting Indianapolis Colts offensive coordinator Nick Sirianni to be their next head coach.

Sirianni’s name emerged late in Philadelphia’s extensive coaching search, which included 10 official interviews and plenty of informal flirting. They reached out to gauge the interest of Oklahoma Sooners coach Lincoln Riley. They put in a request to speak with Buffalo Bills offensive coordinator Brian Daboll, though any potential conversation was pushed until after Sunday’s AFC Championship Game. They considered hiring New England Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels.

But in the end, the Eagles ended up going with the 39-year-old Sirianni, who follows the only Super Bowl-winning coach in the team’s history, Doug Pederson. He comes to Philadelphia without any playcalling experience and with some major shoes to fill.

What does this mean for quarterback Carson Wentz?

Once Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie fired Pederson on Jan. 11, it became clear the Eagles preferred the path of trying to keep and fix Wentz instead of trading him, and they gravitated toward candidates who were on the same wavelength. Wentz was at his best when Colts coach Frank Reich was the offensive coordinator in Philadelphia. Sirianni was Reich’s right-hand man in Indianapolis and coached quarterbacks in San Diego when Reich was the Chargers’ O-coordinator in 2014 and 2015.

Sirianni has majored in the QB position and is in lockstep with Reich, whom Wentz trusts fully. The odds of Wentz staying in Philadelphia went up when Pederson was fired and likely ticked up another few notches with this decision on this coach.

What drew the Eagles to Sirianni?

Philadelphia had an interview with Sirianni on Tuesday that reportedly spilled into the next day. Buzz began picking up soon thereafter that he was a front-runner for the job alongside McDaniels. He helped the Colts finish in the top 10 in offense two of the past three seasons despite a rotating cast at quarterback. He similarly got a lot out of the Chargers’ receivers when he was their position coach from 2016 to 2017.

A source said Sirianni has “great people skills,” is good with player evaluation and has a strong work ethic. Though maybe not the loudest of personalities, Sirianni is said to have more of an edge to him than it may first appear.

There are also internal dynamics to consider. Lurie and general manager Howie Roseman are deeply involved in the Eagles’ football operations. In order for that power structure to stay intact, the coach has to be amenable to it. Sirianni doesn’t come in with the clout of a McDaniels, for instance, and will likely be fine initially with fitting into that construct and focusing on the coaching side of things.

Did the late start affect whom Philadelphia could hire as coach?

Yes. The Eagles had interest in Arthur Smith, Robert Saleh and Brandon Staley, but those candidates were too far down the road with other teams to seriously consider reversing course once the Eagles jumped into the mix after waiting a week to fire Pederson.

With the hot names quickly scooped up, the only real course of action was to take a deliberate approach and find the right fit.

The Eagles were also coming off a train-wreck 4-11-1 season and didn’t enter the market from a great position of strength. Questions about how things ended with Pederson, the tricky quarterback situation with Wentz and 2020 second-round pick Jalen Hurts, and the poor salary-cap outlook for 2021 impacted the job’s attractiveness.

What are the concerns about Sirianni?

Sirianni has never called plays. Will he assume those responsibilities while adjusting to his first head-coaching gig? He’ll be making that big leap while operating in one of the country’s most intense media markets. His previous NFL stops were Indianapolis, Kansas City, San Diego and Los Angeles. He’s in store for a whole different experience in Philly.

Sirianni must now build out a staff. The pool has already shrunk with assistants around the league getting snatched up by other new coaches. That process needs to begin in earnest.

Is it the right hire?

There was a strong case to be made for Duce Staley. The degree to which current and former players advocated for him both publicly and behind the scenes is very rare. Staley has the respect of everyone within the Eagles organization, can command a room like few others and earned the opportunity after 10 years as an assistant in Philadelphia, including the past three years as assistant head coach.

There is a legitimate question as to whether Staley’s blunt style would have vibed with Wentz, but there’s a case to be made that you should hire the best coach and let the coach guide the team, and the quarterback room, the way that person sees fit.

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Los Angeles Chargers coach Brandon Staley makes sure to connect with QB Justin Herbert



New Los Angeles Chargers coach Brandon Staley made sure he didn’t take too long to introduce himself to quarterback Justin Herbert, but priorities are priorities.

“I called him on my way back home,” Staley said about who he contacted first when he learned Sunday that he would be the Chargers’ head coach. “I promise I called [wife] Amy first, but then I called Justin because I wanted him to hear my voice. And I wanted him to know about my family … and then I just wanted to listen for a little bit. Wanted him to hear my energy, maybe see a little bit of vision of what I have for what we want to get accomplished together.”

The 38-year-old Staley said he FaceTimed with Herbert on the way to the Costa Mesa facility Thursday for the introductory news conference “because I wanted him to see us before our big day.”

