Birds Planned to Have 10 on Field? Ah, Suurrrre...
Bobby April played it cagey today when asked about the Eagles' only having 10 men on the field for the critical onsides kick in the win over the Giants.
April would not say whether he intentionally had a player run off the field, drawing the Giants' attention and playing with 10. (The Giants assumed it was part of the play.) April said he wanted to keep that confidential. He agreed with a questioner who concluded that the confusion indeed might not have been on purpose.
April said the true deception had to do with David Akers' ability to make it look like he was kicking it downfield.
One might infer from April's manner and his remarks that the running-off-the-field almost certainly was not planned.
Of the Omar Gaither block on the gamewinning punt return that took out three Giants players, April said, "We call that bowling for dollars."
* Earlier this week, Andy Reid said the Eagles have had to make more adjustments on offense because defenses are showing things that they had not done on film against other opponents. Offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg said today that you don't want to over-anticipate strange things that the defense might do against Michael Vick. He cautioned against chasing ghosts. He said the most important quality for a quarterback is gut instincts, which he said Vick showed in leading Sunday's fourth-quarter comeback.
* Mornhinweg said it was a little early to compare DeSean Jackson and Jeremy Maclin to Jerry Rice and John Taylor, the duo Mornhinweg worked with in San Francisco, but Morhinweg said "DeSean is just about the most dynamic player I've ever had." He added that Maclin has been an overlooked touchdown maker. Maclin has 10 TD receptions on the season.
* And in stating the obvious, he termed being able to score points late in the game as "a good thing."
* Defensive coordinator Sean McDermott said Stewart Bradley is the starter at middle linebacker when he returns from a dislocated elbow. Rookie Jamar Chaney had 15 tackles Sunday against the Giants. McDermott said Chaney handled the huddle well, played physical football, "scraped and found the football."
* Asked about the franchise record 30 touchdown passes the Eagles have allowed this year, McDermott said those points come with turnovers. The Eagles are among the top teams in the league in turnover margin.
* McDermott said cornerback Dimitri Patterson was "right there" in the third and fourth quarters after a rough start against the Giants.
* McDermott also conceded the second quarter was not very good at all for the Eagles' defense as the Giants built their lead. He added that the team has done a good job with plugging in rookies and keeping things together.
* He said the run/pass combination ability of Vikings quarterback Joe Webb is dangerous.
Eagles center Jamaal Jackson made a rare locker room appearance. Jackson is well along the road to recovery from the torn triceps he suffered in the season opener. Jackson missed another season with a torn triceps, early in his career. As he noted, that year the Eagles went to the Super Bowl. But this isn't the sort of cause and effect he wants to encourage.
Jackson said he has been "one of the biggest fans from my couch," and feels successor Mike McGlynn "has handled it great."
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