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Post-Game Quotes: Eagles Offense

Posted Dec 8, 2013

RB LeSean McCoy
On what changed in the second half to trigger the success of the running game:

McCOY: I think we took some shots deep which kind of set them back a little bit. The guys up front gave me opportunities one-one-one by blowing those guys off the ball. I think everybody was so intimidated and scared of Detroit’s guys up front, but I thought the big guys on my team took the challenge and stepped up. The whole week they talked about just running the ball and giving me different match ups one-one-one. Not only myself, but with the backs that we have, I think in one-on-one opportunities, we’re going to win. Today that’s what happened.

 

On playing in the severe weather conditions:

McCOY: It was tough. To be honest, it was definitely tough. You just didn’t have the normal footing and traction that you get when stopping and cutting. Sometimes I couldn’t really plant. I can usually plant on a dime, but it all worked out. The guys were giving me so much room. Even on some of the tough yards when they were stopping me, I was getting about four [yards] a pop, so it worked out. I feel like it is a mental thing. Obviously it’s going to be tough because of the snow and the weather, but you don’t think about it when you’re running. If you think about it when you’re running, it sets you back a little bit.


On his success as a north-south runner today:

McCOY: People really don’t know. They see the moves that I make, but I actually like to run between the tackles. It gives me so much leverage in terms of being able to go up the middle, bring it outside, or reverse it. I actually like to run in between the tackles. You can see your holes, and today the guys up front gave me so much room to work. Tons of credit goes out to those guys. [QB] Nick [Foles] hitting some balls and completing them gives [the defense] something else to look at.


On whether he has ever previously played in such severe weather conditions:

McCOY: I’ve actually played all of my football in Pennsylvania, and this is the worst game that I’ve ever played in weather-wise. It’s my best game too.


On his ability to hurdle potential tacklers:

McCOY: I feel like this season, the guys in the secondary and even the linebackers, they are not coming to tackle me. They’re throttling down and waiting for me to cut. I’m not sure if they’re nervous about shake moves, but they’re shooting at my legs. I’m just anticipating for them to shoot, then give them one stick and hop over them. Everybody is trying to cut my legs out instead of form tackling and wrapping up and that type of thing.


On breaking the single-game rushing record previously held by Hall of Fame running back Steve Van Buren:

McCOY: He’s definitely a hall of famer and one of the best backs to ever play this game, and he played here in Philadelphia. It means a lot. I think records are meant to be broken, and it’s been standing for so long. He’s the kind of guy that if you’re going to break a record, why not his? He’s a guy that put so much work in. [We’re already connected] by the [single-season] touchdown record. We have some history together.


On whether he knew that Van Buren once had a standout performance in a blizzard during the NFL Championship Game:

McCOY: I know now. It doesn’t surprise me. I actually watched some tape of him. He was pretty good and very dominant.


On whether he changed any of his gear today due to the weather conditions:

McCOY: I had the same gear on that I normally play in. I actually changed my cleats because I felt like I needed more traction. I actually changed them after warm-ups. A lot of guys changed [to longer cleats], so I just changed them and I felt that if I didn’t like them, I would change back at halftime.


On the ability of the offense to close out the game:

McCOY: It was just a dog-fight. The last couple of weeks we’ve been struggling to close the game out. It helps when the defense is playing the way that they’re playing. We had to close the game out, and we did well. The guys up front are just playing their butts off. Coach [Kelly] made some pretty good calls today. That last play kind of surprised everybody with [TE Brent] Celek up the sideline. I would have scored, but he’s a vet.

 

On whether he knew the fans were chanting his name during the second half:

McCOY: No, I didn’t know that. [QB Nick] Foles was hating on me, and he told me to calm down [joking].

 

On whether he knew at halftime that there was potential for big offensive second half plays:

McCOY: I just felt like with how well the line was blocking today, we would gash them once Nick started throwing the ball. It was tough with the weather to really play our type of offense. The weather calmed down just enough so that we could make some plays. The way Nick’s been playing, it’s been amazing. As a back, you’re so grateful and thankful for a guy to play so well because it makes the team so balanced. It’s not a problem with me if I don’t get the ball as much because No. 9 is putting it down, and vice versa if I get a chance to do my thing. It makes the offense a lot more balanced.

 

WR DeSean Jackson

On whether he has ever played in weather like today:

JACKSON: Never played in anything like that. I’ve never seen anything like that. Honestly, it was a great way to go out and play together as a team. We did some great things. We came back in the second half. I credit everyone in this locker room. We kept fighting all game long.

 

On his thoughts regarding the moves that RB LeSean McCoy made in the snow:

JACKSON: He’s obviously a great player. He’s done great things in this offense. As long as I have known him, he’s been doing great things. It’s a blessing to have that guy on our team. I heard that him and I were the only two players on the same team who have at least 1,000 yards. We just are going to continue to go out there and motivate each other. We are just going to keep doing our thing.

