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Philadelphia Eagles News

Game vs. Giants: QB Donovan McNabb

Question: What role do you think the drive at the end of the second quarter played in your offense's ability to pick it up in the second half? Response: I think it played a big role as far as knowing what we needed to do to change. I thought early on in the first part of the game we were trying to do too much with seven-step drops and not timing routes we had to go back to because we've been doing it throughout the season. Before the half, which we've been successful in other games as well, and then we were able to come out in the second half after being able to come out with points. I thought what that did was provide us with more confidence on the offensive side. Coming out in the second half we felt that we could throw the ball against this team. They were going to be packed in to try to stop the run, but passing the ball we had to be very efficient. Our guys stepped up and made a lot of plays for us today, which led to us winning.

Q: In the context of the season, and I know there's a lot to go, but where does this compare as opposed to the previous four times you made it to the NFC Championship game? RE: Well I don't know. Obviously when we went three in a row and ended up losing the NFC Championship, that's below the one where we went to the Super Bowl. But it's hard to say right now. I think this team has shown that we're strong mentally and physically at being able to get the job done when our backs are up against the wall. And also being able to trust one another, that each individual guy is going to do their job. Defensively they did an excellent job today. Jim Johnson came up with great blitzes and had a great scheme to apply pressure to Eli and obviously try to stop them from running. They made our job a little bit easier on offense, but obviously next week we're playing against a team that doesn't have any problem scoring points. We're going to have to dig deep on offense and be able to come up with touchdowns.

Q: You talk about trust. Kevin (Curtis) drops that ball that might have been a touchdown and later he comes back with two huge first down plays. Can you just talk about going right back to guys? RE: One thing that I did at the earlier part of this year was to show them that I have the trust in them. And that was putting balls in the position where they can go up and compete for it. If coverage was tight, still show them that I have the trust in them. Even if they drop balls, come back to them. Because one thing you don't want to do is you don't want to have anyone lose their confidence and have what we call low self-esteem in a game where you need them. Kevin played a major part in this offense. So does DeSean and the rest of the wide receiving corps. He was able to pick up big first downs for us in a lot of situations, and after that he came back and he said, ""I'm sorry."" I told, ""Hey, let it go. Let's move on."" Then he stepped up and really showed the type of player that he is. You have to have short-term memory in this league.

Q: Can you take us through some of the plays that you created with your feet? RE: Well it's something that I knew that I was going to have to do, to use my legs a little bit. I thought the offensive line did a great job of giving me the opportunity to step up in the pocket, where I was able to buy time and hit Jason. And then the other time obviously hitting Buck(halter). Buck did a great job of peeling away from the linebacker, because he was covered in the flat, and to pick up big yards for us, which led to us coming out with a field goal when we really should have scored a touchdown. But you know that's what I'm saying. These guys in the locker room have really shown that if given the opportunity, they're able to make plays for us.

Q: That play to Buck was very similar to the play that got you big yardage against the Cowboys. Does he go a certain way when he sees you improvise, or is it strictly instinct? RE: Well it's just a feel. That's the experience factor of playing with each other. Knowing that if I'm moving, to find an open area, and other guys have that same feeling as well, knowing that if they see me scrambling, just find an open area so they could get the ball and try to pick up yards.

Q: There are no gimmees in this league, but what you guys did against Arizona earlier in the year, does that make any difference? RE: We have a feeling of what they like to do, especially on the defensive side. We know that they're a blitzing team, and they'll probably be blitzing more than they showed in that Thanksgiving game. Just watching their game against Carolina, and the first game they won last week, this team is continuing to gel. Everyone talked about them not being able to win on the East coast, and then to be able to go down to Carolina when everyone expected them to lose by a lot, and to win by a lot, the team just continued to gel. They didn't have Anquan Boldin on offense. Larry Fitzgerald stepped up. Defensively, they get pressure from Bertrand Berry and Adrian Wilson and the rest of those guys who are really playing at a high level.

Q: There's a lot of people who said this era of Eagles football with you and (Brian) Dawk(ins) and (Jon) Runyan and Tra (Thomas) was over, and counted you guys out. What does this mean to you guys to accomplish this? RE: Well we've got another week of work. I guess for old guys and guys who really don't want to see us anymore, they'll be watching for another week. It's an exciting time for all of us. It's 10 years for me, 13 for Dawk, it'll be 13 for Runyan, 11 for Tra; this is something that is storybook. You've been to now five NFC Championships in 10 years for me. That kind of shows the trust and the coaching that we have with Andy. Everyone believes in one another and given the opportunity, we feel like we can take full advantage of it. You've seen Dawk play at a high level, Tra doing a good job, Runyan doing a good job, Akers has been here nine years or so. In order for us to move on and get where we want to go, we have to play at a high level.

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