February 20, 2015 |
INDIANAPOLIS - The Eagles added former Jets assistant coach Brian Smith to their coaching staff as assistant linebackers coach, a new position for the team. Smith, 35, spent the last two seasons as the Jets' assistant defensive backs coach. The Wilmington native had been with the team since 2007. He started his coaching career at UMass, where he was Giants receiver Victor Cruz's position coach. Smith played for the Minutemen as a strong safety and cornerback. He will work with outside-linebackers coach Bill McGovern and inside-linebackers coach Rick Minter.
November 16, 2014 |
Casey Matthews arrived at Lehigh University for the Eagles' 2011 training camp atop the depth chart at middle linebacker. A rookie fourth-round pick who entered the league during the NFL's work stoppage, Matthews did not yet know the defense, his teammates, or his coaches. Amid a frenzied free-agent signing period that produced the ill-fated "Dream Team," the Eagles chose the untested rookie to man the middle of their defense. The experiment lasted three games before Matthews was demoted.
September 11, 2014 |
INQUIRER STAFF WRITER Abington coaches rave about Juan Castillo's ability in one-on-one situations. The sophomore forward created plenty of those chances Tuesday, and he made them count. Castillo turned two intercepted clearing passes into second-half goals, and Abington rallied past visiting Council Rock South, 3-2, in a Suburban One National game. He netted the winner with six minutes left. Kevin Weintraub also scored, and Tim Seydel made six saves to keep Abington in the game.
August 26, 2014 |
NATE ALLEN'S touted competition with Earl Wolff for a starting safety position hasn't been much of a fight. Allen has been solid, smooth and capable in his second training camp under defensive coordinator Bill Davis. Wolff hasn't been bad, but he took some time to get his legs under him, coming off a knee injury, and still has things to learn about the position. As the Eagles work toward their preseason finale Thursday, the closer call in the secondary seems to be between Bradley Fletcher and Nolan Carroll at corner.
June 1, 2014 |
When the Eagles' first-team defense took the field during organized team activities this week, Nate Allen was in the lineup. It's a familiar spot for the Eagles veteran, whose grip on the starting job has endured through four defensive coordinators in his first four NFL seasons. He has been injured and demoted at times, but the team still sees promise. In March, the Eagles re-signed him to a one-year deal, the 2010 second-round pick's second contract. The team signed Malcolm Jenkins to start in the secondary, but did not draft a safety in the first round.
December 6, 2013 |
Another week, another mega challenge for the Eagles defense. After doing a decent job on Larry Fitzgerald last week, the gas gets turned up a bit with the arrival of Calvin Johnson and the Lions on Sunday. Though the Birds have been better lately, no team in football has allowed more receptions to opposing wide receivers than the Eagles (204). Ditto for most yards (2,599) and most touchdowns (18). Detroit's receivers and tight ends are strong, long and wrong for a secondary lacking confidence.
December 1, 2013 |
It makes for a tidy story, the second chances Bill Davis and Todd Bowles have taken advantage of as defensive coordinators. But both have been around the block enough to know they're only a five-game finish away from looking for another job. "I've been around the NFL long enough that you never assume security or the opposite," Davis said earlier this week as the Eagles prepared for Sunday's game against the Cardinals. "It's such a slippery slope....
November 16, 2013 |
The Eagles play the Washington Redskins on Sunday at Lincoln Financial Field. The Eagles are 5-5; the Redskins, 3-6. You'd think that would be a good thing, having a home game against a lesser opponent. Yeah, you'd think that. There's just one problem: The Eagles have lost their last 10 games at the Linc. That's a lot. That's four short of the NFL record. For a sense of proportion, of just how long a 10-game home losing streak in the NFL is in comparison to other sports, imagine the Phillies losing 101 straight games at Citizens Bank Park.
November 13, 2013 |
EVERYBODY has an opinion about why the Eagles are 5-1 on the road this season, but have lost 10 home games in a row, dating back to Sept. 30, 2012. Players are starting to reflect the popular idea that something is critically different when the Eagles play on the road. LeSean McCoy was asked about it on the radio last week and asked whether his questioner noticed the lack of booing from the Oakland fans, even after their team had fallen far behind. (Had I been the questioner, I might've asked Shady whether he noticed the thousands of seats in the Raiders' stadium covered by a tarp, and whether he really thought he'd prefer that atmosphere.)
September 17, 2013 |
THE MORE THINGS change, the more they stay the same. The Eagles have a vibrant new head coach and an exciting, new, warp-speed offense that has put up 63 points in two games. They also have a defense that has the very same problem that last year's unit had: It can't get off the field on third down to save its life. The Chargers converted nine of 12 third-down opportunities in the second half yesterday in their 33-30 win over the Eagles. Quarterback Philip Rivers, who threw for 419 yards and three touchdowns, completed nine of 10 third-down passes for 113 yards, a touchdown and eight first downs in the final two quarters.