Posted tagged ‘Sean McDermott’

Eagles Big Win at Carolina Comes at a Cost

September 15, 2009
Donovan McNabb writhes in pain after scoring a TD (AP Photo/Rick Havner)

Donovan McNabb writhes in pain after scoring a TD (AP Photo/Rick Havner)

By now, we all know that the Eagles won the season opener on the road against Carolina with a punishing defense and a capitalizing offense. The Eagles defense came to play and really put on a show related to the way they pressure the quarterback. Don’t forget that the Panthers won 12 games last year and were expected to be a top team in their division.

Of course, with every win comes some significant questions. The rib injury to Donovan McNabb is troublesome, disappointing and upsetting. Here at PhilaTude we are huge McNabb fans. We think that the Eagles best chance to win is with McNabb and not another quarterback. More importantly, the injury causes more of a distraction. Already the media – national and local – have been trying to get under McNabb’s skin about Michael Vick being eligible in week 3 and Kevin Kolb getting to practice with the first team, so he should be better. The good news for McNabb is that the rib injury will heal most likely after the bye week (week 4) and Kolb isn’t any good. Michael Vick isn’t ready to play yet and will only be a shadow of his former self when he is. Barring any other injury to McNabb, he will be entrenched as the starter for this season, which is excellent news to PhilaTude.

Back to the Eagles defense – the entire defense played a remarkable game. Sean McDermott did a great job planning and preparing his team for this game. They got sustained pressure, caused turnovers and held Carolina at bay. McDermott needs to ensure he has an even better game plan for next week against the Saints, since Drew Brees is an infinitely better QB than Jack Delinterception.

Since I am a real Philadelphia fan, I have to be somewhat negative and explain that there were areas I’d like to see improved. David Akers should have field goals blocked. Kevin Kolb as a starting quarterback scares me. He is not a good football player, makes bad decisions and for some reason, I don’t think he has the respect of his teammates. Maybe his teammates don’t think he is any good. Whatever, I want to see the Eagles win, so whoever plays quarterback, I’ll have to deal.

Obviously, with McNabb’s injury and Vick still suspended, the Eagles got some roster help with Jeff Garcia. He’ll be Kolb’s back-up unless things go sour against the Saints. You never what can happen with an Eagles quarterback coached by Andy Reid.

Jim Johnson Passes Away

July 29, 2009
Jim Johnson, (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

Jim Johnson, (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

Jim Johnson, the former Eagles defensive coordinator, has always been a favorite here at PhilaTude.  I was sad to read the news late yesterday afternoon that Johnson passed away after a bought with cancer.  He will be greatly missed by the Eagles organization and fans.  He leaves a tremendous legacy in Philadelphia and left his mark on the entire world of football.

It was always Jim Johnson’s defense.  Andy Reid never meddled or got involved with how Johnson called his signals or lined-up his players.  Maybe that’s why we like Johnson and the defense so much – Coach Reid wasn’t involved.  (Andy Reid is not looked at favorably here at PhilaTude).  Regardless, I loved watching Johnson on the sidelines shuffling players back and forth, lining up the cornerbacks for the cornerback blitz or watching a defensive lineman drop back into coverage while a linebacker ran over a guard and a fullback to stop the running back in the backfield.  Even better were the games when Johnson would send 7 guys towards the quarterback on 50% of the game’s plays.  Johnson always stood by his players and from my perspective seemed to love to coach them.  

I recall a few years back, Johnson was considered for many head coaching positions, but chose to stay with the Eagles as the defensive coordinator.  This proves his commitment to the organization and his interest in running the defense his way – which he did.  I don’t think there will ever be a defensive blitzing mastermind like Johnson again.  I hope that the young defensive coordinators and coaches apply some of his principals to keep the other teams guessing and to provide a level of excitement to the fans.  Sean McDermott, Johnson’s replacement with the Eagles, will definitely be using a Jim Johnson style defense and I look forward to it.  

Jim Johnson will be missed as a football coach, but more importantly he will be missed as a great guy.

Jim Johnson on Leave

May 19, 2009
Jim Johnson, (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

Jim Johnson, (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

PhilaTude wishes Eagles defensive coordinator, Jim Johnson, all the best during his treatment for cancer.  It is amazing how hard Johnson has worked throughout his battle with the disease.  He continued to coach and prepare for the upcoming season all while struggling with cancer.  It is unbelievable how determined and strong he has been trying to keep his life normal.  I am not going to criticize his decision to keep working, but I am not sure how many other people in his position would do the same thing.  It’s amazing and it shows tremendous dedication.

With Johnson out, this gives the Eagles a chance to see how an up and coming coach, Sean McDermott, can handle the responsibilities of a coordinator.  McDermott has been with the Eagles defense and knows many of the players.  He will continue to ensure the defensive players know the Jim Johnson defense.  In the long term, not having Johnson around could affect the guys that have been with the team for a while.  They have relied on his wisdom and expertise related to defense.  However, as a defensive unit, I predict that Johnson’s absence will be negligible on the overall production.

Best wishes and a speedy recovery to Jim Johnson.