Kolb: Rodgers' Confidence Was Key

Kevin Kolb and Aaron Rodgers both backed-up veterans before earning starting jobs. (Steven M. Falk/Mike Roemer/Staff and AP photos)

As the Eagles begin their week of preparation for the season opener against Green Bay, everyone is practicing today, coach Andy Reid said.

Quarterback Kevin Kolb will face a lot of questions this week about Packers QB Aaron Rodgers, who sat behind Brett Favre for three seasons before taking over a team that this year -- in Rodgers' third season as the starter -- is a popular pick to go to the Super Bowl. Today, Kolb was asked what impressed him about the way Rodgers went about succeeding a legend.

"I think it's how steady he is," said Kolb, who said he has texted with but hasn't spoken to Rodgers about their similar situations. "Nobody ever questioned his confidence. They've always known he had the ability, but the way he's shown solid confidence in the whole thing, Not only is it solid for the fans and the media and everybody on the outside, but it's important for his own teammates ... That's something I can learn from."

This is a huge week for Kolb, another in a series of "firsts" in this year of transition.

"You don't want to get yourself too amped too early," he said. "We've all been champing at the bit here the past four or five days to get out there and practice. Coach always tell us the game's on Sunday."

Reid said he never goes into a game anticipating a shootout, because that would disrespect the preparation of his defense, but knows the Packers "do have an explosive offense, and there will be a play or two made."

The Eagles' defense heads into the opener with rookie starters Brandon Graham at defensive end and Nate Allen at safety. Reid said Allen is intelligent, physical and has good ball skills. He said Graham "has a tremendous energy about him."

Reid said center Jamaal Jackson seems ready but that it's a "little bit of an unknown" as to how well he will hold up for a full game. Jackson tore his ACL last December and did not see any preseason action.

Jackson said the same thing -- that he thinks he is ready to play a whole game, but until he does it, he can't know for sure. "I feel confident in it, but I still haven't played a whole game. I just gotta see how I hold up through four quarters of football."


We told you earlier this week about the potential issues the Packers might have in the return game. On Tuesday, The team got a visit from Clifton Smith, a Pro Bowl returner with Tampa Bay in 2008 who was sidlined with injuries last year. However, Smith signed with Miami this morning.

To read Paul Domowitch's season in preview, click here.