Banged Up ‘Boys

USATSI_7622237_168380503_lowres
The injury concerns go beyond the quarterback position for the Cowboys this week.

Star receiver Dez Bryant reportedly tweaked his back in practice on Christmas Day. More from PFT.

Wide receiver Dez Bryant tweaked his back at practice on Wednesday and earned a limited designation from the team for his work during the session. Calvin Watkins of ESPNDallas.com reports that the team does not believe it is anything serious, but Bryant’s got a history of back issues that have hampered him over the years.

Bryant was able to practice Thursday.

Starting middle linebacker Sean Lee has been ruled out of Sunday night’s game, per Adam Schefter.


"Obviously one of the top linebackers in the game," said Chip Kelly. "In nine games he has 99 tackles and four interceptions. And seeing him up close and personal when we played him in October, he was all over the field. He's as good of a linebacker as there is in this league. But you have tape on what their defense is like without Sean in there because he's been out for a little bit here."

Lee has been out of the lineup since suffering a neck injury against Chicago on December 9.  His replacement, DeVonte Holloman (hip), was listed as a full participant at Wednesday's practice.

Meanwhile, signs continue to point to Tony Romo sitting this one out.

Per ESPN Dallas, cornerback Morris Claiborne (hamstring) and DeMarcus Ware (back) practiced in full.

Like the Minnesota game a couple weeks back, the Eagles face a team that will likely be missing some critical pieces. Kelly doesn't buy the theory that the Eagles took the Vikings lightly that day, and doesn't anticipate any fall-off from his team this week based on who's in and who's out.

"I know this team is not going to fall for the banana in the tailpipe trick. We're not concerned with that stuff," said Kelly.

As for the Eagles, Earl Wolff (knee) participated in practice. Julian Vandervelve tweaked his back this week and did not practice Thursday. That is of some significance because he is the backup center to Jason Kelce. Evan Mathis could slide over in a pinch, and Todd Herremans was spotted practicing some snaps Thursday.

Colt Anderson (knee) was the only other Eagle besides Vandervelde who did not practice.

[Update:] Wolff was listed as a full participant, but sounded uncertain about his ability to play following Thursday's session.

Evan Mathis missed practice Thursday because of an illness. He is expected to be OK for Sunday. Brandon Boykin (hip), Trent Cole (hand), Kurt Coleman (hamstring), Lane Johnson (back) and Mychal Kendricks (knee) practiced in full.

  • pjcostello

    Is anyone else impressed that Chip Kelly rattled off Sean Lee’s stats?? Talk about a guy who is PREPARED!!!

    • DirtyWaters

      I’m more impressed by his Beverly Hills Cop reference.

  • theycallmerob

    no sympathy. no mercy.

    • GEAGLE

      Cobra Kai style :)

  • Will

    Banged up Dallas or not The Eagles need to Win…Execute Execute Execute Birds…Go Eagles!

    • OregonDucker

      The Eagles will execute with the fine precision of a Swiss watch and the ferocity of Attila the Hun.

      • GEAGLE

        The cowboys will be able to file bullying charges after what we do to them In their house on Sunday night….I envision the football equivalent of killing their men, raping their woman, and burning down their Village…FIGURATIVELY SPEAKING so don’t get all Butt hurt and in a censoring mood..really sucks to not be able to joke without having to worry about someone acting like a fool about it..

        No, GEAGLE does NOT condone physical Violence of any sort to civilians….

  • Joe from Easton

    This is the week where the Eagles develop a killer instinct in a personal match-up. Last week started that in my opinion, but to come out and stomp on the throats of Dallas’ back ups, instead of playing down like we’ve seen so many times, would go a long way to prepare these guys for playoff success in my book. Chicago was a good team coming in and the birds would have to give them their best to beat them. This game is a team that’s not at their best and they need to take this opportunity to assert dominance over a lesser opponent because that’s what championship teams do.

    • GEAGLE

      Absolutely…not playing down to the level of our competition is the next step for developing into a contender, It helps that our leader has a blood thirsty taste for 50poimt BCS style BEAT DOWNS..it also helps that we were just humbled by the Vikings and that the entire season hangs in the balance of the Dallas game…I get the sense that our boys aren’t ready for their season to end yet..

