The Eagles’ new $15 million edge rusher wants to affect every game.
“At some point, I just feel like I have to make a play that affects the game because that’s what I was brought here to do,” Reddick said at his locker earlier this week. “While I did have some good plays, I did a lot of good things, I don’t think I really made a game-changing play [against Detroit].
The number for Reddick in a 38-35 season-opening win in Detroit were two tackles — one for loss — and one missed tackle in 47 reps against the Lions. He was going after quarterback Jared Goff on 23 plays, supporting the run on 19, and dropping into coverage five times as a curve ball to give Goff some different looks.
According to Pro Football Focus, Reddick was surprisingly solid in run support but his graded when it came to tackling and what he’s known for, the pass rush, were less than inspiring. Overall, Reddick was No. 49 of the 80 edge rushers PFF graded in Week 1.
A South Jersey native and Temple alum, Reddick was hardly given a pass by the Eagles’ faithful who expect not only more, they expect it immediately starting Monday night against Minnesota.
“It’s Philly man, that’s all I can say, it’s Philly,” said Reddick of some social-media pushback. “If it didn’t happen, I would be shocked. I’m not worried nor concerned.”
The sample size is way too small to start panicking, according to Reddick.
“Nobody should be alarmed about anything on Week 1,” he said. “You feel me? It’s Week 1, it’s the first real action. There are a lot of things that go into it. You can tell how good a team is by what they correct from Week 1 to Week 2.”
The Vikings will arrive with a top-tier right tackle in Pro Bowl selection Brian O’Neill but Minnesota is susceptible to interior pressure so Reddick could be on the move a little more this week when it comes to where he lines up, especially in obvious passing situations.
“I have 16 more weeks; 16 more opportunities and I know everything I’m looking to accomplish will come,” Reddick insisted.
Reddick did admit there were a few first-game jitters in Detroit perhaps related to making his debut for the hometown team.
“I feel like that was part of it,” Reddick admitted before turning the page. “… I’m not thinking of that anymore. I finally got to put that Eagles uniform on and play an actual game. Now I’m settled in and focused on playing great football. I’m focused on minimizing the distractions, minimizing what I’m worried about, and just focusing on playing.”
Playing at home in front of family and friends on “Monday Night Football” to the point Reddick can’t get everyone tickets could be another distraction but the vetran is confident he’s ready for that potential pitfall.
“The energy is going to be there,” said Reddick. “I know all the fans are going to come out, come support. While I know it’s a Monday night game, I’m not going to get caught up in that hype. I’m just focused right now on being better than I was in Week 1, fixing the things I didn’t do right in Week 1. That’s all I’m going to focus on.
“I’m not going to get caught up in the hype, I’m not going to get caught up in, ‘oh you’re back home,’ I’m not going to let that stuff distract me. The only thing I’m worried about is playing good football for the Philadelphia Eagles.”