Bowles: Washburn Was Never a Problem For Me

Philadelphia Eagles defensive line coach Jim WashburnAmid reports that Jim Washburn had become a disruptive, divisive presence on the Eagles’ coaching staff, Todd Bowles said today he never had an issue with the defensive line coach.

“Me and Wash had a good relationship,” Bowles said. “Wash is a good man, and he’s a good coach. He was never a problem for me.”

Did Bowles have any input into Andy Reid’s decision to let Washburn go?

“No, I found out when everybody else found out,” he said. “I didn’t have any input.”

Bowles also refuted the idea that Washburn’s dismissal now gives him full authority over the defense, saying he’s had that authority since he was named defensive coordinator.

Even though the move came with just four games left, Bowles said he’s not surprised by anything in the league anymore.

“You take a coaching job in this league, you learn not to get surprised by anything,” Bowles said. “But things happen during the course of the year. Players get hurt, coaches get let go, that’s called body blows that you have to take and just move forward.

“Everybody’s responsible, the way we’ve been playing. Wash wasn’t let go, made out to be a scapegoat or anything like that, but moving forward, we’re all responsible to do our jobs as coaches and players.”

As for the players, Eagles defensive linemen continue to stick up for Washburn. We’ve previously heard from Brandon Graham and Cullen Jenkins. And today, Fletcher Cox, who has had an outstanding rookie season under Washburn, praised his old defensive line coach.

“I was a little surprised when I heard it happened,” Cox said. “And I got a little sad or whatever, but I also realize that this is a business and you see players in and out. Same thing for coaches. Coach Wash, he was a great coach. Everything he knew, he laid out on the table for us. He lost his job, and Coach Reid brought somebody new in. We’ve just got to learn what Coach Tommy [Brasher] likes to do.

Cox didn’t get a chance to see Washburn before he was dismissed, but has gotten in touch with him since.

“I texted him, sent him a message, let him know that I’ll stay in touch with him,” Cox said. “No matter what happened, I’ll stay in touch with him.”

Follow Sheil Kapadia on Twitter and e-mail him at skapadia@phillymag.com.
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