Eagles

Nick Foles opens up about his struggles with confidence

Nick Foles opens up about his struggles with confidence

Even Super Bowl MVPs can lose their confidence. 

Nick Foles was asked Wednesday about a comment that Buccaneers quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick made earlier in the day, about how even a 15-year veteran like himself who’s seen everything can lose his confidence.

Foles took it and ran with it, explaining that even after a record-setting postseason run, after winning a championship, after being named Super Bowl MVP and being immortalized with a Philly Special statue, he too struggles with his confidence:

“You don’t get (confidence) and keep it. I think that’s life. Day to day, there’s struggles. Confidence isn’t just something (that’s always there). I think people expect since you’ve done it before you should know how to do it every time. But each day’s a new day, each struggle’s a new struggle. And we are humans. We do have feelings and we do go through different things. … 

“People look at us as professional athletes and think we don’t deal with that, but we do. And I think that when Fitz says that, that’s really awesome that he’s as honest as he is, because I’ll be honest too. 

“We do struggle. You do lose your confidence at times. But you have to know how to get it back and what does it take. For me, it’s always leaning on Christ and talking to my wife. Even though sometimes I probably drive her crazy. But she’s always been there for me.”

Foles is a unique guy in a unique position. A Super Bowl MVP keeping the seat warm for a possible future MVP.

What really makes him special, though, is how he has used his platform to help others. His honesty regarding mental health issues, self-doubt and his own struggles with confidence is inspirational.

When young athletes understand that even people like Nick Foles or Brian Dawkins, who’ve experienced unimaginable success and achieved greatness at the highest level, still struggle with their confidence or experience self-doubt it can really help them understand that their own similar struggles are perfectly normal and OK.

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Zach Brown doesn’t want to talk Kirk Cousins, but Vikings are happy to troll

Zach Brown doesn’t want to talk Kirk Cousins, but Vikings are happy to troll

MINNEAPOLIS — As you might have guessed, Eagles linebacker Zach Brown wasn’t eager to talk about Kirk Cousins following the Eagles’ 38-20 loss to the Vikings at U.S. Bank Stadium.

Earlier in the week, Brown told ESPN he thought Cousins was the weakest part of the Vikings’ offense.

On Sunday, Cousins threw for 333 yards and four touchdowns against the Eagles.

Did Brown regret saying what he did?

“I’m here to talk about the game, not about that,” Brown said. “Any other questions besides about Kirk Cousins?”

While Brown didn’t want to talk about Cousins, the Vikings’ social media team had no problem trolling in the wake of their blowout win.

Cousins became just the fourth quarterback to complete over 75 percent of his passes for over 300 yards and four touchdowns against the Eagles. The others: Ryan Fitzpatrick in 2018, Peyton Manning in 2013 and Phil Simms in 1984.

Eventually, Brown was asked how he thought Cousins played and gave an answer:

“He did a great job today. He played good. Hats off to him.”

Brown was teammates with Cousins in Washington for the 2017 season. That year, the Redskins went 7-9. Cousins threw for just over 4,000 yards with 27 touchdowns but also threw 13 interceptions. He also fumbled a career-high 13 times. Brown, earlier this week, mentioned that Cousins was careless with the football. Cousins threw one pick on Sunday but it didn’t end up mattering.

Overall, the 38 points given up to the Vikings on Sunday were the second-most surrendered by the Eagles during the Jim Schwartz era, behind just the blowout 48-7 loss to New Orleans last season.

“At the end of the day, we gotta do our job on our side of the football,” Brown said. “Hats off to them, they got the best of us today. But we gotta do our job on both sides of the football. We gotta eliminate penalties on ourselves too. They got the win today, but you never know, we might end up seeing them again.”

If these two teams do meet again, Brown might want to be a tad quieter next time.

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Doug Pederson, Eagles' secondary receive poor grades in report card from loss to Vikings

Doug Pederson, Eagles' secondary receive poor grades in report card from loss to Vikings

There are close losses, and then there’s plain getting beat. Sunday was the latter for the Eagles, who fell, 38-20, to the Vikings in Minnesota (see Roob's observations).

There weren’t a whole lot of positives to take away — a few on offense maybe, but the defense was bad, and the coaching highly questionable, from the game plan to one particularly erroneous call.

The red pen got a lot of use in Week 6, and this report card even goes so far as to hand out a rare F.

Quarterbacks

Carson Wentz: 26/40, 306 YDS, 2 TD, INT

Not sure how much more Wentz can do. To win, he would’ve needed to score more than 38 points while overcoming dropped passes in clutch situations and his head coach’s horrendous decision-making against a really good defense on the road. Wentz’s line was quality — he completed 65 percent for 7.7 yards per attempt and a garbage-time interception. This one isn’t on the quarterback.

Grade: B+

Running backs

Miles Sanders: 3 CAR, 6 YDS, 3 REC, 86 YDS, TD

Don’t look now, but Miles Sanders is third on the team with 219 receiving yards this season — both a compliment and an indictment of the team’s wideouts. Jordan Howard helped keep the chains moving with 49 yards on 13 carries, though a missed assignment in pass protection helped kill a late drive.

Grade: B

Wide receivers and tight ends

Alshon Jeffery: 10 REC, 76 YDS, TD

Not that it really mattered, but Zach Ertz’s fourth-quarter fumble slammed the door on whatever faint comeback hopes may have existed. Ertz also dropped a third-down pass, and Jeffrey dropped one on fourth down — tough balls, maybe, but these are supposed to be star players.

Grade: C-

Offensive line

Jason Peters exited in the second quarter but Andre Dillard held up reasonably well in the future Hall of Famer’s absence. The Eagles averaged a solid 4.2 yards on designed runs (excluding garbage time), and the quarterback was hit just five times in 41 dropbacks — though he escaped pressure a number of times.

Grade: B

Defensive line

Brandon Graham: 4 TKL, TFL, SK

The front four combined for six tackles for loss, including two for Hassan Ridgeway, and did its part in limiting a dangerous Vikings running game to 3.5 yards per carry. But Graham’s sack was one of just three hits on the quarterback by the D-line, which simply wasn’t enough.

Grade: C

Linebackers

Nate Gerry: 6 TKL, TFL

Zach Brown, who had some things to say leading up to this game, had a chance to notch a sack and get the ball back for his offense. Instead, he took a bad angle, the quarterback escaped the pocket and the drive continued. The unit was solid against the run but had no impact otherwise.

Grade: C

Secondary

Malcolm Jenkins: 8 TKL, PD, FF

What a disaster. Back-to-back 50-yard touchdowns over Rasul Douglas, with Rodney McLeod and then Jenkins nowhere to be found. Sidney Jones got beat on a double move at the 8-yard line. They were better in the second half, but abysmal for the first 30 minutes.

Grade: F

Special teams

Jake Elliott: 2/2 FG, 2/2 XP, INT

Can’t really fault Elliott for the pick — that fake field goal was dead on arrival. Rudy Ford’s holding penalty on the Eagles’ opening kick return pinned the offense at its own 7-yard line and helped set the tone for the whole day.

Grade: B-

Coaching

Eagles’ record: 3-3

Here’s the thing about Doug Pederson’s ill-advised fake field goal with time winding down in the first half — even if the pass is complete, unless it’s a touchdown, there’s a good chance the Eagles are lining up for three again moments later. It wasn’t the time. Perhaps taking the three or leaving the offense out there would’ve produced the same outcome, but Pederson hurt the team’s chances of completing a comeback with that decision.

Grade: D

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