Whatever Doug Pederson meant to say on Monday about this week’s game, it has become a pretty big deal.
During a Monday morning radio interview Pederson seemed to guarantee a win for his Philadelphia Eagles over the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday night, though he backtracked off of that a bit.
He continued to back off the potential bulletin-board material, but it seems his players didn’t mind it.
Doug Pederson says he didn’t guarantee anything
Here are Pederson’s initial words in that WIP interview that is sure to be talked about during Sunday night’s game, a game that can be live-streamed on the Yahoo Sports app.
“I know the sky’s falling outside; it’s falling, and I get that. And the fans are reeling just a little bit,” Pederson said on WIP. “But we’re going down to Dallas and our guys are going to be ready to play and we’re going to win that football game, and when we do we’re in first place in the NFC East, we control our own destiny, we’re right where we need to be.”
There’s not a lot of ambiguity in “we’re going to win that football game,” but there is a dispute over whether that constitutes a guarantee.
“Can I just clear something up real quick? I never used the term or the word ‘guarantee,’” Pederson said in a conference call with Dallas media, via Jane Slater of NFL Network. “All I was doing was showing confidence in my football team because there comes a point especially here in Philadelphia where you lose a game or two and everybody feels like everything is kind of caving in on the football team. For me it was about standing up kinda taking ownership of where we are as a football team.”
There’s always an overreaction to “guaranteeing” wins. Every player and coach should feel they’re going to win. What Pederson said isn’t out of line. He thinks the Eagles will win. Jason Garrett likely thinks the Cowboys will win.
But that doesn’t mean it won’t continue to be a big deal before a huge NFC East showdown.
Players liked Pederson’s comments
While Pederson seems to want to back away from his comments, his players seemed to appreciate them.
“I actually received some text messages from players, in support and in favor, who said, ‘Listen coach we know we’re not perfect and we’re gonna get this thing right,’” Pederson said, via Slater. ‘That’s been a positive.”
The Eagles are 3-3 and have been maddeningly inconsistent. The Cowboys are 3-3 too, following three straight wins to start the season with three straight losses.
One of those teams will leave Sunday night’s game with its fan base in panic mode. And if it’s the Eagles, the Cowboys won’t let Pederson forget his words leading up to the game.
– – – – – – –
More from Yahoo Sports: