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November 28 Philadelphia Inquirer:
“To no one’s surprise, Asante Samuel did not make the trip here for the Eagles‘ game against the Bears on Sunday.
The cornerback was listed as questionable on Friday’s official injury report with a knee sprain, but Samuel was declared out by the team on Saturday following a walk-through at the NovaCare Complex.
With Samuel, the NFL’s leader in interceptions with seven, sidelined, Joselio Hanson will start at left cornerback.
Eagles coach Andy Reid said that he had a few options to replace Hanson as the nickel back, but rookie Trevard Lindley is expected to play on the outside when Hanson moves inside on passing downs.”
Eagles’ Brandon Graham looks to step up the sacks
November 28 Wilmington News Journal:
“Rookie defensive end Brandon Graham has just two sacks after his first 10 games, not exactly a smashing debut after the team moved up 11 spots in the first round of April’s draft to grab him at No. 13 overall.
But there’s plenty of time to finish strong, and Graham already has his sights set on a record-setting pace over the next six weeks.
“I still got — what, how many games left — six? Shoot, two a game, 12. Plus the two I’ve got, 14,” Graham joked.
He’s kidding, of course. Nobody’s had 14 sacks in one season for the Eagles since Hugh Douglas rang up 15 in 2000. But the former Michigan star doesn’t doubt that sacks will eventually come as he continues his acclimation into a new defense.
Graham could start today against the Bears at Soldier Field if left defensive end Juqua Parker is sidelined by the hip flexor strain that kept the veteran out of practice all week.
It hasn’t escaped Graham’s thinking that the Bears have allowed the NFL’s most sacks this year (37) thanks to a shoddy offensive line that starts a rookie left tackle.
Even if he doesn’t start, Graham should log plenty of snaps in coordinator Sean McDermott’s pass-rushing packages.
“We’re just going to see who the better rookie is this week,” Graham said.
When you look at his rookie company, Graham is lagging behind. Five other rookies have more sacks, led by Detroit’s No. 2 overall pick Ndaumokong Suh, who has eight.”
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November 28 ESPN.com:
“After suffering another neck injury that landed him on injured reserve last week, Philadelphia Eagles cornerback Ellis Hobbs is likely to retire, according to sources close to the team.
“There’s a good chance of that happening,” a source said Saturday.
Hobbs, 27, is expected to undergo neck surgery next week for the second time in a year.
One source said that if Hobbs had to make a decision today, he would retire. But Hobbs will have the entire offseason to think it over and he has been advised to take his time and not make any rash decisions.”
November 28 Philadelphia Daily News:
“JOSELIO HANSON has done this before. Fifteen starts in an Eagles career that dates to 2006, some just because the defense opened in “nickel,” others because of injury to usual starters.
Maybe a lot of fans know him only as the guy who got suspended for the NFC Championship Game at Arizona last year for something he said was in his Chinese takeout, but Hanson is one of the longest-serving Eagles now, a role player with tenure.
“We did a new deal [6 years, $15 million] for him last year, so we felt good about him,” coach Andy Reid said yesterday. “He’s had opportunities to fill in at the corner spot as a starter and done a nice job. And then, he’s our starting nickel back. So we obviously have a lot of confidence in him and feel good about him being in there, if needed.”
It sure looked yesterday as if Hanson would be needed. The Birds concluded their practice week without Asante Samuel ever stepping on the field, after straining his left medial collateral ligament Sunday against the Giants. Officially, Samuel is “questionable,” as are defensive tackle Antonio Dixon (who left Thanksgiving practice with an abdominal strain) and defensive end Juqua Parker, who aggravated his hip flexor injury against the Giants and did not practice this week.
Reid said all three tentatively were scheduled to travel with the team to Chicago today. He said Samuel is “feeling a little bit better . . . still not 100 percent.” Typically under Reid, players who can’t practice by Friday don’t play on Sunday.”
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