Philadelphia Eagles News

Head Coach Andy Reid

Injury Report: "(WR) Kevin Curtis will be listed as out as will (RB) Brian Westbrook for this week. Kevin is making progress, getting closer here to being able to run. We'll just see how he does here this week. (S) Quintin Demps again has the ankle sprain; we'll just see how he does. (LB) Akeem (Jordan) with the hyper-extending knee is getting better. He's close here. He's been able to run in the pool and actually has done some stuff on the treadmill running. We'll just see how he does this next week. Really, everybody else is okay this morning. (CB) Asante (Samuel) came in. It's more of a neck strain than it is a stinger. He feels good; he really felt good after the game. Today he, likewise, felt good. Everybody else, if we had to practice today, would be okay to practice."

Opening Remarks: "Any win that you can have in the National Football League is a good win. It's always tough to go on the road, in particular in Chicago, and win games. I mentioned last night after the game that I've played a lot of games in that stadium, had some good ones and had some not so good ones. It was good to come out with a win, tough, tough place to play. We had to overcome a few things with the turnovers and penalties and the fourth quarter deficit there. We were able to keep it all together as an offense, defense, and special teams and pull out a win. I thought that a couple of keys to it were (CB) Sheldon Brown and (T) Jason Peters and (FB) Leonard Weaver, just the effort that they gave playing through their injuries that they have that carried over with a little toughness on our team when it counted there; my hat's off to those three guys. I thought (QB) Donovan (McNabb) had a good game. He was over a 100 point quarterback rating and that's a tough accomplishment in this league, in particular against that defensive line. They have a heck of a defensive line there. He completed over 70% of his balls. (RB) LeSean McCoy and (WR) DeSean Jackson and (WR) Jason Avant I thought all were very productive. It was good to get LeSean going in the run game. I thought (offensive coordinator) Marty (Mornhinweg) did a great job of feeding LeSean after the fumble and showing confidence in him. And then, DeSean and Jason with their touchdowns were big. Jason's was a screen down in the red zone area there. He hit that thing. We always talk about getting vertical on those screens after you make the catch and he did that and pounded it in the endzone. DeSean, his touchdown, he split two-deep coverage and focused on the ball. That defender was right in the way of his vision and he was able to still focus on the ball to make the catch. I thought defensively (S) Sean Jones, again you talk about focusing on the football, had great concentration on that last interception there. (LB) Tracy White did a nice job of tipping and Sean making sure that he focused in and made the grab. I thought our defensive line played better than what we did the week before. I thought they really stepped up and did a nice job for the most part of controlling the line of scrimmage and in that type of game that's very important. Special teams, I thought all around, that's a tough group to defend with your special teams. They have two very explosive returners and we were able to cut the field in half and kind of pin them against the sideline there for the most part both on the kickoff team and the punt team. I thought the guys did a nice job of staying very disciplined with their lanes. I thought (special teams coordinator) Ted (Daisher) had a nice scheme for and then most importantly, the punter and the kicker did a nice job of placing the football where it needed to be placed. And then (DT) Antonio Dixon, I can't say enough about the guy. He came through bigger than big with the blocked field goal, such a powerful guy and a very likeable guy too. He's developed into one of our favorites here. He's a great kid and for him to come up big like that, that's a tribute to him."

On the new faces on defense and how they have been able to come together: "It is different. There are a lot of new faces. For that group to gel takes a little time. The one thing (LB Jeremiah Trotter) has done being here, is he's gathered everybody up and taken them into the film room as players, without the coaches there. They sit in there and they watch tape and go over things. And then, (S) Quintin Mikell and that defensive line, some of those veteran players that have been here awhile, they've allowed that group to come in, (LB Will) Witherspoon and (CB) Dimitri (Patterson) and so on, the newer players to step in and given them that confidence to be part of the group. And then, (defensive coordinator) Sean (McDermott) I think has done a good job of putting guys in positions where they can utilize their talents and they're all different. You see some of these young guys like (LB Joe) Mays jump in there last night and made some big plays for us. Everybody has taken their little part and done some nice things with it. Can we get better? Absolutely we can get better, but there are a lot of new faces in there."

On whether it was defensive coordinator Sean McDermott's idea to switch people in and out more on defense: "I don't think he was trying to put his stamp on it, but that was his idea. He was doing it to utilize everybody's abilities and keep people fresh. You saw as different guys were injured he came up with new schemes and personnel groupings to try to utilize everybody's strength. I think he's done a good job of that."

On the value of what Brown does for the team: "Sheldon is a great leader. I mentioned this last night, I just think the tempo that he set during the week, that single mindedness 'I am going to play and I am going to find a way to get out there and to do my job to the best of my ability.' I just think that that carried over throughout the rest of the team. That toughness, you need guys like that, that have that kind of toughness and determination. Especially from a veteran player, that carries over to the younger guys. Sheldon had some good teachers and he mentioned that I know yesterday to you guys. For him to get out and do what he did, I think that sent a message to our football team. I think it helped us in its own little way in the fourth quarter where nobody hung their head. Some guys were hurting, Weavers and Peters and Sheldon and so on, some guys that were hurting that pushed themselves through and did a nice job."

