The Philadelphia Eagles lured quarterback Josh McCown out of retirement earlier this month to back up Carson Wentz, but his signing came with a big perk.
He is allowed to leave the team each Friday to fly to Charlotte, N.C., where his family lives and where he is part of the coaching staff at Myers Park High School. He wants to be with his other team on Friday nights.
McCown shared his story with Zack Rosenblatt of NJ.com, telling him he knew that if he returned to the NFL it would be with a team that has a good front office, coaching staff and roster. He found that in the Eagles, who are aware that at age 40, McCown wants to help in his sons’ football development.
The Eagles “understand the family dynamic,” McCown told Rosenblatt. “The proximity to Charlotte was a factor, and part of why it made sense to sign here.”
It’s almost 550 miles from Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia to Myers Park, and it seemingly is worth every mile to McCown, who has embraced the role.
“He does everything that a regular high school coach does,” head coach Scott Chadwick said. “He doesn’t just show up, he does all the dirty work.”
At practices before he signed with the Eagles, McCown lined the filed, picked up the balls scattered around and took part in every meeting. He even attended team camp in, as Chadwick described it, a very uncomfortable living environment.
His two sons — he also has two daughters — are on the Myers Park roster as quarterbacks, as is blue-chip recruit Drake Maye, who is committed to Alabama in the Class of 2021.
“He has bigger things to do, playing backup quarterback for the Eagles,” Maye said. “But he’s a great coach. It’s been a blessing.”
Myers Park is 1-0 on the young season, with its next game scheduled for Sept. 6. McCown will leave as soon as possible after the game to be back to finish preparations with the Eagles, who host division rival Washington to open the season on Sept. 8.
McCown, entering his 17th season, was a third-round draft pick by Arizona in 2002. He also has played for Detroit, Oakland, Carolina, Chicago, Tampa Bay and the New York Jets. He signed a one-year, $2 million deal with the Eagles on Aug. 17.