A day after burying his oldest son, Eagles coach Andy Reid was back with the team.

Reid returned to Lehigh University on Wednesday to conduct the mock game in preparation for Thursday's preseason opener against the Pittsburgh Steelers at Lincoln Financial Field.

"I know my son wouldn't want it any other way," Reid said during a press conference at Lehigh that was broadcast by Comcast. "I can't put it any more frank than that."

He had been away from training camp since Sunday morning, when 29-year-old Garrett Reid was found dead in his dorm room at Lehigh. On Monday, Reid released a statement indicating that his son's ongoing drug problems were factor in his death. On Tuesday, Reid, his wife Tammy and his four other children attended Garrett's funeral at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Broomall, Pa.

More than 900 people showed up to pay their respects, including NFL commissioner Roger Goodell, New England coach Bill Belichick, Baltimore coach John Harbaugh, Cleveland president Mike Holmgren and interim New Orleans coach Joe Vitt. Saints owner Tom Benson chartered a plane to fly Belichick and Vitt to the service. The two teams are practicing together.

"I don't know how to explain the outpouring of love and support," Reid said. "It helps build strength in your family. I didn't expect that at all."

Reid said he made the drive back to Lehigh on Wednesday morning and spoke with the team before they took the field for the walkthrough.

There will be a moment of silence for Garrett Reid before Thursday's game and players will wear "G.R." stickers on their helmets.

"I had the opportunity to address the team, which I needed to do," Reid said. "The earthly emotions you have, you deal with the good and the bad. That's part of life. ... These kids are worried and I felt it was important that I talk to them. I tried to be as candid as I possibly could about the situation. We're going to cry a little bit, laugh a little bit, cry some more and laugh some more. This is life. This is a challenge that's been presented.

"It's a horrible thing (to lose a son). I can't put it any other way. But Garrett's in a place of peace now. He's at peace and he's in great hands. For all the trials and tribulations he had here, he's in a better place and that comforts us."

 

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