Inside Slant, Notes, Quotes, Personnel, Etc.

Eagles head coach Andy Reid said Monday there is a possibility that kicker David Akers could return for Sunday's road game in Denver against the Broncos.

Akers, one of the league's top kickers, has missed the last three games after tearing his right hamstring. Todd France has replaced him and has made 6 of his 7 field goal attempts, including two Sunday in the Eagles' 20-7 win over San Diego.

"We'll see how David is this week," Reid said. "If not this week, then (he'll return) probably next week (against Washington), I think. Within the next few weeks here, he should be able to get back in there."

Akers initially strained his hamstring in Week 2 against the 49ers, then tore it the next week against Oakland on the opening kickoff when he tried to return too soon.

Akers has been examined by an unnamed doctor that Reid says is one of the country's best hamstring specialists. He said the doctor will be consulted before Akers tries to return.

"You bank on what the doctor says," he said. "We're in touch with what's supposed to be the best guy in the country. We're going to listen to him and see how David feels and go from there."

France has done well on field goals. While his kickoffs haven't been particularly deep, he's gotten pretty good hang time on them, which has allowed his coverage team to get downfield.

"Todd's done a nice job," Reid said.


--After giving up a combined 311 rushing yards to the Chiefs and Cowboys in their previous two games, the Eagles defense held Chargers running back LaDainian Tomlinson to a career-low 7 yards on 17 carries in Sunday's 20-17 Eagles win. "We went into the game with a chip on our shoulder," free safety Brian Dawkins said. "We were hearing how much we can't stop the run, and how this game was going to be no different than any other as far as him running for 200-plus yards probably against us. You get tired of hearing that. You get tired of hearing what you can't do. We went out and showed what we could (do)."

--Through the first six games, 292 of the Eagles' 383 offensive plays have been pass plays. They had just one rushing first down against the Chargers and none in their previous game against the Cowboys. They've got a total of 20 rushing first downs in six games.


--K David Akers, who has missed the last three games with a torn hamstring, could return either this week against Denver or next week against Washington, according to head coach Andy Reid.

--K Todd France has made 6 of 7 field goal attempts since replacing injured David Akers. But with Akers expected to return sometime in the next couple of weeks, his days as an Eagles probably are numbered.

--RB Ryan Moats, who was activated for the first time Sunday and returned kickoffs, suffered a concussion in the game. While he'll probably be healthy enough to play this week, it's uncertain whether he will. He fumbled both of his kickoff return attempts.

--LB Jason Short missed Sunday's game with a high ankle sprain. He'll likely be sidelined for at least a couple of more weeks.

--TE Stephen Spach suffered a lower leg contusion Sunday against the Chargers. Spach, the club's No. 2 tight end, got his most extensive playing time of the season as the Eagles frequently went with an extra tight end to protect injured QB Donovan McNabb.



PASS OFFENSE: D -- Donovan McNabb's day was marred by inaccuracy and poor decisions, including a couple in the first half that cost the Eagles two scoring chances. Unable to throw the deep ball because of his sports hernia, he tried dinking and dunking, and averaged just 5.3 yards per attempt on a season-high 54 attempts.

RUSH OFFENSE: F -- The Eagles again made almost no attempt to run the ball. Running back Brian Westbrook had just 10 carries for 25 yards.

PASS DEFENSE: B-plus -- The Eagles blitzed early and often and pressured Drew Brees into 2 interceptions and sacked him 3 times. While they gave up two passing TDs, they did a good job of shutting down TE Antonio Gates and RB LaDainian Tomlinson.

RUN DEFENSE: A-plus -- The Eagles took away the edges from LaDainian Tomlinson and funneled him inside, where the linebackers helped hold him to a career-low 7 rushing yards.

SPECIAL TEAMS: A-minus -- Quentin Mikell blocked a Nate Kaeding field goal attempt with a minute and a half left and Matt Ware returned it 65 yards for the game-winning touchdown. Coverage units did a solid job after two shaky games.

COACHING: C -- Jim Johnson devised a brilliant defensive game plan to shut down LaDainian Tomlinson, but Andy Reid continues to ignore the run and let his injured quarterback throw 50-plus times per game.

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