Friday, February 12, 2016

In nutty NFC East, Reid keeps Eagles stable

The Eagles are on their third quarterback change of the season, and somehow they are among the sane ones in the NFC East. That's a credit to Andy Reid.

In nutty NFC East, Reid keeps Eagles stable

Can Andy Reid and the Eagles win the NFC East? (Clem Murray / Staff Photographer)
Can Andy Reid and the Eagles win the NFC East? (Clem Murray / Staff Photographer)

5:20 p.m. UPDATE on DeSean Jackson at the bottom of this post.

The Eagles are on their third quarterback change of the season, after ditching their franchise QB in the spring, and somehow they are among the sane ones in the crazier-by-the-minute NFC East.

The latest developments came out of Virginia Tuesday, when the Redskins worked out bust extraordinaire JaMarcus Russell, after trading for Donovan McNabb in the off-season and benching him for the illustrious Rex Grossman Sunday. The head-scratching moves seemed designed to compete with the mismanagement in the undisciplined implosion underway in Dallas. Perhaps not coincidentally, the Cowboys are awful and the Grossman move instantly blew up in Mike Shanahan's face.

And then there are the Eagles, who have had their own drama, but prevented it from spilling onto the field. Credit Andy Reid for this: his team has kept its focus and an even demeanor amid a volatile quarterback situation. No one on the team has publicly clamored for Michael Vick over Kevin Kolb or vice versa. There has been no sniping between the two QBs. To a man, the players have said: we’ll just run our offense and play Eagles football. Reid refuses to publicly criticize his players or assistants. That leads to some infuriating press conferences and statements that are sometimes at odds with reality. But it also suffocates potential fires.

More coverage
Eagletarian: DeSean sees neurologist
MTC: Vick vs. Kolb: Myth and reality (part 2)
Phil Sheridan: Lady luck smiling on Birds
Eagles not expected to pursue Moss
Poll: Should the Eagles sign Randy Moss?
Download the Moving the Chains iPhone app
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Donovan McNabb
Brett Favre
Kevin Kolb
Michael Vick

The result? The Eagles are 4-3 and have a shot in a weak conference and nutty division. They have been competitive in every game. You can blame the losses on on-field mistakes or questionable in-game coaching, but not off-field distractions. The staid Reid has maintained a professional atmosphere and kept the circus at bay. That at least speaks well about how the coach has handled his locker room. It’s better than many of his peers have managed. (We're looking in your direction, Minnesota).

Eagles work out two cornerbacks

The Eagles worked out cornerbacks Joe Burnett, a former Steeler, and Fred Barnett, a former Charger and Texan, Tuesday. Neither was signed. The work outs had been planned in advance and were not in response to the Titans' outburst, according to the team. They were intended to scout potential future acquisitions.

The team had no update on cornerback Ellis Hobbs, who appears to have lost his starting job after being torched last game. Hobbs visited a doctor Monday, according to the team. He had not been on any previous injury reports, though he appeared slow against Tennessee.

UPDATE: DeSean Jackson said he visited an independent doctor today to get another concussion test, but did not reveal the results. In a television appearance Jackson said "I'm feeling pretty good overall," but gave no indication that he had passed.The Eagles had no official update Tuesday. Jackson had not passed a concussion test from an independent doctor as of Monday night, according to the Eagles. He practiced Monday afternoon in a light session that did not include contact.

"I'm still taking it a day at a time," he said.

Jackson told reporters Monday that it would be a "game time decision" on whether he plays against the Colts.

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Birds' Eye View is the Inquirer's blog covering all things Philadelphia Eagles and the NFL.

Jeff McLane Staff Writer
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