COACH SHURMUR: All right, guys. Well, just like when I visit with you every Tuesday, you know, we're deep into the preparations for Tampa Bay. This morning, we had a chance to go back and clean up the mistakes that we made last Sunday against the Giants and then segued right into our preparation for the Bucs. So it's been a good -- it's been a productive morning. We'll be out here in a little while practicing. And I'm sure you've got some questions, and I'd be willing to answer them for you.
How much do you different can you be or do you have to be with Nick Foles playing quarterback as far as getting your running game going and how defenses now will approach you, not having to worry about --
COACH SHURMUR: Yeah. I think that's a better question for the defenses that play us. We're going to function the same way regardless of who's playing quarterback.
For internal uses, we know some of the things that we'll focus on more with Nick in there than Mike [Vick], but the offense won't be any different.
I guess I should have asked you, there was a noticeable drop off in the carries in the running game when Nick came in and when Mike came out. So do you correlate that?
COACH SHURMUR: No, I don't think so. I think we -- when Nick was in there playing in the preseason, we were very effective running the football. And we did what we had to do to win the game. We were fortunate, when Nick was in there, we got some turnovers and then we attacked them in sudden change where we got some points where we threw the ball a little bit.
But the way we're going to approach game planning doesn't change. It's just really our opponent changes. We're going to play one of the top defenses in the league. They're different in style than the Giants. The Giants were probably bigger and more physical inside.
This is a fast defense that runs around, and so it's going to be important for us to be able to block movement. And then just every week we've got to do a good job of beating man to man coverage outside.
You mentioned some of the mistakes that you wanted to clean up. What were some of the most glaring ones?
COACH SHURMUR: Well, I thought for the most part, you know, every game there's the good, the bad, and the ugly. I thought the good is we didn't turn the ball over. You heard Coach [Chip] Kelly talk about what you do with turnovers, and we got 17 points off of turnovers.
The biggest thing for me is I want us to be really tough to beat. And when we have three pre-snap penalties and then we drop some balls, those are correctable errors. And so those were probably the things that we focused on the most.
And then of course, you know, I think we need to be still more effective in the red area. You know, I think early in the game we got down there, we got a third and one, we didn't -- you know, we didn't get it -- we didn't get it so he kicked a field goal. And then one other field goal was a two minute drive where we got it down there with [a few seconds left] -- and the time ran out where we didn't have a chance.
But there still were some bad plays in the red area that we've got to try to clean up so that we can stretch the score out if it presents itself earlier in the game.
Vick is 5-for-19 in the red zone and Foles has been a little more accurate, a little more productive. It's limited numbers, obviously. But any thoughts on why that might be?
COACH SHURMUR: No. I think, again, when you look at it, there's not quite large enough sample size to see any trends. I just think it's a mixture of things. We can't have penalties. We've got to do a better job of throwing and catching. You know, and then of course in critical areas in the field we've got to do a better job protecting.
From what you've seen, how's Nick's deep ball?
COACH SHURMUR: Yeah, Nick throws a good deep ball. I mean, Nick can do all the things throwing from the pocket that you need to do. And, you know, he's been in the game the last two weeks and has been basically very effective.
How important has the zone read been with Mike Vick at the helm? Does that part have to at least changing a little bit with Nick at quarterback?
COACH SHURMUR: No, as I mentioned earlier, we won't change how we function running or throwing. We'll just choose to do more or less with one or the other.
DeSean Jackson had the red zone touchdown on Sunday, but throughout his career he's never been a particularly great red zone threat. I think that was his only seventh red zone touchdown of his career. Is a smaller guy at a disadvantage inside the 20?
COACH SHURMUR: I don't think so. I think, as I mentioned last week, I really do believe that DeSean can be effective all the way up and down the field. A lot of DeSean's touchdowns come from out because he's fast, you know, and he finds a way to get open.
But when you don't have great size -- you know, the first thing that comes to mind is a red zone is a big target you throw a fade to. There's a whole lot of other concepts that are utilized in the red zone, and I think he can be effective. Just as long as you're getting open.
Nick threw a couple passes where maybe the guys weren't necessarily open, but he threw it sort of like he located the one on one and give his guys a chance to go get it. With the way the rules are constructed, is that something you sort of need to push to your quarterbacks now, that even if your guy's not necessarily open or if it's one on one then that's a matchup you want to go to?
COACH SHURMUR: Yeah, I think we all know what NFL open means. And there are times when a receiver is running down the field with a defender behind him but not looking for the football. That's typically open in our minds. And we understand that.
I think it's important that all quarterbacks are able to throw the ball with anticipation. And I wouldn't say that Nick does it any better than Mike. We just saw a couple of examples. The throw to Brent Celek, I mean, he ran a very good route. The guy was in good coverage. We thought we could fool him with the concept, and then Nick made a great throw and Brent made a great catch. That's one that comes to mind, anyways. I don't know if that's what you were talking about.
Besides that big catch, the size he has, can that help in the red zone, when you get in there and you've got all these bodies everywhere?
