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Philadelphia Eagles coach Andy Reid tried to explain how the talented Eagles could fall to 3-5 for the season after Monday's 30-24 loss to the Chicago Bears.
"I've told you, it's the turnovers, it's penalties," Reid said during a press conference Tuesday. "I don't feel people are necessarily stopping us, that we're stopping ourselves, and we've got to take care of that. Right now that's what you can control, and so you go to work and make sure that you get that taken care of. And when we do those things, when we don't have the penalties, whether they're right or wrong, whether we agree with them or don't agree with them, or when we have turnovers, when we don't do those things, we're a pretty good football team. In fact, we're a really good football team."
Reid praised Chicago's play, but did not direct blame away from his own football team.
"As I mentioned last night, compliments to the Bears for the job they did, and obviously we've got room to improve here. There are things we need to work on and get better at, as coaches, starting with myself, and as players. The obvious are the turnovers and the penalties, we've got to take care of business there. Whether I agree with the penalties or don't agree with the penalties, there were some that came at crucial situations," said Reid.
"In that turnover category I put in the fake punt, which was my responsibility, I made the call," he continued. "They gave us what we thought they would give us and that was two uncovered players on the outside, and we just came up short on the throw. The last thing is getting off the field on third downs, and staying on the field on crucial third downs, ones that we needed. We had an opportunity, when it was all said and done, to have the ball in our hand at the end of the game with three-plus minutes to go, and we didn't take advantage of that. A touchdown wins the game and we didn't capitalize there like I wanted to."
The Eagles entered last night's game with a shot at getting back to .500 and bolstering their playoff credentials in the NFC. They had a shot at proving that their early season struggles were far behind them. They did neither and really had no excuses after the game.
Head coach Andy Reid expressed his disappointment.
"We need to keep getting better." Reid said. "That’s what we need to do. Am I disappointed with tonight’s outcome? Absolutely, because we put all of that time and effort into it. We just have to continue to work hard and learn from our mistakes and get better."
Quarterback Michael Vick lamented the missed opportunities.
"Obviously, tonight was a big game for us," explained Vick. "We wanted to take advantage of the opportunity that we had to get back to 500 but you can't let opportunities like this slip away. I feel like we had a chance to win this game and we let it slip away but we have to put it behind us and just not let it happen again. Whatever happened tonight that can be corrected has to be corrected."
Vick says the team has no choice but to keep grinding.
"It's tough right now and obviously we've dug this hole ourselves and we have to dig ourselves out of it. The only thing we can do is take it one game at a time and try to learn from our mistakes."
Remember when the Eagles started off the season poorly going 1-4 over their first five weeks? And then remember how they won two straight against the Redskins and Cowboys and we all started to wonder who the real Eagles were? The sloppy team with an awful defense from the first five games or the one with the dynamic offense and stifling D we saw the last two games? Well, tonight we got our answer.
Faced with a must win game to keep pace in the division and a chance to resurrect their playoff chances the Eagles reverted right back to the same team we saw at the start of year. The offense turns the ball over in the red zone. The defense can't stop the run or the pass... Dumb penalties, mental mistakes and guys getting paid a lot of money as well as guys looking for a lot of money really not looking like they are worth it.
Twice the Eagles had the Bears stopped on third down and twice they bailed them out with penalties. The first was a somewhat controversial roughing the passer call on Jason Babin where he was pushed into the QB. But that said, when you're going full bore after the passer well after he's thrown the ball, stuff like that happens. That call gets made every single time. The other was on Nnamdi Asomugha who just flat out lost Knox in one on one coverage and committed a pass interference penalty. It was somewhat similar to the back shoulder play to Dez Bryant last week, only this time around they actually threw the flag.
The three pro bowlers were all terrible. We already highlighted the Nnamdi play, but the other two were even worse. Domonique Rodgers-Cromartie put so little effort in tackling tonight, he made Asante Samuel look like Brian Urlacher. And speaking of Samuel, where was he on that TD to Earl Bennett? Do you know, because he certainly didn't know where he was. Just awful coverage that made for an easy TD when Cutler was under pressure.
Matt Forte was pretty awful with ball security tonight and his two fumbles led to 14 Eagles points, but when he did hold onto the ball he ran all over the Eagles D. He and Marion Barber combined for 164 yards on the ground. In both the run and the pass game, the Bears offensive line completely dominated the line of scrimmage.
And just to round up the dejavu recap... LeSean McCoy was easily the best Eagle on the field. He tied a franchise record with his 8th straight game with a TD. He did it in style too with this ridiculous 33 yard run.
