Inside Slant, Notes, Quotes, Report Cards

War Nest
Posted Nov 29, 2005


Eagles coach Andy Reid said he will not be making a quarterback change for Monday night's must-win game against the Seattle Seahawks. Starter Mike McMahon, who replaced injured Donovan McNabb two weeks ago, completed just 12 of 28 passes for 91 yards in the Eagles' 19-14 win over the Green Bay Packers.

"Right now, it's Mike's position," Reid said. "We'll see how he does here. He did some good things (against the Packers). He took a couple of steps forward. Now we need to get him started a little faster than we have in the last couple of games."

McMahon completed just four of 12 passes for 27 yards in the first half of the Packers game. The week before, in a 27-17 loss to the New York Giants, he completed just five of 15 passes for 81 yards in the first half.

McMahon played better in the second half of both games. On Sunday, he completed three of four passes on the Eagles' game-winning drive. He also didn't throw an interception and rushed for 29 yards. The week before, he had 31 rushing yards and a touchdown against the Giants.

"I like his mobility," Reid said. "He saw he was in trouble a couple of times Sunday and was able to get out of trouble with his legs. Not only running the ball, but throwing the football down the field. He made a couple of throws there at the end that were big throws."

Koy Detmer is the team's backup quarterback. The Eagles currently aren't carrying a No. 3 quarterback.

NOTES, QUOTES

--Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb had surgery on his abdomen and groin Monday to repair his sports hernia. The recovery time for the surgery is about three months. The team fully expects him to be ready for the club's spring minicamps. "The doctor felt it went well," coach Andy Reid said of the surgery. "He felt real good about it. They repaired the torn groin muscle on the right side and sewed up the abdominal area."

--Lamar Gordon's first-quarter fumble Sunday was the first lost fumble by an Eagles running back on a rushing attempt in 799 carries covering 41 games. The last one: October 26, 2003, by Correll Buckhalter against the New York Jets. Gordon's fumble came in the red zone and cost the Eagles a scoring opportunity. "It's disappointing," offensive coordinator Brad Childress said. "Particularly where it occurred. You take care of the football, you're going to be in good shape most games. They had five turnovers today, we had one. But that one probably cost us points." The Eagles have lost just six fumbles in 11 games.

STRATEGY AND PERSONNEL

PLAYER PERSONNEL NOTES

--QB Mike McMahon has run for 60 yards in his two starts. That's 5 yards more than Donovan McNabb's rushing total in the Eagles' first nine games. Coach Andy Reid said he doesn't try to discourage McMahon from running any more than he did McNabb. "You run the offense," he said. "If you don't have the throw that's there, you go through your progressions and then take off and go."

REPORT CARD VS. PACKERS

PASSING OFFENSE: F -- Mike McMahon completed three of four attempts on an important fourth-quarter scoring drive, but he mostly was ineffective through the air. He completed just 12 of 28 passes. His wide receivers caught a total of three passes for 19 yards.

RUSHING OFFENSE: A-minus -- For the first time all season, the Eagles ran the ball more than they threw it. With a makeshift line that included three guys with a total of two NFL starts, they rushed for 180 yards against the Packers. Brian Westbrook notched just the third 100-yard game of his career and scored the Eagles' only touchdown on a 27-yard cutback run.

PASS DEFENSE: A-minus -- The Eagles didn't blitz much, but they still got good pressure on Brett Favre. The much-maligned secondary turned in a solid effort, holding Favre to 15 completions in 33 attempts while picking him off twice.

RUSH DEFENSE: C-minus -- When you give up 111 rushing yards to Samkon Gado, there's not a whole lot to be happy about. Outside linebackers Dhani Jones and Keith Adams combined for just two tackles.

SPECIAL TEAMS: A-minus -- David Akers bounced back from his 38-yard miss against the Giants and made all four of his field-goal attempts. The coverage units played well and forced two fumbles on kickoff returns.

COACHING: B-plus -- Without Donovan McNabb and Terrell Owens and three-fifths of his starting line, Andy Reid wisely went heavy with the run. Defensive chief Jim Johnson cut down on the blitzes and got a solid effort from his much-maligned unit.


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