Notes From Eagles’ 27-17 Win Over New EnglandBREAKING NEWS, Eagles, News Tuesday, August 21st, 2012
- Ugh. That three letter word best describes how I feel about Michael Vick right now. The man just can’t avoid the injury report. In just 12 plays he’s run this preseason, he’s suffered two injuries. Tonight he took a shot to the ribs, an area that he’s had problems with in the past. If you want to make some easy money, run down to the nearest sports gambling arena and place large sums of money on Vick missing more than three games this year.
- Vick hasn’t at all been delivering on his promise to protect himself in the field. On a run in the first quarter, he failed to slide and instead went with his normal reckless dive. On the play that he injured his ribs, the veteran should have simply gotten rid of the football rather than attempt to be a hero and make a miracle out of a doomed play. Instead he held on to the ball too long, and left himself exposed to take the ferocious shot that knocked him out of the game.
- And now for the good news, we once again look to rookie Nick Foles! Foles played the majority of the game, and while he wasn’t perfect, he still played a fine game, and is looking more and more worthy of the second-string position.
- The rookie finished the game with 217 passing yards and two touchdowns. Foles hooked up with Clay Harbor twice in the endzone after taking the team on long drives. His only blemish of the night was an interception thrown at the end of the first half. He tried to force a ball to Jeremy Maclin that the Patriots had well covered.
- Overall, Foles once again showed great poise for a rookie and was calm in the pocket. He made a number of great throws, and while its clear he needs some polish, he’s doing more and more to inspire confidence that he can be the team’s backup quarterback.
- Another excellent game from Bryce Brown. He finished the game with nine carries for 51 yards, and caught two passes for 16 more. He’s clearly ahead of Chris Polk for the third-string running back job.
- Stanley Havili may have secured his roster spot tonight. The fullback made two big plays in the game, one coming on a 14-yard run on a fullback draw play in the redzone. Havili charged up the middle, running with a good mix of power and speed. It was the type of play the Eagles used to run for Leonard Weaver back in 2009. The fullback also made a play on special teams, which will only help his case.
- Damaris Johnson caught a pass for 23-yards, but he also dropped an easy pass on a slant route. I still think the rookie will make the team, but he’s got to cut out those mental mistakes.
- I thought King Dunlap played a solid game in his first start.
- Yes, it was disappointing that the defense didn’t get a chance to play against Tom Brady. But don’t blame Bill Belichick. Blame the NFL for doing an absolutely terrible job at constructing this year’s preseason schedule. It’s bad enough when a team is forced to play two games in five days during the regular season, but schedule multiple games within the same week during the preseason is beyond absurd. No sane coach is going to operate under normal procedures and risk something happening to his starters.
- To me, no player on the defensive side of the ball was more impressive than Mychal Kendricks. The rookie was constantly around the football, and was in on six total tackles. He’s been fun to watch in the first two games, and even though its early, right now he looks like he could be the team’s best defensive draft pick in some time.
- DeMeco Ryans was much more active in his second game. He finished with five total tackles, and looked a little more like the linebacker we expect him to be.
- Phillip Hunt has been the team’s best defensive lineman so far. Another sack and a forced fumble that lead to a turnover. The way he’s playing right now, he looks primed for a breakout year.
- Cedric Thornton was explosive once again, and picked up another sack. I love the urgency that he and Hunt have played with so far. These are a couple of guys who knew their roster spots aren’t guaranteed, and they’re going to make it impossible for the Eagles to release them.
- Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie had a nice pick that was called back because of a roughing the passer penalty on Fletcher Cox. Outside of the foolish hit on Byron Leftwich, DRC has played very well so far.
- One of the most shocking moments from this game came on the sidelines when Andy Reid and Cullen Jenkins were in an altercation with one another that got so bad that the two had to be separated. We’ve never seen Reid so visibly upset with one player. Both the coach and Jenkins will likely write it off as something that happened in the heat of the moment, but it was still a surprise to see.
- Matt McBriar is going to be this team’s punter. He averaged over 42 yards per punt, while incumbent Chas Henry averaged just 36.
- Brandon Boykin made a big play on special teams, but not as a returner. He flew down the field as a gunner during a punt, beat his blockers, and delivered a hit that forced a fumble and a turnover.
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