The Absurdity of the Philadelphia Eagles’ “Tush Push” Conversation
Is it the “Tush Push” or the “Brotherly Shove” that moves the chains for the Philadelphia Eagles? Nick Sirianni isn’t worried about the name of the play. He’s also not worried about the continued complaints from around the NFL.
“We’ve watched the rest of the league. Quite frankly, they can’t do it like we can. We’ll play by the rules of what they say to do. It’s a good play for us. The competition committee can look at it, but until then, people have to stop it.” –Nick Sirianni
However, Adam Schefter reported that the league will investigate the injury risk created by the play. The City of Brotherly Love can’t help but feel that opposing fans and opposing teams around the NFL are simply jealous.
Eagles Execute Notorious Tush Push
The Eagles improved to 5-0 with a 23-14 victory against the Los Angeles Rams at SoFi Stadium in Week 5. Jalen Hurts carried the ball 15 times for 72 yards, including four successful quarterback sneaks with the notorious Tush Push.
Hurts has 36 first-down conversions on 3rd-and-1 or 4th-and-1 the last two seasons (per NFL.com). Justin Fields has the second most with 16.
The Dallas Cowboys successfully completed the play on Sunday Night Football. However, it’s undeniable that the Eagles have found a formula in a game situation that they’ve been able to execute better than any other NFL team since the beginning of the 2022 season.
The New York Giants failed miserably on Thursday Night Football with their version of the Tush Push/Brotherly Shove.
Two players suffered injuries on the play. The mishap just emphasizes the lack of execution by other teams. The outrage from around the league downplays the credit that Sirianni and the Eagles offense deserve.
“It all starts with our guys. It all starts with Jason Kelce and Jalen Hurts… We’ve watched our evolution of the play and the growth of that play. It’s just a great example of what we want to be as a team. If we stayed the same in our quarterback sneaks from 2021 until now, defenses would’ve caught up to it. We’ve grown in the areas, and we’ve grown in our fundamentals.” -Sirianni
The Eagles have the best offensive line in football, anchored by future Hall of Fame center Jason Kelce. They have a stronger downhill runner at quarterback than any other team. Hurts benefits (and benefits minimally) from an extra shove from behind.
The offense has successfully executed alternate plays by drawing opposing defenses to try to defend the Tush Push/Brotherly Shove.
They executed an outside pitch to Miles Sanders on 4th-and-1 in Week 12 in 2022, taking advantage of the Giants’ heavy concentration on clogging the middle. They also executed a run by Jalen Hurts off tackle in Week 4 against the Washington Commanders because of the threat of the Tush Push formation.
What exactly is unfair about that?
The John Kincade Show Sounds Off
Bob Cooney spoke about the Tush Push on The John Kincade Show.
“Sports is about trying to create an advantage for yourself over your opposition to give you a better chance to win. The Eagles have done that. It’s not against the rules. There’s nothing that a rules committee can do against it…How about you outlaw giving a running back a ball and going up the middle as hard as he can against a bunch of 300-pounders? There’s a chance he’s going to get hurt too. It’s such crap. Are you going to give in because somebody found something that appears to be unstoppable?” -Bob Cooney
John Kincade wrote off the league’s scrutiny as complaining rooted in jealousy. Pat Egan went as far to say that the NFL is hiding behind player safety as an excuse to nitpick something that they don’t like.
Player safety should be a legitimate priority of the NFL. However, if the league is so worried about it, why is the Tush Push the point of focus when players have suffered injuries on turf fields for years with no action from the league?
NFL Outraged About Tush Push
The outrage surrounding the Tush Push is because opponents are being poor sports about their own inability to stop a big, physical offensive line and a powerful running quarterback. The thought of changing the rule incorrectly suggests that some sort of unfair advantage exists for the Eagles that other teams can’t utilize.
It also suggests that defenses would stop the play if the league implemented a rule that players couldn’t push a runner from behind. No rule will change the fact that the Eagles have built a tough, physical rushing attack that executes well in short-yardage situations.
The Eagles keep winning. The league keeps whining. The rule won’t change during the 2023 season, but some alterations might come up during the offseason. Until then, the only real question is whether the “Tush Push” or the “Brotherly Shove” fits as a better nickname.