Esks firings 'nothing personal'

GERRY MODDEJONGE, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 10:55 PM ET

It’s nothing personal.

In fact, that’s why Edmonton Eskimos head coach Kavis Reed removed Jason Tucker from his coaching staff earlier this week — so things didn’t get too personal for him.

The former receivers coach was just two years removed from his playing days with the Eskimos, returning from a career-ending neck injury, instead, to instruct his teammates.

“It was my decision,” Reed said. “Having spoken to Jason, I feel the young man is going to be an exceptionally talented coach. I felt that he did an outstanding job with the players that he had to work with here. But for whatever reason I just feel that removing himself that closely from the players he played with and having to make a tough decision on his guys, I didn’t want to put him in that situation.

“We may make some tough decisions down the road and I didn’t want to put him in the situation where someone who was a friend or he worked closely with as a player, he would have to make a decision.”

Besides Tucker, assistant head coach and special teams co-ordinator Noel Thorpe, defensive backs coach Stacey Hairston and offensive co-ordinator Kevin Strasser were also let go this week.

“I laid out the plan and vision for this football team, discussed it with every coach to see whether or not we were a good fit for them,” said Reed, who addressed the media for the first time since his own press conference last week. “There were some extremely good qualified candidates who were on the staff last year that we felt was only fair to them that we expressed what we were looking for and give them an opportunity to decide.

“Coach Strasser decided it was time to move on and a couple other guys decided mutually that this was probably not going to be the best situation for them.”


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