What a difference a week can make.
At this point last week everyone was so excited to see their Philadelphia Eagles back in action that the anticipation was palpable. Now some Eagles fans are claiming that Mark Sanchez may challenge Nick Foles to be the starting quarterback? Jordan Matthews is in danger of losing his chance for third on the depth chart because of a few drops and inconsistencies? Really guys? It’s just one preseason game. There is time to correct the flaws that were exhibited last week. Isn’t that afterall the whole point of preseason?
Week 2: Dress Rehearsal
Generally speaking the second preseason game features the starters for the first and some of the second quarter depending on the coach and game situation. Head coach Chip Kelly may decide if his first-team offense has been playing well and they put together a couple of scoring drives he’ll let the second team take over. After a rough start last week, it wouldn’t be surprising in the least to see the first team play their way into the second quarter. Kelly may also opt to try out a few new wrinkles or formations against the New England Patriots after practicing with them all week to mix things up. Nothing too outlandish to give away plays for the regular season, but we may see some of his unique formations last year. After a fairly vanilla first game with some basic plays called, testing some new formations against the Patriots may help in the long run. They struggled last week and getting them back on course with some positive steps could prove beneficial.
The Eagles game consisted of 23 penalties last week, nine of which belonged to Philadelphia. Terrible. But it isn’t the end of the world. Do you know who ranked first and second last year in the most penalties? Last year’s Superbowl matchup – Seattle and Denver. How about the year before in 2012? Baltimore and San Francisco were both in the top three. Penalties are not as drastic in this modern day of pass-happy football. Teams can overcome these negatives, even if it may take them more effort to do so. What the Eagles should really hope for cleaning up in terms of their play last week were their turnovers.