The Matchup: Eagles Vs. Bears

FIVE LEFTOVERS

1. On a random Thursday afternoon, this is what the gathering looks like at Cary Williams’ locker:




williamslocker

The Eagles' cornerback has become a media favorite. He has something to say on pretty much every topic and is generous with his time. That's great for reporters, but not-so-great for the guys who have lockers next to him: James Casey and Matt Tobin.

The tight end and offensive tackle often find reporters blocking their lockers after practice.

"Sometimes I gotta push guys out of the way, or sometimes I just gotta wait, go eat something and come back," Casey said with a laugh. "It’s amazing because there will be a huge group of reporters around him, and I can’t even get to my locker. I’ll go do whatever. I’ll come back and the big group will be gone, but there will be two other people talking to him. He’s really nice I guess with the media because he just keeps talking to them."

2. Kelly talked a lot last week about the mortar kicks working for the Eagles, but the squib kicks not so much. I asked Alex Henery to explain the difference.

"It’s just like you’re a golfer, you’re hitting a chip shot into the green," said Henery. "You’re just kind of hitting it up high in the air, putting it where you want. You kind of select your placement a little better that way. So that’s what a mortar kick is."

If the mortar kicks were working well against the Vikings, why did the Eagles then switch to the squibs?

"We were just trying to mix it up because when you start to do the same things over again, then they’ll move their alignments," Henery explained. "And with a mortar, they can hit a quick-hitter. You can kind of load up on one side, and then it wouldn’t be good. So you’ve gotta keep mixing it up and keep ‘em guessing so they can’t get their guy the ball that they want."

With Devin Hester coming to town and the Eagles potentially without two core special-teamers in Colt Anderson and Kurt Coleman, it's possible that Kelly employs the same strategy this week.

3. Now that he's 14 weeks in, Kelly was asked what the biggest difference has been between college and the NFL.

"I think the difference between the college and the pros is that every single week is a challenge," he said. "You can look at some of the games you've played in college and you may hype them up that way, but in the back of your mind, you know what the outcome of the game will be before it's played because there is such a big discrepancy. In this league, there is no discrepancy. You've got to come to play every week. The team that executes the best usually ends up the team that's on top."

While the going-back-to-college rumors are likely never going away, the competitiveness is something Kelly seems to enjoy at the NFL level.

"I think anybody that's a true competitor likes that," he said. "I think that's what this deal is all about. You don't want anything handed to you. You want the opportunity to go out and compete each day. That is the one thing to me that was attractive about the NFL. You play more games. You have more chances to compete. It’s always about the competition. If you ask any coach, the fun part’s the games. The fact that you get more games and the quality of the competition every single week is just going to test you. I think we all enjoy that."

4. Note to reporters: Don't use the term "control your own destiny" when talking to Kelly. A reporter tried that Thursday and was quickly corrected.

"You know you can't control destiny?" Kelly said. "Destiny is a predetermined set of events. Therefore if it's predetermined, you can't control it."

That's Professor Kelly, not Coach Kelly.

5. Kelly will be going up against one of his former players this week: Bears rookie Kyle Long. Long started his college career at Florida State as a pitcher, but was forced to leave school because of academic issues. He spent a night in jail after getting a DUI and had to find some way to get his life back on track. Long enrolled at Saddleback Junior College, started playing football and eventually got a shot from Kelly to transfer to Oregon.

"I think Kyle, when you met him and you understood what he had been through and he explained his story to you, I think he had learned a very, very valuable lesson," Kelly said. "I think he was on the road to working his way out of that. That is what impressed me with Kyle as a person. That is why I admire Kyle in terms of what he's been able to accomplish since then.

"He made a mistake. He admitted his mistake, and he's done everything in his life to correct that mistake. He should be commended for that. A lot of people in his situation could have [said], ‘Woe is me, and I've been dealt a really tough set of cards.’ I think he owned up to everything that he did, and I'm really proud of him."

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  • GEAGLE

    Cutler spoke in high praise about our defense, saying we are very hard to figure out all the odd blitzes, multiple fronts, and different coverages we use over the course of a game….”sometimes you have to fight crazy, with Crazy”-Cutler lol
    ….
    Can’t wait to see the INT he throws to Mr. DECEMBER!!!

  • GEAGLE

    We attack this defense by pounding the ball all game, play action to ERTZY abusing their weak safety!

    • cliff henny

      only Bears game i watched was MNF vs Dallas, and Murray should have run for 300. hope kelly has 1 series where it’s all shady, same play over and over, just blowing it up.

      • Adam

        Wait, were you always cliff henny? I thought it was henry

        • G_WallyHunter

          I’ve always seen henny

        • cliff henny

          always Henny. been called chris henry so many times, i answer to it.

        • EaglePete

          ha, Ive always read it as Henry also, strange.

          “My mind is playing tricks on me”

          • Andy124

            Do you sit alone in your four cornered room staring at candles?

          • EaglePete

            its got 5 corners…..wait maybe not

          • EaglePete

            oh duh, the song, my bad

          • Andy124

            lol. I thought you were deliberately referencing the song. :)

          • EaglePete

            I was, its been so long though, I only ever remember my favorite line….”this year halloween fell on a weekend….”

