December 18, 2013 |
CHIP KELLY'S answer to people who questioned going for it on fourth-and-half-a-yard from his own 24 in the third quarter Sunday has been, basically exasperation - Kelly feels that with this offensive line and LeSean McCoy, if you can't get half a yard, you might as well pack it in, field position be damned. How do the guys entrusted with gaining that half a yard, who didn't get it on Sunday, feel about that? "I think he's absolutely right," center Jason Kelce said. "We should be able to pick up fourth-and-half-a-yard every time we run a play.
December 17, 2013 |
MINNEAPOLIS - One loss after five wins in a row shouldn't lead you to question nearly everything about a football team. But the Eagles fell so grotesquely yesterday, 48-30, to the Minnesota Vikings, did so many things wrong, against such an unassuming opponent - if it isn't time to panic, it surely is time to question a lot of what we thought we'd learned since the previous day like this one, Sept. 29 at Denver. There was a lot of tiptoeing around the "letdown" or "trap game" concept in the postgame locker room, but left tackle Jason Peters kept both feet firmly planted on the tape-strewn carpet.
December 14, 2013 |
Jason Peters says there is no pain in his right Achilles tendon - no soreness, no twinge of discomfort when he digs his foot into the dirt, nothing. He tore it twice in less than two months last year, missed the entire 2012 season, and after two surgeries, after losing 25 pounds to shave his weight to 320 and ease the strain on the tendon, with the help of a daily stretching routine and with his 32d birthday approaching next month, he is again starting for the Eagles at left tackle, is again among the NFL's best at his position, and he feels as if he'd never been injured at all. "The way I feel right now," he said, "I've got at least five in me - five years, five good years.
December 13, 2013 |
IN THE LATE nineties, Jeff Stoutland spent 3 years as an assistant on Paul Pasqualoni's coaching staff at Syracuse. Coached tight ends for 2 years and the offensive line for a year. Also was Pasqualoni's recruiting coordinator for all 3 years. Both of them favored athletic offensive linemen who could move over slow, big-bellied road-graders. "Coach Pasqualoni would say, 'You know what? Let's go find tight ends and defensive linemen and let's make them our offensive linemen.' " Stoutland said.
December 10, 2013 |
RESILIENCE somehow defeated hypothermia and malaise and, ultimately, resulted in a happy delirium. Brent Celek slid in the snow 10 yards shy of a sure touchdown then giddily ran back to the huddle, the game in the bag. Lane Johnson flopped on his back, looking like a snow angel in the end zone. Over 3 1/2 hours of whiteout insanity, the Eagles turned a nightmare before Christmas into their own wintry fairy land. "Most fun game I've ever been involved with," Jason Kelce said.
December 6, 2013 |
MICHAEL VICK twice compiled passer ratings of 100 for three games in a row. He began the 2010 season at 101.9, 108.0 and 119.2. In doing so he stole the starting job from Kevin Kolb. He finished the lost 2011 season at 107.0, 107.9 and 104.1, a meaningless run but one that supplied hope for the next season; a meritless hope, as it turned out. The Eagles were 5-1 in those six games. The common denominator: Vick played behind healthy, cohesive starting offensive lines. Nick Foles now has compiled passer ratings of at least 100 for four games in a row: 158.3, 149.3, 104.3 and 112. In doing so, he stole the starting job from Vick.
December 2, 2013 |
The Eagles offensive line includes the three-man "Elderly Council," a "secretary" who is the line's leader, and the "little brother" who is the unit's most promising player. These characters account for perhaps the biggest difference between the 2012 Eagles, who braced for a head coach's dismissal last December, and this year's team, which is in playoff contention entering Sunday's game against the Arizona Cardinals. Left tackle Jason Peters, left guard Evan Mathis, and right guard Todd Herremans form the Elderly Council.
November 19, 2013 |
BRANDON BOYKIN made the play of the game, intercepting Robert Griffin III with 32 seconds left, but the play that set up the play of the game was made by Eagles punter Donnie Jones. With 3 minutes and 37 seconds remaining in yesterday's 24-16 Eagles victory over the visiting Washington Redskins, Jones went back to punt from the Birds' 26, just after a first-down ruling on a Nick Foles third-down run was reversed by replay. (Have there ever been more calls made on replay than there were in this game?
November 15, 2013 |
CHIP KELLY said yesterday that his kick-return setup is a "fluctuating situation," as the team tries to determine how quickly new return man and wide receiver Brad Smith can fit into the Eagles' schemes. "We're going to get a chance today to see Brad, how he fits in as a returner," Kelly said. "We also can use Bryce [Brown] back there, [in addition to Brandon Boykin]. It's a fluctuating situation. " Kelly also kept open the possibility of going back to Damaris Johnson, if Johnson is active.
November 14, 2013 |
THE ONLY Eagle to manage a touchdown at Lincoln Financial Field since September seems very likely to be in the lineup Sunday against the Redskins. But it might be a mistake to pin your hopes for an end to the 10-game home losing streak on the scoring prowess of Najee Goode, who clambered into the Linc end zone with a blocked punt against the Giants Oct. 27. After entering last Sunday's game in Green Bay when Mychal Kendricks went down, the second-year reserve linebacker saw a sure pick-six interception go through his hands.