Eagles Wake-Up Call: The Babin Backlash
Jason Babin‘s reaction to the “vile” chants he heard at the Linc last week has not gone unnoticed. With the Eagles mired in a three-game losing streak and falling short of expectations for a second-straight year, Babin’s comments have been met with sharp resistance by a weary fan base.
And it’s not just the fans. No one had a more adverse reaction to Babin’s words than Jeremiah Trotter.
“When I hear some of this talk man it really, really pisses me off,” said the former Eagles linebacker on 97.5 The Fanatic, “because you’re focused on the wrong thing. You should be focusing this week on the Saints, not focusing on what the fans are saying, or putting things on Twitter saying this or that. Come on, dude. Go out and win some games. Let the fans do what they’re gonna do. Fans are still going to be fans, and they have every right to boo you if you don’t go out and put a good product on the field.
“Dude, get a grip, this is football. You’re a man. Why are you worried about what people say anyway? I understand that players have feelings, but you’re a man. You’re playing a gladiator sport, and you’re running around worried about what fans are talking about? Even if I did feel a certain way you would never hear me say it because number one, you are showing your weakness right there. You’re playing a gladiator sport, dude. Go play ball.”
Babin put out a tweet about loyalty aimed at a portion of the fan base earlier in the week, and later explained what had him irritated.
“Really I was speaking to, during the game there was a good section of fans chanting some of the most vile things I’ve ever heard — not just at a football game, but in life in general,” said Babin. “Talking about attacking Coach, talking about people’s wives and kids and chanting them. And I just thought there is no place for that in the NFL. None whatsoever. Just some of the foul things that they were saying.
“And I’m going to be protective of Coach Reid and Coach Wash and my teammates. It was upsetting that a few bad apples were chanting that stuff, but what are you going to do?”
Talk-show lines have lit up on the topic. There were few Babin defenders.
While there’s no evidence that the two are directly related, Marty Mornhinweg took a left turn at his press conference Friday and decided to hit on the fan-player relationship in Philadelphia. The reporter’s question was about Michael Vick and how much of a distraction his situation presents. This is where Mornhinweg took it.
“Very little. I will say this, that there are some players that can’t play in this city. It’s that simple, and then the tough guys, both physically and mentally, can thrive playing for the Philadelphia Eagles and this city,” said Mornhinweg. “You know, I’ve been here a while now and I’ve grown to love and respect our fans. They are passionate. It’s almost like, hey, they can say anything they want about their players, but no one else can. We understand that and it’s just very simple that outside influences distract us zero. It’s that simple and I’ve talked about that a little bit, generally, here with that certain attitude and that certain mentality.”
Not sure what that has to do with Vick, but it sure is applicable to the conversation going on this week, thanks in large part to Babin.
WHAT YOU MISSED
Mike Patterson was activated to the 53-man roster and hopes to get in on the action Monday.
Nate Allen missed practice again and is a question mark for the Saints game.
Sheil hands out the first of his cheat sheets for Monday night.
Are the recent transplants driven to fight for their coach’s job? We take a look.
WHAT THEY’RE SAYING
Here is a Saints’ slant, courtesy of the Times-Picayune:
Maybe the fortunes of the Saints offense can change as well as the Eagles have been an uncharacteristic mess with Philadelphia already firing defensive coordinator Juan Castillo and promoting Todd Bowles to take over the vacancy. The change didn’t produce early dividends as Matt Ryan and the Falcons offense torched the Eagles defense last week in Philadelphia.
“I’m sure just like every team, when you have a new defensive play-caller, there are things that you evolve to as the season progresses,” Brees said on the new Eagles defense. “You find out what you’re good at. You find out what your sweet spot is and that type of thing. A lot of what you do is study film and see how you study scheme and personnel and you study tendencies and all those things. Yes, I’m sure that will evolve.”
The ESPN experts are split on this game. Six picked the Saints, and six the Birds.
The Eagles travel to New Orleans. We’ll have live coverage from The Big Easy.