Staley was the coordinator for the Los Angeles Rams‘ top-ranked defense. And while he wouldn’t go into specifics as to what he’s looking for in an offensive coordinator or offensive scheme, the former college quarterback has an understanding of what it takes on both sides of the ball.

“I’m looking for somebody with character and capacity and that can lead our staff and be part of our vision for how to get the best out of our players.”

Staley did say he would be making the defensive calls and hopes to have a staff in place “in a few weeks.”

Chargers general manager Tom Telesco was asked why he hired a guy with so little NFL coaching experience, including zero on the offensive side.

“Having his background, coming up in high school and college on offense. I think that helps,” Telesco said. “I’m watching the Baltimore and Buffalo playoff game and one coach [Sean McDermott] had a defensive background and the other [John Harbaugh] had a special-teams background. And they both have young quarterbacks and they’re both doing very well.

“There are different ways to do this,” said Telesco, adding that Staley’s brain is “very sharp.”

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Woody Johnson to resume principal owner duties with New York Jets



FLORHAM PARK, N.J. — The New York Jets have a new coach and a new way of doing business.

On the day they introduced Robert Saleh as head coach, the Jets announced a reorganization of their power structure. It will be headed by chairman Woody Johnson, who flew back to the United States on Thursday after a completing a three-year term as U.S. ambassador to the United Kingdom.

Johnson will resume his duties as the principal owner “quite soon,” according Christopher Johnson, who ran the franchise during his older brother’s absence. Christopher will become the vice chairman and will maintain a prominent role in the day-to-day operations.

Instead of reporting directly to ownership, as the two previous coaches did, Saleh will work directly with general manager Joe Douglas. This means greater power for Douglas, who spearheaded the coaching search and still will report to ownership.

Christopher Johnson said the new setup is “a clean and simple way to do things.” One aspect of the dynamic is unusual in that Saleh hasn’t met Woody Johnson, who has owned the team since 2000. Woody Johnson, who lived in London, wasn’t directly involved in the coaching search.

“I haven’t had a conversation with Woody yet,” Saleh said during a virtual news conference. “[I’m] really excited to get the opportunity in the near future.”

Saleh said he’s “not concerned at all” about his lack of familiarity with his boss, adding that he expects it to be “a collaborative effort.”

Woody Johnson will have the final say on all decisions, according to Christopher Johnson, who expects “a fair amount of continuity” because of a strong working relationship with his brother.

While serving overseas, Woody Johnson was the subject of U.S. government investigation that concluded he made racist and sexist remarks. Johnson issued a denial.

In four seasons with Christopher Johnson as the acting owner, the Jets went 18-46, finishing in last place in the division three times.

Clearly, Saleh is walking into a massive challenge, but he was upbeat and confident during his introduction to the media.

“Get used to the mantra: All gas, no brake,” said Saleh, who signed a five-year contract.

Saleh, who spent the past four seasons as the San Francisco 49ers‘ defensive coordinator, said he won’t call the defensive plays. That will allow him to be a CEO-type coach, a departure from the previous staff — a welcome change from the organization’s point of view. Former coach Adam Gase called the offensive plays and focused mainly on that side of the ball.

Saleh will entrust the defensive playcalling to newly hired coordinator Jeff Ulbrich, mostly recently the Atlanta Falcons‘ interim defensive coordinator.

Former 49ers passing-game coach Mike LaFleur will be the offensive coordinator, Saleh confirmed.

The biggest question facing Saleh is the future of quarterback Sam Darnold. Repeating Douglas’ public stance on Darnold, Saleh praised the former first-round draft pick, but he stopped short of committing to him as the starter.

Saleh said he’s still evaluating the roster. With the second pick in this April’s draft, the Jets could opt for a quarterback. He wasn’t about to tip their hand.

“He’s got unbelievable arm talent,” Saleh said of Darnold, the NFL’s lowest-rated passer in 2020. “There’s a reason why he was the No. 3 pick in the [2018] draft. He’s fearless in the pocket. He’s got a natural throwing motion. He’s mobile. He’s extremely intelligent. He’s tough as nails. His reputation in the locker room is unquestioned.

“You can see all those qualities on tape and around the building by the way people speak about him.”

Ultimately, the decision belongs to Douglas, who has the final say on the roster.

The prevailing theme in the news conference was Saleh’s leadership and ability to connect with players, something the Jets felt was lacking under Gase.

“When we met him,” Christopher Johnson said of Saleh, “we knew we had our coach.”

Saleh, trying to rebuild the culture, already has reached out to every player via text. He said there’s “a lot of talent on this roster” — he gushed about defensive tackle Quinnen Williams — yet he acknowledged there’s a lot of work to be done.

“It will take time,” he said, “but everything we do will be designed to win championships in the future.”

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