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Jalen Mills, DBs Ready For Another Stern Test

Posted Jan 16, 2018

Cornerback Jalen Mills, in coverage against wide receiver Julio Jones on the final play of Saturday’s 15-10 win over Atlanta in the NFC Divisional Round game, enjoyed the postgame hours – the locker room celebration with the team, the hour of talking to the media and answering the same questions, the remainder of what was left of the late night having a good time with friends.

And then it was back to the cold tub and hot tub the next day to “calm down a little bit.” And look ahead. The aftermath of being a last-play hero was to move on to the next challenge.

“It was really good to have a day off because it took a day to get it out,” Mills said.

Mills watched the Vikings win on the last-play miracle and he felt for Saints safety Marcus Williams after Williams whiffed on the Case Keenum-to-Stefon Diggs completion and, ultimately, game-winning touchdown play.

“Tough to see, because you always want to be in that position, where the last play comes to you,” Mills said. “You’re watching and you think, 'He’s going to make the tackle and keep him in bounds.' And then he missed and he (Diggs) kept running. It’s tough.”

Mills, of course, made the play in coverage against Jones. He had a world of media covering his story, and then he went to his phone and saw the dozens, if not more, of text messages and well wishes.

“That was really nice, especially hearing from my grandmother, wishing me the greatest of luck,” Mills said. “My phone was crazy.”

The secondary has another stiff challenge on Sunday with Minnesota coming to Lincoln Financial Field. Adam Thielen had 91 catches and 1,276 yards, while Diggs added 64 receptions, 848 yards, and eight touchdowns. Thielen is a third-down conversion machine, while Diggs has big-play ability from everywhere on the field.

“Good group, very good group,” cornerback Patrick Robinson said. “They get open and when they’re covered they make catches in coverage. So it’s another challenge, just like every week in the NFL. There are no off weeks in this league. Minnesota is going to test us.”

The secondary will be up to the challenge. The Eagles had a terrific mix on defense against Atlanta, and the task this week is the same: Stop Minnesota’s run game and win in coverage against the Vikings receivers.

“These guys run good routes and they make a lot of plays,” Mills said. “They’ve played really well this season. Hey, this is the NFC Championship Game. You expect the best, so that’s what we’re expecting.”

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