Sep 2, 2011, 8:17 AM EDT
The Eagles left the Meadowlands with the all-important preseason win, dropping the Jets by a 24-14 count, and they got a good look at some of the guys who could play key roles later in the season. A few guys will be pretty sore today though, with last night’s starter Vince Young coming up lame with a hamstring issue as he rolled out for a red zone strike.
VY was having a very good night until that point, throwing for 193 yards (15 for 23) and a TD pass to Chad Hall, generally looking pretty comfortable. On his final pass though, he pulled up without contact, wincing and grabbing his leg. After the game, he said he’d get an MRI when the team returns to Philly, but Andy Reid thinks he’ll be ready to go for the season opener. It was encouraging to see VY with a smile on his face on the sideline not long after coming out, and after the game he said it felt pretty good. No word on whether he’ll tweet the MRI for us.
Mike Kafka had a scary moment too, taking a nasty hit to the chest, and for a minute it looked like the Eagles might have to send emergency QB Jason Avant in. Kafka was able to resume play though.
Surprisingly, Riley Cooper was also OK after the hit you’ll see in the video below.
Daaaaaammmnnn. Brodney Pool was flagged on the play, but didn’t appear to deserve anything more than some helmet slaps by the other guys in his secondary. That’s life in today’s NFL, for better and worse.
Rookie running back Dion Lewis racked up 100 total yards (15 carries for 62 yards, 3 catches for 38 yards) and a touchdown, and generally looked great, with explosive speed and some slick moves. And he’s third on the depth chart. Not bad for a team that relies heavily on the pass and probably always will.
Danny Watkins was the sole starter to see action in the game (*correction: Dixon played too), having requested to play to get some more snaps before the regular season (Jeff McLane says he was probably going to see time whether he asked or not). McLane also points out that Watkins still has some learning to do, starting off slow for the second straight game, which can be dangerous for the guy behind him. But in both contests, he got better in subsequent series, which is a good sign. Lockout, holdout, late to the game of football… He’s also a rookie OL no matter how you slice it. There’ll be some growing pains, but it’s good to see progress in there too.
The rookie kicking tandem also had a pair of shaky moments, with Alex Henery missing one field goal and punter/holder Chas Henry bobbling a snap on another, then rolling out and throwing a pick, although the latter play was washed out with a Jets penalty. Henery did hit his three PATs and drill a 49-yarder in the fourth quarter to end the night on a better note though.
So that’s it for the preseason. The Birds exit exhibition with a 3-1 record and, hopefully, no major injuries to key players. Along with the rest of the NFL, there will probably still be some rust when the take the field in week one, and there’s still work to do in the areas we knew would be iffy, most notably the new-look OL and the linebackers.
Reuben Frank has much more on the game, including what standout performances by Brian Rolle and Donald Lee mean for their chances to make the team as a big wave of cuts looms.
Photo: Noah K. Murray, The Star-Ledger-US Presswire
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