Thursday, December 25, 2014

Dallas Gave Birds a Wedgie

Eagles special teams coordinator Rory Segrest said his unit's problems covering kickoffs Monday in Dallas had to do with attacking the Cowboys' four-man blocking wedge.

Dallas Gave Birds a Wedgie

   Cowboys' special teams coach? In politics, "wedge issues" are the ones that divide people. In football, "wedge issues" can mean you end up getting divided, like the Red Sea, or like the Dallas Cowboys divided the Eagles' kickoff coverage team over and over again Monday night, most notably on Felix Jones' 98-yard touchdown return.

    Eagles special teams coordinator Rory Segrest talked Thursday for the first time since that night, in which Jones averaged an astounding 41.2 yards on a half-dozen returns, putting the Birds' defense in tough spots over and over again.

    "Our execution was unnacceptable. It was one of those deals where we went down and fit the wedge poorly. We lost leverage on the returner, as far as running through where our guys are supposed to be, forcing him back to their help ... It's something we're definitely going to spend a lot of time making sure (we fix)."

     Segrest said he didn't think he needed to make personnel changes.

     "I think it's more of an execution thing and just proper fits," he said. ('Fits' are kind of like angles of attack, approaches.) "It was the first time this season, including preseason, that we faced a four-man wedge (instead of the more common three). The fits were a little bit different there."

      Other highlights from the coordinators' news conferences:

    Jim Johnson said his defense had a bad night in Dallas but can recover from it; he said the key is getting better pass-rush pressure. Toward that end, Johnson indicated we might see more of defensive end Chris Clemons this week. Johnson said Victor Abiamiri (wrist) remains three to four weeks away from returning, a timeframe Abiamiri later said seemed accurate. That would take Abiamiri, injured in training camp, pretty much to the bye week.

     Marty Mornhinweg said the Steelers' 3-4 defense is "a touch more aggressive schemewise" than Dallas's 3-4. Mornhinweg said right guard Shawn Andrews remains "day to day" with the back spasms that took him out of Monday's game. He said wideout Reggie Brown, practicing this week after missing a month with a hamstring, "looks good" and shows no effects of the injury.

    

  

Les Bowen Daily News Staff Writer
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Les Bowen Daily News Staff Writer
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