Several Eagles players spoke to reporters following the team’s Week 2 loss to the 49ers, and many shared their thoughts on losing veteran and captain Brandon Graham, as well as losing Brandon Brooks, and Jalen Hurts spoke about some of the offensive struggles.
Here’s what some of the players had to say:
The DT said that the defense overall played pretty well on Sunday, but obviously not well enough to win. So, they’re going to learn from the bad, and the good, get out there and practice and correct things.
Cox was visibly upset when Brandon Graham went down with an injury, and he explained why it was a rough moment for him.
“It’s always tough, and it was a pretty emotional moment for me to see BG limp off the field because I know me and Brandons played so much ball together, and to see him limp off the field was pretty rough for me. But, we know Brandon, he’s in a good spot right now, and we’ll talk and once he figures out what’s going on — at the same time, we’ve got his back, and we’ll go from there and get ready for the next game.”
He acknowledged though that things happen in football, players get hurt — “your best friend gets hurt” —, but Graham is still his locker-mate, and has been since Cox got to Philly, so they’ll still get to talk and work, it just won’t be on the field on Sundays. Cox also is committed to making sure Graham stays in a good place mentally as he works his way back.
Cox was also asked about the flag thrown on K’Von Wallace that negated the fumble recovery was a turning point for the team, and it sucked the air out of him. He emphasized that he didn’t agree with the call, but noted it’s up to the coaches to handle. The DT went on to say that you don’t point fingers at any one player though, because penalties can happen to anybody, and they just have to be better as a team moving forward.
“There’s no panic in that locker room at all.”
On Brandon Graham’s injury:
“It’s terrible. One of the greatest humans I’ve had the pleasure of playing with, competing with, for eight years, going on nine years. He’s really the heartbeat of this team. The way he conducts himself, the way he leads, and the way he plays, so I’m not sure what the extent of the injury is, but I’m heartbroken for him.”
On Brandon Brooks injury:
“You can’t replace those type of players. Younger guys gotta step up and we gotta press on. It’s terrible, I mean, Brooks is one of my best friends, best guard in the league for a long time, and was doing well so far this season, and having him not be out there was a tremendous loss for us. Having him out there might have been the difference between us winning and losing.”
Johnson was asked how Landon Dickerson did in his debut, stepping into Brooks’ role, and he admitted that he has to go back and watch the film but he thought the rookie adjusted well in the second half. But, Dickerson is a “massive human being” and when he starts figuring it out, he’s so strong and big, he’ll be able to hold his own.
“We had a lot of opportunities out there that we didn’t capitalize on, that’s plain and simple right there. We have to be consistent in our execution. I have to be consistent in my execution and my operation as the field general, so something to learn from, today. A lot to learn from. A lot of things out there — everything out there were things that we can control, so that’s what hurts the most.”
Hurts was asked about some of his deep pass attempts, and he talked about how they were called to give guys an opportunity and he failed to do that.
The quarterback was also asked what it meant to lose Brandon Graham and Brandon Brooks.
“It definitely hurts. It hurts me because those are OG guys. OG guys that have put a lot of time in to this team, made a lot of plays for this team, done a lot of great things with this team, and so for them to go out tonight — for us to come up short, I feel bad. I feel like I let them down.”
The linebacker gave a lot of credit to the Eagles’ defensive line that worked hard to set the line of scrimmage against a really tough running 49ers offense. Singleton was also asked about losing Brandon Graham and what that means to the defense.
“That’s obviously one of our captains, that’s huge. He’s that emotional leader. You guys all know him, he’s always got a smile on his face, always doing the right things. He’s one of those guys [...] I remember when I was still on practice squad, he was the guy, everyday, telling me I would play one day. So, he’s that guy for this team, and he’ll still be that guy. I think that’s the best thing about him is, we might lose him on the field, but we’re definitely not losing him in the room, in the building.”
The veteran corner was asked about Brandon Graham’s injury and he admitted that it affects the defense because a guy like that has a presence on the field.
“That sucks for BG, man, I got a lot of respect for that guy as a leader, and his hard work and dedication to what he’s been for this organization. I just hope he gets better and well, but definitely was sad to see him limp off the field.”