And so you're going to hear a lot of people writing the Eagles obituary this week and with good reason. The problem isn't that you can't make the playoffs after a starting with a record of 3-5. The problem is that you can't make the playoffs when you play like this most of the time.
More Bears mistakes have led to more Eagles points and more LeSean McCoy magic have made way for the Eagles first lead of the game. The Eagles opened up the second half with a methodical 15 play, 80 yard drive that culminated in a four yard Ronnie Brown TD to tied the game at 17-17.
The Bears started the ensuing drive off well handing off to Matt Forte who was getting big yardage... but for the second time tonight, Forte fumbled and the Eagles recovered. LeSean McCoy would make him play with a blistering 33 yard TD run to put the Eagles up 24-17. Check out the video as McCoy just makes a Bears defender look silly, then turns on the jets....
After not fumbling all season and going 347 touches without putting the ball on the carpet, Forte has lost two tonight that have led to 14 Eagles points. Eagles lead 24-7 with a little over a minute to go in the third quarter.
If you love really ugly football, you need to be watching this Eagles vs Bears game. Jay Cutler can't hit an open receiver, Michael Vick threw an awful pick, Jeremy Maclin forgot how to catch, FGs are bouncing off uprights and Matt Forte fumbled for the first time this season. After the teams traded gift TDs at the end of the half, it's 17-10 Bears as we head into the 3rd quarter.
We'll start with the Bears gift... Matt Forte's first fumble of the season, in fact his first fumble in 347 touches turned out to be a very costly one. Up 10-3 with less than two minutes left in the first half, Jay Cutler hit Forte on a screen out to the right. He was met there by rookie LB Brian Rolle, who stripped Forte, picked up the loose ball and returned it for a TD to tie the game at 10.
On the ensuing drive, the Bears offense, which ground to halt in the second quarter when they inexplicably abandoned the run and Jay Cutler completely lost any semblance of accuracy can't convert a third down and they need to punt. DeSean Jackson fields the punt and promptly gets that ball knocked out. The Bears recover with first and goal to go.
The Eagles defense would actually make a stop however and appear to force a FG, but Jason Babin was called for roughing the passer on third down to give the Bears first and goal once again. Replays showed that Babin seemed to be pushed into Cutler, but the Eagles protests fell on deaf ears and the Bears scored to make it 17-10.
Prior to the last 2 or 3 minutes I would have said that the score flattered the Eagles, but given how poor both teams have looked, it's probably about right. Bears started hot, but since then it's been just a mess. Here's hoping for a better showing in the second half.
If the Philadelphia Eagles are going to come back and defeat the Chicago Bears in Monday night’s game from Lincoln Financial Field in Philly, they’re going to have to do it without free safety Nate Allen.
That’s because Allen was hit in the helmet during the Bears scoring drive early in the first quarter and was slow to get up. After being taken back to the locker room, it was later announced that he had suffered a concussion and would not return.
Following the injury timeout, Chicago quarterback Jay Cutler found tight end Matt Spaeth for a five yard touchdown. Robbie Gould's extra point was good to put the Bears up 7-0.
A pair of field goals for both teams has since followed and it now stands 10-3 in favor of Chicago. Stay tuned to SB Nation Philly for more updates on Allen's injury as they become available.
Asante Samuel was rolling around on the field in obvious pain with two hands grasping… well his groin area. So apparently, a cup does not provide full protection. Samuel left the game and sat on the bench for a while before being taken to the locker room. So far there has been no update on his condition or return. But it looked like it hurt…
Samuel is the second starter in the Eagles secondary to go down tonight. On the previous drive Nate Allen left the game with what is now being called a concussion. Rookie Jaiquwan Jarrett from Temple has taken his place while Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie will take Samuel’s slot at right cornerback.
As soon as we get an update on Samuel we’ll update. The Bears still lead 7-0 in the second quarter.
[Update by JasonB, 11/07/11 9:44 PM EST ] Samuel has returned to the game, but according to the Eagles, he suffered a "groin laceration." Ouch!
Chicago Bears rookie offensive tackle Gabe Carimi will not play Monday night against the Philadelphia Eagles due to the knee injury that kept him out of practice all week and had him listed as out in Saturday's injury report.
The rest of the Bears' inactive list is as follows: quarterback Nathan Enderle, running back Kahlil Bell, defensive tackle Anthony Adams, defensive end Corey Wootton, defensive end Mario Addison and linebacker Jabara Williams. Adams did not appear on the injury report this week, but it appears he will left out due to Matt Toeaina's return from a knee injury that kept him sidelined for two games.
