Philadelphia Eagles News

QB Donovan McNabb

On whether it is important to get WR DeSean Jackson and WR Hank Baskett more involved in the offense: "I think it's important that we get everybody involved, and that's something that I've been trying to do is to continue to spread it around obviously. It's going to be a difference every week of who your leading receiver is or who is getting more opportunities and things of that nature. I think that's kind of a blessing in disguise for a lot of different receivers that we rotate in, but yes, you want to continue to get everyone involved and that definitely includes DeSean and getting Hank a little bit more involved. I think we have to get him more opportunities getting in there because he was productive for us early on. (WR) Reggie (Brown) has done a good job for us. Hank has made some catches for us. (WR) Greg Lewis. And, of course, obviously, we need to get our tight ends involved. We started that at the beginning of the game and then kind of tailed away from it, but there's only one ball and you have to spread it around. But a lot times, some guys are going to have more catches, sometimes they're not."

On what effect these past two games have had on him and why the losses have been particularly hard for him: "Because we're a much better team than what we have been showing. There is no reason for us to come out the way we did early in the season and to be where we are at right now. I think people take it hard. I'm one of the guys who are very competitive and I hate losing, and I especially hate losing in that fashion. These last two weeks were games in which we should have won, and like I said in the press conference (after the game), no discredit to those two particular teams, but we are a much better team than they are. It's easy to say, but for us we have to go out and do it. I'm not the only one who felt that way. I expressed it to you guys. I expressed it to the team. At this particular point for me, it's just making sure that I'm doing the right thing to go out and change that, and everyone will begin to follow."

On what he thinks needs to happen in order to turn things around: "I think everyone has to understand what situation we are in. It's a one-game-at-a-time approach but you have to have a sense of urgency to go out and change that. And in order for us to change that, we all, collectively, have to do it at the same time. Eliminating mistakes, capitalizing on more opportunities, being able to score points, and, obviously, being able to stop them from scoring points. It's got to be a total team effort. It's not a hard thing for us to get accomplished but it has to start right now."

On whether he thinks that they have taken enough shots downfield in the last couple of weeks: "I think we have, but yet still, we haven't capitalized on the intermediate game as far as the passing game is concerned. In this game, it's about collecting first downs and taking the shots when they are there. Teams have seen us try to go downfield a lot, so they're trying to eliminate that. So, what we have to do is we have to work the intermediate passing game, get guys involved underneath, be able to run the ball and set up play action because if you can't run the ball there is no reason to run play action. We just pretty much have to go into the offense in which we started early this year, getting guys involved early, and being able to do it throughout the whole game."

On whether he detected a lack of a sense of urgency going into the game Sunday: "Not at all. I thought we came out in that game, offensively, ready to role. But again, you always here the same cliché, 'It's not how you start but it's how you finish,' and when you start something out like that, you have to be able to continue that on consistently throughout the whole game. What that does now is that puts you in a better position to win games when you're doing that. You can't go through a stalemate through the middle of the game or late in the game and then try to pick something up late at the end. It has to be a consistent effect where you are consistently moving the ball, getting first downs, eating up clock, and putting points on the board."

On why he called a team meeting Monday: "I think it was a collection of different things. Nothing that I see negative as far as people in the building, or people not working hard, or the effort, it's really, it's just the production. I think it's also us understanding what situation we are in right now. We've lost two games back to back that we shouldn't have lost. The Dallas game, I felt like we shouldn't have lost that game either. Again, I tried to let them know that it's easy for us to sit and say we could be undefeated right now or we should be 4-1, whatever it may be, but we're not. So, in order for us to correct that and put these four or five games behind us, we have to do it right now. And in order for it to be done guys have to dig deep, you have to challenge yourself, and you have to go out here and display that on the football field and get the job done on Sunday."

On why he thinks the team isn't running the ball as well as they have in the past: "Again, it goes back to if it's missed blocks, if it's mistakes, penalties, whatever it may be. It's a collection of different things, and I think we've all seen it by watching film, so it's nothing that we are unaware of, and now that we know what we have to do, we have to go out and correct it."

On what he sees from himself when he watches game film: "For myself, I'm very hard on myself. If it's a throw that I missed that I know I can make, that's something that I have to correct. If it's a sudden movement in the pocket to buy a little time, that's something that I also see. Also, for me, if it's a third down, maybe a read that I missed that I felt that I could have went somewhere else, that's something that I try to correct. It's nothing to where you are watching it as kind of a guy that doesn't know what's going on. I watch it in a sense that being very critical of myself, of knowing what throws I should have made, what throws that I made that I could have possibly went somewhere else to make a bigger throw or a bigger completion, whatever it may be. But I've always harped on, for me, consistency, and when you have consistency in our passing game, good things happen for you."

On what he saw in the offense against Washington in the 28 minute span of film when he went back and watched the game tape: "Missed opportunities. We can say play calling but when the play is called we have to be productive. And if it was a pass dropped, if it was a bad throw on my part, if it was not picking up guys in the run game that could have spared us, if it's giving guys opportunities to break tackles, whatever it may be, that was something that we all see and we see that together."

On whether the fact that the Eagles run game has not been very effective, and that he doesn't run as often as he used to, has made it the pass easier to defend: "No. If teams play us man we have to make them pay because, obviously, they feel that if they play our receivers man, it's not about me running, it's about stopping the guys on the outside. It wasn't something to the fact that I couldn't have run, I tried to give the guys opportunities on the outside to make plays and we just didn't. And that we do – we run the ball, but when we run the ball, we have to be able to pick up yards. So, when teams play us man we have to make them pay. We have to give the guys opportunities to make plays for us on the outside as well as create mismatches with linebackers against our tight ends, whatever it may be, but be able to exploit that."

On why they aren't throwing the ball to the tight ends as much as other teams are: "I think it's a lot of things. Our tight ends are getting open when they have to, but the ball may be thrown outside. Also, when we call plays for them, they are very productive. We called plays in the first two series to (TE) L.J. (Smith), and he caught balls and we just never went back to calling those plays for him. I think that plays a part in it. I know you guys want to be down on L.J., but if you call plays for L.J., he can be productive, and that's something that we have to get back to doing."

On whether it would be beneficial for the team to have identified team captains: "This isn't something in which you want to stand up and say I'm the leader. You set the tone by getting out there on the field and doing it, and if you have something to say, you speak about it. We had a team meeting. Other guys have an opportunity to speak if it's something that they want to get off their mind. I called it because I felt it was definitely needed, something in which people need to hear. If you're sitting here at 2-3 and you think we're okay, then you're wrong. You can be an older guy, you can be a younger guy, it doesn't matter. If it's something that you want to say, get it off your chest. I felt that it was needed, and I did that many other times in the previous years. That doesn't make you a bigger leader or a captain that people would pick as their guy. It's something that people take heart in what we're doing. You have to enjoy your job, have passion in your job, and my passion relies on me going out and doing what I have to do and winning, and if we're not doing it, then I have a problem with it."

On whether he said the team lacked urgency: "I never said that about urgency. I thought the urgency was there for us. My thing was continuing it on. You can't come out on the first two drives and look like gang-busters and all of a sudden you die out and then you try to play catch up at the end. That just can't happen, you can't win games like that is this league."

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