      A win is a win…don’t care what it looks like or who it comes against. I don’t look at this game as a GUARENTEED win,,I don’t think that exsists in the NFL. Kyle Orton and the Cowboys could end our season if we don’t bring it!

      With that said, I do believe that if we bring our A game, and the cowboys bring their A game, we win this game! I believe coaching I and preperation at this level is crucial..while I understand that in reality we can lose this game, this isn’t the week that I’m ok with squeezing out a win.

      We can NEVER go into a game more motivated, and time for Growth is OVER!! This is the time, to put it all together and bring our best. At our best, this should NOT be some close 3 point win. If we play down to their sloppy, Undisciplined, under coached level, I will be worried. Winning is usually enough for me, but this week I want to see us make a statement on the road, and put the rest of the NFC on notice!

      The bears,scored on this Dallas defense on every possession…a win is usually all that matters,but this week, HOW we WIN, ii believe will tell us a lot!!!

      • Joe from Easton

        Well said. I want to see them curb stomp Dallas into next year. Nothing is guaranteed, but I think a loss means we showed up and shot ourselves in our proverbial feet all day.

        • GEAGLE

          That’s exactly it…for us to lose, it means we found ways to lose this game, and that would really really sting considering we have been so Disciplined and well coached…

          When was the last time someone actually beat us when we played up to our potential?

          • Joe from Easton

            I don’t know… we gave away the SD game, NY and Dallas; we got Barkley’d, Denver was just better, Minne was shot in the foot, and KC was another game we hurt ourselves in. I mean the NFL is what it is and those are the common reasons teams lose games, but the Birds firing on all cylinders can contend with anyone.

          • GEAGLE

            I would probably say Denver…they were flat out better! and while we didn’t play anywhere as good as we did these last tw months, we haven’t gown into the team we are now yet at that time..

            I really really really hate that giants Matt Barkley game. It bothers me that those pathetic giants have a win over us.

            What I really wish for is to be able to play KC now!!!

          • Joe from Easton

            Yea, I’ve just wiped that Giants game out of my memory. Thanks for reminding me, a$$.

            If we played KC right now, we’d beat them by 10. Denver was the better team, today I think the Eagles could contend with them.

            To be honest, the scariest team to me is Seattle or Carolina. I don’t want face one of those dual threat guys in a win or go home game, but more so, those defense are just plain good. The Eagles can compete with them, but they’re damn good.

          • OregonDucker

            Don’t worry about Seattle or Carolina. Chip knows Carroll and Newton. His gameplan for either will be a winner. Chip is hitting his stride in the NFL and so is his team. Every potential Eagles opponent should be concerned. Chip teams are scary good.

          • Joe from Easton

            I’m growing more and more confident that you’re right. By year two or three, we should be a juggernaut of epic proportions!

          • GEAGLE

            Chip certainly got his revenge on Nick fairly! ramming 200 plus rushing yards,up his fat ass

            Cam is NEXT!!

        • knighn

          Exactly. Leave all those little ‘boys on IR for 2014.

  • Beastmode

    Bring it.

    • Scott J

      Um, the Persians beat the Greeks.

      • Nobody Knows Nothin

        um, ever heard of battle of plataea? greeks destroyed the persian army and ran them out of europe.

        • Scott J

          um, ever heard of Thermopylae? That’s what the movie 300 was about.

      • Johnny Domino

        “Forget it, he’s rolling”

        • EaglefaninAZ

          Upvote for the Animal House reference.

  • Mikeq

    A little off topic, but I read an AP article today that said for Philadelphia fans, beating Dallas was an “obsession”. I’m 40 so I can confirm that was definitely the case all through the 80s and into most of the 90s. But to me, somewhere along the way the Giants became the much more desired win rather than the Cowboys (not counting this week of course since it’s for the division).

    I’m curious what everyone here feels. Will you up vote this comment if you feel the Giants are the team you want to beat most every year, down vote it if you still enjoy beating the Cowboys the most? I don’t think I can up vote my own comment, but I vote Giants.

