New England Patriots: Five Matchups To Watch In Joint Practices With Philadelphia Eagles

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Aug 20, 2012; Foxborough, MA, USA; Philadelphia Eagles running back LeSean McCoy (25) scores a touchdown against the New England Patriots during the first half at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports

1. Eagles RB’s vs. Pats front seven

One of, if not the biggest strength of this Eagles team is who they have running the football. Everybody knows about LeSean McCoy, but Philly has Darren Sproles in the fold as well.

The Pats are beat up on the inside, and how they hold up against the run is one of the few question marks for this talented defense. Vince Wilfork and Tommy Kelly are solid starters, but with Sealver Siliga and Chris Jones both sidelined, the Patriots don’t have much depth to work with. Rookie Dominique Easley finally returned to practice yesterday, and if he can participate in the hitting portion of these practices, he will surely make an impact.

If New England wants to prove they can play the run as well as they can play the pass, this is the perfect opportunity for them to showcase it. Wilfork, Kelly, and (potentially) Easley will have to play well in the trenches, so the Pats’ talented group of linebackers have room to go make a play. It will be interesting to see how this battle plays out over the next couple of days.