Despite the fact that England is on the verge of a fifth-place finish in the Six Nations, number eight Sam Simmonds has endorsed head coach Eddie Jones.
If England loses to France in Paris and other results in Cardiff and Dublin go against them, Jones and his team will finish one spot ahead of Italy in the standings.
That would be a repeat of last year’s Six Nations performance, prompting heavy questions from the media about the head coach’s job security.
However, England has received some credit over the weekend for their valiant performance with 14 men against Ireland, with Simmonds rallying around Jones.
“Eddie’s experience in the game is amazing. When he talks, boys listen,”
“I feel like as a group, probably in this campaign more than any other, we’ve come together as a squad.”
“Also, we’re not just playing for England, we’re playing for the coaches. It’s big to see that and how much confidence we have in what Eddie does and in how we play the game at the weekend.”
“He’s improved my game and I wouldn’t say there is a player who has left camp who hasn’t improved and taken on board the things that Eddie’s said.”
If England loses to France, Jones will face more pressure as another Six Nations passes without a credible title threat.
However, Simmonds, who is vying for a starting spot at number eight alongside Alex Dombrandt, maintains that a strategy has been devised to stop the oncoming juggernaut.
“Against a huge French pack, you don’t want to be going too high against them. It’s something we talked about this week – our chop tackles need to be good and our second man needs to be good to wrap the ball up as well because they love to offload,”