The Eagles defense will also have to rise to the occasion given the offense’s struggles without injured QB Carson Wentz.
It’s entirely possible that the college football world will be forever changed because of a movie that garnered a 35 percent fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
The premise of the 2013 Vince Vaughn-Owen Wilson buddy comedy The Internship was simple enough: Two middle-aged pals get internships at Google. But the plot isn’t important to this story. What’s important is that Clemson coach Dabo Swinney — never one to shy from mediocre comedy — saw the film and took notice of one of the set pieces.
Turns out, Google’s headquarters has a slide, and Swinney loved it. So now, inside Clemson’s $55 million football facility, a stainless steel chute runs from the second floor, outside the coaches offices, down to the first, ending near the team’s weight room.
I thought, ‘If I ever get a new football building, I want a slide,’ Swinney said. Now I go down it every day.
The defenses never rest: The narrative for the 2017 Falcons has focused on their supposed Super Bowl LI hangover and an offense that fell well short of its 2016 standards. Such handwringing overshadowed the continued maturation of a defense that’s quietly morphed into one of the NFL’s most well-rounded units and will likely be the primary reason the team’s NFC title defense succeeds or fails.
Atlanta has allowed just 16.3 points per game over its last six, clamping down on some of the league’s best offenses (New Orleans, Carolina, and the L.A. Rams among them). It’s a speedy, athletic group that borrows many of the concepts head coach Dan Quinn used in Seattle and will typically load the box with eight players and dare fill-in Eagles QB Nick Foles to beat it. Especially impressive in Saturday’s upset of the Rams, who scored more points than any other team in the 2017 regular season, was the play of blossoming LB Deion Jones (10 tackles) and CBs Robert Alford, Brian Poole and Desmond Trufant, who missed last year’s Super Bowl run with an injury.
Philadelphia finished the season ranked fourth in both points and yards allowed, but the performances have been uneven lately. The Eagles surrendered just 16 points in their last two games yet were burned for 88 in the previous three. Coordinator Jim Schwartz relies on a deep and talented front to generate pressure, which will likely be vital against an Atlanta offense that can exploit Philly’s vulnerable secondary given sufficient time.