Tuesday, July 22, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Spotlight on McCoy's blocking ability

Above are some photos from my walk in.

Spotlight on McCoy's blocking ability

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    Above are some photos from my walk in.

    Greetings from the Linc. We are counting down to kickoff from the press box, where we'll be live chatting, starting at about 8:15 p.m.

    The weather is perfect (64 degrees), and you get the feeling this city is ready to give the Eagles its undivided attention if they can put together a good performance tonight.

    I was telling my buddy Lemur yesterday that I can't believe we're already in Week 9. That's what a successful baseball team will do to you, I guess.

    But in a way, it's good. We've seen ups (last week against the Giants) and downs (the Raiders) from the Birds through their first eight weeks. Now we get ready for an important run.

    The Eagles face the Cowboys tonight and then are on the road for four of the next five: at San Diego, Atlanta, Chicago and New York.

    Can they take hold of the division, or will we be hoping for a miracle again in Week 17?

    As for the Brian Westbrook news, I'm less concerned with the Eagles losing him as a ballcarrier than as a blocker. The Eagles are going to have opportunities for big plays in the passing game as long as they can protect Donovan McNabb.

    To that end, can LeSean McCoy do a good enough job as a blocker? He was exceptional last week, picking up Giants blitzers on more than one occasion to give McNabb time to find receivers. The week before? Not so much, as he whiffed on a block and was responsible for McNabb being sacked against the Redskins.

    I'm excited to see how McCoy performs. This is why the Eagles drafted him. I remember watching him at training camp, constantly having coaches and teammates in his ear after every rep. He was always attentive, always trying to improve, always competing.

    But we are in Week 9. McCoy's alma mater, Pitt, has just three games (in four weeks) remaining on its schedule. In the NFL, the season is really just beginning.

    So keep an eye on No. 29 tonight, specifically when he doesn't have the ball. There could very well be one or two big plays that determine the outcome. Perhaps a missed block that results in a sack and a turnover. Perhaps an exceptional blitz pickup that results in a big play in the passing game.

    Back with more soon.

    Sheil Kapadia Philly.com
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    Sheil Kapadia is in his fifth season writing about the Eagles and the NFL for philly.com. His earliest memories as a sports fan include several trips to Veterans Stadium with his Dad. He's not a beat writer or an Insider, but is here to discuss the NFL 365 days a year. E-mail him at skapadia@philly.com or by clicking here

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    Sheil Kapadia Philly.com
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