Colts Head Coach Chuck Pagano
On the injuries from today:
“As far an injuries go, we didn’t have anything significant. A couple guys – [DT] Kelcy [Quarles] went out there late with cramps. [CB] Jalil Brown went out with cramps, so nothing significant there. [OLB] Cody Galea got a hamstring and then I think there was one other – [CB] D’Joun [Smith]. He’s going to go through the concussion protocol. We’ll just deal with that normal stuff.
On the game today:
“As far as the game goes, I think we were all excited to get to the game and see exactly where we’re at. Got our feet wet, so to speak. Had a chance to evaluate a ton of guys, especially the young guys. It didn’t go the way we wanted it to go, but there was some positive stuff. Early on, [QB] Andrew [Luck] was pretty sharp, the pass protection was good, [Luck] had time to throw the football. It’s unfortunate we drive it down and then we had a pitch count on the quarterback, so even in that drive we got him out of there and put [QB] Matt [Hasselbeck] in. We had to settle for three, but defensively got things calmed down. I thought the guys did a nice job at halftime making adjustments and then getting that thing calmed down. It’s extremely difficult. You open the preseason with this football team and from a defensive perspective the scheme is tough. You don’t spend a lot of time, you guys know that, you don’t spend a lot of time game planning for the first preseason game. You talk through some base stuff so it’s a tall order – the pace of play at which they go, the zone read, the option element and obviously all the play-action pass stuff that comes off of that. You guys saw the same thing that I saw. We gave up too many yards there. We have to tackle better. We know that and we can do that. Can’t turn the ball over the way that we turned it over. So again, we’ll go back and look at the tape, make the evaluations. Looking for obviously great effort, we’ll find out who can push through this with the amount of plays that they played and the heat and all that stuff. But it’s early. We know it’s a long, long season and the journey just started.”
On the run blocking and what could be improved there:
“I think we averaged 2.2 [yards per carry] at the halfway point, which is, our goal this year we set a lofty one for ourself to put outselves in the top five in rush average at 4.5 [yards per carry]. We only averaged 2.2 [yards per carry], but it was good to see the second and third group get some runs generated and I know our numbers, I don’t have the final stats yet, but I know our numbers were better in the second half. [RB] Josh [Robinson] obviously did a nice job and that was really encouraging to see that, but we have to be better.”
On the play of WR Phillip Dorsett:
“He’s a big play waiting to happen, but again he has to take care of the football. You’re looking at a guy that’s going to be an outstanding football player, but you know what you’re going to remember is the turnover. But again, we’ll look at the tape. He’s going to be a dynamic guy for us.”
On how he will evaluate the game given that the team did not game plan for it:
“Again you still put a premium on fundamentals. You can still grade the heck out. Effort [is] number 1, fundamentals and then taking care of the ball. There is nothing more important than the football. You can’t turn the ball over. You can’t muff a punt, get stripped on a long pass completion, put the ball on the ground as a runner. We were fortunate to get the one back, the guy was hustling. But when you throw interceptions you’re not going to win football games. I don’t care what time of year it is. You just can’t do it. You can’t give up big plays. I thought [P] Pat [McAfee] kicked the heck out of the football. You’ve got the guy wrapped up and he gets out of it and he goes the distance right before halftime and you’re sitting there scrambling. You’re 13-3 you have a ball game, you’re never out of it as we know, but you can’t allow that.”
On his third through sixth receivers:
“We know we have some guys there. We know we have some talent, but again there are too many drops. Guys had opportunities. [WR] Duron [Carter] had an opportunity to make a play. [WR] Quan [Bray] had an opportunity to make a play and they’re going to find out that you can’t squander those opportunities. So you have to go back and go to work and have to be able to do it on a consistent basis. Not only in practice, but you have to be able to under the lights when it’s for real, so to speak. You have to make those plays.”
Colts QB Matt Hasselbeck
On what happened on the field today:
“There’s a lot to clean up; there’s a lot to work on. There was definitely some positives. Coach [Pagano] talked about a lot of the things we did well post-game in the locker room and he definitely had praise to give around. There was some good stuff, but unfortunately he also had a lot of criticism and a lot of critique and things that we need to do better.”
On the good things during the game today:
“You know, there were some good things – [P] Pat [McAfee] kicked the ball really well both in the punting game and also in the kickoff game. Our defense caused a turnover. We ran the ball well in the second half…they had moved the ball and gave us good field position and we weren’t able to convert on that last third down. We had to settle for a three, but third downs are very, very important downs in this league and I thought that group did a nice job converting what we call manageable or good third downs.”
