The preseason has mercifully come to a close and all of us Eagles football junkies are just a little over a week away from getting our first real fix... The final preseason matchup gave us a chance to check out some young guys fighting for spots, but wasn't without it's casulties. Near the end of the game Max Jean-Gilles went down with some sort of knee injury. It looked like he had trouble putting any weight on it.. for now the Eagles are calling it a strain, but he's scheduled for an MRI today.
Listening to football on the radio - I had to work late last night and didn't get to leave until 6:30. So I listened to the first hour or so of the game on the radio and really enjoyed it. I was out of range of the Philly stations so I listed to the Jets broadcast which was great because I think you get a lot more honest evaluation of your players from opposition announcers. Let's be honest, the Eagles broadcasts on both the radio and TV tend to compliment every single thing they do... On the Jets broadcast I continually heard 3 names on defense...
Joe Mays - It's really been amazing how good Mays has been this preseason. What is most surprising is how quick he is, which was always a knock against him. Everything knew he was a big guy who could deliver a hit, but no one thought he played this fast. Mays led all players in tackles with 11.
Bryan Smith - The rookie 3rd round pick really came to play last night and showed a lot of what the Eagles must have seen when they decided to take him so early. He registered one and half sacks(one he split with McDougle) along with 9 total tackles. For a guy who was advertised as a "fastball" pass rushing specialist, he plays the run really well. In fact, he's played the run pretty well all preseason but hasn't shown a really good pass rushing flair until last night.
Dan Klecko - If Klecko was anywhere near the bubble last night, he's not anymore. Great game out of Klecko that surely cemented his spot on the 53 man roster. Klecko was borderline dominant against the Jets interior line, he was penetrating and blowing up the run, changing the direction of plays, and pressuring the passer registering one sack. He really seemed to live on the other side of the line of scrmimmage. I gotta say, if Klecko can be anywhere near that good in the regular season... what's the need for a guy like Darren Howard? Why put some DEs inside to rusht he passer if you've got some reserve DTs that can do it?
Kevin Kolb - Kolb impressed once again last night and it's not only reflected in the numbers. We know he's got a good arm and throws an accurate ball... but he really displayed a command of the offense and showed veteran poise back there. the more I see of Kolb the more I feel confident for the day he eventually takes over. The Jets announcers couldn't say enough about how good they thought Kolb looked.
Lorenzo Booker - It was nice to see Booker actually play a good bit last night. We've seen the Eagles move him around in formations, split him out, give him a spot carry here and there... but up until last night we haven't seen them give Booker a couple of carries in a row and let function like he's a primary back. He had 11 rushes(one for a TD) and caught 7 passes. Booker was hyped to the moon thanks to his impressive play in training camp, which was obviously premature and really unfair to the guy... When preseason kicked off and the games went live Booker never looked as impressive as he did at Lehigh... but last night I think we saw a little more of the Booker we've wanted to see all preseason, he didn't looke like the next Westbrook but he did look very useful.
AJ Feeley - I really just don't see the point of AJ Feeley anymore. Two picks tonight, one his fault and one not... but it's really just more of the same from AJ. He never was that good and I think has gone backwards since the time he was first here. Can anyone tell me that they'd be confident in AJ stepping in and winning a game if called upon? Kolb, even in just his second year is clearly the superior player of the two... I just don't see anything from Feeley that tells me we need this guy.
Matt Schobel - After taking a big hit one play, he alligator arms a sure TD catch! That's a no no when you're trying to win a job... Tsk tsk.
Who are your stock up/stock downs for last night?