Take a deep breath everyone, a VERY deep breath. Now let it out and crack your smiles, because football is back in town!
Just as everyone in the “City of Brotherly Love” prepares to slaughter the Philadelphia Phillies for recent skids, pitching questions, and Ryan Howards 1 millionth career strike-out, the boys in green take the field Thursday night against the New England Patriots. Granted its just a pre-season game, but can’t you just feel the excitement that football brings to the city? Can you even sleep anticipating the first snap?
We will, as Eagle fans carry a heavy heart as we look upon the sidelnes and miss 2 very fond members of our “family”. It’s going to be hard to watch on and not see defensive coordinator, and blitz master Jim Johnson, who passed away from cancer, not be calling in the schemes. And of course we will also feel a little tug as we look out for our long time hero number 20, Brain Dawkins, who had moved on via free agency to the Denver Broncos.
Alas though Eagle fans, there will be plenty to be excited about. Donovan McNabb’s off-season cries for help on the offensive side of the ball has produced plenty of new names!
We will get some looks at first round draft pick Jeremy Maclin out of Colorado, and be made familiar with the progress of a revamped O-Line featuring Pro Bowler Jason Peters and former Bengal tackle Stacy Andrews. Plus who isn’t hyped to see another draft pick, and possible RB heir LeShon McCoy get a few carries?
On the defensive side the hopes are high as well. New defensive coordinator Sean McDermott is not Jim Johnson, but was referred to as a “head coach candidate in the making” and “incredibly smart football guy” by ESPN football writer Michael Smith. Sean Jones attempts to take over in the spot left empty by Dawkins. Though he is not yet the vocal leader, Jones has proved to have a knack for finding the football, coming up with 14 interceptions in 4 full seasons of play while with Cleveland.
We are always expecting a ton from our Birds, and why not? During the “McNabb-Reid Era” this team has appeared in 5 conference championships. Yes some names have changed, but when over the last dozen years have we seen names change for the worse? This team has a knack for knowing when players times are up, and making needed adjustments to bring in new faces.
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