One of the more interesting story lines, aside from the big free agent signings of course, is the new "tough love" approach being implemented by the likes of Jim Washburn, Howard Mudd, and new defensive coordinator Juan Castillo.
That sentiment was captured wonderfully in this AP photo of Juan Castillo headbutting linebacker Keenan Clayton during a drill to take on and shed blockers. According to Moving the Chain's Sheil Kapadia, Clayton didn't keep his head and eyes up. As you can see from the photo, Castillo made him pay.
But Castillo also paid a bit for his badass-looking headbutt of a professional football player wearing a helmet. Kapadia says Castillo had a little cut on his forehead to show for it.
Hey, they don't call it "tough" love for nothing. That's just how it's going to be.
There will be no kid gloves, no concerns about egos and hurt
feelings. Only a focus on doing things the right way, over and over
It's certainly a different approach from years past. You get the
sense the players, and specifically the veterans, don't mind it. Trent Cole said yesterday he hasn't been yelled at this much since his rookie year, but that's just fine with him.
Is this not the kind of attitude Philadelphians absolutely love? Couple big spending on huge pieces with this type of coaching and you've got a recipe for a Birds team this city can really embrace.
All of the talk of Wasburn's approach reminds us of a video we first posted about here back in February. It's an NFL Films piece on Howard Mudd and Jim Washburn embarking on a trip together to South Africa. As we wrote then, "It really gets into the personalities of the two guys. As neat as it
is to see two rivals maintain such a close friendship off the field,
I'm even more excited to have them now working together for my Iggles."
Now we're getting just a taste of that.