On missed opportunities in the passing game:
“For sure. Tons. Way too many. And it’s preseason and you don’t game plan and you don’t study, and I know for myself in particular I got fooled, completely fooled, on one coverage. With film study it would be helpful, but at the same time, it works for them. They’re not studying us either so I think what you’re looking for is just looking for improvement, especially from the first game to the second game. For us, we know that there’s tons to improve on.”
On WR Phillip Dorsett:
“For us, I think myself personally, and I think everyone agrees, if you practice well we expect that you’ll play well and he’s practiced great, and he makes plays. I gave him a chance on a deep route early, and I think we were just a little bit out of bounds. But those are the things that you know, we’re playing them and they’re playing us man coverage, but they’re playing heavy outside technique, and we just hadn’t seen a lot of heavy outside technique. You see it, you learn, you talk about it, you allow yourself to get coached up, and you have a plan for next time. But he did a nice job. He had the catch unfortunately with the fumble, but he’s obviously got a bright future.”
On the pass protection in the game today:
“I thought the pass protection was great, and there were a couple of hits; there were sacks even, but the fault was not at the protection. It was more of us holding the ball too long and they were dropping some different coverages. But like I said, I told those guys I thought their pass protection was really perfect when I was in.”
On the new group in pass protection and the run block catching up:
“I think so [on run block catching up to the pass protection]. Again, like I said, if you get the opportunity to really game plan I think that helps the run game stuff. It was good to communicate. It was good to communicate on the line of scrimmage. At practice, the coaches are standing 15 yards back and they’re yelling those little coaching reminders and with them on the sidelines, it’s a little bit different with them out there. There’s some good stuff that came out. We had the headset glitch, usually one a year, and those are good contingency plans to test your contingency plans out. Test out your hand signals. A lot of people say they don’t like the preseason. I love the preseason. It gives you time to really hone in on what you’re going to be as a team and grow.”
On the right perspective when looking at the preseason and preseason losses:
“I don’t know, I mean, I remember in 2008 we were undefeated in the preseason and I think that was the first time we were ever undefeated in the preseason and we had the worst year we ever had, so I really don’t know. I remember the Colts year after year didn’t seem to do very well in the preseason and they were always one of the top 5 teams in the NFL. I think the preseason has a lot of value. It’s different for each person. I think for the organization it gives you a chance to evaluate players, and for certain players like myself as a 6th round pick, it gives you a chance to get some playing time and to show that maybe you have some potential. And so I don’t take that for granted either.”
On RB Josh Robinson’s running style:
“I think all of our running backs have done a good job. Charlie Williams, their coach, is on them. He’s hard on them and I think sometimes they wish he wasn’t as hard on them as he is, but I think it shows. The young guys are doing well, even there at the end of the game. [RB] Tyler [Varga] and [RB] Abou [Toure] did a good job. I think we just probably set a lofty goal for yards per carry, and I think we’d like to obtain that goal. Even though it’s lofty, I think we’d still like to obtain it.”
Colts G Todd Herremans
On what the team needs to improve heading into week two of the preseason:
“We need to get the run game going a little more and protect the ball. We have to hold on to the ball if we’re going to win games. Turnovers aren’t going to help us at all. We need to get a little more positive yardage out of our run game. There are definitely things for us to clean up but there were also some positives to go along with it.”
On his return to Philadelphia:
“It was different [coming to the other locker room]. Everything was different. Once the kickoff goes on, it’s just football. So it was a little weird for me the whole time but once the ball went up in the air for the kickoff it was all just football.”
On catching up with former teammates:
“It’s good to see those guys. When you spend so much time with them you build up relationships, and that doesn’t go away just because you’re on a different team. It was good to see everybody and it was good to see everyone doing so well.”
Colts OLB Trent Cole
On his return to Philadelphia:
“It was weird. It was definitely weird. I’ve never been in this visitor’s locker room so I’m not going to lie it was a weird feeling. It was great to get out here with the team and break off the rust. We’re just trying to get prepared for this big season coming up here. It’s definitely exciting, there are a lot of positives in this ordeal and we’ll work on the negatives. It was great for everyone to get out here and kick off our first preseason game.”
On the Eagles’ video board tribute:
“It was great. Philly fans stick behind former players. Like I said, it was great to see everybody. I’m a Colt now, and I wouldn’t change anything for it. I’m with a great team and I love being here. We had a great camp, we all worked hard, and we’re looking forward to a good year.”
