Tuesday, February 9, 2016

What we're watching: Eagles-Raiders

Each week, we provide a list of what we will be watching during the Eagles game:

What we're watching: Eagles-Raiders

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Asante Samuel celebrates his third quarter interception last week versus the Buccaneers. The Eagles are second in the league in interceptions with 12. (David Maialetti / Staff Photographer)
Asante Samuel celebrates his third quarter interception last week versus the Buccaneers. The Eagles are second in the league in interceptions with 12. (David Maialetti / Staff Photographer)

Each week, we provide a list of what we will be watching during the Eagles game:

1. The assault on JaMarcus. Defensive coordinator Sean McDermott blitzed Bucs quarterback Josh Johnson on 60 percent of the Eagles’ defensive snaps (45 of 75) last week. That percentage might be even higher this week against Russell, who was sacked six times and lost three fumbles last week against the Giants.

2. Turnover time. The Eagles are second in the league in takeaways with 12, and should be able to add to that total this week against a Raiders team that has the third most giveaways (12). Seven of those 12 giveaways belong to quarterback JaMarcus Russell, who isn’t very adept at reading coverages and doesn’t protect the ball in the pocket.

3. The Jackson & Maclin Show. DeSean Jackson and rookie Jeremy Maclin already have combined for three 100-yard receiving performances and four touchdown catches in the first four games. The Bucs rolled their coverage toward Jackson last week and Maclin responded by catching six balls for 142 yards and two TDs.

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4. Welcome back Trotter, Act II. Less than 2 weeks after re-signing with the Eagles, Jeremiah Trotter played 19 snaps last week against the Bucs, all of them on first down or in short-yardage situations. He wasn’t much of a factor, which was hardly surprising considering he hadn’t played football in almost 2 years. He’ll try to shake off some more rust Sunday against a Raiders team that is averaging the third fewest yards in the league on first down.

5. Plague of the yellow hankies. The Eagles committed a season-high 10 penalties against the Bucs last week and currently are seventh in the league in flags per game (7.25). Fewer penalties is very high on Andy Reid’s “things to do” list this week against the 1-4 Raiders.

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Four our earlier report from practice, click here.

Daily News Columnist
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