COACH SHURMUR: I don't know. You know, I think, you know, a guy that's taller sometimes from the pocket can see a little bit better. But that's not to say that guys that are a little bit shorter don't find a way to execute just as well. But it can help in some ways.
Riley Cooper only got targeted once. Did you guys find him getting open, or was that just a circumstantial effect?
COACH SHURMUR: You know, I think targets and catches come in bunches, you know, and I think he was doing a good job of trying to get open. We just we just didn't get it to him.
Have Jeff Maehl's reps with the offense increased?
COACH SHURMUR: Sure.
What have you seen from Maehl?
COACH SHURMUR: Well, I think he's more and more familiar with what we're doing, which makes, you know -- makes him be able to go in there and execute faster. Which he's done. And I think he's getting a couple more reps each week and we'll continue to use him, just like we will Damaris [Johnson]. He had a couple of reps, and we'll keep amping up his as well.
Jason Kelce had some trouble against the bigger guys with the Giants on the front line, just blocking him. Is that going to be -- you know, is that an issue for him going forward when he comes up against those bigger 310-320 pound guys?
COACH SHURMUR: I don't think it's a trend. I think the Giants, the Giants were big inside. You know, Shaun Rogers is like blocking this whole tent. I mean, he's a big, big man. And most people that block him -- he can play at a very high level, and most people struggle to get movement on him.
So we don't see it as a trend. But they are very stout inside, and that showed up a little bit.
In what situation when you're outside guys are being covered, are you looking at utilizing tight ends more as the season is going on?
COACH SHURMUR: Yeah, most of our route concepts involve three and four guys, you know, and then, you know, you got to beat them down the field, you've got to beat them across the field, and then every once in a while we try to bunch them up and move them around. And so we try to use him.
Brent [Celek] had some good production the other night. And again it comes in bunches. Because there are concepts where they're all involved and one of them will pop free and the quarterback's just got to do a good job of going through his progression.
How have you seen Zach Ertz's blocking progress?
COACH SHURMUR: Yeah, he's doing a good job. And the way we block the perimeter with our tight ends, you know, he's got all the skill and ability to get done what we want him to do. And he's getting better each week.
Pat, when you look at the Bucs on tape, does Darrelle Revis look all the way back from his injury?
COACH SHURMUR: Well, Revis is playing at a high level. And that reputation he has of being a shutdown corner, you know, you see that on tape now. So I don't know if he's all the way back, but he's playing at a very high level.
And they're going to be a challenge. We went through yesterday and we watched last year's game as a staff with Nick [Foles] playing, as you remember, where we won the game on the last play of the game, and it's going to be -- it was one of those gritty, hard fought games.
And now they have the same style of defense, but then they've added some really dynamic players. And they've got good players at every level, not just Revis. You know, [DT Gerald] McCoy is a real good player. [LB] Lavonte David at the linebacking level is really good. And their safeties, I think, that pair of safeties is as good as we're going to see in the league.
Do you remember scouting Mike Glennon in the offseason?
COACH SHURMUR: I do. I remember very well. Yeah. We liked him quite a bit. You know, he's one of those rookie quarterbacks that's probably going through what all rookies [do], and I've had a chance to be around a few of them, but he's a guy that he's going to be able to win games in this league. And I'm sure he's learning a lot every time he steps on the field. But he's a good player.
In that Bucs game last year, what stood out to you about Foles' performance?
COACH SHURMUR: I thought he battled all the way through it. And I thought it was it was a gritty performance. And we all know how difficult it is to win in this league. We talk about it every week. And it's difficult to go win on the road against a very what I would consider active and physical defense.
And, you know, he led the Eagles to victory last year. And there were a lot of players that weren't in there at that time. The Eagles were dealing with a lot of injuries, so there were a lot of so called role players in there playing a lot. And he led the team to victory. And that's really what you rate your quarterback on.
And so what's the reason you guys watched that film? Was it to get a better sense of Foles or was it a better sense of the Bucs?
COACH SHURMUR: No, just a combination. You know, it's the same style of defense. And typically you watch -- even though our scheme is different, there are a lot of plays that are similar. I've said it all along, there's four verticals and curl flat in every offense, you know, and so we were able to see Nick against Tampa Bay Bucs and the way that they function defensively.
If you have a guy like Revis who's a shutdown corner, are there like different things you can do to try to use other guys more?
COACH SHURMUR: No, we're going to go through our progressions and we're going to play the game.
And there will be times when we're going his way and there will be times when we're not. You know, that's just the way it works. And we'll just see how it plays out.
As a coach or a coordinator, has there ever been a guy that you've played against that you told your quarterback don't throw to that side?
COACH SHURMUR: Well, I -- you know, there's some fine corners in this league. I can remember being here, there was a guy named Deion Sanders playing, and he played on a couple of different teams that we played against where he was out of sight good. I mean, he would bait guys to throw to him, and then he would make plays that were ridiculous. But that's the one that I remember.
But there was a -- we have a -- you know, we have a great respect for all the players we play against. And there are some guys that, you know, they've earned their reputation as really good players.
But we like the guys we have and we're going to go out and challenge.