On preparing for a team like the Eagles:
“It’s hard to game plan for them. You just have to go out there and play. They came with the hurry up offense and when I saw that coming I was familiar with that and I was like here we go. This is going to be a rollercoaster ride. All the guys came out here and kept fighting, and that’s what it’s all about. You get to work on some things, play some football, and build from there. It’s hard to game plan for them. We just tried to work on stuff as a team and we have to work off of the positives that we had from this game. Once you get into the game you have to get a feel for what’s going on and get a feel for the team. When you’re out there for such a short period of time, it’s pretty hard. At the same time, everything can be evaluated. You have to learn from your failures. You have to accept failures and learn from them. That’s why they call it the preseason. It’s a time for teams to correct the things they need to work on. No matter what happened out there, I think today was a good start.”
Colts ILB D’Qwell Jackson
On the Colts performance today:
“Obviously there is room to get better. Guys can’t wait for Chicago to come in and get back a conventional style of football. You have to give credit to Philly. They have a lot of weapons and they keep you on your heels. We definitely have a lot to look at and we definitely have a lot to iron out when we watch the film.”
On the new additions to the defense:
“All of the guys we’ve brought in, including the undrafted guys, are going to get a lot of reps. Every week we have to keep building. We’re excited to see a lot of the young guys get in and fight to the end. I thought I saw a lot of effort out there. With Philly, it’s a different style offense and a different style team, so you have to game plan differently. They exposed some holes and we’ll watch it on the plane ride back and we’ll come in as a group and watch it together.”
Eagles Head Coach Chip Kelly
- RB DeMarco Murray, you decided to hold him back?
COACH KELLY: Yeah, we knew we were going to go out and try to work him out a little pregame and get ready to go play the Ravens. A couple guys we kept out like that.
- Is keeping Murray out still your call?
COACH KELLY: Yeah, he’s fine. He should be going on Tuesday.
- Would your explanation for holding back Murray be the same as the one you gave for holding QB Sam Bradford back?
COACH KELLY: You can write whatever you want. I really don’t care what you guys write to be honest with you.
- Just wondering why Murray isn’t playing?
COACH KELLY: Because I said I held him back. I just answered that question.
- A lot of your rookies and first‑year guys showed up today. LB Jordan Hicks had a nice block on the punt return. Can you talk about the contribution you might see from the rookies this season? In the previous two years, we didn’t see a whole lot from those younger guys.
COACH KELLY: The one thing you don’t know about any of those guys is what are they going to be like until you get them into a game and that’s the encouraging thing. Sometimes the guys stand out in practice. That’s been history and all of a sudden you get in the game and they are not the same player, and then other guys that were not so good standing out in practice, stand out in the game.
Before getting a chance to look at the film, some of those guys, I thought, really stepped up and made some plays. DB Eric Rowe had a big fumble caused on one of those receptions on the crossing route, came in from behind and did a great job of stripping him. Nelson [WR Nelson Agholor] made a big catch on their bench and turned it into a touchdown and then had another catch.
We are excited about those guys. It’s just one step for us, but we feel like we’ve got a lot of really good film to teach off of with officials, legitimate down and distance, all those things; a lot of good situations that we can get in the meeting room with those guys when they come back on Tuesday and really start to grow this team.
- What do you look for most when you look at the tape of the starting secondary? They gave up two third-and-long conversions —
COACH KELLY: It’s everything, and again, it’s not just the secondary: it’s what type of rush did we have and did we generate rush on them on those plays? There are a lot of different combinations when it comes to pass defense, but we’ll look at everything.
- It looked like QB Matt Barkley got rid of the ball really quickly and QB Tim Tebow ran for a touchdown. Is there one particular set of skills that you —
COACH KELLY: No, they have to be able to do it all, but you also have to look at who is in with who. You know what I mean? I think there’s a different set of receivers in with Matt than Timmy had and really a different line at times.
So you have to take some of that into ‑‑ there’s a couple of those where Timmy held the ball and looks like, ‘Why is he doing that?’ Well, the receiver ran the wrong route. He’s looking for a receiver to run a shallow cross and we didn’t get a shallow cross. We don’t get that a lot in training sessions where if the receiver doesn’t run the right route, now what do we do?
So there were a couple busts out there. We have some young receivers that we think are going to be good, but three of those guys just got here a week ago, so there were a couple mental mistakes, whether it was up front or at the receiver spot.
- What did you make of Barkley?
COACH KELLY: I thought he did a real nice job. We screwed up a little bit on that one naked [bootleg] where it ended up getting tipped, but that guy should have been blocked. Our tight end was lined up too tight, we should have had a pin block on him and got him to the corner and given him an opportunity to throw it, but I thought he did a real nice job out there.
- It was a small sample size, but what did you see on QB Mark Sanchez’s two drives?
