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Philadelphia Eagles News

QB Donovan McNabb

On how he's had a similar injury, and whether he has any advice for LB Stewart Bradley: "It's a tough injury, obviously, because it's frustrating at times when you feel you're getting better and the next day you wake up and it feels like it's sorer than it was before. Also, when you're in the situation, when you get hurt during the season, you obviously want to be out there with the team. You try to do as much as you can to just contribute in any way, if it's on the sideline cheering for them or talking to them in the locker room, whatever it may be. Patience is the most important thing. Take your time."

On how a team brushes off injuries and pushes forward: "As a team, you have to really gel together, and that's when, I guess the guys that are healthy, really elevate their game to try and take the place of the guy who was injured. I think another positive about it is the fact that the guys who are backing up those guys who are hurt, if they are starters, and the backups who may be hurt, the other guys get an opportunity to get reps and get their feet wet, so to speak, of just getting that experience of playing. The confidence is built throughout the team if someone was to go down and that guy can step in because he was able to get some reps."

On what he can do personally to motivate the defense: "I think, for all of us, is just to come out of here with their minds set of getting better, being able to set the tone for practice and being able to execute in all facets of the game and provide confidence for the guys who are out there. If we're competing against the defense, we want to push those guys just like they're pushing us to be the best at what we're doing. With that, to make sure that everyone is relaxed and not having to worry about anything on the outside as taking their focus away from what we're doing out here."

On whether there is too much made of Broncos FS Brian Dawkins being gone and speculating who will step in and lead the defense: "I think there's too much made of it. I think any time you are in a situation where you lose a guy who is a possible Hall of Famer, one who I think is a Hall of Famer, everyone tries to look for the next guy to fill a spot or to fill a role. That's hard for anyone. It's just like saying (S) Quintin Demps is going to be the next Brian Dawkins. Don't put that pressure on him. I don't think that's right for him and it's not right for Dawk – (you need) to be yourself. I think when you start appointing who is the leader, I think that's wrong in itself because some people who you think is the leader is really not a leader. They don't want to be leaders. I thought Stewart Bradley was definitely one of our leaders but that doesn't mean that he can't still be the leader. He's just going through an injury right now. He can rehab and still push the guys who are out there. We still have guys like (CB) Sheldon Brown, (S) Quintin Mikell, (DE) Trent Cole, there are a lot of guys, and it's not just on defense, it's just as a team. We have leaders that can really elevate peoples' game and elevate their game as well to compensate for what we may be missing at that time."

On whether it's still possible for WR Jeremy Maclin to come in here and be as effective as he can possibly be despite his missed time: "He's a rookie. You all act like he's been in the league for five or six years. You don't know what he's going to do anyway. All we ask of him is to catch the ball and get up field and score. That's all we ask. He's a receiver. I think for him, at this point, it's a business aspect of things that we've all been through. It's not like he's the only one who's holding out. He'll be here. We'll be able to get some work (in) and be able to see what we can get out of him this year."

On whether injuries play a big part in the reason why he is hesitant to call this team a Super Bowl team:"It's not the injuries. I just think it's premature in general. I think too many times people get caught up in saying who's the best team, who's going to win the Super Bowl, who has the best whatever at what position, or who's the best coach – it doesn't matter. In the preseason everyone looks great. What really did you expect (President) Joe (Banner) to say? If he was to say he wasn't confident in the guys he brought in here, then you guys would have probably ripped him like you do anyway. So, he's going to put confidence in the guys we have here. I think it's premature to say that we have great guys that are here that are going to do different things, because you're asking too much of the young guys. For the older guys that are here, yes we have to elevate our game and do it on a consistent basis and make sure that these young guys begin to follow suit and understand that this is a 16 (game) and possibly 24 game season, however you want to look at it. So make sure that you're ready at all times."

On whether losing Bradley is a major loss: "It's a major loss. Stewart is a guy that I thought was really stepping into his own at the middle linebacker position. He was able to do a lot of different things besides just stopping the run. He was able to be that leader. He was able to do well in the pass game. Obviously he set the tone for those guys on the defensive side. Whoever steps in at that role, we're going to have the utmost confidence in them that they are going to do the job as well. We've all been through situations where guys have been hurt. I've been hurt. (Former Eagles DE) Hugh (Douglas) was hurt. (Former Eagles RB) Duce (Staley), other guys on the team have been hurt. What you do is you gather the troops together and be able to move forward. Someone else has to step up."

On the condition of the field last night: "It was a little different than obviously being out here but that's our stadium."

On how it's different: "It's level. You can see that some of these fields out here have a crown on it. But it was nothing with the grass. I think our grounds crew does a great job of making sure that we have a great field, great playing surface."

On how T Jason Peters is doing: "Jason, I think, has gotten comfortable because he was involved in minicamps and OTAs. Right now, after coming back, he seems like he hasn't missed a beat. Obviously he would like to be at 100 percent, and I think he's working toward that. The positive side about it is that he's out there. He's out there working and I think what we've got, we've got one of the best tackles in the game, and I'm sure he's going to try and prove that this year. We have confidence that he'll be able to do that and play such a major part for us on the offensive line."

On whether it's tough for G/T Shawn Andrews right now given what he went through last year with his back: "Yes, it is. Shawn plays a major part with us as well. But he will be back out there and it will be good to see him jumping around and laughing again, and we look forward to him when he gets out there."

On how RB LeSean McCoy is doing with the number one offense: "Shady is doing well. With having McCoy, it adds another dimension to our run game as well as our pass game. You have a guy who can spare (RB Brian) Westbrook just like when (Broncos RB Correll) Buck(halter) was doing it for us. Buck did it for us for a numerous amount of years and did it excellent for us. McCoy, hopefully staying healthy and learning more about this offense and what we want to do, I think he can help us out in so many ways as well."

On whether he sees RB Leonard Weaver playing both tailback and fullback: "I think eventually he will. I think what you're seeing is you're seeing something, not to take anything away from the guys we've had at the fullback position, but we have kind of another dimension with Weaver. He can play the tailback position. He can play the fullback position. He can catch the ball out of the backfield. He's picking up blitzes for us, doing a great job with that. So, that helps us in so many ways to be able to have a versatile guy like that. Whenever he's back there, you have that confidence knowing he's going to do the right thing."

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