          • Andy124

            First verse as sung by Jason Garrett:

            At night I can’t sleep, I toss and turn
            My D can’t get a stop, visions of DBs gettin’ burned
            4 games in the month of December
            I’m paranoid, Jeruh’s finger’s on the trigger
            The fan’s are always stressin’ I ain’t call it right
            But Romo in Rocember is my plight
            See every time my eyes close
            I start sweating, and seeing Tony Romo’s throws

            Too many lyrics to do that crap with a rap song lol.

          • EaglePete

            well played, love it. Ya way too many lyrics, it would take a while. Even what you did took some effort, nice. If the boys lose it will mean xmas fell on a weekend for birds fans. Stealin divisions instead of bags. I wont even try to match up lyrics.

          • Richard Colton

            your talent is wasted here

          • Andy124

            lol. Thank you.

          • Joe from Easton

            Hvae you eevr raed a wrod srcabmle? The hmuan biran deos not raed eevry letetr in a wrod, geenarally olny the fsirt and lsat. Hecne why you wuold esaily see a siimlar wrod.

    • jabostick

      Agreed. I hope wee see some multiple TE sets and new formations. I imagine Chicago is just as aware about the run game and this might be a good one where Chip can get in their heads a bit with unique looks

    • Joe from Easton

      We NEED to run the ball and often. We can hang with the Bears in a shoot-out, but 2nd year QB’s are not immune to mistakes if the volume is high enough. I don’t want to see Foles have 40 pass attempts in this one. I’d love a nice 19/28 – 270 yds and a TD or two with zero Int’s along with Shady racking up 125 and two TD’s. He can easily do that against this Defense with 25 carries or more. We need to control the clock and keep the bears offense off of the field (yea right, right? haha).

  • TNA

    NFL.com’s Around The League posted their All-Pros and Mathis, Kelce and McCoy were the only unanimous Eagles picks. Foles, Peters and DeSean also got some votes. But goes to show you that in terms of execution and production, and not just talent, the Eagles’ OLine is the best in the league and the strength of this team.
    As always, the Eagles D needs to get off the field with turnovers and stops. And that starts with special teams giving the opponent the ball inside the 20 and forcing them to go 80+ yards. I expect Forte and Bennett to go off in this game because there’s going to be a priority placed on not letting anything go over the top. Kendricks and DeMeco will have their work cut out for them and I hope Kendricks stays focused all game.

    • cloisterwater

      The Eagles OLine sure didn’t play like tops in the league this past week. But I agree they are a top 2-3 NFL line.

      • Andy

        Agree, but O-line play is something that definitely can be determined by effort, and if there is one part of the team that fell into the trap against the Vikings it may have been the line. At least I’m hoping that’s the explanation.

  • cliff henny

    cant tell future, no idea if Foles will lead Eagles to McNabb like tenure, hopefully much more, or he’ll be JAG. pretty sure he wont fail because of IQ, hubris, excepting coaching and effort to improve mentally and physically without constant supervision. when kelly was hired, certainly wasnt the type of qb i was expecting, but Foles seems to get it, and a really easy guy to back.

  • calieagle

    Is that Sheridan lurking in the back of the reporter pack?

    • Chris

      I think i see Ruxin from The League too

  • Adam

    If Earl Wolff is healthy why would you rotate him in and out? He’s clearly better than Chung. Don’t even put him on the field.

    • Token

      Yea if Wolff can play Chung should never see the field as a Eagle again.

      • G_WallyHunter

        Give him kickoffs

    • southy

      Remember the 3-safety look is Davis’ brainchild, too. Don’t try to reason it out. You’ll just give yourself a headache.

  • Andy

    Anybody remember the trick kick-off return Andy Reid tried last year where Boykin caught the kick and faked a run out and then threw across the field to Riley Cooper, who had been hiding laying down in the endzone lettering? The TD return was called back because it was a forward pass, but we need to try that again!

    • G_WallyHunter

      Was thinking about this today actually, should definitely try it again, Chip can probably hit it better

      • Joe from Easton

        I loved that play. I wonder what kind of tweaking chip could do with it. I’m sure the blocking would be better and more disguised.

        • G_WallyHunter

          Yup, and I was thinking Boykin runs up a few yards more, get the gunners more out of allignment and make for damn sure it’s a backward pass.
          Ex. Boykin runs up to the 10 yd line, plants feet and tosses to Riley at the 5 (and if Boykin gets to the 10 and gets the ball off, chances are he takes a huge hit)
          then it’s perfected, the gunners should be way out of position if Boykin gets to the 10.

          This is all assuming they don’t see Riley and adjust to it haha

  • EaglePete

    Is Foles a “gamer”, does he have “ice in his veins” stay tuned to find out. That is huge in my book, more than all the stats. This franchise deserves that, its been a long time coming. Cmon Skins, cmon Cousins, Im dying to see the Cowboys sideline completely distraught. Put up a quick 14 on em and test their meddle.