COACH KELLY: He had a couple high throws. I think he has to get his feet set a little bit, but I thought we played with good tempo. As a group, we were all on the same page: guys were clicking and guys were hitting. I’m sure he’d want a couple of those throws back just because they were a little high.
- Were you able to chat with K Cody Parkey at all during the game?
COACH KELLY: No, I did not talk with Cody during the game. I just talked to Fipp [special teams coordinator Dave Fipp] ‑‑ we’ll see the film and get it straightened out.
- Why does LB Marcus Smith look like a different player this year than he did last year?
COACH KELLY: Birthdate. He’s a year older. I think it’s not all new for him. I think he’s been there, done that. This isn’t his first preseason game and this isn’t his first training camp. I just think there’s kind of a calming sense around him. He’s got a better grasp of what we are trying to do and he’s really showed up in our training sessions and he showed up today. We are encouraged with his growth.
- What did you see from Smith today that was impressive?
COACH KELLY: I think there’s just a different ‑‑ he’s carrying himself in a different manner. He was excited about going out and playing in a football game today. We are excited to see where this goes.
- Are you thinking about bringing in some competition for Parkey? If not, why?
COACH KELLY: No, we are not. I mean, he was an All‑Pro Bowl kicker last year. In his first exhibition game, he missed an extra point and a field goal. He’s hit three from 40, too. I wouldn’t push the panic button right now.
- He missed a couple field goals the other day in practice. Is he battling anything mentally right now?
COACH KELLY: He made a mistake in practice? I mean, let’s not go crazy now. He’s a pretty good kicker. Hey, he’s a Pro Bowler. I’ve seen Pro Bowlers miss kicks. I’ve seen Adam [Colts K Adam Vinatieri] ‑‑ Adam is a Hall of Fame kicker — I’ve seen him miss kicks before, too. Let’s not hit the panic button on Cody right now. We are in the first preseason game.
- Agholor’s touchdown was a great catch and a great run after. Is that what you’ve seen a lot of during camp?
COACH KELLY: Yeah, I mean the one thing with Nelson is when he gets the ball in his hands, he’s real explosive. So you’re anticipating run after the catch with him. That’s one of the things we knew about him because you can see it when you watched him play in college. He did that a ton in college. He was also a great returner in college, so you can see when he has the ball in his hands, he’s a dynamic player and I think what you saw today is one of the reasons we drafted him so high.
- Were you able to gauge much from the first-team defense when they were out there against the Colts starters?
COACH KELLY: Just a little bit. I wouldn’t weigh too much into it. Andrew [Colts QB Andrew Luck] came out actually in the middle of the second series and Matt [Colts QB Matt Hasselbeck] came in. There’s tape for us to coach off of and that’s really what we’re looking at, but we are not making any predictions or any lofty goals in terms of coming out of this. It’s just one step.
It’s our first preseason game. It’s a good opportunity to go against another team. You get to live tackle to the ground. We did miss a couple tackles on the defensive side of the ball and we need to clean that up. That one touchdown run, we should have had the [running] back down on the long third-down that they ran in for a touchdown. Those are things that Cory [defensive backs coach Cory Undlin] and the other coaches will get a chance to get in the film room with those guys and coach them up off of it.
- S Ed Reynolds was around the ball quite a bit today —
COACH KELLY: Yeah, he was.
- What about Reynolds’ progress?
COACH KELLY: I thought he showed up today. He showed up, not only two interceptions but had a big tackle on the kickoff return after that late in the game. I think he’s a guy that’s pushing to make the 53‑man roster and I’m happy for him right now. Part of it — we put a big emphasis on how you play in the game. It’s not just our training sessions. It’s how do you play when it’s live full go and let’s go. And I thought Ed did a nice job and put himself in a pretty good situation coming out of game one. We’ll see how he grows from here.
- The third safety spot is up for grabs. Is it important for one of those guys to be able to go down and play in the slot? How do you evaluate those guys?
COACH KELLY: Whoever plays are the guys that we evaluate so that’s what the deal is. We have a deadline coming up right after that Packers game that we have to make our cuts and then we’ve got another deadline coming up immediately right after the Jets game that we have to make our cuts. It’s got to be based on who is playing and who is out there and who is putting it on tape for us.
- What kind of camp has Reynolds had?
COACH KELLY: Ed has had a really nice camp. He’s a lot like [LB] Marcus [Smith], year two. It’s not all new for him. He spent the entire offseason here, was here every day. We weren’t allowed to be with him until April 20 but he was in the building working on his own and I think it’s showing right now.
- For the guys who played today at receiver, how would you assess their performances?
