Eagles' Johnson ready to face the Patriots

Game 2 of the preseason is on Thursday.

Ed Benkin
August 11, 2018 - 4:08 pm
The Philadelphia Eagles are shown at Lincoln Financial Field.

Ed Benkin/KYW Newsradio

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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — It's preseason game No. 2, but Lane Johnson has apparently been looking forward to Thursday night more so than the average preseason game.

The Eagles will take on the Patriots in New England as the two teams meet on the field for the first time since Super Bowl LII. The stakes won't be nearly as high, and the top players from the two teams are expected to see limited action. However, Johnson admits he likes the thought of facing the team the Eagles vanquished in the Super Bowl.  

"I'm ready," said Johnson. "I've been waiting on this ever since the Super Bowl was over with. It's time."

Johnson has not been bashful this off-season when it comes to offering his opinion on the Patriots. The offensive lineman criticized the way New England goes about its business. He called the Patriots a "fear-based organization." He also spoke out about what he believes is an arrogance surrounding the Patriots. Johnson will likely hear the boos from the New England faithful when he takes the field at Gillette Stadium. While Johnson is not afraid to express his feelings about the Patriots, Head Coach Doug Pederson took a more reserved approach on Saturday before the team's open practice at the Linc.

"It's going to be fun," Pederson said. "It's obviously a different atmosphere. It's preseason, and both teams are still evaluating a lot of young players. The Patriots will focus on the Patriots, and we're gong to focus on the Eagles. It'll be exciting. It should be a good crowd. It's a great place to play."

Johnson said the players on the top unit are expected to see more playing time on Thursday night. Pederson singled out the strong play of both the offensive and defensive lines in the first preseason game despite limited snaps for the top players. Johnson is excited to get more snaps in New England and is hoping the offense will get the chance to run the ball more against the Patriots.

"There were some errors," said Johnson. "At the end of the day, I think we could have ran the ball as many times as we wanted to. This coming week, we'll probably play a quarter and a half and get more snaps, so we'll try to keep progressing."

The Eagles and Patriots are not scheduled to meet in the regular season, so this will be the only matchup between the two teams in 2018. The only other possible way they could meet would be in a Super Bowl rematch in February. No matter when the two teams meet, Johnson has no fear of lining up against the team he had plenty of harsh words for in the off-season.

"They know who I am on film," Johnson said. "They know who we are on film. We'll see what's going to happen."