    Edit: I can up vote my own comments. I’ll need to remember that…

    • theycallmerob

      f*ck dallas.

      • GEAGLE

        You sir are a poet and a scholar

    • reb

      Don’t know that I can pick. “Beat ______ [Dallas, Giants, Redskins]” all fits.

      • Mikeq

        That’s funny, I didn’t even think about putting the Redskins in there. I always felt Redskins-Eagles was the least of the NFC East rivalries; just don’t think they’ve been good at the same time, in the Super Bowl era at least. But you’re right- knocking them silly a few times the last couple years has been a lot of fun!

        • reb

          True, though for me I have a running bet with a friend who’s a Skins fan. Makes it more interesting than it might otherwise be.

        • theycallmerob

          it’s definitely an “older” rivalry, if you will, since the redskins have been so bad for so long. someone above also said the same thing re: the cowboys, since for most teenage/early-20s fans they didn’t have to suffer through America’s team BS.
          On that same note, I still have a hatred of the cardinals from their divisional days.

          • Mikeq

            I think Bruce Arians whining re-awoke some dormant Cards hatred from me. Hopefully they miss playoffs and have to stew about the allegedly terrible officiating all offseason.

    • GEAGLE

      I don’t really know how to answer this..
      ..
      I know that the week of a cowboys game I despise them, and watching us smash them is one of the most enjoyable things in football..but I don’t respect them, I don’t worry about them..to me they are clowns, a bunch of baffoons..
      ..
      In the infamous words of Herman Edwards (now this only works if you picture these words being said in that ultra hyper,Herman Edwards Twang/Accent):

      ” They got the Big gaudy cowboy hats, they got the big, flashy, shiney belt buckle….but they ain’t got NO cattle” lol

      I respect the,giants much more as an opponent. I remember being a kid, being Eliminated by them in the early 90′s because of a field goal”, the two recent Super Bowl wins……so it’s two different types of rivalries…

      • Mikeq

        That was part of why I asked everyone. If you were say, a 20 year old Eagle fan, you would really only know the Cowboys as a dysfunctional mess for the most part. Wondered if those fans really cared about them that much. Two different types of rivalries might be a good way of putting it- Giants more recent success, but everyone young and old knows and hates the Cowboys history and yearly overhype.

    • pkatz

      I have much more dislike for Dallas than the other two teams, but I think that the team I most want to beat is the one that’s the best at the time. In the 90s that was the Cowboys but the Giants have won Superbowls more recently -plus my in-laws are Giants fans :)

      • GEAGLE

        Well said

      • Mikeq

        Yeah, probably should have asked who do you have the most irrational hate for, rather than who you want to beat. Stands to reason most of us would rather beat whoever our biggest competition is. Since I despise New Yorkers, any sports-related misery for them brings a smile to my face.

    • Joe from Easton

      The Cowboys are absolutely the team that I loathe the most. Everything about them makes me sick to my stomach, except when they lose.

    • BlindChow

      I enjoy beating whichever team is doing the best, because I love crushing their hope.

    • MattE

      I would say Dallas still cause in my opinion Eli’s 2 superbowl wins occured due to 2 of the best catches in Superbowl history. PLAIN STUPID LUCK, ELI IS NOT PEYTON. Plus NY fans i can deal with, its Dallas fans not from Texas that i absolutely despise.

      Me: “Oh you’re a Dallas fan?”
      Dallas Fan from PA/NJ/NY: “Yeah”
      Me: “Ever been to Texas?”
      Dalls Fan from PA/NJ/NY: “No”
      Me: “Get away from me…”

      • airgreen7

        I hate the “just because” dallas fans. Band wagon fans, so to speak. Can’t name five players on the team, maybe strugle with two. Just like the team colors or the star on the helmet….yeah, I got family members like that. I can’t wait to crush them(DALLAS) this weekend. Sunday nite can’t get here soon enough.

    • OregonDucker

      “America’s Team” is a media darling. Their players think their sh*t don’t stink. Their fans think the Eagles in particular are low-life scum. Cowboy fans are insufferably elitist and a$$holes.

