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Avant tempers Eagles' expectations for offense
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Ever since Michael Vick was officially named the starting quarterback Tuesday, the hype building around the Eagles' offense has swelled like a wave.

LeSean McCoy, DeSean Jackson and Jason Peters each said the Eagles' offense would explode out of the gate, with McCoy even suggesting the group could be "unstoppable."

But one teammate seems to remember the danger of the "Dream Team" label from 2011. Seven-year veteran Jason Avant spoke up Thursday as the voice of reason, tempering overboard expectations.

"That's all speculation," Avant said after practice at the NovaCare Complex. "That's all what-if. You have to prove that type of thing. You have guys saying 'this is gonna be this' or 'this is gonna be that,' but you've got to prove it. Nobody's going to give you anything in this league.

"Do we have some guys who can play? Yeah, we have some guys who can play. But every team does and we gotta focus on being our best each Sunday and each time we get a chance to play a game. And then we'll see at the end of the day how we stack up.

"Potential is always a dangerous word, because if it's not reached, you're not doing the right things."

Avant's remarks contradict the wide-eyed comments from earlier this week. Along with McCoy's "unstoppable" prediction, Jackson added to the buildup.

"I honestly think, man, it's going to be a great year for us," Jackson said. "But it's too early to say. It's just my confidence in the level that me being here going on my sixth year, just the things that happened in the past and seeing where it is at now. Just one of the great feelings that we have."

Peters, who on Saturday is expected to see game action for the first time since Jan. 1, 2012, had called the Birds' offensive line "one of the most athletic" he's played on. He said the team's goal would be allowing the fewest sacks in team history and promised that people would "be shocked" by the Eagles' offense.

"As the year goes on, people will try to game plan for it and get adjusted to it," he said. "But they're going to be shocked the first couple of weeks, coming at them quick and fast, so we're going to see."

This is the kind of chest-beating Avant cautioned against.

"Everything else will take care of itself," Avant said. "We're trying to play the best that we can as a team and really not worry about who is out there as much as executing our assignment."