In the post-game press conference after Philadelphia's 26-24 win over Indianapolis, Andy Reid was very quick to praise the defense, particularly the secondary.
"Kurt Coleman coming in and replacing Nate (Allen), I'm proud of him for the job that he did, and Dimitri Patterson, we asked a lot of him today and he rose to the occasion, and Asante with the two picks."
Peyton Manning versus Dimitri Patterson and Kurt Coleman - Complete and utter mismatch, right? You'd think so, especially considering Pro Bowlers Asante Samuel and Quintin Mikell routinely lined up on one side of the field, while defensive coordinator Sean McDermott trusted Patterson and Coleman to lock down the other side. While Peyton Manning threw for a seemingly impressive 294 yards, he did so on 52 passes, for a very modest 5.7 yards per pass.
Patterson was tested early and often. When asked if the Colts were targeting him, Patterson remarked:
"No doubt about it. I was in their gameplan. They gave me three double moves, they went deep on me twice. That's five plays, but they went 0 for 5."
On whether Patterson's gameplan was to not give up a big play:
"My gameplan was to show not only Peyton but also their offensive coordinator that every time you came over there, you (were) going to come up empty handed."
Kurt Coleman praised the vets:
We rallied around the veterans and I felt we played assignment football. It's tough to hold down Peyton Manning, especially for 4 quarters. He did a great job leaning down on that final drive, and we buckled in for that very last drive with a minute left, and got a pick by Asante. Asante had a great game."
Quintin Mikell was impressed with the play of the two inexperienced defensive backs:
You have two guys that... a rookie (Coleman), and Dimitri who hadn't played a lot to come in and play as well as they did was great. Kurt (Coleman) hardly got any reps all week, and for him to come out and play as well as he did, I'm very proud of those guys. They made a name for themselves today, and that's great.
Peyton Manning even praised the Eagles' secondary as well:
They have good players, they have good cover guys as well and everything was kind of contested, but we just had a tough time finding any kind of rhythm in the second half and you have to give Philadelphia a lot of credit.
Per Andy Reid, Nate Allen has a neck strain and will have an MRI tomorrow. Obviously, Allen will have his starting job waiting for him when he's ready to play. I'm not so sure I can say the same for Ellis Hobbs. Patterson had an excellent game against one of the best quarterbacks in the history of the NFL, not to mention a great receiver in Reggie Wayne. It's time to ride the hot hand.
Much more to come tomorrow about this win...