I think it's pretty safe to say the Eagles were completely looking past this matchup against the Dallas Cowboys today, and focused their attention toward their first likely playoff opponent, the Green Bay Packers. They had the advantage of playing a division rival, and therefore the coaching staff had the opportunity to recycle their gameplan from their matchup last month against the Cowboys (although that's pure speculation on my part), while prioritizing their efforts toward next weekend.
I had a chance to ask Eagles guard Todd Herremans if the Eagles players, knowing that their likely opponent this week would be the Green Bay Packers, began watching film on them early, or if they waited until they knew for sure would their opponent would be. Herremans' reply:
"We went over a couple things. If we had found out that (the regular starters) weren't playing (this week against Dallas) and we didn't (begin to prepare for Green Bay), I think that would have been stupid on our part. Anytime you can get a head start on an opponent, I think that should pay off."
I agree. With an opportunity to get healthy in favor of playing a division rival in a meaningless game, while also getting the jump on your first playoff opponent in the film room, I'm of the belief you take advantage of that situation every single time. Andy Reid echoed that sentiment:
"We were able to look at a little bit of (film). The coaches took a peek at (the Packers) over the last couple days."
Andy Reid also updated the health status of some of the Eagles players that were resting today.
On whether Michael Vick could have played if needed:
"There's a chance he could have."
On whether Vick will return to practice:
On the health of Asante Samuel and LeSean McCoy:
"Everybody should be ready to go."
On whether Stewart Bradley could return to play against Green Bay:
"There's a chance on that. We just need to see how he does over the next couple days."
On whether Max Jean-Gilles will be available to play Sunday:
"We'll see. I just saw him walking around (in the locker room). I have to go back and see how he's doing. We might not know anything for a day or two, but we'll see."
We'll be ramping up our coverage this week. After all, it's the tourney! I'll have more tomorrow on the Eagles' thoughts on Green Bay, Aaron Rodgers, how the Eagles think they are a different team than they were way back in Week 1, and we'll do some film study of that Week 1 matchup later this week...