Eagles

Mack Hollins Q&A: Chemistry with Wentz, Backpack Kid TD dance

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Mack Hollins Q&A: Chemistry with Wentz, Backpack Kid TD dance

Mack Hollins has sure made his 70 snaps count. 

The Eagles' rookie wide receiver from North Carolina is only averaging 10 snaps per game but has made quite an impact on the offense. 

He's been targetted six times and has six catches, five for 10 yards or more and all five of those for first downs.

His 64-yard touchdown against the Redskins tied the game at 10 late in the second quarter — one play after Carson Wentz had been leveled — and got the Eagles back into a game where nothing had gone right the first quarter and a half.

Hollins, a fourth-round pick, spoke Wednesday about his big touchdown Monday night, his quarterback, his rookie season and other topics.

Q: You looked real comfortable catching that deep ball from Carson Wentz Monday night.
Hollins:
No different from college to me. Different guys and different jerseys, but I’ve done that before. I know what it feels like to track a ball in lights and things like that, so I was comfortable. Carson’s a heck of a player and if that didn’t show you how confident he is and how great a player he is after getting hit the play before and go out there like nothing happened and throw a perfect ball? It’s amazing how he’s playing. I never question Carson’s arm. I never question that. If he were 30 yards backed up, he’d still be able to throw it that far.

Q: You beat a pretty good safety in D.J. Swearinger on that 64-yard touchdown.
Hollins:
 That’s an extremely difficult route to cover, especially in that coverage, where he has so much responsibility, where he can’t just sit back there, he has to really cover. So it’s an extremely difficult route to cover, which works in our favor. That’s the biggest thing, for a route like that, with how deep it is and also a double move, there’s a lot of time, and pure credit goes to the offensive line. He gets hit the play before and they don’t skip a beat.

Q: You only played eight snaps Monday night. How tough is it to go in cold and be ready?
Hollins:
 I’m lucky where I have the opportunity to play special teams, so I’m never really cold. My legs are always going. I know if I get one snap or 100, I have to be ready for that snap. There’s no, 'I’m cold,' or, 'I’m not ready to go in yet.' Coach says, 'Mack you’re in,' and I’m ready to go.

Q: Was that role difficult to get used to?
Hollins:
 Not really. My freshman and sophomore year at UNC was similar and I just take advantage of what I get.

Q: Why were you in for Torrey Smith on that play?
Hollins:
 He had happened to go on a deep ball and tap me. I was just the lucky one who got the deep ball the next play.

Q: What were you thinking while the ball was in the air?
Hollins: 
I was thinking, 'If I drop it, I'm getting booed.'

Q: You have quite a streak going — six targets, six receptions. 
Hollins:
 I know my job is to catch the ball. If you all make it a streak, then I gotta keep it going, because if I don’t, then it becomes a thing. So I guess I gotta just keep catching the ball.

Q: That was an interesting end zone dance.
Hollins:
 That’s something that I do just randomly when we’re just messing around in here (locker room), and I’m getting better and better at it. A lot of guys can’t do it, they think it’s easy. It’s called The Backpack. There’s a kid who created it. He’s got some moves. I'll find you the video.

Q: You came in right from the start of OTAs with the attitude that you belonged here. Where did that come from?
Hollins:
I think it’s just a confidence thing. Really at the beginning, you have to trick yourself to being confident until you actually are. Tell yourself that it’s real until it becomes real. So that’s what I did from the beginning. Was just telling myself, 'I’m a starter in my mind. I’m the best player here in my mind.' Until I become able to make plays and do things on this team. Now I’m getting opportunities, which is great. So I just have to continue to grow and become a better player.

Q: Carson has really been hitting the deep ball — you, Nelson Agholor and Torrey Smith all have touchdowns of 50 yards or longer. What's the key to those plays?
Hollins:
 It’s kind of like anything. The more experience you have with somebody and the more comfortable you get with them, the easier it is. The longer you play with Carson and see where he throws it and the longer he plays with us and knows my stride vs. Alshon (Jeffery)’s vs. Torrey’s vs. Marcus (Johnson)’s and just knowing where to put certain balls, the easier it gets for really all of us and the completion percentage will go up and everything will start going up.

Q: Do you really ride a bike to home games and to practice every day?
Hollins:
 I've rode the bike this entire year. I don’t have a car. I had a motorcycle in college. A (Honda) CBR 600, but they’re not too fond of it. So it’s at the house in Maryland.

Q: Why don't you have a car?
Hollins:
 I just don’t have a car (laughs).

Q: Backpack seems to be your nickname from college. Does that have something to do with the dance?
Hollins:
 No, I just aways have a backpack on. I guess that’s my thing. They call me Backpack Mack. It’s a useful tool to have. I always have one on. I’ve had it since high school. Then I have a briefcase. Always have a briefcase. For class in high school and for games. But it only comes out on certain days. It definitely has locks on it. But I find ways to carry it on the bike. I can carry a lot on the bike. I can carry boxes, briefcase, suits, all of it.

Vikings win 7th straight to stay on Eagles' heels

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Vikings win 7th straight to stay on Eagles' heels

DETROIT — Case Keenum threw for two touchdowns and ran for a score all in the first half to give the Minnesota Vikings a double-digit lead and they went on to beat the Detroit Lions 30-23 Thursday.

The Vikings (9-2) took a huge step toward winning the NFC North, taking a three-game lead over the second-place Lions.

Detroit (6-5) made mistakes in every phase of the game and Minnesota took advantage.

Keenum was 21 of 30 for 282 yards with both TD passes to Kyle Rudolph that gave the Vikings a 20-3 lead late in the second quarter.

The Lions rallied to pull within four points early in the fourth quarter on Matthew Stafford's second TD pass to Marvin Jones.

Xavier Rhodes ended Detroit's comeback hopes with an interception at the Detroit 37 late in the game (see full recap). 

Eagles injury report: Jake Elliott still in concussion protocol

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Eagles injury report: Jake Elliott still in concussion protocol

Eagles kicker Jake Elliott is still in the NFL’s concussion protocol but it looks likely that he’ll be able to play on Sunday.

Elliott was a full participant in Thursday’s practice after being a limited participant on Wednesday. In Phase 4 of the concussion protocol, players are allowed to participate in non-contact drills.

Elliott suffered a concussion in the first half of Sunday’s game in Dallas and the team played the second half without a kicker. If Elliott can’t play against the Bears the Eagles will either bring back Caleb Sturgis from IR or sign an outside kicker.

While Elliott was able to practice  on Thursday, Beau Allen (knee) and Trey Burton (back) did not practice. Allen has missed practice Wednesday and Thursday.

Rodney McLeod (oblique) was a full participant on Thursday.