August 1, 2013 |
CHIP KELLY says his depth chart is written in sand, which doesn't mean he takes notes on an Etch A Sketch. It's his clever way of saying that there is precious little permanence on his roster this early in a training camp in which he has posted a "Help Wanted" sign on every job but pastry chef in the NovaCare cafeteria. At the moment, with the Sept. 9 season opener against the Redskins still 5 1/2 weeks away, it's safe to say no more than nine or 10 of the Eagles' 22 starting jobs are completely locked up. Running back LeSean McCoy and wide receiver DeSean Jackson can breathe easy.
July 31, 2013 |
A program might be needed to familiarize Eagles fans with the team's starting defensive backfield. A new era of Eagles football will likely include at least three new starters in the secondary. It's entirely conceivable that all four will be newcomers. Gone are Nnamdi Asomugha and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, high-priced former Pro Bowlers. The Eagles signed four less acclaimed players for the defensive backfield, though they do have significant starting experience. Cornerbacks Cary Williams and Bradley Fletcher and safeties Patrick Chung and Kenny Phillips have started a combined 131 regular-season games.
July 19, 2013 |
RANKING THE Eagles' top dozen offseason moves: 1. Hiring Chip Kelly on Jan. 16: Well, duh. A new direction after 14 years of Andy Reid. It still feels strange, and it probably will all season. Maybe Chip will blow through all his timeouts too soon in the opener and make us feel more at home with him. 2. Hiring vice president Tom Gamble on Feb. 16: Everybody in the NFL said this was a good personnel hire, for a team that has tried to patch over bad drafts with free agency in recent years, and reaped awful results from it. If Kelly is going to build a winner, he will need a heads-up personnel team.
July 17, 2013 |
IF THERE'S nothing for agents and NFL general managers to fight about, they'll invent something. That's all you really need to know about the issue of "offset language," which so far has kept seven of the top 10 first-round draft picks from signing, including the Eagles' Lane Johnson, selected fourth overall in April. New Eagles coach Chip Kelly is scheduled to greet rookies for training camp at NovaCare in 6 days. There's a decent chance Johnson won't be there then, though sources close to the situation say they don't think a prolonged stalemate is likely.
July 3, 2013 |
ALL GOOD things take a little time. Following a disastrous season for the secondary, the Eagles signed free-agent cornerbacks Bradley Fletcher and Cary Williams to replace Nnamdi Asomugha and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie. With organized team activities and minicamp now a thing of the past, the new-look secondary has made a stride toward creating some chemistry. But a few weeks of noncontact practice is not enough on which to predict the future. After winning a Super Bowl with the Ravens, Williams signed a 3-year contract with the Eagles.
June 29, 2013 |
The NFL Network wrapped up its Top 100 Players of 2013 series on Thursday night, and its almost complete shunning of the Philadelphia Eagles is now history. Perhaps deservedly so, after a 4-12 season that got head coach Andy Reid fired. Only one Eagles player made the list, running back LeSean McCoy at No. 45. That's way down from 2012, when the list included seven players: McCoy at No. 18, tackle Jason Peters at 42, defensive ends Jason Babin and Trent Cole at 44 and 57, quarterback Michael Vick at 70, wideout DeSean Jackson at 71, and cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha at 79. Peters had a good excuse: He missed last season because of a twice-ruptured Achilles tendon.
June 1, 2013 |
It's a fundamental part of football, but tackling is the hardest to simulate in practice, especially with the restrictions that NFL coaches increasingly face. But it is easy enough to describe. Patrick Chung explained what goes into a successful takedown. "Tackling is a technique thing - stay square, inside foot up, take away one side, keep your head up, and don't duck," the Eagles safety said on Thursday. "It's the same thing. It's just a matter of doing it over and over and over again.
May 22, 2013 |
TRYING TO determine the primary reason for the Eagles' bad-awful pass defense last year is like trying to find an answer to the old chicken-or-egg question. Was it the meek pass rush, which recorded just 30 sacks and too often gave opposing quarterbacks enough time to get a mani-pedi let alone find an open receiver? Or was it the mistake-prone secondary, which managed to turn coverage-blowing into a 16-game art form? Clearly, there was enough blame to go around for the franchise-record 33 touchdown passes the Eagles gave up, their league-worst 99.6 opponent passer rating and their measly eight interceptions.
April 5, 2013 |
ALL PAUL HOLMGREN had to say was, "Bryz is our No. 1 goalie, now and for the foreseeable future. " Words to that effect would have squelched speculation that the Flyers' deadline trade Wednesday for Steve Mason, a young, pedigreed goalie, might mean an early divorce from Ilya Bryzgalov. Instead, Holmgren said, "We see [Mason] as one of our two goalies, not only the rest of this year, but moving forward. We'll just leave it at that for now. " Of course, nothing concerning the Flyers gets left at that.
April 4, 2013 |
FORMER EAGLES cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha has agreed to a 1-year contract with the San Francisco 49ers, his agent confirmed. According to an ESPN report, the deal could be worth up to $3 million. A source told ESPN that Asomugha picked the 49ers over the New Orleans Saints. Asomugha also collects a guaranteed $4 million from the Eagles, who released him earlier in the offseason. Noteworthy * As expected, the Arizona Cardinals acquired quarterback Carson Palmer from the Oakland Raiders.