Cold comfort for Eagles

ROB LONGLEY -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 9:15 AM ET

The Philadelphia Eagles know better than to expect the weather forecast to be an ally come playoff time. Two years ago in the NFC Championship game, the pre-game buzz was about how the Tampa Bay Bucs couldn't compete in frigid conditions.

Instead it was the Eagles who were frozen out of a Super Bowl trip with a 27-10 drubbing by the Floridians.

Curious then that Eagles defensive end Jevon Kearse said yesterday that the snow and cold expected to sock Philly today and tomorrow might help his team contain Atlanta Falcons quarterback Michael Vick.

"I personally think he'll have more advantage if it's good footing out there," said Kearse, whose prime assignment will be to run down the Falcons' spectacular pivot.

"If the weather comes in like it's expected and works for us, hopefully it will be bad footing for someone like Vick who is extra quick, extra fast."

Vick, who had three 100-yard rushing games this season, wasn't exactly singing Let It Snow, but the fleet-footed lefty didn't sound intimidated, either.

"I might put a glove on my right hand and my left hand will be free to just let it rip," said Vick, who was held to just 30 rushing yards when the teams met in the divisional round in 2002. "I played plenty of football games in cold weather and it didn't seem to matter."

Usually playing outdoors this time of year hurts a dome-based team like the Falcons. Atlanta, however, is one of only two dome teams to make it to the Super Bowl, doing so in the 1998 season. St. Louis is the other.

Vick played his college ball at Virginia Tech and had to deal with some bad-weather conference games. And he certainly wasn't fazed by his first career playoff game at Lambeau Field.

"Green Bay, 2002," Vick said when asked when he last played in the snow. The Falcons handed the Pack their first playoff loss at Lambeau, 27-7.

"It worked out," he said.


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