In case you missed it, the Eagles' inactives are as follows: quarterback Mike Kafka, offensive tackle Winston Justice, guard Julian Vandervelde, defensive end Juqua Parker, defensive end Phillip Hunt, cornerback Curtis Marsh and safety Jarrad Page.
The Philadelphia Eagles will be without linemen on both sides of the ball as defensive end Juqua Parker and offensive tackle Winston Justice are both listed as inactive for Monday night's game against the Chicago Bears. Parker was listed as doubtful Friday with the high-ankle sprain that kept him out of last week's game against Dallas. Parker originally suffered the injury Week 2.
Justice was listed as probable Friday, but will not play due to a knee injury. Justice also missed last week's game with a knee injury, but would not address the injury with the media. Justice missed the first four games of the season after having knee surgery last year.
When you think of the Eagles most famous wins over the past couple years, they've all been in prime time. The 59 point shellacking of the Redskins last year was a Monday nighter. The blowout of the Cowboys last week was on Sunday night. In fact, the Eagles are 6-1 playing under the lights over the past two seasons, with their only loss coming this year to Falcons in the game where Michael Vick was injured in the 4th quarter.
Head coach Andy Reid was asked this week if the preparation for these prime time games is different and does that explain their success?
"I'll tell you the same thing as the bye." Reid said. "We go through the process, try to stay as focused as you can. There's a lot of possible distractions when you're a primetime game, you are the only show going on and so you can be torn in different directions and it's important that you focus in. But those are the same things you're working on for every game. There's just a few more situations that you can be pulled on for the primetime games."
Michael Vick's explanation was a little less practical. He says the guys just get up for playing on a big stage.
"I think all the guys like to play on Monday night because the whole world is watching on Sunday and Monday nights," Vick said. "It gives you an opportunity to showcase your talents in front of the whole world, and you obviously want to try and put on a good showing. Just to go out and play with confidence each and every week, you have to be ready to go."
The Eagles can get back to .500 with a win against the Bears on Monday Night Football.
The Eagles made the move we've been waiting for the last two weeks and activated 2010 first round pick Brandon Graham from the PUP list. G Kyle DeVan was cut to make room. Our speculation was that Jarrad Page would be the obvious man out, but actually DeVan probably works just as well. After a poor start to the season, he was benched prior to the Bills game in favor of 2011 first round pick Danny Watkins, who seems to have made the position his own since then.
But really, the story here is Graham. He obviously won't start and will probably only see limited snaps, but just the fact that he'll be back playing is a big deal. This was the 13th overall pick in the draft in 2010, so clearly the team sees him as a major part of their future. While he may not be the pass rusher Jason Babin is at this point. Graham was a better two way defender at Michigan. He was a great pass rusher and did well against the run. So the upside is that we could potentially have a second Trent Cole to play opposite Trent Cole...
But we don't want to get ahead of ourselves here. It's just good to see Graham back and now he's got some time to further strengthen the knee and get himself back into playing shape.
When the Philadelphia Eagles selected linebacker Jamar Chaney with the 220th overall pick of the 2010 NFL Draft, he was viewed as a possible special teams contributor. Now, defensive coordinator Juan Castillo calls Chaney a budding Pro Bowler.
"Jamar can be standout at whatever linebacker position he would like. He runs a 4.5 at 245-250 pounds. He's physical, smart. That's ability. When you give a coach ability like that, he's going to be a Pro Bowl player some day," said Castillo.
Seven games into the 2011 season, the second-year Chaney has already made more tackles (43) than he did during his rookie campaign. Surrounded by All-Star talent, Chaney has nonetheless managed to carve a bigger role in the Eagles defense.
"When you start making the plays on the field, you become a leader so that when you say something, you don't have to say it loud and be rah-rah," said Castillo. "Everybody is going to listen to you because you're a football player and you know the defense. Jamar does, and he studies a lot. He'll be in here tonight late and he was in here yesterday and he'll be in here tomorrow. We text each other and tell me about the game plan. He's into it mentally, too, so you take a guy that's smart, loves the game, and is talented like that and he's evolving into what he should be."
The Eagles defense has stepped up during the past two games, allowing a combined 20 points in wins against the Washington Redskins and Dallas Cowboys. Chaney has centered the suddenly stingy Eagles, becoming the unit's leader.
