Sirianni pleased with Eagles youngster’s maturity to start 2021 season

DeVonta Smith Eagles
DeVonta Smith led the way for Eagles rookies in Week 1.
John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

There certainly seems to be a connection with Nick Sirianni and the numerous rookies that round out the Philadelphia Eagles’ ranks.

The first-year head coach rolled with 10 first-year players in Week 1 against the Falcons down in Atlanta — a game the Eagles rolled to a 32-6 victory in.

A nice start to the season and an even better indication that the Eagles did their homework during the offseason.

“When we drafted these guys, the first thing we looked at obviously was talent,” Sirianni explained. “The second thing we wanted to know is if they loved football, if they had high character, and they were tough. With these guys, we felt like that was the common denominator.

“If those players have those three things, then they’ll reach their ceiling. I feel really good about these guys because they have those three things.”

First-round pick and reigning Heisman Trophy winner DeVonta Smith put on a strong showing in his NFL debut as the Alabama product reeled in six catches for 71 yards and a touchdown. The Eagles will be hoping that this will be the first big day of many for the No. 1 pass-catcher of the future.

“When you have guys like that, sometimes it feels like the moment isn’t too big for those guys because they’re mature enough to handle it,” Sirianni said.

High praise after just one game of the season, but the Eagles’ convincing effort down in Atlanta at least provided an inkling of suggestion that this team might not necessarily be the kind of pushover in the NFC East that many folks forecasted throughout the offseason.

Naturally, that’s what happens after a summer of overhauling — and the Eagles will have much stiffer tests than a Falcons team that doesn’t have high expectations this season, either.

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