Reid says Eagles starters will play

December, 26, 2011
12/26/11
4:59
PM ET
If you're in a fantasy football league and still playing next week, it sounds as though you're okay to start LeSean McCoy and Michael Vick. Philadelphia Eagles coach Andy Reid said he will play his starters -- and play them the whole game -- in Sunday's season finale against the Washington Redskins, according to the Philadelphia Daily News:
"If you're preparing to play, you got to prepare to play four quarters," Reid said.

McCoy suffered a sprained ankle in Saturday's loss to the Cowboys, and Vick is always an injury risk. With the Eagles having been eliminated from playoff contention, there had been some thought that the Eagles' star offensive players might get Week 17 off. But Reid, who likes the momentum his team has right now and likely sees some value in trying to make the 2011 line on his resume read 8-8 instead of 7-9, says otherwise.

McCoy has been one of the best running backs in the league this season. He has 1,309 rushing yards, which is 128 behind league leader Maurice Jones-Drew of the Jaguars. He's also 203 yards shy of Wilbert Montgomery's team record for rushing yards in a single season, set in 1979. After Sunday's game, McCoy joked that Montgomery was "probably smiling," since McCoy's 35-yard performance likely left that record unattainable this season.

Incidentally, while I understand the long-term risks of playing McCoy and Vick in this game and I understand that the Vikings' Adrian Peterson tore his ACL in a "meaningless" game Saturday, I think Reid's making the right call here. But I'm old-fashioned, and I still think that as long as people are paying for the tickets, both teams should be trying as hard as they can to win the game.

Dan Graziano

ESPN New York Giants reporter

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