Linebacker Jeremiah Trotter can attest to how good a coach Andy Reid has been. Trotter witnessed first-hand as Reid turned the Eagles into a struggling franchise into a perennial contender. Trotter has played for two other teams - Washington and Tampa Bay - so he has a basis for comparison.
And now that he's been playing for first-year defensive coordinator Sean McDermott, Trotter can see that McDermott is on a path that will lead to a lot of success not just now but in the future.
"He was thrust into that position because of the circumstances. A lot of things Sean has learned, he's learned on the fly," Trotter said. "I think he's handled himself well. He's adjusted well. He's got a great staff around him. That's one thing that makes great coaches. They listen to the guys around them. They don't feel like, 'Hey, I'm running the show.' I think in time he's going to establish himself, make a name for himself and be an elite defensive coordinator in this league."
After taking over for the late Jim Johnson, McDermott's defense ranks seventh in the NFL overall, seventh against the run and 10th against the pass. On third downs, the Eagles defense ranks fifth in the league.
And McDermott has had to do it with a linebacker corps that has been fluid all season. McDermott has utilized seven different starting linebacker combinations this season. With the return of Akeem Jordan, an eighth could be on the way. Head coach Andy Reid said on Friday that Jordan "can play all three spots" and "really has done that this week (in practice)." Jordan has missed the last four games with a knee injury. Jordan said on Thursday that he doesn't know whether he will start Sunday against the Giants after starting on the weak side for the first eight games of the season.
Trotter was a player who was added into the mix mid-season despite not playing football last year. He is thankful that Reid gave him a chance when many would have considered him an old guy with nothing left in the tank.
"I'm thankful Andy saw something in me whether it was leadership or whatever, giving (Michael) Vick a second chance, it goes a long way with the players," Trotter said. "Not only Vick appreciated it, me, but our teammates appreciate that too.
""Guys we love playing for him. He's truly a player's coach ... I know a lot of teams out there still going in full pads (during practice). He takes it easy on us. He trusts the veteran guys that we're going to get out there and go in shells and work hard, get our work in and get out and take care of our business on Sunday."
Riding a three-game win streak into the final regular season game between the Eagles and the Giants at the Meadowlands, if the Eagles take care of business it will go a long way to solidifying a spot for the postseason tournament.
-- Posted by Chris McPherson, 3:22 p.m., December 11