While they were only on the field for six plays in the first preseason game, many people took note of how active and physical the Eagles’ corners were. We even saw the “tackling challenged” Asante Samuel wrap up and bring down a big TE… Eagles defensive coordinator Sean McDermott was asked about what seems to be Samuel’s new dedication to hitting & tackling.
“Asante is a pro and he’s driven, in my mind, by being the best and the best that he can be. I think he realized that he needed to get in the weight room, which he has, and add muscle to his body, which he has. To me, he looks like he’s added five to six pounds of muscle. I can’t confirm that right now because I don’t know where he is, but I believe his weight was up about five or six pounds. When he came back in the spring, when I saw him for the first time since February or January there, [I knew] that he had been working hard. That’s to his credit.”
He was also asked whether he thought Ellis Hobbs seemed to playing with a chip on his shoulder.
“I really do. I would imagine when you’re in a situation like Ellis went through last year, not being able to be on the field, going through a significant injury that he went through, you see both sides of the game and how quickly things can be taken away in this league, both as a player and as a coach, for all of us. Whether it was that, or just how he is, and I think it’s a little bit of how he is, as well, an extremely driven individual, extremely aggressive, and then you look at the physical attribute. He’s quick, can burst, and loves to play the game. Those are all great qualities to have, especially in a corner.”
If the Eagles corners play like they did Friday night they’ll consider that position a strength this year… but six plays against a team who can’t really throw the ball is hardly enough to judge.