 

On what it was like playing in this weather, considering he is originally from California:

JACKSON: When you are a kid from California, you dream about playing in whether like this. It’s always sunny there and it barely rains. As a kid growing up you dream about playing in snow and having fun and slide around. From the start of the game to the end, it was crazy. We were able to whether our own storm and get it done. Everyone in this locker room deserves credit for this win. It’s a great, well deserved and much needed win.

 

On what changed for the offense in the second half:

JACKSON: It wasn’t necessarily the footing. We just came out motivated and determined. We felt like we were the better team. They did a great job in the first half, but once we calmed down and continued to do what we do, run the ball and pass when we can, that’s what this team is all about.

 

On how satisfying this win was:

JACKSON: It was a great team effort. [head coach] Chip [Kelly] made great calls. [defensive coordinator] Bill Davis made the right calls. [special coordinator Dave] Fipp made the right calls. In all three phases, besides a couple of their returns, we felt like we did a great job. Our defense did a great job of stopping them. Our offense did a great job.  Got to give credit to the guys up front. The linemen did a great job of going out there and creating holes for McCoy. [quarterback Nick] Foles did some great things back there too. He did a great job of going out there and giving us an opportunity.

 

 

TE Brent Celek

On sliding after catching the ball in the 4th quarter:

CELEK: It felt real good. Just knowing that the game was over, it was a good feeling.

 

On how big this win was for the team:

CELEK: It was real big. Especially, for us as a team, to be down like that, in these conditions, you know that it’s going to be hard to come back. To do what we did. We were just on fire there at the end. I thought it was big for our team.

 

On whether he considered going in for the touchdown instead of sliding:

CELEK: No, I knew as soon as we called that play, that if I caught it, I was going down. Listen, I score then we have to do a kickoff and then the defense has to go out there. Guys can get hurt. It’s not a smart move for the team.

 

On scoring 28 points in the fourth quarter and what was working today that wasn’t working in past games:

CELEK: Today was a different type of day. I don’t know. We were finishing in the run game. We knew we were going to have to take care of that and block them up. They brought a lot of guys down in the box, but we had to find a way to block them all. I think we started doing that at the end. The running backs did an amazing job.

 

On how impressed he was with RB LeSean McCoy considering how hard it was to move out there:

CELEK: It was insane. Sometimes it felt like there were 8 inches of snow out there. When you would step, you wouldn’t be touching the grass. The fact that he was doing that, it’s insane.

 

On whether he will ever forget this game:

CELEK: I will remember this game always. For it to start snowing as hard as it was in pregame, that was some of the hardest snow I have ever seen. I have been around a lot of snow. It just kept coming. It was accumulating so fast on the field. All they could do was brush off the lines. The difference between running where the lines were and running on the snow, I mean you had to kick the snow out of the way just to line up. It was crazy.

 

On whether WR Riley Cooper’s 40-yard catch was a spark to the offense:

CELEK: Yeah, you could just tell, even when we were down, that we were not going to give up. Nobody gets down, everyone believes. That is the biggest thing.

 

On the job head coach Chip Kelly did calling plays:

CELEK: Some of the adjustments we make in games are awesome. There are sometimes that we are running things we didn’t get a chance to run in practice that week. The way the guys execute them is great. The way coach Kelly has the faith in us to do those types of things is big. Guys appreciate it.

 

On how hard it was to see the ball:

CELEK: The hardest thing was to see the sideline. But it wasn’t that bad. It wasn’t as bad as we thought it was going to be.

 

 

Guard Evan Mathis

On whether or not he expected RB Lesean McCoy to break the teams single game rushing record when playing in a game with inclement weather and against Detroit :

MATHIS: I don’t see why not. They are a good team, and a very talented one, but we have a lot of confidence in what we can do.

 

On how they had success running the ball against the 2nd best running defense in the league:

MATHIS: We just stuck with what we are doing. I think there are some runs we do that we do pretty well. We just stuck with what we know.

 

On running the ball north-south:

MATHIS: A lot of the runs we were calling were the north-south type plays. With the wide plays, it was harder to get your footing on. We had to really adjust and run the ball where the linemen could keep their feet underneath them.

 

On whether or not the snow stopping helped with his footing:

MATHIS: I think that is definitely part of it. The snow stopped, and personally I changed my cleats at halftime to studs from the molded cleats.

 

On whether or not the rest of the offensive line changed their cleats as well:

MATHIS: Nope, I was the only one. I wasn’t feeling good in those other ones. I think it definitely helped me in the second half.

 

On the weather suiting RB Chris Polk’s physical bruising style of running:

MATHIS: Absolutely. You would think with this type of weather it would not be good for Shady, who’s shifty and might fall, but then he comes out and puts over 200 [yards rushing] over there. If you look at in on the surface it does fit somebody like Chris Polk, who’s downhill and going to hit it. When he does hit it, he is really going to hit it.

 

On how much fun it was blocking in the second half:

MATHIS: It was great. The offensive line loves when you’re able to run the ball with success. The whole team was riding high, feeling good.

 

 

OT Lane Johnson

On whether he was able to see the cutbacks that RB LeSean McCoy was making today:

JOHNSON: No, not really. When we come off on the sidelines, we can see the paper that the coaches show us. He was showing us that most of the cuts are coming backside, so I knew where he would hit, but I never saw them when we were on the field.

