Courtesy of USA Today
By the time Sunday night rolls around, the Cowboys will have had 16-plus days to stew over their embarrassing Thanksgiving loss to the Eagles. And because their Week 14 game against Chicago was played on a Thursday, they were allotted nine days to try and come up with ways to ensure it doesn’t happen again.
In order to change their fortunes they will have to have to do better against LeSean McCoy, who busted loose for a season-high 159 yards on 25 carries (6.4 avg.). The Eagles finished with 256 rushing yards in all en route to their 33-10 win.
A heavy-hearted McCoy had a much harder time this past week against Seattle, rushing for 50 yards on 17 carries (2.9 avg.) while losing a key fumble to open the second half. McCoy thinks Rod Marinelli will apply some of Seattle’s tactics to try and limit the Eagles’ ground attack this week.
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There’s “V-Doc” (Vinny Curry) and “Fletch” (Fletcher Cox) and “Swamp” (Cedric Thornton, given to him by Jim Washburn who thought he was built like the Swamp Thing). Then there’s “Wado” (Wade Keliikipi) and “B-Bair” (Brandon Bair) and “T-Hart” (Taylor Hart). Those are some of the nicknames you might hear bouncing off the walls inside the defensive line room.
There is also a nickname for the group that the players have embraced in recent weeks.
“We’re ‘The Nobodies,’” said Cox. “That’s us.” Read more »
Photo Credit: Jeff Fusco
Here’s a roundup of what the national media are saying about the Eagles this week. Read more »
Photo Credit: Jeff Fusco
There is still a major hurdle to clear, but Nick Foles is showing signs of progress.
The quarterback has been increasing his activity during training sessions of late, running and throwing and catching passes on the side as the rest of the team practices around him. This week he has jumped into some individual drills, like the one below from earlier today. Read more »
Kirby Lee / USA Today
On Saturday night, there’s a pretty good chance that Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota will win the Heisman Trophy.
To the man who recruited him and coached him for two years, that’s not really a surprise.
“I had nothing to do with Marcus. When he was a freshman, I remarked, ‘This kid’s gonna win the Heisman,’ ” said Chip Kelly. “He’s a special young man, and he’s a hell of a football player, and he deserves it. But I don’t think it was any impact that I had. The type of kid that he is, he had an impact on everybody that got to coach him. I’m sure Mark Helfrich and Scott Frost will tell you the same thing. He’s just a special young man and very deserving of the award.” Read more »
Tony Romo did not play a clean game on Thanksgiving as the Eagles handed the Cowboys a 33-10 loss.
He went 18-for-29 for 199 yards, no touchdowns and two interceptions. But most notably, he went down on a couple occasions when pressure was near, something that has been rare for him throughout his career.
“Oh, we’ll see a different offense,” said Eagles defensive coordinator Billy Davis. “We’ll see a healthier Tony Romo. We’ll see a healthier team, a team that’s got plenty of time to prepare for us, including a game with us under our belt. But we also have that time. It will be a little different. Tony Romo will look completely different against us than he did against Chicago. He looked a lot healthier in Chicago, and now 10 more days of recovery, I think we are going to get more of the healthy Tony Romo.”
Maybe Davis just wanted to make it clear to his players that taking the Cowboys lightly would be a mistake. Maybe he wanted to drive home the message that the performance in the first game will have no impact on this one.
Or perhaps he was saying how he really felt. Read more »
A single response from Pat Shurmur Tuesday explained a lot about the Eagles’ ugly offensive performance against the Seahawks.
“They played exactly… they did less on defense than we expected,” Shurmur said. “They played single-safety middle like we expected. They played a combination of man and zone, and on third down it was very similar until we got in third-and-long and you saw split safeties. They did less on defense than what we had planned for.”
In some ways, what Pete Carroll does on defense is similar to what Chip Kelly does on offense. It’s not about volume. It’s about finding an identity, having answers for every situation, getting a lot of reps and allowing players to make plays in a scheme that they know inside and out. Read more »
Photo Credit: Jeff Fusco
It is not all that common to be playing a division opponent twice within the span of three weeks, so many of the questions posed to Chip Kelly Wednesday were about the potential obstacles or unique challenges that such a situation presents.
The head coach didn’t hold anything back the first time around in anticipation of this matchup, he said, and doesn’t intend on drastically changing his approach the second time around.
“Just go play. I think you can paralyze yourself by trying to overanalyze it,” said Kelly. “I would imagine DeMarco Murray is probably going to carry the ball a lot against us in our game. I think they’ll probably try to throw the ball to Dez Bryant in our game. They’ll probably try to find the tight end a lot in probably third-down situations in our game. We’re going to give the ball to LeSean McCoy in our game. It’s kind of similar to what happened the last time. It’s really about going out and executing and which team can execute better and which team can block better and which team can tackle better.” Read more »
The long ball has fallen off some since Mark Sanchez has taken over.
When Nick Foles was at the helm, he threw passes of 20-plus yards 19 percent of the time, resulting in nine touchdowns and six interceptions. Sanchez, meanwhile, has gone deep at a 13 percent clip and has one TD and a pair of picks. He started out with a bang, hitting Jeremy Maclin for a 52-yard pick-up down the middle on his first regular-season snap as an Eagle, but hasn’t connected many haymakers since.
There appears to be two key reasons for the shift in approach. Read more »
Photo by: Jeff Fusco.
Riley Cooper has been backed by the coaching staff at every turn this season. Whenever his level of play or production is questioned by the media, he receives a strong defense. On Monday it was Chip Kelly. On Tuesday, Pat Shurmur followed suit.
“The last time I checked he only has two drops, right?” asked Shurmur. “Other than that when we throw him the ball he catches it. We don’t have a problem with him. Somebody does, but we don’t.
“We certainly see it different than you do. We’re comfortable with him out there playing and we don’t have a problem like I think some people questioning me do.”
Cooper spent a good 15 minutes or so at his locker with reporters today talking about the public criticism versus the in-house praise. Is the coaching staff as complimentary in the meeting room as they are at the podium?
“Absolutely,” he said. “I have a very, very close relationship with Chip. We talk very frequently. I’m one of the captains of our room, me and Jeremy [Maclin], so we’re always going up to Chip with ideas and things and talking – sometimes not even about football. I’m real close with Chip.” Read more »