Gotta figure McDermott would have put in a good word here.
good point. hadn't thought of that. mikell was one of the players who liked what mcD was doing in philly.
The defense had its ups and downs the rest of the way, but as McDermott increasingly became a target for bloodthirsty Eagles fans, there were more low moments than high. He began to lose the support of several players, some of whom complained about their roles and others who thought McDermott's game plans were too complex.
"That's one of the things I have heard," said Mikell, one of McDermott's staunchest supporters. "Everybody's a different type of player. There were schemes he put us in that had the simplest tasks and we messed up. And there were complex things that we did right."
Trent Cole, who could not be reached for comment, told reporters earlier this season that he did not like McDermott's zone-blitzing schemes, which required the defensive end to sometimes drop back into pass coverage.
"There's nothing wrong with that," Mikell said. "Trent, he was coming from a good place. He just wanted to get to the quarterback and he didn't want to drop."
McDermott, always a fiddler, began scheming radical ways to stop offenses. For instance, against the New York Giants in December, he unveiled a third-down look that had no linebackers and seven defensive backs on the field.
"Going into that week, I thought that was a good idea," Mikell said. "It looked like something that would work against [Giants quarterback Eli Manning]. But it didn't, although we did eventually adjust."
In the end, following in the footsteps of Johnson weighed heavily on McDermott.
"I've always been in his corner," Mikell said. "Obviously there were things he would have liked to have gotten better at. And when things don't go well, that falls on the defensive coordinator. But we have to take ownership for this, too."
i thought and said quite often even before mcD was having problems in philly that he needed a mentor, that he wasn't quite ready for complete control of a defense b/c he needed to be more disciplined in hte way he managed his D. he has the perfect situation for him with a guy like rivera as HC. i just wish i felt better about whole game management where rivera is concerned because as a defensive mind i doubt there are many better than him.