Eagles' Jim Schwartz Denies Reports of Friction with Head Coach Doug Pederson

Tyler Conway@jtylerconwayFeatured ColumnistSeptember 12, 2017

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - AUGUST 27: Defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz of the Philadelphia Eagles looks on against the Indianapolis Colts during a preseason NFL game at Lucas Oil Stadium on August 27, 2016 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
Joe Robbins/Getty Images

Philadelphia Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz denied reports he is attempting to usurp power from head coach Doug Pederson. 

"I'll say this," Schwartz told reporters during his news conference Tuesday. "And I'll say this unequivocally: I am very comfortable with my relationship with Doug Pederson. I know he's comfortable in his relationship with me. What I do here is, I work extremely hard to execute the defense the way that he has outlined it for me. OK? I'm very comfortable with that. Not everybody is privy to those instructions. 

"If anybody misunderstands or misinterprets any actions, just know this: Coach Pederson is aware of everything that I do in this building and outside of the building."

Jeff McLane of the Philadelphia Inquirer reported three players told him that it's "known" Schwartz was undermining Pederson behind the scenes in hopes of replacing him as head coach.

Schwartz joined Pederson's staff when he took the Eagles job before the 2016 season. He previously served as the Detroit Lions' head coach from 2009-13, posting a 29-51 record. Philadelphia went 7-9 during Pederson's first year, and he led the Eagles to a 30-17 win over Washington in Sunday's season opener.

"I just know the way that Doug outlined the job for me," Schwartz said. "It had nothing to do with having my personality. He embraced that. Look, I can be brash. Check. I can be in your face. Check. It's the only way I know to coach defense. As long as coach Pederson is fine with it, I'm going to continue that. He is." 

McLane's report says that members of the coaching staff also believe Schwartz is trying to undermine Pederson. The Eagles head coach, however, seems to have faith in his defensive coordinator—and Schwartz, at least publicly, has his back.