Big weekend for London sporting events.
You’ve got Arsenal and Crystal Palace on Saturday, then the Eagles and Jaguars on Sunday, followed by Tottenham and Manchester City on Monday.
On paper, the Birds/Jags matchup SHOULD have been the most exciting of those three, but a pair of disappointing 3-4 starts takes some of the luster off Sunday’s American football fixture at Wembley Stadium.
I’m sure some blokes are still chuffed to see the reigning, defending Super Bowl champions (as Bruce Buffer would say), so here are some notes from Doug Pederson’s Friday presser from the United Kingdom, which includes England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland. Ireland itself is not part of the UK:
- tough to get adjusted to time change and long flight, but feels like team was prepared going into this game and knew what they were getting into
- will have a “typical Saturday morning,” work for 2-3 hours and have a walk through, after that team will be able to relax and/or go see something in London if they’d like
- Haloti Ngata (calf) will be a game time decision but has been “doing well”
- Corey Graham – a chance he plays, it’s “day by day and getting close”
- Tim Jernigan is doing well, will see where he is in a few weeks but he’s trending in the right direction
- Jacksonville is familiar with London and the travel aspect of this game, but the Eagles have some players and coaches who have been here before. “Both teams are definitely in the same situation today and feeling the same things.”
- British NFL fans love the league, will wear jerseys of all different teams, but it’s becoming a global sport with fans all around the world
- Darren Sproles is still rehabbing and will play again this year (seems like the most severe hamstring strain I’ve ever heard of)
In stunning news, Eagles beat writers report that it’s cloudy, cold, and raining in London.
The Birds are practicing at Hazelwood, which is the ground where the “London Irish” rugby team trains:
As it begins to drizzle at Hazelwood, Fletcher Cox and the DL chill on a bus. Here’s the special teams group breaking down the huddle before drills. Haloti Ngata just walked on the field. #Eagles pic.twitter.com/c3spUSoZd9
— Mike Kaye (@mike_e_kaye) October 26, 2018
If you’ve been even half-paying attention this week, you’ve probably heard about the Jags’ troubles heading into this game. Blake Bortles was benched last Sunday but given the nod to start this week Donte Moncrief had passport issues and needed to hop a commercial flight across the pond. The secondary is banged up and A.J. Bouye can’t go, which means you’ll probably see undrafted rookies Quenton Meeks and Tre Herndon on the field. The Eagles should have favorable cornerback matchups outside of Jalen Ramsey working on Alshon Jeffery.
We should get the final Eagles’ injury report a little later today, and Carson Wentz is scheduled to speak to the media after practice.
Also I thought this was cool:
— John Clark (@JClarkNBCS) October 25, 2018
Maybe next year all of the Brits can come over here and experience the real Passyunk Avenue, the part that goes past Geno’s and Pat’s in South Philly, not the shitty part on the other side of the Expressway.