There weren’t many bright spots in the Philadelphia Eagles loss to the New Orleans Saints on Monday night, but rookie running back Bryce Brown was one of them. Brown had four carries for 49 yards including a 40-yard burst that displayed his speed and individual moves in the open field.
“It was a toss-sweep,” Brown said. “As I said before, I feel a lot more comfortable out in space. I really feel like it allows my natural ability to show. That was it. I can’t really say much more than that.”
The Eagles (3-5) could use some more plays like that when they face the Dallas Cowboys (3-5) on Sunday, Nov. 11 at Lincoln Financial Field (FOX TV Channel 29). The kickoff is set for 4:25 p.m. They can also use some help in the red zone. The Eagles had a tough time cashing in scoring opportunities against the Saints.
“When you get down into the red zone everything happens a lot faster, holes are a lot smaller (and) pass lanes are a lot tighter so all those things we can fix,” Brown said. “Those things we can go out and spend a little more time (on) with the quarterbacks and the receivers. Since we’re involved in the passing game as well, just staying after and just doing the little things we just have to come together and figure it out.”
Brown, a 6-foot, 220-pounder, was the number one recruit in the nation in 2008. The former high school All-American from Wichita, Kansas took an unusual path to the NFL. He played only 13 games on the collegiate level with Tennessee and Kansas State. He had 104 carries for 476 yards and three touchdowns.
He left Tennessee when head coach Lane Kiffin went to take the USC head coaching job. He transferred to Kansas State and sat out the 2010 season. Then, he suffered an ankle injury early in 2011 and played in one game before leaving the program. After going to the Wildcats Pro Day this year, the Eagles picked him in the seventh round.
Brown has seen some playing time his first year. He has 24 rushing attempts for 105 yards. He’s averaging 4.4 yards a carry.
“I don’t want to be content,” Brown said. “I think the coaches trust me when they put me in and know that I can protect and do the best I can.”
This is a big week for the Eagles and Cowboys. Both teams are in desperate need of a win. A year ago, the Eagles swept the Cowboys in the season series. Brown feels the Eagles can still turn things around with a victory on Sunday.
“We control our own destiny,” Brown said. “It’s something Coach (Andy) Reid has pointed out. The Cowboys are a great team. They’re struggling just like us. A lot of teams have highs and lows. They’re experiencing the low part of their season. They’re going to come here and want to win just like us. It’s going to be a great game.”