By Matt Dolloff, 985TheSportsHub.com
It’s literally one week before the start of training camp for the New England Patriots and Philadelphia Eagles. But amazingly, players from the Eagles are still finding ways to jab the Pats after beating them in Super Bowl LII, a good 165 days ago.
The offensive line, for whatever reason, has been by far the most frequent aggressors against the Patriots, mostly against Bill Belichick and the team culture. Center Jason Kelce is the latest to take his own shot at the Pats, but this time he was more critical of the guys he faced on the field in the Super Bowl and not the man on the sidelines. As part of a new interview with SI, which also featured prominent Patriot-bashers Lane Johnson and Brandon Brooks, Kelce managed to shoehorn a sly joke about the Patriots defense into the discussion.
“The last defense we had seen was Minnesota’s, and we were like, ‘These dudes have got some players.’ Then we see [the Patriots] and we’re like, ‘These dudes have got some … coaches.'”
All in all, a mostly innocuous comment. And the interview, presented more as a conversation between the group of Eagles O-linemen over dinner and drinks, presented a clear opportunity for Kelce and the others to go even harder than they did at the Patriots. This is actually a clever joke. Although it would be understandable if a Patriots defender read it and took it as more of a needless insult. At the core of Kelce’s comment is a statement on what he sees as a weaker Patriots D.
The Eagles offensive line dominated the Super Bowl, and might have been the main reason Nick Foles shredded the Patriots defense to the tune of 538 total yards. The secondary had some … issues … for sure, but the Patriots couldn’t get any pressure on Foles whatsoever. Kelce’s complete control of the line of scrimmage played a big role in that, and any anger over his joke shouldn’t cloud the reality that the Patriots didn’t have nearly enough talent on defense at the end of last season.
Still, Philly was facing a Patriots defense that was missing captain Dont’a Hightower. Not to mention that whole Malcolm Butler thing. The Pats enter training camp with much better depth up front. Kelce and the Eagles weren’t exactly facing a full complement of players that night – but obviously, that wasn’t going to stop him from tossing yet another jab New England’s way.
It’s almost training camp time, and incredibly, we’re still talking about the Eagles talking about the Patriots. Hopefully, the Eagles will worry about themselves for the 2018 season. Because any team can win one Super Bowl; if the Eagles can’t get back there in short order, these trash-talkers will look pretty silly.
Matt Dolloff is a digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Follow him on Twitter @mattdolloff or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.