Eagles

Eagles

Fletcher Cox considers himself pretty lucky. 

The Eagles’ All-Pro defensive tackle has a full gym at his Texas home, equipped with just about everything you could want in a gym. He even has an area with weight sleds to push and pull. Consider that a benefit of signing a $100 million contract. 

But most of his teammates don’t have $100 million contracts. For them, Cox has an interesting piece of advice: 

“I tell guys, ‘hey, drive your car to a flat parking spot and push it,’” Cox told reporters on a Zoom call Thursday. “I feel like that’s the way, we can work our way to pushing cars, you gotta push on bodies for three to four seconds. I think that’s a good way to kind of simulate that.” 

So if you see an influx of defensive linemen driving MINI Coopers, you’ll know why. 

While Cox is lucky to have a full gym setup, these are still trying times for all NFL players during the COVID-19 era. Virtual workouts are underway and there’s no sign of in-person OTAs to come. Most folks are just hoping training camps will still begin in late July. 

And after that, we’re all hoping there will be some form of a real NFL season. 

You just gotta assume it’s going to work out,” Cox said. “The only thing I tell myself all the time, control what you can control. We’ll get over this. We’ll be fine.

 

Earlier this week, Dr. Anthony Fauci spoke with NBC Sports’ Peter King and outlined the necessary measures the NFL will need to take to have a season in 2020. Among those measures is a drastic increase in testing protocols, but Fauci didn’t rule out a season for the upcoming season. 

Cox on Tuesday afternoon was asked if he’ll worry about his health in a scenario where the NFL tries to have a season. The 29-year-old quickly said he thought the league would be “real cautious” but then added that there are 90 players on rosters in the offseason and over 60 (with practice squads) during the season. And then there are trainers and staff members and everyone else around an NFL football team on a daily basis. That’s a lot of people. 

“I’m sure they’ll be pretty cautious about it,” Cox said. “Our health is a priority and I respect each and every person for that.” 

Even if there is an NFL season in 2020, there’s no guarantee fans will be allowed into stadiums to watch games live. Carson Wentz already said it would be “weird” to play in front of an empty Lincoln Financial Field and Cox agreed. 

It might be even stranger for Cox and the defense, who feed off crowd noise in the stadium. Since 2016, the Eagles are 23-9 at home and 15-17 on the road. 

It would be different for sure if we had to play the game with no fans,” Cox said. “I think at the same time, we have to understand that health is a priority. And we have to look at our health. If we have to have to play games without fans, it’ll be something to get used to.

For now, all Cox can do is prepare like there’s going to be a 2020 season. He said the virtual offseason is “weird” and has taken some getting used to. But he’s doing the best. 

Cox is working out and staying in shape in his state-of-the-art gym. 

And maybe some of his younger teammates are in vacant parking lots pushing and pulling their vehicles around the asphalt. It can’t hurt.  

“But at the end of the day, it’s really hard to simulate and put your body in those weird positions when you’re actually playing football,” Cox said. 

Because if there’s one thing we know about cars, it’s that they don’t push back. 

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