Philadelphia Eagles News

Westbrook Prepared For Preseason Duty

Over the course of training camp Brian Westbrook has shaken the hands of members of the armed forces, made highlight reel plays, mentored teammates and remained confident that his contract issues will be resolved.

"I'm positive. I'm really optimistic about how things have been going," Westbrook said during his press conference on Wednesday.

While the Eagles' star running back focuses on football, his agent and the team's front office are working on the specifics to ensure a deal gets worked out.

"They are continuing to talk, trying to discuss the structure and a number of things like that. They are trying to get it done," he said. "Hopefully they will be able to get it done soon."

Westbrook has been in the NFL for six seasons, improving his statistics every year. At this point in his career, it really doesn't take long for the two-time Pro Bowl back to get prepared for game action.

"I'm ready to play," Westbrook said. "I am ready to play the game of football. You want to do things in the proper way and of course you would want the contract before the games. That's how things work and hopefully that's how things will work out this time."

Westbrook said that he could play as much as a quarter-and-a-half on Friday in Pittsburgh, but his time on the field hinges on what head coach Andy Reid wants. The preseason is not a time where No. 36 tries to shine.

"It's a great opportunity for the younger guys to get out there and show what they can do," Westbrook said. "For the older guys, if you've been around the block a couple times you know what you're going to have to do when you get out there and play a couple series of the preseason."

Instead, the 28-year-old would much rather observe as the backups showcase their talents against actual competition.

"Guys talk trash and say they can do this, say they can do that," he said. "But you never really know until its live out there, full go, and I like to see those guys have success. We know what they can do in shells and pads and just helmets, but we want to see what they can do out there on the field when live bullets are being thrown around and it'll be exciting to see those young guys play."

Live action can be beneficial for veterans, too, even if it's not against a preseason opponent.

"I think more important are the live periods that we've done out here on the practice fields, for me," Westbrook said. "Preseason, it's tough because you're not really gameplanning very much. Most of the time, during the year, you're going to gameplan for a whole week, and then play a game. Preseason is a little bit different because you're just putting all your plays in and you're not really gameplanning. It's hard, sometimes, to compare offenses and defenses like that. We'll go out there, we'll play, we'll compete, and, hopefully, we'll win."

Roughly three weeks ago, it was not clear whether Brian Westbrook would arrive in Lehigh for training camp. He did and he has consistently expressed that the proper decision was made.

"I feel good that I am here with the guys," said Westbrook. "(That I) had the opportunity to get ready for the season and hopefully my contract situation will work itself out soon."

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