Eagles coach Andy Reid talks for first time since son's death

LEHIGH UNIVERSITY - August 8, 2012

Reid talked after taking part in a morning walkthrough with the Eagles team and began his statement saying he is a 'humble man.'

"I'm a very humble man standing before you, a very humble man," Reid said. "I'm humble because of the outpouring (of support) not only from the media but from our football team and the fans. It was unbelievable. I'm not sure you ever think that many people care. A very humbling feeling. I know my son would feel the same way. I think that's all I can say on that part and keep it all together."

Garrett Reid was laid to rest on Tuesday following a funeral attended by approximately 900 people, including the Eagles and various other dignitaries from across the NFL.

While no cause of death has been released for Garrett Reid, Andy Reid said in a statement earlier this week that Garrett lost an ongoing eight year battle.

"It's a sad situation and it's one that my son has been battling for a number of years," Reid said. "Our family has been battling. It doesn't mean you stop loving your son, because that's not what you do. You love him and a lot of families deal with this type of thing. It's a sad situation."

Garrett Reid had struggled with drug problems for most of the past decade. Five years ago he was arrested on drug charges and spent the next few years in and out of jail and treatment.

Reid says his wife Tammy encouraged him to get back to work, to get back to a team that has become a second family for him.

"I'm a football coach, that's what I do. I know my son wouldn't want it any other way. I can't put it any more frank than that; he loved the Philadelphia Eagles, so I just know what he would want me to do," Reid said.

Reid's players were happy to welcome him back.

"It's really an honor to have him as our head coach. He's really a great guy, so whatever it is we have to do to keep him up in spirits and keep him going, that's what we're here for," wide receiver DeSean Jackson said.

"It's great to have Coach back. We've been looking forward to getting him back, but, obviously, we wanted him to take as much time as he needed, but his presence is warmly felt today," quarterback Michael Vick said.

The Eagles quarterback says he is personally dedicating the season to his coach.

Andy Reid says he takes strength from the support of his team and the knowledge that Garrett is now at peace.

Reid said he plans to coach the preseason opener against Pittsburgh on Thursday night which will air on 6abc.

When the Eagles take the field tomorrow, they will observe a moment of silence for Garrett Reid. They will also be wearing the intials "GR" on their helmets.

Coverage of the preseason game begins at 7:00 p.m. with the 6abc pregame show "The Battle Begins."

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