Philadelphia Eagles News

Smallwood Kept In Check Vs. Packers

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As the Eagles looked to extend their four-game home win streak on Monday night against the Green Bay Packers, running back Wendell Smallwood hoped to capitalize on the opportunity at hand.

Fellow running back Ryan Matthews was ruled out for the game after suffering an MCL sprain in his right knee last week against Seattle. With the open slot in the starting lineup, Smallwood prepared to handle the extra workload.

However, with the Packers recording 35:23 time of possession, Smallwood and the Eagles offense were limited to only 24:37 of offense, limiting Smallwood's chances to make a big play.

"I think that came with them having the ball so much, and then us being down we started having to pass," said Smallwood.

"I think that was the plan going into the game and we started to do it but we only could do it when we're on the field. We weren't on the field a lot."

Despite the lack of playing time, Smallwood led the Eagles in rushing yards with 37 yards on nine carries. In total, the Eagles ran the ball for 81 yards on 18 carries.

The Eagles offensive line faced a noteworthy setback prior to the game, causing a shift in the lineup. Starting right guard Brandon Brooks was hospitalized with an illness, which put rookie Isaac Seumalo in the lineup at right guard.

Despite the shift up front Smallwood didn't believe the changeup had much of an effect on the run game.

"I honestly didn't notice any difference today in the way the line played," Smallwood said.

"I thought (the offensive line) was getting down field on our blocks and being aggressive how we wanted them to be. I think it wasn't really tough for us. Isaac stepped in and did a good job and (Allen) Barbre was in a different spot so I think everybody did well as far as running the ball."

Heading into Week 13, the Eagles now have their backs against the wall at 5-6. But for young players like Smallwood, whatever happens down the stretch, all they can do is put their best foot forward to make a lasting impression on the coaching staff.

"It's like (Coach Pederson) said, 'If you're going to be here, he's going to see it,'", Smallwood said. "I love it here, and I'm going to go all out, and I know the guys I've been working with since OTAs and all of the hard work we've put in; we're just not going to let it go downhill.

"We're going to bring our 'A' game 100 percent every game so I don't think anyone is really going to put their head down on this one. We're going to come out, get it right and get a win next week." 

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