Nov 032010
Eagles DE Brandon Graham

Eagles DE Brandon Graham

November 3:

Philadelphia Eagles news and stories from around the web…

DeSean Jackson to practice after visit to neurologist

November 3 Philadelphia Daily News:

“Eagles wide receiver DeSean Jackson said he saw independent neurologist Dr. William Welch yesterday and that he will practice today.

Jackson did not say whether Welch gave him final clearance to play Sunday against the Colts. In fact, he said he is still “taking it day by day” as he recovers from a concussion suffered Oct. 17 against the Falcons.

Jackson, speaking on Comcast SportsNet’s “Daily News Live,” said he was ready to “start off fresh.” He said his violent collision with the Falcons’ Dunta Robinson wasn’t so much of a trauma to his head as a “whiplash-type injury” to his shoulders and neck. He said he hasn’t had a lot of headaches.

“I don’t know man, that’s not my decision,” said Jackson, when asked when he would know if he is cleared to play. He said he would “keep preparing myself like I’m gonna play, taking steps I normally take to play in a game.”

Jackson also participated in Monday’s light workout, as the Birds returned from the bye.”

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Justice isn’t always served on both sides of the news

November 3 Philadelphia Daily News columnist Winston Justice:

“I’VE LEARNED a lot since I started writing this column last year. I’m a player and now I’m a member of the media (sort of) and I often feel torn between the two worlds.

I never realized how hard it is to be objective, opinionated and politically correct at the same time. This week, I was shocked to find out that Randy Moss was fined for not speaking to the media, and subsequently cut from the team. In this world we live in now, with immediacy of news, there is little room for mistakes.

Right after a game, you better collect your thoughts and get your emotions under control or it could cost you your job. It’s harder now than it used to be to get forgiveness for saying the wrong thing at the wrong time. In the old days, many of the beat writers who covered a team on a daily basis would give a player the chance to rephrase his quote if it seemed to be inflammatory, but now they are fighting against the gossip sites and bloggers. You don’t have to be right anymore, you just have to be first. It’s discouraging. But in these changing times, we all have to adapt.

I actually enjoy speaking to the press. I also take the responsibility seriously and understand the consequences that come along with saying something provocative. If I didn’t know it before, I certainly do now.

In today’s world, controversy sells. Stories are blown out of proportion on a regular basis. Sports and politics are the two things that are covered 24 hours a day.

I understand the role of players and the newsworthiness of knowing what goes on behind the scenes.

As a player, are we really going to tell you how we feel about each other and our bosses? Not likely, unless you’re trying to talk yourself off a team. Without news, we don’t have fans, without fans we don’t have a business. Although I’ve never shied away from an interview, I have picked up plenty of papers and wondered, “What the heck are these people talking about? That isn’t what happened at all.””

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Oddity stumps Eagles

November 3 Camden Courier-Post:

“By now, you’ve probably heard it a thousand times. And by the end of the week, you’ll have heard it a thousand more.

Nobody has beaten an Andy Reid-coached Eagles team the week after a bye. After all these years, he’s still perfect. Eleven up and 11 down.

For years, people have tried to rationalize that. Opinions as to why Reid’s teams are unbeaten range from the Eagles being a well-rested team to home-field advantage (eight of the 11 games have been at home) to blind coincidence.

There is no concrete answer, and Reid doesn’t even have a concrete theory.

Is there a sensible explanation?

“Maybe because everyone is feeling kind of like how I feel right now — rejuvenated,” tight end Brent Celek said. “I don’t know what it is, but he’s got a method, and obviously it works.”

Even the great Bill Belichick has lost in his first game back after a bye — five times, actually. Every active coach with a Super Bowl ring — Belichick, Mike Tomlin, Tom Coughlin, Mike Shanahan and Sean Payton — has lost at least once. Coughlin is only 8-6, Payton is 1-3.

One potential reason is the Eagles’ 5-7 record going into bye weeks. More often than not, they’ve had to carry around the disappointment of a loss for an extra week, so when they return to practice, they’re in a redemptive state of mind.”

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Eagles’ Graham feels need to prove himself

November 3 Philadelphia Inquirer:

“He’s approaching only his eighth game, but top draft pick Brandon Graham said he had crashed headlong into the so-called “rookie wall” weeks ago.

After thriving in his first NFL training camp and winning a starting job, Graham suffered a high-ankle sprain against the Jaguars in the third game of the season. While laboring through that, he picked up a nasty-sounding prostate infection that limited him against the Titans on Oct. 24.

After a week off and some time back home in Michigan, though, Graham said that he was ready to provide the pass-rushing injection the Eagles envisioned when they drafted him and that the pass defense sorely needs.

“I hit that rookie wall about five weeks ago, but that bye week took it up off me. Now I’m ready. Nine more weeks. Let’s go,” Graham said as the team returned to practice Monday. “I got better with my ankle, and I knew that was holding me back. Right now I just say I’ve got nine games to prove myself, and that’s what I’m going to do.”

Graham’s comments about proving himself hint at an underlying concern: He has not yet been the quarterback terror the Eagles envisioned when they traded up to draft him 13th overall in April.

So far, he has two sacks and a paltry seven tackles. He lost his starting job to veteran Juqua Parker. And he has been part of an Eagles front line that has created little pressure without the blitz.

It was supposed to be different with the Eagles’ reshuffle along the defensive line. But instead of harassing quarterbacks with just the front four, the Eagles have had to either bring extra men to create pressure – leaving the secondary vulnerable – or settle for safe coverages and little pass rush, allowing quarterbacks time to throw and culminating with Kerry Collins’ big day for the Titans.

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