Run Them Back!
Q&A: Birds Should Bring Back Entire Secondary
For the Philadelphia Eagles, the bye week was a time to self-evaluate, study the rest of the conference, and look toward the future.
On the latest episode of “Q&A” on Inside The Birds, former Eagles Jason Avant and Quintin Mikell shared their bye week experiences from their playing days and answered fan questions.
Quintin Mikell: “I can only draw from playing experience with Andy (Reid). Most of the time it was completely off for the entire week, except for maybe one or two years that I played that we had to come in during the week. And we needed that. If you’re a veteran team that dreams and sleeps football, just working your butt off from training camp all the way to the bye week, you need that entire week to recuperate and just get away from the game. For us, I didn’t watch games on Sunday. We would just get away from the game, recuperate, get your mind right, and recharge.”
Jason Avant: “Usually, the coaches will stick in an extra practice. If we had a bye week and we were off from that Sunday after the game until the following Sunday, we would be back there Monday for a small 10-10-10 practice, which is 30 plays offense and defense and then there’s a special teams period. You would do that and then we would be back in the saddle Wednesday. The scouting department had self-scouted us. We took that information and formulated a game plan for the rest of the year. Not only do the coaches prepare for the upcoming game, but they take time to scout the future games as well so they can always have a tight game plan going forward, so they’re not trying to cram everything. Part of the reason the team gets better is because they not only look at our future opponents, but they do an inventory on what work and what doesn’t work for our team. They get all of the statistics and they come up with a new version of the team.”
Avant: “I believe that the Rams will get better. I know that the 49ers will get better because their defense is still unbelievable even though the Chiefs took them to the woodshed this weekend. Tampa Bay, you can’t count out Tom (Brady) and you can’t count out Green Bay even though they’re playing bad right now, so those teams are very dangerous. At the top of the NFC are NFC East teams. Does it look like it’s going through the NFC East? As of right now, I believe the answer is yes. I don’t believe there’s a team in the NFC that can hang with the Eagles as of today.”
Mikell: “This is very similar to when we played, where in the NFC East, everybody was winning. What I remember mostly is in those division games, we ended up beating each other to death. There would be so many injuries in those NFC East games that it got to the point where you get to the playoffs, but you’re limping to the playoffs. I would agree that the NFC East is at the top now, but you’re hoping that everybody is so good and so physical that it doesn’t end up being an issue where you do make the playoffs, but now you’re beat up and you’re one and done.”
Upcoming Free Agents
Avant: “I think that (James) Bradberry is the priority, especially with Darius Slay having that responsibility of covering team’s number ones if need be, and then him being that dominant number two, that combination together has been stellar and I don’t think you should break that up. I think Marcus Epps should get a deal and I think you’re going to be able to get him on a bargain deal because I don’t think there’s a bunch of teams that are going to covet him the way that the Eagles should covet him. He’s not going to be at the top bracket for safety, so I think that should be a priority.”
Mikell: “I think you definitely need to keep T.J. Edwards. I like C.J. Gardner-Johnson as well. If there is some way they can figure out how to bring this entire secondary back for another year, I think they’ll be in great shape. In today’s NFL, you can find a free agent in the secondary, just like we found Bradberry, that can come in and give you what you need. I think that the right way to go is to keep doing what they’re doing, building the offensive and defensive line, re-sign the players that are young and can still offer some youth and still have some development left to continue to grow.”
– Benjamin Paul is a staff writer for InsideTheBirds.com
Listen to the latest “Q&A” podcast featuring former Eagles standouts Quintin Mikell and Jason Avant:
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