 

On whether there were any adjustments made in the second half that led to McCoy breaking longer runs:

JOHNSON: We just weren’t firing off the ball. We really had to slow it up and let the Lions linebackers overrun their gaps. Then we just sealed off and Shady hit them on the backside for long runs.

 

On how proud he is to be part of an effort like the one the team made today:

JOHNSON: It’s exciting. To do it all in the second half. We stuck with it. We work so hard during the week. Our preparation is there and we just have to execute. When we do, big things will happen. I am proud of our team.

 

 

WR Riley Cooper

On how hard it was to play out there today:

COOPER: I think it was hard for everybody out there. It was hard for receivers to get in and out of breaks. It was tough for the DB’s to do the same. It was tough for both sides.

 

On how satisfying it was to come back from a deficit in this game:

COOPER: That’s huge. There were so many great individual efforts. [LeSean McCoy] was unbelievable, setting a team record. He carried us. He played an outstanding game. I am really proud of him.

 

On whether they were prepared for the weather:

COOPER: How could you be prepared for this? It was fun. It was a fun football game. Everybody thought it was so wild and crazy. We just had fun with it. It was like I was a little kid.

 

On whether this was the worst weather he has ever played in:

COOPER: This.

 

On his 40-yard catch and whether he made any adjustments as the game went on:

COOPER: No, there were no adjustments. We just kept going at them. In a game like this, it’s isn’t going to be perfect. There are going to be drops. There are going to be bad throws. There is going to be missed assignments. When you’re in a game like that, with so much snow, there are going to be stuff like that. We just kept going and going. We ended up with the win.

 

On whether there is anything he has to do differently out there because of the weather:

COOPER: You really have to focus with it. You really have to focus on the ball into the tuck. You have to watch it all the way into the hands. Unfortunately, in games like that, if you can get the ball into the body, catch it there.

 

 

Center Jason Kelce

On whether he has ever played in conditions like today:

KELCE: I’ve played in snow games, but never where it was that hard to grab the ground. Really to just see five yards in front of you in the first half was tough. It was a good job by everybody staying locked in, and really pushing throughout the game. Obviously in the second half we were able to get it going a little bit. When the snow slowed down, the footing got a little better.

 

On whether he changed his cleats:

KELCE: Some guys did, I didn’t. I went to enough guys to see if I should switch to seven studs, which are screw-ins. They said they weren’t really grabbing the ground either. It was one of those things where it did not matter what shoe you were wearing, it was more about staying under control with your feet under you. That was the biggest thing.

 

On clamping down on the Lions DT’s Ndamukong Suh and Nick Fairley:

KELCE: I think the snow took everybody out of the game a little bit. Those guys rely on such explosion, and I think that slowed them down a bit. Overall, going into the game we knew those were their two primary guys we needed to take care of. So all week we were preparing to take care of [Suh and Fairley].

 

On when he realized the weather was going to be a factor in the game:

KELCE: When I walked out to the field for warm-ups. It got worse after warm-ups too.  In warm-ups I was actually able to grab the ground. I remember they had only shoveled the lines and numbers and I tried to run on a patch where they hadn’t shoveled and I just slid like three yards.

 

On when they realized they were going to have to run the ball downhill:

KELCE: We had some things designed, game-plan wise and schematically, where we wanted to attack that explosion out of [the Lions defense]. I think as we got the game going we realized the snow was taking them out of their game, in terms of the defensive ends able to rush up the field quickly, and the defensive tackles had to change up the way they were playing. I think we just had some success moving the ball vertically, and the coaches picked up on that.

 

On wearing the Lions defense down:

KELCE: When you are running the ball effectively you always believe you are forcing your will on the opponent. Whenever you start running, the best thing to hear is the defensive guys yelling at each other. That’s usually a good sign.

 

 

Running Back Chris Polk

On whether or not he has ever played in a game with these extreme weather conditions:

POLK: No this is my first time, and definitely something I can tell my kids. I’m glad we won it.

 

On big running holes up the middle:

POLK: That is credit to the O-line. We got off to a slow start. They stayed with it and kept believing in [the running backs]. Sure enough we started to pop once we got warmed up.

 

On his touchdown run:

POLK: I give all the credit from my run to the offensive linemen. I wasn’t even touched; [the hole] was so wide open. Thank God I was in and able to contribute and get a touchdown.

 

On his increased number of carries:

POLK: We knew going into the game the conditions would be a little rough. The plan is to rotate the running backs every game, more so this game because of the elements. I’m just glad and blessed enough that they believed in me. Good things come to those who wait.

 

On whether the game was easier in the second half:

POLK: I felt like it got easier because we actually got our offense going. We came out to a slow start, but the O-line started playing great. They took over the line of scrimmage for us. Coming into the game we knew if we could control the line of scrimmage, especially [Detroit’s] two tackles, that they wouldn’t be able to stop the run. The O-line played perfectly today.”

 

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