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Preseason Preview: Philadelphia Eagles vs. Cincinnati Bengals

Last week, I went over the matchups I’d be looking for against the Jaguars. This week, I will do the same thing for the Eagles second preseason game against the Cincinnati Bengals.

Eagles Corners vs. Batman and Robin
If you’re unaware of the Batman and Robin terminology, it’s Chad Ochocinco’s self-proclaimed name for himself and Terrell Owens (T.O. is Batman, Chad is Robin).

Anyway, the Eagles corners have been a topic of concern throughout the offseason and Training Camp. We only got to see the starters for six snaps last Friday, so it will be nice to see them get some extended time. Also, it will be nice to see them go up against some talented receivers.

There is a chance we might see Asante Samuel sit out tonight, and I’d actually prefer if he did. This way we can see some of the backups fill in. Outside of the starters, the play from the corners was terrible last week. They have a lot to prove and what better way to do it then by strutting their stuff against Batman and Robin.

Eagles Red Zone Offense vs. Bengals Red Zone Defense
Although the Eagles first team offense looked good moving the ball last week, they struggled once they entered the end zone. They failed to convert any touchdowns and spent a lot of time working on it this week. I think that Michael Vick will be a big help in the red zone this season, but I don’t think they will show any plays with Vick until the regular season.

The offense needs to show more than just driving the ball. They need to prove they can go the distance.

Eagles Defensive Line vs. Bengals Offensive Line
Although I’m excited to see the entire Eagles first team defense play more than just six snaps, I’ll be paying particular attention to the defensive line. This was a large focus or the Eagles, and I want to see them put some serious pressure on Carson Palmer and any other Bengals quarterback who enters the game.

Brandon Graham is obviously a guy everyone will be looking to make plays. I want to see him convert the things he did in Training Camp to an actual game.

Eagles Return Coverage vs. Bengals Return Team
After all the talk about the improvements we thought we’d see with Bobby April coaching special teams, there was quite a let down last Friday. The Eagles return coverage looked horrible against the Jaguars, giving up large chunks of yardage whenever they were on the field.

April is a good coach so I’m sure he was all over the guys this week. Also, special teams is the only way some guys will make the team, so watch for some of the young guys to try and make some plays.

What matchups will you have your eyes on?

Brandon Graham

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