In sports, it’s not always just about winning and losing. It’s also about growing — and getting better.
The best athletes and teams in professional sports learn from their mistakes and can build off of previous successes.
LeSean McCoy is arguably one of the three best running backs in all of football. And he thinks the Eagles will be able to build off of their two biggest losses in 2014 — losing to the Saints in the Wild Card round of the NFL playoffs, and losing DeSean Jackson.
“For myself,” McCoy said of the Eagles and their choice to cut Jackson, “I took out of that, no matter how good a player is it’s a team. If you can’t buy in, anything is possible. Thats how I take it.”
But Chip Kelly disagrees. He contends it had little to do with Jackson buying in to what the first year coach was selling last season.
“I don’t send messages to other players by how I deal with other players,” Kelly said in Thursday’s news conference. “How LeSean McCoy interprets things, LeSean has a beautiful mind, so sometimes trying to analyze that mind, I don’t wrap myself around that too much or bother myself too much with that. However LeSean interprets things is how LeSean interprets things.”
McCoy’s mind is not only a world-class football mind, but he also realizes the immense gap left in the Eagles’ offense from Jackson’s departure. The newly acquired Redskins’ wideout collected 1,332 yards and nine touchdowns last season.
“A player like that has done so much for this franchise,” McCoy said, “even the year Chip was here, the stuff he did. Some players, some teams may think he’s producing on the field thats the only thing that matters.”
McCoy, who in all likelihood will become the Bird’s all-time leading rusher next season, is pleased to be a part of a rather uneventful camp this season with the Jackson drama behind them.
“It’s a little different this camp,” McCoy said. “It’s quiet. In the past we have had so much attention on this team for all the wrong reasons and now we are just preparing. We came off a good season last year which ended too early and we want to capitalize off that.”
The Harrisburg, PA native has become more of a leader as he as become an NFL veteran who enters his sixth campaign since leaving Pitt in 2009.
“I think LeSean is a guy that has great energy,” Kelly said, “and I think people feed off of that energy in terms of what he brings here every day to the building. He doesn’t really ever seem like he has a bad day. He’s always up, he’s always positive. One thing I love about him is he takes responsibility for everything he does, so if he doesn’t have a good day, he doesn’t make excuses about it, he learns from it and moves forward. They are two distinct, different personalities, but you need to have different personalities on a football team.”
Kelly took time to pay McCoy one last compliment. “He’ll give you a lot about every subject. He can tell you who’s going to start on other teams in the league and he can tell you a lot of things. I enjoy talking to LeSean. He’s the best.”