Why is Jeffrey Lurie sending his son to the Senior Bowl?
The Eagles’ senior executives and scouts have made the annual pilgrimage to the Senior Bowl. There has been plenty of speculation on whether or not Jeffrey Lurie sent Howie Roseman down there to scout Kenny Pickett or one of the other quarterbacks that are going to be available in the NFL Draft.
I’m sure all of the serious tape eaters out there will be paying close attention to what goes on in the game. I’m more interested in who The Eagles sent down there as part of their scouting team.
This year Jeffrey Lurie sent his son, Julian Lurie, to the game.
If you’re like me, hearing that the Eagles’ 70 year old owner has begun to give his son a more public role with the organization gives you nagging reminder that not even vast wealth can stave off the ravages of time. A little bit of digging reveals Julian may be further along in his process of eventually taking over the team than any of us realized. Via the Inquirer:
“The 26-year-old doesn’t have an official role with the Eagles, but his presence has grown over the last year. Lurie was part of interviewing coaching candidates last offseason and attended both home and away games for the first time. He was here not to scout prospects but to observe the team’s pre-draft process, a team source said.”
According to NBC’s John Clark, Julian has been learning aspects of the Eagles’ organization, partaking in a rotational program at the NFL’s offices.
Jeffrey Lurie had his kid interviewing coaching candidates?
This was quite a shocking revelation to me. I’m not going to lie though, I had no idea Jeffrey Lurie even had children until I stumbled across this particular article. Since I’m not a weirdo, I don’t spend a ton of time worrying about the family dynamics of the guy that owns the Eagles. Unfortunately those days of not being that type of weirdo are behind me now. Now I’m very concerned about Jeffrey Lurie’s family.
Everybody knows that NFL franchises are like car dealerships.
Teams get passed down from generation to generation until a compulsive gambling habit or a bitter legal dispute leads to someone having to sell off their controlling stake. Still it’s always weird to find out a twenty-something kid, whose only qualification is the ability to say “Do you know who my dad is?,” has such an important role in the organization.
The Eagles have had an incredible run of success since Jeffrey Lurie bought the team. Since 1995 they have been to the playoffs 16 times. That’s the second most trips to the playoffs in that time in the NFC behind only the Green Bay Packers. So any change in leadership should give Eagles fans pause.
Just ask Bears fans how quickly having a team in the same family for multiple generations can go sideways. Successfully running a franchise is not a genetic trait.
Lurie has always had some sway in decision making during his tenure, but in recent years has had a more passive role. Julian will of course need to know a little bit about the in’s and out’s of a football organization if he eventually takes over.
So what else do we know about Jeffrey Lurie’s son?
We know that he’s developed a close partnership with the Eagles vice president of football operations and strategy, Alec Halaby. According to a story from the Athletic, quoted at length by NBC Sports Philadelphia:
“To some, Halaby is something of an interloper. They say he carries influence with Lurie in part because of a close relationship with fellow Harvard grad Julian Lurie, Jeffrey’s son, who stands to one day take over the family business. To others, Halaby is “brilliant” and simply willing to fight for what he believes is right. The more nuanced opinion is that Halaby is in a “no-win situation,” boxed into a specific characterization by the non-traditional football background he shares with Roseman and a personality that makes him a “square peg in a round hole.”
Great. He’s already under the sway of a svengali figure nobody can get a read on. This sounds like a potential recipe for disaster. Julian Lurie is likely at risk of being taken advantage of by some mystic wearing a polo and waving around a calculator.
He’s probably not street smart. Where he’s from (Harvard) being good at math is viewed as a good thing, and not a dangerous red flag.
Hopefully he can break free from Halaby’s hypnotic array of charts and graphs. Otherwise we’re going to be stuck spending his tenure as owner watching him cycle through dozens of head coaches.
All the while Halaby stands behind him with his arms crossed. Or maybe he’ll be a good judge of character. Who knows? We won’t really know anything until he’s the guy running the team. Isn’t nepotism great?
Mandatory Credit: Philadelphia Inquirer