Doug Pederson Addresses Nigel Bradham Gun Arrest

The Eagles head coach wants his players to be more responsible.

Nigel Bradham. (Jeff Fusco)

Nigel Bradham. (Jeff Fusco)

Eagles head coach Doug Pederson spoke with reporters on Wednesday morning for the first time since the conclusion of Philadelphia’s Week 4 bye. One of the main topics of discussion, as expected, was Nigel Bradham. The Eagles’ starting linebacker was recently arrested for reportedly carrying a loaded gun through a Miami airport. Pederson offered his reaction to the news.

“My messaging of the week before [the bye] was ‘Be smart, be careful. Protect each other away from the building,'” said Pederson. “And obviously [the arrest] was away from here. Guys have got to make better decisions when they’re away from the building. It’s unfortunate. It’s obviously something that’s out of my hands now. It’s still a legal matter. You’ve just got to use your head and be smart. Know the situations.”

While Pederson seemed understandably disappointed in Bradham, the Eagles coach indicated he doesn’t currently plan to punish the linebacker.

“Until the whole legal process pans out, obviously, from the league, they’ve got to look at it the same way I’ve got to look at it,” Pederson explained. “Right now, nothing has been said. We’ll go forward. It’s much like the Lane Johnson thing; until we hear something further, both of those guys will play. We go from there.”

This message is not dissimilar to the one Pederson conveyed when Bradham was arrested earlier this summer for an alleged assault incident. Still, the Eagles head coach emphasized the need for players to behave better when they’re away from the NovaCare Complex in South Philadelphia.

“Obviously, it’s a concern,” Pederson said about Bradham being arrested twice now. “You know, again, both of these were incidences that were away from here. And when they’re out of your control that way. And this is where guys need to just be smart about it. It’s their livelihood, it’s their families.”

“In everything that we do, it’s no different if I’m away from this building, and the things that I do as when you’re not the head football coach, and you’re with your family, you’ve just got to make those smart choices. It’s easier, obviously, when they’re in town because you can kind of control the environment a little bit and protect them. But they’ve got to be a little smarter away from the building.”

The truth is that the Eagles need Bradham to stay out of trouble. He’s played well through the first three games and Philadelphia is light on quality linebacker depth. The coaching staff has liked what they’ve seen out of him as far as on-field performance goes.

“He’s played well, he’s played well,” said Pederson. “He’s been one of the bright spots on defense. He’s also had a role on special teams. When [Zach] Ertz was down he kind of had to fill in on teams and pick up the slack there. He’s been a valuable part to what we’ve done defensively and as a whole as a team.”

Watch Doug Pederson’s entire Wednesday morning press conference via the Birds 24/7 Facebook page.