  • Guest

    c

  • Crestfallen

    Top 15 WR duos in the NFC, ranked by yards (from reddit):

    • Richard Colton

      thats ugly. doesn’t even tell the whole story because they’re both so good. Dallas is #7, byt Dez is the only one who scares me. Same thing with Megatron. Somebody say something comforting about Fletcher & Williams in this matchup, please.

      • Andy124

        They struggle more with quicker guys than with bigger guys.

        • Daniel Spector

          Not true… J. Boykin had a field day against us when we played the Packers and he is pretty slow.

          • Andy124

            He did. And that would certainly mean my statement was not true if I had said that they only struggle against quick guys.

      • cloisterwater

        Neither of them are named Nnamdi?

      • G_WallyHunter

        They will both bounce back and shut down these two beasts without getting any PI calls.

        • Joe from Easton

          Now that is optimistic. I believe we can beat the bears, but shut down both of these guys AND not get a PI? Can I have some of whatever you’re drinking?

          • G_WallyHunter

            Hey, Colt just said to say something comforting, he didn’t mention anything had to be realistic.

            Imagine tho, if that happened, and that duo is held to say 100 combined and a TD? We can dream

          • Joe from Easton

            Indeed we can. If we held them to 150 and Cutler’s only two TD’s then I’d even call it a win, haha.

      • theycallmerob

        Kempski broke that list down, too.

        Turns out the Eagles have played, or will play, the top 8 on that list. Results are mixed, but it’s not end-of-the-world bad.

        http://www.philly.com/philly/blogs/red_zone/The-Eagles-have-plenty-of-practice-at-facing-top-WR-duos-results-are-a-mixed-bag.html

    • Andy124

      I was totally confused at first glance. So in case anybody else is as blind as I am, just wanted to put the NFC in bold. List does not include AFC duos.

  • GiveMeABreak

    If we beat Chicago, it will most likely be in a shootout. We’ll see if the train wreck that is the Skins can pull it together and beat the ‘Boys but it is not looking good. The game in Dallas is likely to be for everything. It will be good not to have our QB play the air guitar on the way to the field. I think Shady wakes the echoes of Wilbert and beats the boys, however. Nick just needs not to lose it. Davis has earned his pay this year getting the performances he has from a group that lacks so many important pieces.

  • nicksaenz1

    Patrick Chung has been “in a little bit of a slump” for the better part of his career.

  • EaglePete

    Tidbits from a motivated Redskins team.

    “You can probably guess what the Redskins would like to see happen, can’t you? “It’s a great opportunity to go into a rivalry game and get a win and give our fan base something to feel good about,” Cousins said. “So there’s a lot to play for.”

    “London Fletcher’s last home game with the Redskins. The 38-year-old linebacker announced on Wednesday that he’s “99-percent” certain this will be his final NFL season.

    Despite suffering a one-point loss in his season debut as a starter last Sunday, Kirk Cousins increased his trade value with three-touchdown performance in Atlanta that included directing a clutch last-minute scoring drive. But if he’s truly ready to be a full-time starter in the NFL, his next challenge is being consistent from week to week. The good news for Cousins? The injury-plagued Cowboys own the NFL’s worst defense. And they’ve also lost back-to-back games against backup quarterbacks (Chicago’s Josh McCown and Green Bay’s Matt Flynn). Redskins Coach Mike Shanahan said Cousins will be better prepared against the Cowboys. “I know he’s enjoying the repetition that he’s gotten [in practice] and he gets to work with the first unit again,” Shanahan said. “You can see he’s more comfortable this week than he was last week.”

  • theycallmerob

    good to see Foles comes in for workouts and a tape session on his day off. great attitude all around. glad he didn’t enter the league with a lot of drama like Cam did, or Johnny Manziel probably will.

  • EaglePete

    can you imagine the vibe at the linc if the skins win….oh boy

    • G_WallyHunter

      Didn’t even really think of that, jeeze, I bet the atmosphere would throw the Bears way off, some Seattle 12th man s$!t lol

      Someone mentioned yesterday, Fletcher’s last skins game at home tomorrow, let’s hope the vibe at FedEx field makes skins win and creates the Linc vibe lol

      • EaglePete

        not to mention the drinking involved pre-game, look out Cutler. We will force that sorry pout face. Im pumped already, its a long wait til Sun night. Lets Fly Eagles Fly….havent been this excited for Eagles football in years.

  • John J. King

    I hope Chip makes them put 8 in the box and then DJax them into oblivion.

    • Jason

      You mean, like the Vikings game

  • jon h

    I know I’m beating the dead horse here, but it still amazes me how insightful these articles are vs. the others out there. I was reading some of the other coverage, and it’s all opinionated and negative. You guys really go deep into the fabric of the team and even your opinions (like the prediction on how many quarters the starters will play) is very different. If nothing else, you can tell by the reader reviews how valuable your articles are, because most of the responses (usually 20+) focus on the content rather than criticism. Well done again fellas.

  • Clamdigger

    Is this article mistitled?

  • Ryan

    This matchup is better for our corners and safeties than against the Vikings and Broncos. We have big, slow cornerbacks who do better against big receivers who aren’t necessarily as quick/fast speed guys like Jennings, Patterson, and Demarius Thomas.