The kids were alright on Sunday.
Brandon Boykin – He was tasked with covering Victor Cruz for much of the game. Cruz finished with just 5 catches for 48 yards. There were plenty of double teams so it isn’t as if Boykin just shut Cruz down. And there was a costly PI penalty that sustained a TD drive. But Boykin helped to keep Cruz under control. Boykin had a spectacular INT (while covering Cruz). He also blitzed from the outside and got some pressure on Eli’s first INT. Boykin can become an impact player even if he stays as the Nickel Corner.
Mychal Kendricks – He picked off a pass and recovered a fumble. Kendricks now has 3 FRs and leads the NFL. The INT was completely a gift, but how many times over the years have we seen an Eagles LB drop that ball? Kendricks is expected to be a playmaker. He’s showing signs of that.
Ced Thornton – Had 4 solo tackles and a TFL yesterday. Helped push the pocket on the play where Manning’s hand got hit and the ball was picked off by Kendricks.
Fletcher Cox – The Eagles most athletic DL was able to get some pressure yesterday. He was about to sack Eli when Manning threw the ball to Cruz over the middle and Boykin picked it off. The stat line shows just 2 tackles, but there was more impact than that.
Earl Wolff – Broke up a pass and had 4 tackles. Need to study the tape to really see how he did.
Brandon Graham / Vinny Curry – Limited snaps again, but they were able to get some pressure. Curry made his impact felt more.
Bennie Logan – Got his first NFL sack. It was Curry’s pressure that created the sack, but Logan finished the play.
You don’t build a juggernaut defense overnight. It takes time to collect the pieces and put them together. Players take time to develop. The Eagles have a long, long way to go, but it was very encouraging to see the young players impacting the game as they did.
They’ll gain confidence from Sunday. Part of becoming a good player or unit is believing in yourself. That can be hard to do when you’re getting lit up. A taste of success can go a long way to getting players to believe in what’s going on. We’ll see if Sunday is something the young players can build on.
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A Tecmo thief, to be exact. Funny stuff for those of us who remember those games.
I can think of a few Tecmo players I’d like to add to bolster the defense.