Monday, January 2, 2017

NFL Eagles Eject Writer From Press Box

The Eagles on Sunday ejected Inquirer beat writer Jeff McLane from the stadium after he and a member of the Eagles media relations team got into an argument over how loudly other reporters were talking in the press box.

According to, McLane, who has covered the team for eight seasons, was escorted from Lincoln Financial Field during the second half of the Eagles' final regular-season game against the Dallas Cowboys.

Anne Gordon, the team's senior vice president of marketing, media, and communications and a former Inquirer managing editor, said McLane violated the press box's "well-understood code of conduct" while arguing with the Eagles employee.

Jeff McLane
The ejection brought a sharp rebuke from Inquirer Senior Vice President and Executive Editor Stan Wischnowski.

"We find the actions taken by the Eagles media relations staff to be extremely disappointing and unprofessional," Wischnowski said. "Jeff has spent eight years covering the Eagles exhaustively in a fair, accurate and thorough manner."

McLane said that during the game, Zach Groen, a member of the Eagles media relations team who also sits in the press box, told journalists sitting in McLane's row that they were speaking too loudly.

McLane said he and the other reporters snapped back at Groen. Gordon said McLane told Groen to "shut up," though McLane said he did not use those words.

McLane said after the initial sparring, he decided to talk about the issue with Groen in a room outside the press box.

About 15 minutes later, McLane said, an Eagles security employee returned with Gordon and told McLane he was being kicked out. Daily News columnist Marcus Hayes posted a picture of the encounter on Twitter.

Gordon said: "I asked for security to eject Jeff from our press box, a press box that has a standard code of behavior that every reporter understands and actually participates in endorsing and policing. . . so that people can watch the game and can follow and do their jobs carefully."

McLane said that while other members of the press box were objecting to his ejection, Gordon threatened to throw them out, as well.

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