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McDermott Adjusts Style Vs. Giants

While Sean McDermott has come to be known, like his predecessor Jim Johnson, for his relentless blitzing proclivities in his young tenure as Eagles' defensive coordinator, he showed against the Giants that he's just as comfortable sitting back if that's what the situation calls for.

"You can't blitz every down," said McDermott after the 40-17 victory. "You have to be able to play the run without blitzing and play the pass without blitzing. That's fundamental football and it's important that we play sound fundamentally.

McDermott's decision to let his defensive line take care of the pass rush and allow the rest of his defense to focus on coverage was based on reading the Giants' offense.

The Giants' "plan on third down, obviously, was to not let us blitz," McDermott said. "They kept the tight end in, and if they're going to keep eight or nine guys in, then we're going to cover and we're going to allow the front to go hunt and get home."

That game plan resulted in two sacks on Giants quarterback Eli Manning, both coming from the defensive line, but also two interceptions and a frustrating day for Manning.

"I've learned a lot from Jim (Johnson)," McDermott said. "I think that you have to take advantage of a situation. If the offense is going to keep eight guys in to protect, then I'm going to cover. I'm not going to keep hitting our head on a wall that's not going to give. We're going to play smart football and if the situation calls for us to cover and run a four-man front, then that's what we'll do.

"There are always going to be blitzes on that game plan sheet, but we have to take advantage, as I said before, and understand what the offense is doing and what their plan is. That's where the feeling-out process comes into play. As the game moves forward, we get a feel for what their plan is and obviously their plan was to protect their quarterback, and so my plan was not to throw blitzes out there and put our secondary in a bind and our linebackers in a bind. I'm going to help them out and let the D line go hunt."

McDermott also commented of the play of veteran safety Sean Jones, who has emerged as a consistent performer at safety.

"He's got great work ethic and he's a professional," he said of Jones. "You're talking about a player who's been in the league a number of years and came in here and held his head high and continued to work day in and day out. Then, when he had his chance, or chances, he's shown what he can do and he's earned more playing time."

Even so, McDermott remained coy about who, among Jones, Macho Harris and Quintin Demps, would see the majority of time at free safety moving forward.

"We'll see what the situation calls for at that time."

-- Posted by Bo Wulf, 3:22 p.m., November 2

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