      Their team deserves to be crushed and humiliated. 60 – 10 Eagles, because the Eagles 3rd string only scored twice!

      • BHOtheLiar

        If the Cowboys are playing Al-Queda, I’m rooting for the scum sucking terrorists.

        • Mikeq

          Ha! So I suppose I’ll put you down for one Cowboys vote…

          • fansince’67

            I’m a lifelong Birds fan, but have lived in Austin, TX since 1999. Make it up for the Dallas game most years – was at the Pickle-Juice Game the first year we moved here which was awesome. I’m heading to the game Sunday and can’t wait to kick the snot out of the Cowgirls. Usually I’m pretty nervous as divisional games can go sideways pretty easily – but I really feel like the franchises are headed in opposite directions right now. Going to enjoy this one and will invariably hear about Dallas’ five rings on the way to the parking lot after the game and not the 30 points we beat them by this weekend.

      • theycallmerob

        you’ve come a long way this season, oregonducker. Spoken like a long-time philadelphian.

        • OregonDucker

          Thanks for the complement!

    • Richard Colton

      2 types of Cowboys fans in my experience. 1st are the locals; I ran into these guys a lot when I lived in Lawton OK. The locals live for three types of football: HS, College, Pro. and can’t tell the difference between the three. It’s not that they’re stupid, just football stupid. Seriously, the same guy who can break down the dynamics of a successful NASCAR pit crew will INSIST Joey Galloway was a surefire hall of fame WR.

      2nd type are the “America’s Team” fans. Never been to Dallas, most of them couldn’t find Dallas on a map of Texas if you spotted them Fort Worth. When asked, they’ll lie and say they follow the Cowboys because of a childhood fascination with the “Star” or an cool uncle (most of them don’t know their fathers) loved the team. The truth is that they’re all insecure losers.

      The hate is so real that this town deified a coach who never won anything because of a bounty on a kicker and a fake kneeldown.

      • Beastmode

        Most of me don’t know their fathers–ha!

    • James Hathaway

      So, up until this year, I’ve always hated the Giants more than Dallas. I started watching the Eagles consistently in 2000 (I was 15), so the Giants had our number then. The Cowboys have been a mess, and with the proximity difference (EDIT: I was from South Jersey, now live in PA.), I just hated the Giants more.

      Now, the Giants are a mess with holes everywhere, the Cowboys got a lucky win over us, and I’m practically salivating for kickoff. I love Sunday night football, but this is TORTURE waiting for this game to get going.

      So, I really have no idea. I’ve been taught to hate Dallas, but I learned to hate the Giants more. I would say it’s equal amounts of hate, far and away more towards them than the Redskins.

    • Spooonius

      For me it goes like this. From most to least hated:

      1. Cowboys
      2. Redskins
      3. Giants
      4. Cardinals (I’ve been a fan for a long time)

      • Richard Colton

        wow. so Neil Lomax ruined your childhood too, huh? F the Cards. they always got off easy.

        • Johnny Domino

          I see your Neil Lomax and raise you Jim Hart.

      • theycallmerob

        well played

      • Maggie

        Being on the West Coast, I have to include one more NFL team I have hated for several years, for several reasons. Oakland. As far as I’m concerned, every QB in the league can score 7 touchdowns on them every week.

      • Mikeq

        Oh I definitely remember the St. Louis Cardinals as well. They are certainly 4th though. Breathed a sigh of relief when it was them who moved to Phoenix and not the Leonard Tose-owned Eagles. Any younger fan who complains about Jeff Lurie should look up Tose or “the guy from France”, and count their blessings.

    • J Bird

      I feel like the cow bots root for the death star because it’s an accepted symbol of power that people living outside of America’s birth place don’t challenge. So to me, a victory over the cowboys is not just a “W”, but a reenactment of the Liberty Bell being rung in defiance of the powers that be.

    • UKEagle99

      Its marginal but Dallas is the bigger turd. I was brought up on Buddy Ryan so I blame him.

