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Eagles Not Taking Vikings Lightly

(credit: Ed Benkin/KYW)

(credit: Ed Benkin/KYW)

Ed Benkin Ed Benkin
Ed Benkin has been reporting sports for KYW Newsradio since April...
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By Ed Benkin

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — After making the playoffs in 2012, the Minnesota Vikings are stumbling through a 3-9-1 season.  That doesn’t mean the Eagles are taking Sunday’s game for granted.

It what appears to be a classic NFL ‘trap” game, the surging Eagles are favored to win their sixth game in a row on Sunday in Minnesota.  Despite their record, the Vikings have remained competitive throughout much of the season and Eagles Linebacker DeMeco Ryans says the players aren’t taking the Vikings lightly.

“We’ve watched the film,” said Ryans.  “We see these guys work.  The way they play ball, they play really hard.  It’s not like they’re getting blown out of games.  They’ve been in the games they’ve played in.  It’s not going to be an easy game.”

The health of the Vikings running backs would make it even easier for the Eagles to look past this game.  Star Running Back Adrian Peterson is questionable with a foot injury and his backup, Toby Gerhart, it also battling an injury.  It won’t change the approach of defensive players such as Cornerback Cary Williams.

“We’re going to practice the same way we always practice,” Williams said.  “Whoever steps out there in the purple and gold is whoever we play.  We’re going to go out there and play the best Eagles football we possibly can.”

This will be the first game the Eagles will play in a dome this season.  Despite Minnesota’s record, the Vikings have played in front of one of the loudest crowds in the league over the past few decades.  However, Linebacker Mychal Kendricks says the Eagles music-filled practices have likely helped them deal with hostile crowds on the road.

“It has to,” said Kendricks.  “I don’t know the difference because I’m always out there practicing with the noise.  I don’t even notice.”

A win would keep the Eagles in sole possession of first place in the NFC East.  It is a far cry from last season, when the Eagles were spiraling towards a 4-12 finish.  However, Tight End Brent Celek says now it not the time to reflect on the team’s progress.

“We’ve still got a long way to go,” Celek said.  “I don’t want to give us much credit right now because we haven’t accomplished anything.  We’ve still got a lot to to, and we’ve got to focus on Minnesota this week.”

Linebacker Najee Goode was the only Eagle unable to practice Wednesday because of a hamstring injury.  Safety Earl Wolff saw limited action in practice as he continues to recover from a knee injury.