COACH KELLY: We had a couple mistakes, a couple missed assignments in terms of routes. I thought [WR] Miles [Austin] had a big catch. Did a nice job bodying the receiver, showing you he’s a wily veteran. A lot of guys would have maybe outrun the throw. He knew it was a little bit behind him, so slowed down, let the defensive back kind of hang on his back and made the catch over his shoulder. [WR] Jordan [Matthews] made a big catch coming across the middle. So we were happy with him. Nelson was someone that obviously showed up today.
I’ve been pleased with our receivers so far in camp. We did have a couple drops today, though. There were a few that we kind of wish we had in. Nelson had a drop in front of our bench and I think [RB Darren Sproles] Sprolesy had a drop. We had a couple others. I think [TE] Trey [Burton] had a drop. So a couple too may drops for us. We’ll get that corrected.
- What has separated G/T Andrew Gardner at right guard today to earn the start?
COACH KELLY: He just rotated. It wasn’t a separation. I think it was just who we had in there the last day or so. It could be a new ‑‑ we are going to give all those guys an opportunity before we make a decision on what’s going to go on there.
- From the beginning, there was anaggressiveness about your team, a sense of competition, energy, enthusiasm. Where did that all come from?
COACH KELLY: Depth. We’ve got a lot of depth here and there’s a lot of guys fighting for spots. I think everybody is aware of that. You don’t really – it wasn’t like we gave them a big rah‑rah speech before we went out on the field but we put a lot of emphasis because of how we train on what goes on when you get a chance to go in a game when it’s live. There’s no excuses when you’re playing in a game. You can’t say, ‘Well, I would have had that guy but you blew the whistle too quick, coach,’ or ‘I pulled off because I didn’t want to have a big collision.’ This is live; this is real; this is going.
So I think our depth is really giving us a sense of urgency at a lot of different positions. We’re excited to see that and that’s what we wanted from those guys today.
- How does RB Kenjon Barner fit into the running back puzzle?
COACH KELLY: If he continues to perform like that, we have to fit him in. We are going to find a way to keep the best 53 players here but when you get an opportunity to do something, you step up and do it. It’s not a, well, if I had my chance ‑‑ everybody gets their chance. A lot of guys played a lot of football today. If he continues to play like that then he’s going to put himself in the mix.
- Barner made plays last year in the preseason and then got hurt. Can you talk about the difference between him last year and this year?
COACH KELLY: I thought he did well in the preseason. We did get him late and then he got hurt in that last preseason game. It wasn’t a decision we could make in terms of keeping him on the 53. He was hurt, so we waived him injured and then we had an opportunity after he got healthy to bring him back and put him on the practice squad. I think he’s taking advantage of his opportunities now.
- You’ve talked about receiver drops, but WR Rasheed Bailey seemed to make two tough catches: a one-handed catch and one in traffic. What kind of camp has he had and —
COACH KELLY: He’s been really good. That’s the one thing about Rasheed, he’s got outstanding hands. He may not be as fast as some of those other guys, but I think he’s a really good route runner. You talk about the jump that he made coming from Roxborough High School [in Philadelphia] and playing at DelVal [Delaware Valley University], and then all of a sudden he’s playing in the Linc [Lincoln Financial Field] against the Indianapolis Colts. That’s a pretty big jump for anybody.
I was anxious to see what his response would be. If there was any kid or any player on our team that could be a little starry eyed, it would have been him, but he wasn’t. He was out there, it was all about business, wanted to make plays and made a nice catch on our sideline on a key out route and then that catch he made coming down on the seam ball from Timmy. I thought Tim put it in the only place he could put it, because it was pretty good coverage, but for him to come up with it was a big time catch on his part.
- What kind of things did you like from watching Tebow? It seemed like he was able to run and he was able to hit receivers.
COACH KELLY: I liked how Timmy threw it. That’s the big concern with everybody coming in, is has he really changed? I think he’s sequencing better. He’s got his feet underneath him. When the guys ran the right routes and he had the opportunity to throw the football, I thought he threw the ball really well.
Eagles Defensive Coordinator Bill Davis
On what makes this run defense so special:
“I think when you start with a two-gap – and a two-gap is a very hard defense to run against and that’s what we’re based out of. When it works right, it’s very hard to run against and it was working pretty well today.”
On how creative the team can be given the depth at defensive line:
“As long as we can stop the run first, and most good defenses do that first, that’s the foundation of a good defense. We have a good group of second year d-linemen and a good crop of young guys that played well today. As long as they continue to develop like that, we’ll be pretty solid.”
