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Philadelphia Eagles News

FS Brian Dawkins

On what is behind the players not shaving anymore: "It's just a little something we decided to do as a team. It's not just the defense, it's whoever wanted to join in and do it. For me, the reason that I decided to do it is it's just a reminder every time that I get up and every time that I look in the mirror and every time this thing itches you, it reminds me what's going on right now and it makes me think about the task at hand and that's the run we're trying to make."

On who's having the hardest time growing a beard:"I don't know. I don't know."

On whether CB Lito Sheppard is having the hardest time: "Probably so. He or Bunk [DT Brodrick Bunkley], probably."

On whether there are any rules for the beards:"No, it's, individually, whatever you feel like. There are no stipulations or rules. A couple of us have rules, but, for everybody else…"

On whether the secondary has rules: "Kind of."

On whether he knew about the NHL players that did that in the playoffs: "I had heard about it. That's on another level, there. Those guys are on another level. We're not quite to that point. Like I said, it's a fun thing and also a camaraderie thing. For me, it was really a scruffy, down to business, every time I think about it, every time I see it in the mirror, I'm thinking about why I'm doing it. And, that's because of the push we're on."

On whose idea it was: "It was something that I thought about. I thought about doing it."

On what the itching reminds him of:"It's just a constant reminder of this push we're on and the serious nature of where we are. There's no time to let up. Because we're doing it, not just one person is doing it, a number of us are doing it. We're also thinking about the individuals, the teammates that are going through the same thing you're going through as far as the uncomfortableness of it. It's all for, we believe, a good cause."

On when it started:"I don't know. A couple games ago."

On whether there's any chance of head coach Andy Reid joining in: "I don't know, we'll see. We'll see if he wants to join in. We welcome all comers. You guys can join in, if you want."

On his increased intensity level over the last few games and what has caused that:"I would say, just the fact of what we want to do and what I would like for this season to end up being. More so than anything else, that's probably driven me to be even more energetic than I normally am. When you combine all those things, the things you just mentioned, the situation we put ourselves in, the hole that we're in, and the fact that it's really needed at this time—everybody needs to take their game up to another level at this time of the year—all those things, toss them into the pot and it's just brewing that craziness."

* On whether the discussion of his age motivates him:*
"I told you guys a long time ago that it is always going to be the case. Until I retire, it's always going to be the case. It comes with the territory when you get up there and play enough years. It's a blessing you're playing the years, but it also can be, if you allow it to be, aggravating—the fact that those things happen. I don't worry about those things, I just go out and play ball."

On whether the focus and feeling right now is similar to that at the end of the 2006 season:"I think the feeling is the same. The confidence level is the same. We are believing in what we can do as a unit, collectively as units. We are believing in the coaches and what they are going to allow us to get into. They are aggressive; they're calling aggressive game plans. You have a confidence that when you step on the field, you should win that game. It's not, 'We can play with this team.' I hear that a lot—we can play with this team. It's not about playing with teams that we face. We believe that we go into every game and if we do what we're supposed to do, then we should win that game."

On whether he senses there is a different feeling going into these games: "I think we felt that [when we were losing], but for whatever reason, I can't give you a clear-cut definition for what it is. I don't know what it is. It is what it is. Right now it's there; we feel it and I think everyone is feeling it. You can feel the attention to detail, you can feel the desire. Everything is where it needs to be right now. I think we're playing our best ball at the right time."

On what the "next level" would be for him: "The next level, for me, is just when you flat out stop thinking and you play. When everything is slowed down even more than it already had for me. The confidence in success is very much heightened. I think that's there too."

On how dangerous this team can be when they are playing their best ball: "I think you've seen that the last couple of weeks. When we don't turn the ball over, when we don't give up big plays defensively, when we don't allow a team to stay on the field, defensively, and we get off the field. You see what we are capable of doing. Hopefully that'll continue on and I believe it will."

On why the Eagles always seem to play their best football at this time of year and why they always dig themselves into a hole in the beginning of the season:"I have no idea. I have no idea of why we have been in this situation before and have been able to dig ourselves out. I can tell you why we have been able to dig ourselves out is because of the confidence in one another. The character we have in that locker room, that desire—that's something that [head coach] Andy [Reid] always preaches about this time of year. This is where you separate yourself. Either way, you separate yourself as someone who is going to contend and move on, or you separate yourself the other way—as someone who is going to be home. We understand the significance of this time, also."

On whether you have to be careful that confidence doesn't become overconfidence: "I guess I make this quote every week: what's our record?"

* On whether he has to remind players on the team about their record:*
"I don't think you really have to. Like I've always said, you kind of lead more by example than you do by anything you say. If we are walking around, as veterans, with an overconfident attitude—smiling, not getting in treatment like you're supposed to, coming in late to meeting, whatever the case is. If you're attending to everything you need to be attending to, your desire and the look in your eyes is heightened, then they're going to see that also."

On whether there was a point during the game against the Giants that he could sense doubt and frustration:"You can sense that. You can sense when things are not going well for another team. We have been on the side of that, also, when things are not going our way. You kind of get frustrated. You have to find a way, as a team, to be able to fight through that. They weren't able to this particular time, but I'm pretty sure they'll learn from that film. I think you'll see a different Giants team this coming week when they play."

On what it means to him that he will break Harold Carmichael's record for games played as an Eagle if he plays on Monday: "It means a lot to me, it really does. I've said this before also, that it's kind of hard to reflect in the middle of a career, in the middle of a season, and kind of pat yourself on the back. This is not a pat-yourself-on-the-back kind of moment for me. But, to know that, out of all the people who have played for this organization, I've been here long enough, for one thing, healthy, for another thing, to have played the most games and to pass someone I really respect in Harold. Knowing that we're both from Raines High School [in Jacksonville, FL], that means we put out some pretty good product there. To know that I'm passing him is another big thing for me, because I respect him so much."

On whether breaking the record at home on Monday means more to him: "In Philly, yes, knowing that I'll be able to do it here. But, guess what? When I step on the field, I won't be thinking about that at all. I'll be thinking about the Browns. I'll think about everything I need to think about with this team and what they're going to bring with the receivers they have. I don't know what's going on with [TE] Kellen [Winslow], but if he plays, he's one of the best tight ends in the game and one of the best receivers in the game. The running back who can get going at any given moment and start chewing up yards on you. We have our work cut out. All these things we just discussed about the beard, about the mustache, about the career—all that stuff means nothing if we don't go out and play ball against a team who, you out there might be looking past, but we have no room for that."

* On whether he is able to transfer knowledge gained by experience to younger guys on the team:*
"You can't transfer that experience. You can transfer the fact that we've been through it before and this is what to expect. You can't transfer the emotion from it, the experience of it, but you can transfer the outcome and what came of it. You can transfer those things."

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