    • Maggie

      Just a quick note. I once lived in a city which had an absolute hatred for a nearby city with teams in the same conference. A hatred which was returned. Then one year my city’s team WON EVERYTHING! Strangely, that nearby city didn’t matter any more. To us, they became just another opponent. They still hated, but nobody cared.

      • Andy124

        San Fran vs. LA Rams?

        • Maggie

          It was a different sport, although the 2 cities competed in EVERYTHING. Goes back to the 80′s. Edmonton Oilers won 5 Stanley Cups in 7 years. Calgary hated!! I loved it at the time.

          • Andy124

            Ahhhh. I knew you were Canadian, but I wasn’t sure that was always the case.

    • Johnny Domino

      And the Cowboys will try to tell you that their rival is the Skins.

      Lyin’ sacks, I tell you.

      • Maggie

        Somewhat interesting references to body parts? Hmm. Are you stating your preference for where the boot should be planted on Dallas?

        • Johnny Domino

          Pictured you in heels as you typed that.

          • Maggie

            Haven’t worn heels for a while, but boots were a necessity in a job where some of my coworkers felt emasculated, I guess. I was just making a living, supporting 7 people, but a few of my male colleagues had a problem with it. Their problem, not mine, lol.

          • Andy124

          • Andy124

            Like this?

          • Johnny Domino

            Photoshop a logo on that and you’ve got a winner.

    • Saskatoon Raps Fan

      As a 22 yr old fan I’ve gotta say I hate the giants a lot more. I can’t stand Eli or coughlin. I can’t believe they lucked into 2 superbowls. As for the cowboys they’ve always been a huge joke to me, albeit a hilarious one. To me having romo in the division is the equivalent of a gift that just keeps on giving. I eagerly anticipate his next hilarious choke job. Although let’s give him some credit, Romo does have an elite skill….no qb is better at snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.

      I can see how older fans than I would hate the cowboys more tho

  • knighn

    I wish there was a way for the all of the poor little Cowboys to get all healthy again… only for the Eagles to go in and put them all in the hospital!
    E-A-G-L-E-S, EAGLES!!!
    Bring it, little bitches!

    • GEAGLE

      Are you trying to seduce me? :)

      • knighn

        I swing an axe… but I don’t swing it that way!

      • UKEagle99

        Would be nice to see Nick sprint to the star and stand arms spread after his 1st (of many) TDs!

        • Beastmode

          Sprint, huh? Time stands still when he runs :)

          • UKEagle99

            It’s all relative ;-)

  • OregonDucker

    The following is a little dated, Nov. , but you might enjoy it.

    “Watching Game Film with Chip Kelly.” http://smartfootball.com/coaching/watching-game-film-with-chip-kelly#sthash

  • Explorer51

    Should we be worried about Wolff’s ability to play with pain? It seems that he’s cleared for full practice but he seems to be really reluctant to commit to play. For a critical game, wouldn’t you think a rookie would be out to prove that he can go?

    • Clamdigger

      Maybe because he knows that as soon as they see him hesitating and favoring that knee they’re going to put Chung in? Why would you want to risk further damaging an already sprained ligament?

  • Joe from Easton

    Just for gigs, I looked up the numbers since week 9…

    Foles: 134/201 (67%), 2,006 Yds (9.98 YPA), 19TD/2 Int, 2 rushing TD’s, QBR of 126.5

    Manning: 188/298 (63%), 2,292 Yds (7.7 YPA), 22 TD/4 Int, 0 rushing TD’s, QBR 105.72

    Foles is the hotter hand and the hottest QB in the league. Let’s go win on Sunday Night!!!!!!

  • Cranky Caucasian

    Big love for the Beverly Hills Cop reference by Chip. Keep thinking I can’t love this guy any more, and he keeps making me do it anyway.

  • Adam

    Sean Lee injury is massive. He was a big reason the Eagles O couldn’t do a lot of what they wanted to do last matchup.

  • Scott J

    I hope Wolff doesn’t have Bynum Syndrome.

  • UKEagle99

    Tony had an epijural? Congrats! Was it a boy or a girl?

    • Maggie

      Speaking as someone who gave birth several times, I laughed out loud, between groans, so to speak.