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01-12-2005, 09:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Dave Carlson
As we have had a lengthy arguement about this earlier in the year, I still think you vastly underate the Eagles secondary. What I don't even get with this post here, is a ver post earlier you said the Eagles secondary is among the tops in the league, but here you say they are a mediocre to below par crew. Them being a good secondary is not entirely because of Dawkins. You for some reason refuse to acknowledge their play this year.
What evidence, based upon this year, warrents your criticism for the Eagles corners? It baffles me. Brown would hope to be a nickle corner on most teams? Are you serious? I for one feel confident with Sheppard 1-on-1 with a top receiver.
When you say the nicke and dime packages are lacking, do you mean against some ideal package in your imagination? Or in comparison to the rest of the league?
Perhaps you don't get it because you are confusing what I said.

The starting secondary is more than just the Corners. It also includes the safeties. Having two of the best safeties in the league makes up a lot of ground for having two average corners.

Sheppard has shown playmaking ability and has not been burned nearly as much as he was last year. IMO, that is due in no small part to the extra support he has received both from the pass rush up front and havign Dawkins/Lewis helping him out in coverage. Like I said, Sheppard would be great as a #2 CB where he could focus on ball hawking without being left on an island with top talents. Whenever the Eagles did face a top talent, Sheppard had help. While you may feel confident with him 1-on-1 with top receivers, it doesn't seem the Eagles share your enthusism. Brown is solid, but nothing special. I liked him better than Sheppard heading into the year. Compared to other teams around the league, Hood, Wynn and Ware leave much to be desired. Taken as a whole, the corners are not a strong crew.

My criticism is based on watching them play. No CBs have the inside help or pass right up front that the Eagles CBs do. Considering the circumstances, their play has not been anything special. Give any half-decent CB 47 sacks and Dawkins/Lewis helping them and they should be adequate. More to a point, I have not seen Sheppard and Brown in nearly as many man situations as the Eagles used to have. When Taylor and Vincent were starting (not that they should be now), Johnson was more aggressive blitzing. Why? Because Vincent and Taylor were more adept at covering.

Put it this way, if Sheppard and Brown were starting on a team with average safeties and only 35 sacks, would the be even half as effective? Do you think Sheppard would be going to the Pro Bowl if he played for Minnesota instead of Philly?

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