Each week during the season we’re going to try and connect with a blog covering the opposing team that week, and invite them to do a guest post here at Patriots Daily. This week we reached out to Derek at Igglesblog.com to help give us a sense of what’s happening around the Eagles, and what they’re looking to do tomorrow night.
Post from Derek at Igglesblog.com.
From February 28th to July 25th, the Eagles had one heck of an offseason. In between losing Brian Dawkins to the Denver Broncos and the official, sad announcement that defensive coordinator Jim Johnson would not be returning to the sidelines, the team revamped its offensive line, added depth all over the field, and hauled in a nice draft class with some much-needed young offensive weapons. Eagles’ fans were as juiced as the middle of the ‘04 Red Sox lineup.
Since the end of July, though, the train has jumped off the tracks. Up-and-coming middle linebacker Stewart Bradley and huge-upside/high-risk rookie tight end Cornelius Ingram both tore ACLs and will miss the season. Human enigma Shawn Andrews hasn’t seen the field due to a lingering back injury. And while we’ve dodged a couple recent bullets, every day at practice one or two guys are being carted off the field to get MRIs. A normally high-strung fan base is already in nail-biting NFC Championship game form.
At least we don’t have to worry about overconfidence.
For all that, if we can just stop rolling sevens from here on out, this is still the deepest and most dangerous team Andy Reid has fielded since at least the last time we lost to you all in the Super Bowl. Speaking of which, that’s the last time the Eagles and Pats played each other in their first preseason game. Just sayin’.
On Thursday night, all Philly eyes are going to be on two players: WR Jeremy Maclin and RB LeSean McCoy. We’ll be looking to see if either of these guys can add that bit of explosiveness we need to take this offense from top ten to top five. (Of course, that’s assuming a patchwork offensive line can hold things together for a night.)
On the defensive side, I love this match-up, since we’ll get to see two things: 1) how well the front four can rush the passer without Trent Cole, and 2) how well our linebackers can do in coverage against Brady’s flag football passing game. Of course, Belichick being Belichick, he’ll probably just screw with us by running the ball 10 straight times.
One last point: Since this first game is almost beyond meaningless, I’m really disappointed we’re not going to see once-and-future coaching intern Matt Nagy take the field as the Eagles’ #3 quarterback. I was really looking forward to seeing the former Arena Football League guy get a chance to run around with an NFL team, but alas, rules are rules.
Check out our PD post over on Igglesblog.com. I didn’t think it was smug, really.