On whether they were dead set on playing Brown: "I wasn't sure he was going to be able to play. He is very convincing, but I wanted to make sure that, first of all that we didn't hurt him any more than he was and that he could keep himself where he could function out there and not in a dangerous position where he can't move and get hurt. We took him out before the game and put him through a pretty extensive workout, (head trainer) Rick (Burkholder) and (general manager) Tom Heckert did and he looked good and felt good. We pulled him out there a little bit by design before the end of the first half and then if we needed to use him nickel we were going to do that, but the Asante situation, he had to sneak back in there and play some more."

On whether LB Jeremiah Trotter played more in the second half because Mays got caught out of position on a play: "He got caught on one play, but that's not why. There was a pass there that he got caught on. The run was a culmination of guys, that wasn't just Joe, but there was a throw that he'd probably like to have back there. That's not why (he was taken out). I wanted when it started getting down there and they were showing us a few different things and going hurry up, I wanted Trot in there from the experience standpoint."

On whether he is alright with playing Mays and Trotter if Jordan cannot play next week: "Yeah."

On the teams poise in the 4th quarter: "I think Donovan did a nice job with it. I thought he kept everybody calm. I thought Marty did a nice job, same thing, kept everybody calm, good play call selections. And then I think when enough is said about it, so maybe I give you guys a little credit here, I've learned with professional athletes that when they're challenge normally good things happen. These are talented guys and I think they just took it up a notch."

On G Stacy Andrews not playing yesterday: "(G) Max (Jean-Gilles) was back healthy and I wanted to give Max a shot. I don't have enough spots there for everybody. We were able to put Peters back in, (G/C) Nick (Cole) went back to the right guard, and Max I know can play both (left and right)."

On whether Andrews not playing is a disappointment given the contract he signed this past offseason: "We knew with Stacy's knee that that first year back after knee surgery, that's a tough thing especially as late as he had it. This is nothing on Stacy's will or knowledge, it's just being able to plant that leg and feel comfortable on it. It goes in a cycles a little bit. He'll be back in there and just back off a little bit and he'll pick it up as we go."

On the importance of giving young players the ball after they make mistakes as Mornhinweg did with McCoy yesterday: "I think it's important with any back, but in particular with a young back. Especially in that situation where the game is on the line a little bit and you just show a trust there. This kid has done some good things for us and worked very hard at his game and so, I felt like the first one was a fluke and hey listen, you can say it all you want, but when you hand him the ball again you're showing him."

On whether he thinks McNabb will become a hall of famer by the end of his career or if his career ends today does he think he'd be in the Hall of Fame: "Well I hope it doesn't end today. I think he's done some incredible things in this league and I think he's worthy of that. I think when it's all said and done he'll be worthy of that. Like I said I hope he has a few more years left here."

On the game against the Ravens last year when he put in QB Kevin Kolb for McNabb: "I didn't think any of us were doing our best job. I thought everybody needed to pick up their game. Unfortunately it starts with the quarterback and works its way around, but I think with that everybody picked up their game. Not that I had any prophecy into that, that's what ended up happening. I knew we were leading the league in drops, and Donovan wasn't catching the ball. We weren't protecting very well and he wasn't blocking. He wasn't calling the plays and so on."

On Brown's injury: "Hamstring strain."

On the grade of Brown's hamstring strain: "This is a high grade one."

On whether they're confident playing will not injure Brown further: "Right."

On whether Trotter's leadership was a big part of the decision to sign him: "I thought he could bring a little bit of that part. I have some good leaders. Sheldon Brown is a tremendous leader, and Quintin Mikell. But when you have one of those linebackers that's right in the middle of that secondary and defensive line they normally can rally it and they're normally your primary leader on the defensive team. I thought Trot could do that. I thought he earned the respect just from his past career where he could come in and do that. Trot, he's willing to do anything. You see him out there on special teams, he doesn't care. He just wants to play and help any way he can. I think the players respect that. They all know he's old, but they also know that he's built quite a résumé over his years in the league."

On if QB Michael Vick's 34-yard run proves it was a good decision to sign him: "(Joking) If he had scored it would have been. He did a nice job with that. We'll see how things go here down the road."

On whether Peters will practice less or lighter to rest up for the next game: "With that injury, you work through that injury. You're going to have tweaks and you just have to back off when the tweaks happen. It's not something that you're going to further the injury. Actually practicing helps that a little bit. Those are a little different kind of injury, the high ankle sprain."

On whether the protection needs to improve: "We need to do a better job. That has something to do with everybody. Whether it's the play calling, whether it's the protection, the blocking, and the protection you add the tight ends into it along with offensive line and running backs, quarterback, is he getting the ball out fast enough are the receivers getting open on time, all of those things factor into sacks. The bottom line is we have to do better."

On what happens with the linebackers when Jordan returns: "I have to see how Akeem does, how far back he gets here. We'll see how that goes. If we had a practice today though, I had him on that list where he wouldn't practice today."

On whether the best linebacker set is Witherspoon, Jordan and LB Chris Gocong: "Possibly, I'll talk to Sean about that here in the next day or so."

On McCoy's skill at protection: "He did some good things. They didn't blitz quite as much as I thought they might compared to the last time we played them. They blitzed enough where they challenged him and I thought he did a nice job."

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