Updating: Guards Max Jean-Gilles (ankle) and Todd Herremans (calf) missed practice Thursday, along with middle linebacker Stewart Bradley (elbow). Jean-Gilles and Herremans still seem likely to play Sunday against the Packers; Bradley probably will not play.
Tackles Jason Peters and Winston Justice said cohesiveness shouldn't be a problem for the Birds on Sunday, no matter who is playing guard. Justice said Jean-Gilles and Herremans have played enough that they shouldn't really need a lot of practice to be ready.
Coordinator Sean McDermott said he is extremely proud of what his defense has accomplished. "A lot of defenses are sitting home right now," he said.
"This is a resilient bunch," he said. "They give great effort every week."
McDermott knows better than anyone how his Eagles defenders have struggled, but he also knows he has to get them ready to face the high-powered Packers this Sunday, and the way to do that probably isn't by publicly lamenting their shortcomings.
In facing Green Bay, McDermott said he plans to roll in every defensive end they have and will continue to blitz. The question is just how much. He also pointed to the Packers making a concerted effort to run the ball more.
Middle linebacker Stewart Bradley was not part of the team's morning walkthrough today and remains day-to-day with a dislocated elbow. All signs point to rookie Jamar Chaney making his first playoff start.
"We've got his back," strongside starter Moise Fokou said of Chaney.
On the other side of the ball, offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg said he thinks the Packers might be playing their best defense of the season in recent weeks.
He said the Eagles will be in good shape against the Packers' blitzes and noted that quarterback Michael Vick was not 100 percent against Minnesota.
Clay Matthews and Charles Woodson are "two of the very best defensive players in the league," he said.
Special teams coordinator Bobby April indicated that DeSean Jackson probably will return punts, though he said that ultimately will be Andy Reid's decision.
April also lauded Pro Bowel kicker David Akers for what he called a "real quality year." Akers led the NFL in scoring and had more touchbacks that he has ever had.
April also said returner Gerard Lawson was what the Eagles hoped and expected he would be, a tough return guy who also played well in kick coverage. He noted that Lawson could have gotten better blocking in his Eagles debut last Sunday against the Cowboys.
Right guard Max Jean-Gilles insisted he'll be fine for Sunday. When a reporter noted that Jean-Gilles' left ankle still looked swollen, Jean-Gilles shook his head. "Thick ankles," he said.
Left guard Todd Herremans, who was listed as a limited participant yesterday, is not expected to practice today.
The Eagles announced two surgical procedures that took place earlier this week:
DB/KR Jorrick Calvin underwent microdisectomy surgery on his lower back Monday by Dr. Alex Vaccaro of the Rothman Institute at Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia.
DT Jeff Owens underwent surgery to repair his left knee patella tendon as well as microfracture surgery Wednesday by Dr. James Andrews in Birmingham, AL. Owens, injured a handful of snaps into his NFL debut, will also have surgery to repair his ACL at a later date.
To see Les Bowen's video report, click here.
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