On how much he constantly challenges the guys up front to keep challenging themselves:
“It’s kind of built in. We’ve got some great position coaches. [Jerry] Azzinaro has the d-line and [Bill McGovern] has the outside [line]backers and they’re kind of interchangeable. It’s just a highly-motivated group that takes a lot of pride in stopping the run and getting after the quarterback.”
Eagles QB Mark Sanchez
On the up-tempo offense:
“That was great and that was what we’ve been seeing in practice. Our speed is really an advantage for us and it makes it fun. It makes it tough on the other team. So we have to continue to be in great shape and maintain our good conditioning and then go out and play really well, make good decisions and throws and all that when we’re on the move like that.”
On the grade he would assign to today’s game:
“I don’t know. We got the win. I thought we took care of the ball okay. There were a couple of throws and stuff that I know some of the guys wanted back and we don’t want to turn it over. You’d like to be clean that way, but we’ll let the coaches grade it out. Obviously, a win’s big and we’ll just move on from here.”
On whether it felt good to get back out on the field:
“It was great just to be back in the stadium, to hear the fans and to go through the whole drill again. It was nice to just get things going. It’s nice that it’s almost September and it can’t come fast enough. It’s great.”
Eagles QB Tim Tebow
On whether he had butterflies:
“I always do. When you care about something, you want to go perform.”
On his touchdown run:
“It’s fun. We were getting looks that I couldn’t really pull it for a while. It was kind of close and I wanted to take it. It was fun.”
On how he would assess his play:
“I think there were some things that were decent and some things that we have to work on. Just try to be more consistent and improve communication with the offensive line and receivers. That’s a big key, especially when you’re running a fast tempo in this offense. Everybody being on the same page is huge. It’s never as good as it seems and it’s never as bad as it seems. It’s one more day to try to improve and try to get a little bit better tomorrow.”
On whether he thinks the changes he’s made are starting to pay off:
“This is the first time [in live game action], so I thought there were some throws that I made that were decent and I just want to continue to improve.”
On what it was like for him to be back out there after not playing for a few years:
“It was fun. Playing ball. I loved it. You want to be focused and you want to focus footwork, reads, communication with everybody. So enjoy the moment. You won’t always have it.”
On the fan reaction to him coming into the game:
“I was grateful, but I was also like they’re not going to be able to hear me.”
On how special it was for him to be playing:
“It’s a blessing to put in work for something and be able to see that work, to be able to get to a point where you’re back playing ball and having fun. I’m grateful for this opportunity.”
On whether his opportunity has been everything he thought it would be:
“Playing for Coach Kelly and the way that everything is done here is so professional. I think they do a lot of things that are very innovative, and things that are changing the game. I’m glad to be a part of it.”
On whether he feels like he has a fair shot to make the team:
“I was just worried about today and I’m going to just try to get better tomorrow.”
Eagles QB Matt Barkley
On how comfortable he feels compared to last year:
“Feel like I have come a long way. Right now, where I am at, I feel great that I can lead this team, score points and move the ball down the field. I feel good about how we moved the ball today, but we definitely left a little meat on the bone. There were a few tough third downs, but I feel like we did okay for the first preseason game.”
On why he thought he was more comfortable today than he was in the past:
“Just experience. I am confident in my arm and my timing with the receivers. My knowledge of the offense has grown tremendously from last year. The combination of all those things helped me play fast.”
On whether he wanted to make a statement today with the way that he played:
“I just wanted to play good football. If I made a statement, so be it. But I wanted to come in and make plays. I think the important thing with this offense is to get the ball rolling, get completions and get yards right away. Once drives start moving, plays open up. I think we did that tonight.”
On whether he has a better feel of the tempo then he did in the past:
“Yeah, I feel like [head coach Chip] Kelly just wants to push the tempo as much as he can. It worked in college when Oregon played [USC]. I understand where it is coming from. If you can get the defense on their heels, plays open up. I feel like, starting with our offensive line, they did a good job of pushing the tempo. I was just trying to get it going the whole time.”
On what his reaction was to the fans cheering for QB Tim Tebow:
“He’s a fan favorite and he’s a good teammate. He played well today. He did a good job. It’s pretty funny to see their reaction. It happens wherever he goes, as it should. He’s a good person. I love him as a teammate. It was a good showing.
Eagles WR Jordan Matthews
On WR Nelson Agholor’s game:
“All I know is that Nelson balled today. I am proud of him. He makes it look easy. Like I said, when you practice fast and you’re as fast as he is, the game is going to slow down a lot quicker. Then, on top of his natural ability, he works extremely hard and he’s smart. I think this game is going to come easy for him. He’s going to come into his own quickly. I think he’s going to help this offense a lot.”
