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Philadelphia Eagles News

QB Donovan McNabb

On whether the injuries happening to players are worrisome to the team: "That's the game of football. Obviously you don't want to see any of your guys go down but, it's the game of football and I think we have good training staff that will take care of any of those things that may happen, but you just hope everything is alright and get back out there and get ready to go."

On whether he has spoken to QB Kevin Kolb after his injury in practice: "I haven't."

On what he looks to get out of a first preseason game at this stage in his career: "I just work on game tempo and timing. We all know it's going to be the first game; some things aren't going to be a crisp as you want them. But, for the basic stuff, the fundamentals, make sure that that's there and you can watch the film and feed off of that going into game two. In this game I think it's important for not just the ones, but all the rest of the guys who have been getting reps at training camp to get adjusted to being in game situations. It's hard to simulate out...of just playing in front of a crowd and game tempo and play clock and things of that nature. But, getting out on the field I think it's something that you have to be adjusted to and adjust fast to, and I think that's important for us."

On whether he is envious of what Patriots QB Tom Brady has accomplished: "Not at all. I'm excited for him. I wasn't excited for him too much in 2004, but I'm excited for him. I think everybody is different and some have had an opportunity to win a Super Bowl, some have won Super Bowls, some have never been in the playoffs. He has been on a great team that has played well consistently for years, and we've played well consistently for years. And, they've just been able to come out on top and something that obviously all want for those who don't have one. But, I'm excited for him for the things he has been able to accomplish."

On whether he has concerns about the offensive line: "I think the continuity is there and they can adjust that in the meetings. I think out here on the practice field, (T/G) Stacy (Andrews) has been out here, (T) Jason (Peters) has been out here, and if he's not out here he is definitely somewhere working with (Offensive line coach) Juan (Castillo) just making sure that he gets the calls and the snap counts and things of that nature. (G/T) Shawn (Andrews) will be out here soon hopefully and we'll be able to get everybody going. But, the important thing for us is the fact that for those guys who are rotating, the (G) Max's (Jean Gilles) and the (C) Nick Coles, they have experiences from last year and they can kind of feed off of that and that's something that is a positive for us because if anything was to happen, we can fill those guys in knowing that we have the utmost confidence in them and that they'll be able to get the job done."

On what he has seen from the offense and where he thinks the offense is at: "You go through days like this. When you're in training camp not everything is going to be crisp. I thought, offensively, we've been able to do some great things in the previous days and we've had some tough days, but we've been able to battle through. Today was a tough day for us and the defense had a wonderful day today and we saw some different looks that we haven't seen before and guys were making plays. You obviously want that to happen, but you don't want that to happen versus us. I think we can just watch the film, be very critical, and come back out tomorrow and be ready to attack our defense. It's very competitive out here, there's a lot of trash talking going on throughout the day, and today our defense won. But, we look forward to getting back out tomorrow."

On whether, at this point in his career, he comes into training camp trying to accomplish new things or just perfect skills he already has: "It's a little bit of both. Throughout the offseason you watch films of yourself and then watch films of other guys and things that they've been successful with, and maybe some things that may have been a weakness for you, to kind of strengthen those throughout the offseason and come out here and work on them. I think it's important to polish up a lot of different things that you do out here with the team and work on your chemistry and make sure that as a quarterback, ball placement, knowing where you're going with the ball, making quick decisions and footwork and things of that nature is something that you work on here."

On whether he is working better with WR Jeremy Maclin and WR DeSean Jackson: "Again it's sort of practice. I think that's something throughout the preseason that we will be able to work on. Working on the air, or maybe a DB, or just throwing routes, it's not really that you can use going into games. He'll have to understand the game situation and obviously if it's first and ten, if it's second and short or long, we decide to go for a play-action deep pass, how a DB is going to play him, what he's going to see, how he is going to be faced, whatever it may be. And that's something that we'll learn throughout the preseason together."

On whether this is the strongest he has seen the NFC East: "I don't think so. I think it's easy to say that obviously, for some of the players who we have added. But, the NFC East has been strong for a while. I remember when the Redskins had everybody that was a Pro Bowler five or six or seven more times and everybody thought that they would do well and things didn't work out well for them. So, it's hard to say right now, we'll see how the season goes and who jumps out and who continues to play well throughout the year."

On whether he still believes that the NFC East goes through the Eagles: "I think you have to. I think you start with confidence in yourself first and then you get out and translate it out on the field. We had some ups and downs last year but we were able to overcome those and move forward. It's important for us to start fast and in the middle of season be able to continue on hopefully what we started and end the season off right."

On what it takes for him to gain confidence in young receivers: "Catch the ball. Get open and catch the ball. And that's not a lot of pressure on their shoulders, it's just doing your job. In this situation you have to trust all the guys and knowing that they're going to get separation from their guys and catch the ball because if you get separation and you drop the ball it doesn't matter. What you've seen from (WR) DeSean (Jackson) last year was a guy that felt confident that he could get open no matter what route it was and he caught the ball and made big plays for us.

"And the same went for (TE) Brent Celek, the same went for (WR) Kevin Curtis when he came back healthy, (WR) Reggie (Brown) was able to do that as well. When you add guys like (WR Jeremy) Maclin, (WR) Brandon Gibson, those guys have to gain that confidence and I think that's going to come over time. And for the guys who have the experience, the guys that I mentioned, it's time to take it up another level and make sure that we're hitting on all cylinders when the time comes."

