Explaining the Eagles’ Scale Back to Walkthrough Wednesday
It’s Dallas week, which is always big in Philadelphia.
This one has a bigger impact than usual. The Eagles are at 5-0 and the Cowboys are at 4-1. This gives the Cowboys the chance to comfort the remaining 1972 Miami Dolphins players by ensuring that perfection is not in Philadelphia’s future.
The Cowboys will also be in first place in NFC East, even though both teams are 5-1. Dallas would hold the tiebreaker until the Dallas Christmas Eve rematch.
” We know how big it is because we are the Cowboys. We also know how important it is because we have the next game. And we know how large it is because we have the division game. “We’re going to do our business as usual, prepare like we always do and leave no stone unturned. “
Sirianni doesn’t want this team to make the game more than it is ,
” We don’t get caught up in [the rivalry],” said he. “The best teams I have ever been on aren’t too involved in all those different things. They just get on with their business and get ready for the week. “
Sirianni originally planned a traditional Wednesday. This is the most demanding day in an NFL week.
After mulling things on Monday and Tuesday, however, Sirianni looked at a landscape that featured some key players like Jordan Mailata (shoulder) and Aveonte Maddox (ankle) trying to work back from injuries, along with the realization that the team is coming off its longest road trip of the season, the 20-17 nailbiter over Arizona on Sunday, and scaled back to a walkthrough Wednesday. This is the second consecutive week that the Eagles have held walkthroughs on Wednesday. This is something that is usually reserved for later in the season.
Sirianni outlined the strategy last week.
” “It’s a feeling thing,” he said. “… There were some bumps and bruises during that [Jacksonville] match. We do what is best for our men The Eagles have made it a priority to ensure that their players are healthy.
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“We did (a walkthrough) after the Monday night game (against Minnesota) on a short week. Sirianni stated that we did it (after Jacksonville).
This was the first time that the plan was changed so late in the process. It’s also for a high-profile video game, so the decision will be viewed with the benefit of hindsight.
Sirianni noted a week ago that he wasn’t interested in Wednesday walkthrough mode and added that practice to the schedule before reversing course on Tuesday afternoon.
” We’ll do that later in the year.,” he stated. “We are not yet in that mode as far as that is concerned. It was just a feel (after the Jags game) for hey, we’ve got some guys banged up; it would be good to get them another day’s rest while working their minds really hard today with meetings and walkthrough.”
That “feel” just came a little later this time perhaps in an effort to manage the banged-up players, a group that expanded and now includes All-Pro center Jason Kelce (ankle) and left guard Landon Dickerson (leg).
Right Guard Isaac Seumalo was also dealing with an ankle injury after the Jacksonville game. Seumalo played 100% snaps in Arizona but had his ankle heavily wrapped.
The Cowboys second-year defensive stalwart Micah Parsons is a potential game-wrecker.
“He must be accounted for every play,” Shane Steichen, offensive coordinator, said on Tuesday. He flies around. They line him up all around the place. He is a great pass rusher. He is quick. He is strong. We need to be aware of his power. “
Once you understand this, you will understand why the Eagles want to manage the offensive lines in order to get as many starters as possible.
They are considering Parsons and his potential impact on backup offensive linemen.
John McMullen is the NFL Insider at JAKIB Media and contributes Eagles coverage to SI.com’s Eagles Today. You can listen to John, alongside legendary sports-talk host Jody every morning from 8-10 on ‘Birds 365,” streaming live on YouTube. John hosts “Extending the Play” in South Jersey on AM . You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @JFMcMullen
The author of 5 books, 3 of which are New York Times bestsellers. I’ve been published in more than 100 newspapers and magazines and am a frequent commentator on NPR.