On this year’s receiving group, considering all of the turnover over the past few years:
“It was a good showing. Even [WR] Rasheed [Bailey] going and making that crazy one-handed sideline catch. That is what you love to see. That is what this game is about, everyone coming out and making plays. Our room of guys, we are like brothers. We are not putting any labels on nothing, none of that 1’s, 2’s or 3’s. It’s about being a core, being a family and wanting the best for each other. When you have a bunch of guys going out there and making plays. That is what you want to see. Now we just have to continue to bring the whole room together. We are all going to make plays, from top to bottom. I just love seeing guys on our squad make plays.”
On how important it will be for him to get in-game reps with QB Sam Bradford:
“Of course. It’s no secret that Sam has been running with the ones in practice. He’s doing a great job, nothing but positive. Of course it will be important to get reps with him. I think he’s going to play on Saturday. Whenever he is in there, I know he is going to ball. I just can’t wait to get on the field with him.”
On Agholor’s game speed:
“Oh yeah. You know, when I saw [WR] Josh [Huff] last year, he was so quick side to side. I was like, wow. When you talk about running straight forward, my boy, Nelson goes zero to one hundred. He does it day in and day out. He is explosive in practice. That cat has speed. He runs on every single catch, so it’s no surprise when he takes a hitch to the house like that. I think he almost made another big play on a hitch. He had three short catches that were or could have been big gains, because of his raw athleticism. I think he’s going to help us out a lot. Adding him to this offense is huge.”
Eagles WR Nelson Agholor
On what it feels like to score a touchdown on his first NFL reception:
“It felt like a pass that I was targeted on in practice. Good habits on the practice field carried over to the game. [QB Mark] Sanchez and I connected on multiple hitches in practice and it wasn’t any different today.”
On whether he was the first read on the touchdown play:
“Sanchez had multiple options, he just gave me a shot. I’m grateful that he thought enough of me to get me the ball on that play and I just finished the play.”
On whether he was surprised to see daylight after he caught the ball:
“I just caught the ball and tried to finish. Every day in practice we try to turn catches into more.”
On how he feels knowing that his speed translates to the NFL:
“At the end of the day, you just train to finish. Different people may catch you, I don’t know. I’m not the fastest guy in the world. Some days, guys won’t be able to tackle me. On that play, I continued to finish very hard and I got away.”
On whether there were any plays that he would like to get back today:
“Yeah, I absolutely would have loved to get back two 3rd down situations. One of them was an in crossing route. It’s considered a basic route and I felt like I could have come back to the ball a bit stronger. Then there was one on the sideline. I need to work on just finding the ball and not looking who is throwing the ball. I think my eyes went to the quarterback. At the end of the day, I like the fact that that happened today. It’s a good thing to learn from. I look at my timing, because sometimes when I look back to the quarterback, I can see both. But, different things happened today that were good.”
On whether he had any first game jitters:
“It’s always business. This was a great opportunity for a lot of us. We are in preseason right now. You learn from the good and bad plays that you make. That is what it is still about. We are still in progression mode. Come game time, you have to capitalize on all the opportunities. Right now, it’s all about getting better.”
Eagles C Jason Kelce
On the ovation that QB Tim Tebow received from the fans:
“Tebow’s a great guy. I’m really happy for him that he was able to go out there and play some football again. He’s one of the hardest workers on the team. He’s a great guy, a great teammate and a great player, so I’m happy for any accolades he gets.”
On how it felt to play next to G Andrew Gardner:
“I’ve played next to Gardner, both last year and a lot this offseason, so he really didn’t do anything surprising [to me] out there. Every time he’s been put in the mix, and every time he’s played right guard, he’s done a solid job for us. We had a really good double-team block on one play. As far as I know, in pass protection he held up pretty darn well. I think I speak for the entire team when I say we’re confident in Andrew Gardner and we’re confident in a couple other guys who have been rotating in that spot. I think one of the good things about whoever is going to play that right guard spot is most of those guys have seen action in games and they’re guys that I think our offensive line and coaches are comfortable with.”
On RB Ryan Mathews:
“He’s been great in camp. Obviously full contact and tackling is a little bit different than training camp. The running plays always tend to be a little bit different in games. You watch the way he hits the hole, he hits it downhill, the speed, the agility, the elusiveness. He’s a dynamic back. Having him and [RB] DeMarco [Murray], and [RB] Darren Sproles. [RB Raheem] Mostert looked really good out there too. We have a lot of good running backs. As long as this offensive line can do what they’re supposed to, I think we’re going to make hay in the running game.”