"The thing is that Jamar basically runs the defense. He basically calls the huddle, and he's the one who calls the checks. Sometimes some of the safeties do that, but I think what's happening now is that being a young guy and playing with veterans, what happens is he has to prove himself to them. Part of that is so that he can feel comfortable because he has to tell those guys what to do and getting on their butts," said Castillo.
"I think what you're seeing is that Jamar is a very blessed individual and he's working hard and he's a smart kid. It's just a matter of time. I think he is showing on the field. He had nice, tight coverage last week on the tight end and that's the kind of stuff we have been working on. He made some good plays in the run game, so he's just getting better and better. I think when you watch tape, all the other guys are going to see that he's a big time player."
The Chicago Bears have had an outstanding bill of health in the early part of the lead-up to their Monday night contest against the Philadelphia Eagles. On Thursday, the team did not have a single player listed as a limited participant or out from practice and on Friday, it was only rookie tackle Gabe Carimi who made it to the second injury report of the week by not practicing.
Carimi suffered a dislocated knee cap during Week 2 and has been forced to sit out the past five games as a result. Thursday was the first time he participated fully in practice since Sept. 18. Even if Carimi is ready to play against the Eagles, the Bears have said he will not start, with Lance Louis getting that distinction instead for the third straight game.
Philadelphia Eagles defensive end Juqua Parker missed practice Friday due to the same high-ankle sprain he has been battling since suffering the injury Week 2. Parker missed two games with the sprain but has played in each of the past three games for Philadelphia and participated fully in practice Thursday. If he is unable to play Monday night against the Chicago Bears, the Eagles could look to activate defensive end Brandon Graham from the physically unable to perform (PUP) list, assuming they can find a roster spot for him.
As expected, running back LeSean McCoy returned from his stomach illness for full participation after missing practice Thursday, as did tight end Brent Celek from his hip injury. Linebacker Akeem Jordan was also cleared for full participation after having to sit out with a concussion. Parker was the only member of the Eagles to miss Friday's session.
The Philadelphia Eagles are favored by a touchdown in their Monday Night match-up with the Chicago Bears.
It's no big secret what the major weakness of the Bears offense has been this year. The offensive line, while doing a fine job opening holes for Matt Forte, has really struggled to protect QB Jay Cutler who has been sacked 21 times, the third most in the NFL. Despite that, Cutler says he believes the line is getting better and will continue to improve.
"Getting better and better. We're getting there." said Cutler "We're getting some guys healthy and I think that group we have right now is really consistent and has a good feel of what we're trying to get done and the communication is a lot better. What we're doing, I think, is really helping them out, so we've been able to find some stuff -- getting the ball out of my hands, the way Matt (Forte) is running the football he's presenting some problems for defenses. So it's going to be interesting to see how they play us."
On the other side of the ball, the Eagles, who have the 6th most sacks in the NFL this year, have to licking their chops. LB Jamar Chaney says that playing on Monday night against the Bears is yet another chance to prove that the defenses' early season struggles are behind that.
"Every time we step on the field, we want to showcase our talent." said Chaney. "We work all through the week just to go out there and have a good game on Monday, so it's always our goal no matter what the situation is. We consider every game a must-win, and we want to go out and have a great game on defense. That's why we come out here even on the days that we have off. You see all the guys on the defense out here trying to get better, even laying in our beds and watching film so that on Monday we are ready to go."
The Philadelphia Eagles were without tight end Brent Celek and running back LeSean McCoy during their Thursday practice leading up to the much-anticipated Monday night contest against the Chicago Bears.
McCoy was sent home early in the day with a stomach flu, according to a report from the Philadelphia Inquirer. Head coach Andy Reid said he expected McCoy to be back at practice Friday.
Celek missed the practice with a hip bruise, but said he expects to play Monday. The only other Eagle to miss practice was linebacker Akeem Jordan, who suffered a concussion last week against the Cowboys and has yet to be cleared to come back to practice.
Safety Nate Allen (knee), offensive tackle King Dunlap (back), offensive tackle Winston Justice (knee), defensive end Juqua Parker (ankle) and running back Owen Schmitt (groin) all made full participation in practice.
Defensive end Brandon Graham also continues to practice, despite being on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list. The Eagles have until 4 p.m. Sunday to decide if they want to activate him for the Bears game or release him.
-Visit Bleeding Green Nation for complete Eagles coverage and our team page for schedules, statistics, news and more.
Matt Forte has averaged 5.4 yards a carry this year, behind only LeSean McCoy and Fred Jackson.
The Philadelphia Eagles fired on all cylinders during Sunday's 34-7 win against Dallas, leaving a confident team to prepare for the Chicago Bears.
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