COSTA MESA, Calif. – Wade Phillips has a track record. A darn impressive one, actually. The 70-year-old Rams defensive coordinator has been a head coach or a coordinator for nine teams and has coached five Hall of Famers and 31 players who have been selected to the Pro Bowl.
He's pretty good. Actually, he's very good. And he's got his defense playing at a high level as the 9-3 Rams prepare for the Eagles on Sunday.
The Eagles put only 10 points on the board Sunday night in Seattle and they know they've got to do a whole lot more this week against the highest-scoring team in the NFL. The Eagles had a very strange game in Seattle with only one three-and-out series and only three punts, but they couldn't put points on the board.
"It was difficult. I think we felt like we left some points out there," Eagles offensive coordinator Frank Reich said on Tuesday. "I credit them (Seattle). It was hard to get a little bit of a rhythm going in the first half. We just couldn't quite produce. We had some plays, but just not quite enough to get down into the red zone and get more points.
"Second half, we got into a little bit of a pass mode and put some yards up there, but our formula has been play good early on, get a lead, be able to stay balanced."
Reich knows Phillips well enough to know what he's going to see from a scheme standpoint – an "under" front, a five-man rush, with Cover 1 coverage on the back end. Los Angeles has a dominating player in tackle Aaron Donald and a lot of pieces that fit the defense extremely well.
"It's a very good Ram defense," Reich said.
Of course, one of the stories of this game is Rams quarterback Jared Goff, the first pick in last year's draft, going against Carson Wentz, the No. 2 selection. Reich isn't worried that Wentz will get caught up in the hype. Wentz isn't wired that way and, besides, he has plenty to think about figuring out the Los Angeles defense.
"He's like many of the great players I've been around. Very hard on yourself. And, of course, you're very hard on yourself – and I'm not talking about a throw that was missed to any one particular player – but sometimes I can tell you over the course of quarterback play, that there are throws that you missed that you know you should have made. That still doesn't mean that everything was perfect," Reich said. "When you are the kind of player that Carson is, you're always going to put the blame on yourself. He's very hard on himself, but that's par for the course."
On Tuesday, the Philadelphia Eagles arrived at Angel Stadium of Anaheim. The team will be practicing at the baseball stadium this week while in California.