This Eagles defense is starting to get a reputation.
First, Vonta Leach of the Baltimore Ravens accused the Eagles defenders of "playing dirty" following the teams Week 2 game. Now Willie Colon of the Pittsburgh Steelers has backed up Leach's comments by also accusing the Eagles of playing dirty this past weekend.
Here is what Colon had to say according to Ron Cook of the Pittsburgh Post Gazette.
"Ben was mad. He thought they were going after his head," Colon said. "They were cheap-shot artists all day. They were hitting us in the back. I know I lost my cool once or twice. It is what it is. You have to play through it."
Colon has reason to be upset- he was called for 4 holding penalties during the game trying to keep the Eagles defensive line off Roethlisberger. Overall, the Pittsburgh offensive line got the job done- it was the first time since 2010 where Roethisberger was not sacked.
The play that Colon talked about was also drawn attention to by Graham yesterday on his Instagram account. The defensive end posted a picture of Roethlisberger and him in each other faces, with the caption "So mad we lost but I had to let him know."
Are the Eagles playing dirty? There have not been any blatantly dirty hits by this team, but they have been called for a few personal fouls. Against the Ravens they certainly did not back down from a few post play scuffles.
But the better question might be- if they are, is it a good thing?
Last year the Eagles defense was considered soft by most fans. Games like the one against the Seattle Seahawks showed that at times they looked to avoid contact instead of initiate it. This year that certainly has been different- they are doing a better job tackling and seem to be more aggressive towards the ball carrier.
Many consider the Baltimore Ravens and Pittsburgh Steelers two of the toughest teams in the league- so to have them call you dirty might just be a feather on the cap for an Eagles team that could be trying to change the perception from last year.
Follow Eliot Shorr-Parks on Twitter at @EliotShorrParks