All season long, Chip Kelly has praised the pass-rushing ability of Trent Cole, even though his efforts weren't translating into sacks in the official box score. Cole didn't record his first sack of the season until Week 9 against Oakland, but according to Kelly, Cole has made his presence known without getting to the quarterback.
Cole is now drawing even more recognition for his disruptive play.
According to Greg Bedard of The MMQB, Cole was the second-best edge rusher in Week 13, even though he "only" recorded two sacks. Justin Tuck of the New York Giants was Bedard's best outside rusher with 4.0 sacks of Robert Griffin III, but Bedard's research also took into account the things that don't show up in the box score - quarterback pressures, hurries and hits, among other stats.
Cole and the rest of the Eagles front line of defense will have to play well this weekend against Detroit. Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford gets the ball out as quick as anyone and only needs a small amount of time to find his favorite target, wide receiver Calvin Johnson.
"It's very important," Cole said of the Eagles pass rush. "When you have those kinds of receivers, you have to get to (the quarterback). On Sunday, we're going to have to get to him because those guys are receivers that anybody in the league would want to have on their team. They're tall, fast, can get up and get the ball, and four out of five times they're going to catch a ball over a corner or safety because they're just so tall."