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Originally published December 1, 2011 at 10:54 PM | Page modified December 1, 2011 at 11:12 PM

Eagles' LeSean McCoy after loss to Seahawks: 'They're a good team, but we're far, far better'

Philadelphia fell to 4-8 and definitively out of playoff contention.

Seattle Times staff reporter

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After his team had been throttled by the Seahawks last night, another low point in a season gone horribly awry, Eagles running back LeSean McCoy came to an eye-opening conclusion.

"That's a good team over there, but I feel we're a far better team," he said quietly. "No disrespect to them; they played hard. They're a good team, but we're far, far better. Way more talent. We played poorly today."

Poorly enough — four critical turnovers and glaringly poor tackling of Marshawn Lynch on a jump-starting touchdown run, for starters — to leave them answering postgame questions about their effort.

Beleaguered coach Andy Reid, who saw what was once proclaimed a "Dream Team" fall to 4-8 and definitively out of playoff contention, defended them.

"Listen, man, we're busting our tails everyday in practice and trying to win a game," he said. "Everybody is playing hard."

That sentiment was echoed in the locker room, but defensive tackle Cullen Jenkins recognized that those words sound hollow when juxtaposed against the results.

"We can come up with all the words, plead our case, say there's great effort," Jenkins said. "But fans don't want to hear that. Fans want to see it. They want to see it out there on the field. They don't want to hear it after a loss."

What fans saw, instead, was Lynch break loose from a scrum of Eagles in the first quarter, emerging from what seemed like a busted play to dart for a 15-yard touchdown run.

"Everyone had their hands on him," said Eagles defensive end Trent Cole. "Shoot, I was disgusted myself. I couldn't figure it out myself. I remember going to the pile, and I thought he was caught up in there. All of a sudden, he popped out. I didn't even know who had the ball. He popped out of that big pile on his way to the end zone."

Cole added admiringly of Lynch, "He's a freak, just a freak. I don't know how to explain it. We've just got to wrap up and lay people down."

The mounting losses are adding to the pressure on Reid, who is increasingly on the hot seat in his 13th season as Eagles coach. In his postgame remarks, Reid blamed himself for not getting his team to play better, but McCoy disputed that sentiment.

"Andy's not going nowhere," he said. "Look at today's game. I don't see where it's Andy Reid's fault. Turnovers. Andy can't control that. Lack of doing your assignment. Andy doesn't control that. That's us as players. He puts us in the right position. He takes a lot of blame for things he shouldn't. We have to dig deep and get things done. He shouldn't be accountable for us not getting things done."

Meanwhile, however, people will continue to dig for answers to what ails the Eagles. DeSean Jackson, no stranger to controversy, got increasingly agitated after the game as he was queried about his sideline interaction with teammates, or lack thereof. The thrust, talked about on the television broadcast, was that he didn't seem to be communicating with them during the game.

"If that's what they saw, that's what they saw," Jackson said. "I'm not going to entertain that. I don't have to sit here and answer those questions. My teammates know what it is."

Jackson eventually cut off the interview when questions persisted. But Jenkins understands the frustration that is permeating down to the fans.

"I'm sure right now, a lot of people are ticked off, and they should be," he said. "Any fan wants to see his team do good. It's one thing if we're going out there and teams are just better than us. We're not. We're going out and giving away these games. I can just imagine from fans' standpoint watching games, it probably looks like lack of effort, lack of fundamentals, lack of everything. The fans are going to be frustrated."

Philadelphia tight end Brent Celek was more blunt.

"We've got four games left to prove we're a legitimate team, because right now the world's laughing at us."

Larry Stone: 206-464-3146 or lstone@seattletimes.com

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