Good morning, Eagles fans! Viking ships are approaching Philadelphia and the Eagles continue to prepare for Sunday's battle. The team will practice today at 1:00 p.m. and will speak to the media in the locker room at 3:15. Here's what you need to know in today's Morning Roundup presented by Microsoft beginning with a dedicated team of warriors.
1. Wigs And Warriors
Michel Sproles, wife of Eagles' running back Darren Sproles, was diagnosed with breast cancer at just 28 years old. Due to her diligence, she discovered her cancer early at Stage 0 and able to beat it. However, Michel knew that plenty of other women did not have the resources she had to get an early diagnosis and the correct treatment.
It's why she started a campaign to raise awareness that breast cancer can affect women as young as her and provide free services to women who cannot afford them. In addition, she started The Pink Line in 2013 to create quality wigs for those with cancer who lost their hair. With Breast Cancer Awareness Month underway, Chris McPherson writes that Michel's efforts have built a team of warriors fighting back against breast cancer:
Michel realizes that she was fortunate to catch the disease early. She also recognizes that she had access to resources that other women don't have.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, mortality rates in black women are 39 percent higher than for white women. Furthermore, research from the National Cancer Institute showed that not only are minorities diagnosed with breast cancer at a younger age, but it's typically at a more advanced stage.
"So many women are dying from this disease not because they have to, but because of catching it so late and not having the resources to actually go to the doctor and get that mammogram," Michel says. "There were women who I met that had never had a mammogram and were in their 50s which is crazy because the provisional guidelines for a mammogram is 40."
2. Beating The Blitz
In quarterback Carson Wentz's first two games back, he has been hit hard. Wentz has faced a combined 18 hits and nine sacks and has had two fumbles. While Wentz was quick to take some of the blame, it's also true that the offensive line has not looked like itself to begin the 2018 season. Members of the O-line are aware of the mistakes and believe communication will be key to getting back on track against a talented Minnesota defensive front:
"There are three aspects really of picking up the blitz," Kelce told reporters at his locker Wednesday. "There's one, being in the correct situation; two, communicating it; and three, everybody executing. I think if you look back to the game, we didn't handle any three of those aspects well.
"Obviously, they got us on a couple bootlegs and that's kind of a luck of the draw. Unfortunate, but I think at the end of the day, we just have to make sure we're all on the same page. That's all you want to be. If we can all be on the same page, that's going to drastically change the blitz situation."
3. Pro's Pros
Pro Football Focus released it's first quarter All-Pro team and two dominant Eagles made the cut. Center Jason Kelce and defensive tackle Fletcher Cox both were named first-quarter All-Pro for being elite at their positions in the first four games of the season:
Kelce's reign atop the center position continues. He was the highest-graded offensive lineman in the entire NFL a season ago and hasn't had any sort of Super Bowl hangover to speak of.
Cox is off to the best start of his career, which is saying something given how good he's been. We collect times a pass-rusher beats an opposing offensive lineman yet the pass is thrown too quickly to record a pressure. Cox's 11 such blocks defeated are the third-most of any defensive lineman in the NFL.
4. Banged-Up Birds
In yesterday's injury report, running backs Corey Clement and Darren Sproles both missed practice again. Fletcher Cox and defensive end Derek Barnett joined them. Wide receiver Alshon Jeffery, who now has a chest injury after suffering from an illness and his shoulder injury a week ago, also sat out while tackle Jason Peters was limited.