Philadelphia Eagles News

Eagles Unable To Contain Ground Game

ARLINGTON, Tx. --The Eagles knew about Tony Romo and his bevy of weapons. You read all week about wide receiver Miles Austin and tight end Jason Witten.

The Cowboys also have a pretty good running game. And if the Eagles forgot, the Cowboys weren't subtle about declaring their ability to move the ball on the ground with Marion Barber and Felix Jones. The Eagles defense allowed 179 yards on the ground in Sunday's 24-0 loss to Dallas.

"That's why we're going back to work as soon as the plane lands," defensive coordinator Sean McDermott said. "If you want to be a good defense, you have to stop the run with a seven-man box. We weren't able to do that tonight. The quarterback (Tony Romo) does a great job at the line of scrimmage. We've got to be ready for that and get off the block when they want to run the football."

Barber and Jones each had 91 rushing yards on a combined 29 carries. Philadelphia's defense, which entered the game ranked eighth against the run, was stymied from the start as the delayed draw plays and handoffs out of the shotgun kept the unit off-balance. The exclamation point came in the third quarter as Jones ran down the left sideline for a 49-yard touchdown run to put the Cowboys ahead 24-0. Jones blew past linebacker Moise Fokou, strong safety Quintin Mikell and used the blocking of tackle Doug Free to finish off the score.

"It's a difficult situation when you look at it from the standpoint of the defensive player you're seeing two different ideals. You're seeing a pass set, but you're seeing a running scheme," linebacker Will Witherspoon said of the delayed draw plays. "You really have to stop the run before you get into any type of blitz package. If a team establishes the run, that's where you run into seeing two sides of an offense."

-- Posted by Chris McPherson, 9:32 p.m., January 3

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