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February 06, 2023

Eagles' rivals are developing a hatred for Nick Sirianni, but his players love him

Eagles NFL
020623NickSirianni Bill Streicher/usa

Nick Sirianni knows what he's doing.

If it's true that you're doing something right when your adversaries begin vocalizing their hatred for you, then Nick Sirianni is on the right path to becoming a great NFL head coach. Sirianni is only in his second season with the Eagles, and it seems that rival fans and players have already emphatically made their decision — they don't like him.

The point at which the vitriol for Sirianni accelerated was when he nodded approvingly in the direction of a television camera during the Eagles' 38-7 stomping of the New York Giants in the divisional round of the playoffs. The FOX television crew showed the moment in slow motion, and well, this will be a famous gif for a long time.

"It was like right in my face," Sirianni said. "I was juiced. We were up a couple scores. It just was like right there. Like, I don't know, that was the first thing that came to my mind. I guess that's just who I am."

During a recent interview on NFL Network's "Good Morning Football," Giants safety Julian Love expressed his distaste for Sirianni's head nodding. 

"I don't like it. I don't like it at all. He's in for a free ride right now," Love said, insinuating that Sirianni had little to do with the Eagles' success this season. "You guys [the on-air TV talent on Good Morning Football] can coach this team."

Sirianni's sideline antics even got the attention of popular comedian Bill Burr.

"At one point he was hamming it up so bad the NFL literally did a 360 shot around him, the same shot Tarantino used on Pam Grier in f***ing Jackie Brown when she was coming out of the g**d*** dressing room," Burr said. "They did that to an NFL coach who looked like some j***o** who's out there shoveling a driveway." 

Lol 😂. You can watch Burr's full Sirianni rant here (you'll have to click "Watch on YouTube"): 

And, of course, rival fans hate him, too. After the Eagles' playoff win over the Giants in the divisional round, we scoured comment sections for the live game threads at other NFC East fan websites, and Sirianni was a common target of hate. A sampling (grammar and spelling left uncorrected):

• "Siirianni embodies all that Philly is about - compete douche bag."

• "Siriani has the most punchable face ever."

• "Sirianni has to be the biggest a****** in that stadium"

• "Ugh they earned it but holy s*** Sirianni has to be the most unlikeable coach ever."

• "Siriani looks really seems like a douche"

• "Sirianni does have the most punchable face ever, he acts like a frat boy"

• "Sirianni seems like such a tool. Perfect for Philadelphia."

• "Nick Sirianni is one of those mouthy punks that I used to end up punching out in a bar a million years ago when I was a young man."

• "I must punch Sirianni"

• "Jalen Hurts is an easy guy to root for... i hate he is on the eagles and i cant root for him. Philly doesnt deserve him. Nick Sirianni on the other hand entails the eagles fanbase: Toxic, stupid, stubborn, arrogant fool"

If you search "Sirianni punchable" on Twitter, you'll get an absurd number of hits.

The nodding incident certainly wasn't the first time that Sirianni got under the skin of a rival fan base. Near the end of the Eagles' Week 6 win over the Dallas Cowboys, Jason Kelce was tackled after the whistle by frustrated Cowboys DE Osa Odighizuwa. The ensuing unnecessary roughness call gave the Eagles a first down, and allowed Jalen Hurts to kneel down twice to seal the 26-17 win. After the late hit, Sirianni was caught on camera yelling, "That's f****** game! F*** you!" presumably at Odighizuwa and other Cowboys players.

There was also the incident in which some Giants fan dork grossly exaggerated an encounter with Sirianni on a tennis court in South Jersey, which dominated the local news cycle for a few days during a slow time in the NFL calendar.

So, again, to recap, rival fans don't like Sirianni's sideline antics. 

You know who does? Eagles players.

Chauncey Gardner-Johnson

"Me and coach are straight. That's my boy... I regard him as like brother / mentor, with all the lessons he teaches you and s***." 

On Love's comments, Gardner-Johnson said, "Tell him to pick his facemask off the dirt... He's got a captain badge, but what is he a captain of? Ain't no leadership over there. If that's the case, y'all would be where we're at."

Brandon Graham

"People always got something to say when they're watching from home."

"I just know that Coach Sirianni, what he did last year, with a team that nobody thought was going to do much, he ended up getting us to the playoffs. And then the second year, you're supposed to get better, bring players in and get them to do what you need them to do, and we did that."

Landon Dickerson

"He's passionate for his job and his team. He cares about something and he's passionate about it, and that's how he expresses it."

On whether he would be annoyed if an opposing coach had similar sideline behavior, Dickerson said, "I'm really not paying attention to the coach on the other side."

Milton Williams

"He's got guys mad about what he's doing on the sideline. They need to be worried about what they're doing on the field. But he's just doing his job, trying to have fun with it, embrace the Philly culture."

Jordan Mailata

"Coach is young, too, man. He wears his heart on his sleeve. The head coach comes with some expectations and some responsibilities, but this is the way he coaches and we're here for a reason. We know Coach. He's not [faking anything]. He's like that in f****** walkthroughs. He's always animated. You should see him when we're not executing."

On worrying about an opposing coach, Mailata said, "That coach ain't helping me block f****** Nick Bosa. That wouldn't affect me. If we were on the other team and we saw Nick like that, what's that going to do? We're going to go out and execute our jobs. That's just me. I wouldn't give two damns.

"Personally, I'd probably use that as fuel. I'll give you something to rah rah about. But I wouldn't get annoyed and go on TV and talk s*** about another coach. At that point, that's just petty."

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