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Game Vs. Cardinals: Eagles Defense



Eagles Defensive Coordinator Bill Davis**

On the team's tackling tonight:

"No matter who is in the game we need to tackle better than we did tonight. We tackled terribly tonight and we have to get that fixed. The run game was a big time issue. We have done better than that and we will do better than that. I don't know where it came from but we have to stop it before Washington. It wasn't good enough by anybody tonight and tackling will be an emphasis this week. You are not going to win many games when you are tackling like that. What happened tonight we have to figure out. The tackling hadn't been like that so we have to see who, how, and why."

On losing players to injury:

"You already had matchups you had to concern yourself with. You don't want to be one-on-one with any of those three star receivers. When we started losing corners, we had to figure out how to help while still trying to stop the run game. They had us on our heels a little bit. If we tackled better than we did it wouldn't have been like it was. We didn't play well or coach well today. It was a bad day but we have to turn around and throw all of our attention to Washington and get this thing going. We have no choice and we can't sit and dwell on this one. It was a bad, bad night that started with the tackling. We have to just go attack Washington with whoever is healthy."

On the pressure up front:

"We didn't get a whole lot of pressure up front, but there were times when we had a lot. They are a highly efficient offense, they're one of the top offenses in the NFL for a reason, and they did a nice job of protecting. We didn't play well enough in the rush, we didn't play well enough in coverage, and we didn't play well enough in the tackling and run games."

Eagles S Malcolm Jenkins

On how he can explain the defense's poor tackling tonight:

"I don't know if you can explain it, it is what it is. Tackling is something we didn't do well tonight and when you play a good running back, he's going to make plays."

On how much the defense had to adjust after losing both starting cornerbacks to injury:

"It didn't change anything. I thought that [CBs] Jaylen [Watkins] and E.J. [Biggers] came in and played well. For all the shots they threw downfield, I think they only connected on one. I thought they came in and played well. They fought. They missed some tackles, but everyone missed tackles. I thought from that standpoint they played well."

On whether he can make any sense of the run defense's inconsistencies:

"It came down to tackling and poor fits. Those are the same things that plagued us a few games back. At the point of attack, someone missed a tackle, doesn't fit the gap right, or over runs it. For whatever reason, we couldn't get it adjusted until it was too late."

On how the team can bounce back going into a short week:

"We have to. It's a short week. We play on Saturday. We have to get some rest and dive back into this. For us, stopping the run and tackling will be huge this week. We have to stop the run and also stop the shots down the field. I think we did a good job with that, but as a defense, if we don't stop the run, we will have a hard time stopping anybody. We have to take a look at the tape, swallow this and move on."

On whether he is looking at playoff scenarios:

"No, just win. If you win it takes care of itself. If you start looking at scenarios, you lose sight to what is at hand. We win, it takes care of itself."

Eagles LB Connor Barwin

On why he thinks tackling was such a problem tonight:

"I don't know. There were some guys that were thrown in there because of injuries. I don't know if it was them or not, but [Cardinals RB David Johnson] did a good job. We have had some missed tackles at times this year, but nothing like that. I don't know where that came from."

On how the team can bounce back after tonight:

"Yeah, the playoffs start on Saturday. We have to put this one behind us. We will watch the film, not make the same mistakes and play with an edge. We will play a lot better."

On whether the Cardinals did anything different than what was seen on tape:

"Yeah, they did a couple of things differently. They had a couple of extra days, but for the most part, we knew what they were going to do. They ran a little more stretch, but that is not a major difference. We know that after the first quarter."

Eagles DE Cedric Thornton

On the Eagles future:

"We control our own destiny. We have the Redskins and then the Giants, so we just have to take it one game at a time. We have to try to be 1-0 next week. We play a good Redskin team. We look at it like our playoffs start this Saturday. We definitely dictate our future and whether we go to the playoffs or not."

On the Eagles run defense:

"I can't really make a comment on it. I have to go watch the film. We have outbreaks here and there. We are consistent sometimes but we have to fix the leakage in some areas. We have to fix the little things and keep playing together as a team. If we play together as a team, we can beat anybody, as we saw in New England. We just have to correct our mistakes by Saturday."

On the team's tackling tonight:

"We definitely practice tackling every day. Their rookie [RB] David Johnson is hungry and breaks a lot of tackles. We just have to watch film and see what happened."

Eagles CB Jaylen Watkins

On the Eagles tackling:

"Sometimes it's leverage, sometimes it's trying to go for the strip, and sometimes it's over-running a play. It's something we have to get better at by getting in the film room and understanding leverage. I think we'll do more tackling drills this week in practice."

On playing more snaps after the injuries:

"It's not really that difficult when you want to be out there, so I think anybody would ask for the opportunity, especially after getting released and brought back. It was right there in my face and I was looking forward to it. I obviously don't want to see our players get hurt but I wanted this opportunity to show people I can play in this league. That's the way you have to approach it to stand out. [The Cardinals] have some great guys over there. One guy is going to be in the Hall of Fame."

Eagles CB E.J. Biggers

On the Cardinals passing game:

"They are a great passing attack team, especially going vertical. Our goal was to keep them in front of us because when you let guys get behind you like that, they're going to score. We tried to keep them in front of us as much as we could and just battled."

On matching up with the Cardinals offense:

"We had to match up with whoever they put out there. They had a great day on offense. When you watch their film you can see they throw the ball a lot."

On playing a bigger role with the defensive injuries:

"This doesn't bother any of us. We practice all the time. We're all getting the same reps and the same looks in practice. It wasn't a drop-off as far as knowing what's going to happen and the game plan. There are always going to be things that you can correct. We had some plays but we also had plays that we have to fix and get better with. We challenged most of their deep passes so they were getting some passes underneath and got their running game going. We had a lot of missed tackles and that can't happen. It hurts the team."

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