On how important is to have two reliable tight ends for him to feel confident in this offense: "In a West coast offense it is important that you have two tight ends that not only can catch the ball, but that can do some blocking as well. It's important that we be able to do that. In what we've been able to do, we've always had two tight ends that we put on the field together. One may split out, one may be more of a pass catcher then the other, whatever it may be. It's important that we have that. Obviously, the team has to have confidence in the second guy that's out there as well. It's not who's one, who's two, it's just both have them have to be good tight ends that can do big things for us. We'll see how things go with the guys that we have and hopefully we can provide confidence for those guys that they can step out on the field and make plays."

On whether he is concerned about not having a fast start: "No, not worried about that at all."

On what he likes most about Celek during this training camp: "I think Brent has definitely elevated his game. He took it upon himself to challenge himself throughout the offseason, of coming in not only in great shape but being able to establish himself as the starting tight end and a guy that could get down field, a guy that could create separation from a linebacker or safety. And, he's been able to do that here in this camp. I think the guys have so much confidence in Brent that he'll be able to make that play for us. Even in the NFC Championship last year, he made some big plays for us and he can continue to feed off of that going into this year and the years to come."

On what helped him most as a rookie to learn about picking up blitzes: "In this league as a quarterback you'll see a lot of different looks, you'll see a lot of disguises, you'll see a lot of guys coming down and bailing out and then blitz from the other side. I think the important thing for any of the young quarterbacks is not to second guess. If you see it, go with it. And if you see it and it's the wrong thing, you'll at least know what you're seeing and be able to react to it. That's something that as a young quarterback you'll see different looks and the way different teams disguise its schemes, or they like to blitz from the weak or strong side or up to the middle or whatever it may be. But you have to be able to react to it. It's something that over the years that obviously, defenses change every night, not everybody runs the same defense, week in and week out. You have to have short term memory and just erase what happened last week and move forward the following week."

On whether picking up blitzes is something he still needs to work on: "You still watch film and come up with the game plan and come Sunday you would have thought you'd seen all of the looks you may be faced with and be able to react to whatever you maybe seeing."

On the type of roommate FB Leonard Weaver is: "Sloppy. No I'm just kidding. He's a very good roommate. For the both of us, we've been communicating on just what we want to get done out here in this training camp as well as during the season. He has a lot of leadership qualities and one that when he is in the huddle, we always seem to crack a couple of jokes, but he's intense. He's an intense player and (RB Brian) Westbrook is looking forward to obviously working with him, but he's been doing a great job with (RB) LeSean McCoy—blocking for him and opening up holes, catching balls out of the backfield, very good athlete."

On whether Weaver is one of the guys that he is most looking forward to seeing in a preseason game: "Not really. I think for all of us it's more or less of kind of getting this thing started. It's just right around the corner, when we play. You want to see the offensive line, the guys that will be out there. You want to see Maclin, DeSean, you want to see (S) Sean Jones and (S) Quintin Demps, you want to (LB) Joe Mays and those guys, you want to see (DE) Trent Cole coming off the corner, the list goes on and on. It's opportunity for us obviously, to get our work done and get out and to watch and support the rest of the guys that are going to be out there."

On Shawn Andrews' injury: "Obviously he wants to be out on the field. And I think everyone looks at it differently because nobody knows what he's going through. If a back is bothering you, a back is going to be bothering you. You just want to continue to provide that confidence for him that hey we're supporting you, we're behind you and when you get ready, when it's time to come out, let's be ready to play. He understands that, he's been in this league long enough where when you're out on the field you've got to give it your all, and he's looking forward to that. We're all looking forward to him being out here."

On T Winston Justice: "Winston has done a great job. I think the important thing for Winston is the fact that he doesn't have to look over his shoulder and see (former T) Tra (Thomas) and (former T Jon) Runyan there. He can play with confidence now. He knows what he's doing. I think he's in his natural position of being a right tackle, a position I think that he played at USC. He's comfortable. The guys have provided confidence for him and he's continued to grow and learn a lot of different things that we do out here and I think he's done a great job."

On whether his career stats affect the way he looks at his play in the upcoming season: "If I can give back all of that to get a ring, that's what I want. I look forward to these next couple years, hopefully this year, of putting things together, leading this team into where we need to go and hopefully holding up that trophy at the end."

On whether having contractual issues resolved in the offseason put him more at ease going into next season: "It didn't bother me. I just got tired of answering the question of 'will I be here next year?' I think we solidified that, that I'll be here. Now we can move on to another question. That was never a distraction for me, that was nothing that I've ever talked about throughout the media, and nothing that I would ever do anyways. So, my main focus is just getting out here on this field and getting our chemistry and timing together and getting ready to step out on the playing field and having a good time."

On how many more years he thinks he'll play: "With the Brett Favre's and Vinny Testaverde's, I think the sky is the limit."

On whether this is the year in his mind:"I think every year is kind of the year. You don't say in two years we want to win the Super Bowl, we want to win it now. You never know what can happen tomorrow, so you want to take care of whatever is there for you to take care of right now and I think that's got to be the focus. I'm not really worried about who is going to be here or how many years they've got on their contract and all of that. So, I think the focus for me is to win it right now. And, the focus was for me every year to win it right now. Nothing has changed. Now it's just getting the job done."

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