On whether he thinks the offensive line has made strides during the offseason coming together:
“We have a lot of depth at the offensive line position. We have good players here, we have a coach who is dedicated to really making sure the guys are blocking the right way, to developing the younger guys and the second-tier players because you know there’s a chance they could play. That’s not always the case in the NFL. [Offensive line coach] Jeff Stoutland does a great job making sure everybody is ready to go, if need be.”
Eagles K Cody Parkey
On whether there was something about the distance – 33 to 34 yards – that he was having difficulty with:
“No, that should be very easily made by me. Obviously it’s all on me. I missed the kicks. That just shows why we do the preseason – to get some kicks under your belt, to get some plays under your belt and feel natural and feel good going into the first game.”
On how the changes to the extra point rule affect him:
“It doesn’t affect me at all, you just have to hit a straight ball and it won’t miss.”
On when he started preparing for the new extra point rule:
“We’ve been doing it since last year. No excuse to miss, ever. Just go out there and do my thing.”
On where his confidence is right now:
“It’s sky high. Couldn’t be better. We have the best holder, the best snapper in the league. The best protection. I just have to go out there and kick and do my thing.”
On whether today’s performance was just a blip on the radar:
“Yeah, I think everybody is human, everyone misses a kick here or there. It’s obviously pretty embarrassing to go out there and miss two in the first game. It sucks for me to do it, and I’m just going to go out there next week and do better.”
On whether there were any issues on the snaps that caused him to miss:
“No. Perfect snaps, perfect hold.”
Eagles DE Fletcher Cox
On opening the preseason with a victory:
“Today everybody was focused on their job. The offensive was focused on putting the ball in the end zone and the defense was focused on finding the football.”
On the continuity and comfort level of the defensive line:
“I feel like we respect and trust each other. I think that goes back to square one. We respect and trust each other and believe in each other. We know that we’re going to get the job done no matter what the situation is.”
Eagles RB Kenjon Barney
On his success in the run game today and whether the running plays were to his liking:
“It’s just the playbook. Everything we ran today was just our playbook. One of the reasons we were having success was because our offensive line was doing a great job of moving guys and re-establishing the line of scrimmage on the opposite side of the ball. I was able to [play] off of them and they were just doing their job.”
On his punt return touchdown and the decision-making process of either calling for a fair catch or making the return after catching the ball while backpedaling:
“I had a long conversation with [Eagles RB Darren] Sproles during pre-game. He told me [Colts P Pat McAfee] was going to give me plenty of opportunities and he was going to outkick his coverage and sure enough, throughout the game, you see that he was kind of outkicking his coverage and our guys did a great job as gunners. Usually gunners are the first guys down there to make or break a play. So I was able to see that they were taking care [of that] once the ball left the punter’s foot. So you catch the ball and do what you can.”
Eagles LB Marcus Smith II
On his progression moving forward:
“That’s what I’m shooting for. Hopefully, after that, I can become a starter one day. I understand what my role is on this team and I know I’m going to have to play special teams and play on defense as well. That’s what these preseason games are for. I played on special teams [today] and I think I did an okay job on defense, but I definitely want to get better.”
On what he thinks he could have done better today:
“I think when it comes to pass rush, just getting off of the [tackle]. Even though it was a three-step drop, I feel like my expectations are to still get there. I really want to get there. I know in preseason, a lot of teams, they do three-step drops because they want to protect the quarterback. If I can make him hold the ball just one more second, then that’s what I want to do.”
Eagles S Ed Reynolds
On contributing today after getting off to a slow start last season:
“I was on the practice squad last year, which was a great experience for me in terms of going out and playing wideout, playing corner, playing nickel, and playing safety. Coming into this year I just wanted to make sure that I came out and made an impression. In the end it’s just going out there and playing ball, doing your job, and making plays. I felt a lot better this year just because I was able to participate in all of the spring, and all of training camp. It’s about staying healthy and doing what I need to do. Today is just the first day of trying to stack up good days.”
On what he needs to do to build on his two interception performance today:
“I just need to be consistent. It can’t just be this one week. I need to show up this week, then show up the week after that, and hopefully carry it over into the regular season and then into the playoffs.”
On how it felt to be a major defensive contributor today:
“It felt amazing. It made me feel like I was in college again. That was my thing in college – to go out there and be a ball-hawk and give our offense more opportunities. It felt good, but it wasn’t like I was going out there and doing anything crazy. I was just playing our scheme and having good eyes on the quarterback and breaking and believing what I saw.”
On whether his performance today helps his quest to earn a roster spot:
“It definitely helps. But like I said, this is just the first step. I have to keep stacking them in practice and get ready for Baltimore.