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Mornhinweg defends limited use of McCoy

reuben frank csnphilly

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#1 herbicide


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Posted 16 November 2012 - 12:18 PM


Mornhinweg defends limited use of McCoy

November 16, 2012, 7:00 am

Posted Image

It was one of those comments that makes you wonder.

Really, really wonder.

Eagles offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg, who for years has had to defend limited carries for running backs from Brian Westbrook to Correll Buckhalter to LeSean McCoy, found himself in that position again Thursday, four days after McCoy got just seven carries (at 8.9 yards per pop) in the second half of the Eagles’ loss to the Cowboys.

“I don’t think there is a problem there,” Mornhinweg said.

Read it again:

“I don’t think there is a problem there,” Mornhinweg said.

Just another day over at the NovaCare Complex.

Asked why McCoy has been such a small part of the offense lately -- he hasn’t had 20 carries in any game during the Eagles’ five-game losing streak -- Mornhinweg staunchly defended the team’s use of McCoy.

Even though the Eagles this year are 3-0 when McCoy gets at least 20 carries and 0-6 when he doesn’t, Mornhinweg believes the Eagles are calling plenty of runs for Shady.

“It means that we’re in four-minute at the end of the game and he gets a few more carries,” Mornhinweg said of the 3-0 mark when he has 20 carries. “It’s just that simple. Every game is different, and you have to dig into every game. Usually the ball-carriers get a few more carries when you’re ahead and in four-minute [situations] during the end of the game.”

“I think LeSean is eighth in carries and fourth in total touches.”

So let’s look at the numbers.

Mornhinweg said McCoy gets more carries in the final four minutes of games when the Eagles are winning, but McCoy has only seven carries all year in the final four minutes of the game, including two against the Ravens, two against the Giants and one against the Browns.

That’s five carries in the final four minutes of the Eagles’ three wins. Or less than two per win. Certainly not enough to account for the disparity in carries when the Eagles win (23 per game) and when they lose (16 per game).

As for Mornhinweg’s contention that McCoy is eighth in the NFL in with 162 carries and fourth with 196 touches, that is true.

But it’s also deceiving.

The first month of the season, when the Eagles were 3-1, McCoy averaged 20.3 carries per game. The last five weeks, all losses, he’s averaged just 16.2 carries -- a 20 percent decrease.

And since Week 5, McCoy ranks 18th in the NFL with 81 carries.

Overall, McCoy is averaging 4.4 yards per carry this year, 11th-best in the NFL among backs getting at least 15 carries per game.

McCoy’s 4.7 career rushing average is 16th-best in NFL history among running backs with at least 750 career carries.

McCoy went to his first Pro Bowl last year and is on pace to rush for 1,253 yards this year, despite not getting 20 carries in a game since late September.

The Eagles are 10-1 all-time when McCoy gets 20 or more carries.

In the loss to the Saints two weeks ago, he had 90 yards on 10 carries in the first 15½ minutes. He got just nine carries the rest of the game. In the loss to the Cowboys Sunday, he averaged over 5.0 yards per carry but had only seven carries in the second half of what was a one-possession game until the final 46 seconds.

McCoy has shrugged off this latest period of under-usage, saying he’s more concerned with the team winning games than his own personal stats.

At his locker on Thursday, he said again it’s not about his carries but about the team having success, and he reiterated his faith in the very coaches who are limiting his carries.

“Coach Mornhinweg’s a great coach, he really is,” McCoy said. “I love coach [Andy] Reid, coach Mornhinweg, all our coaches. I know they’re looking out for me and doing everything they can to get us going.”

E-mail Reuben Frank at rfrank@comcastsportsnet.com.

#2 djbigf


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Posted 17 November 2012 - 09:17 AM

morningwood sucks. hopefully he never gets another job in the NFL again. if andy takes him along to san diego he's a fool.

#3 time2rock


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Posted 17 November 2012 - 09:37 AM

morningwood sucks. hopefully he never gets another job in the NFL again. if andy takes him along to san diego he's a fool.

Unless it's with Dallas or the Gnats.