Wake-Up Call: Eagles To Reportedly Add OL Moffitt

John Moffitt (Chris Humphreys/USA Today)

John Moffitt (Chris Humphreys/USA Today)

In 2013, John Moffitt decided he’d had enough of the NFL.

A 2011 third-round pick by the Seahawks, Moffitt started 15 games at guard before being traded to the Broncos. In the middle of his first season with Denver, Moffitt announced he was retiring at the age of 27.

“I just really thought about it and decided I’m not happy. I’m not happy at all,” Moffitt told The Associated Press in a phone interview from Seattle. “And I think it’s really madness to risk your body, risk your well-being and risk your happiness for money.

“Everybody, they just don’t get it and they think it’s crazy. But I think what I was doing is crazy.”

Less than two years later, Moffitt has had a change of heart, and according to Ross Jones of Fox Sports, he’s signing a one-year deal with the Eagles. Read more »

What They’re Saying About the Eagles

Photo By Jeff Fusco

Photo By Jeff Fusco

Here’s a roundup of what the national media are saying about the Eagles.

Daniel Jeremiah of NFL.com thinks the Eagles have the best backfield in the league:

NFL Media’s Daniel Jeremiah, a former scout for the Ravens, Browns and Eagles, also placed Philly at No. 1, saying: “Murray gets all the headlines and attention, but I’m even more intrigued to see what the role is for Mathews and Sproles. The way they do it, you go out there for a series. I think it’s going to be a good fit. I kind of worry about those secondary runners when you get a carry here, a carry there. But the Eagles with their tempo, (Mathews is) going to get a full series and he’s going to get a chance to get into a rhythm.”

Read more »

Eagles Wake-Up Call: Can Lane Johnson Make the Leap?

Photo By Jeff Fusco

Photo By Jeff Fusco

In some ways, Lane Johnson has become a forgotten man on the Eagles offensive line.

Jason Kelce has emerged as a team spokesman of sorts. Jason Peters gets national accolades every year. And there’s been plenty of talk about Allen Barbre and Matt Tobin, guys who will be asked to take on bigger roles in 2015.

Many expected Johnson to make the second-year leap in 2014, but he was suspended for the first four games of the season and couldn’t even be in the team facility until the end of September.

“You could tell in the first game that he had been away from it a little bit in the Rams game,” said offensive line coach Jeff Stoutland. “And then you could see as the year went on he progressively improved and got better.”

Johnson improved in pass protection, and while he was fine as a run blocker, he’s yet to become a consistent, dominating force. This offseason, he decided to try something new, spending time at Jay Glazer’s Unbreakable Performance Center in West Hollywood, Calif. Read more »

Eagles 53-Man Roster Projection

Photo By Jeff Fusco

Photo By Jeff Fusco

Let’s get the usual disclaimers out of the way:

  • It’s only June, and the Eagles haven’t even practiced in pads yet.
  • There will be more roster moves made between now and September.
  • Players unfortunately will get injured.

Having said all that, providing an early 53-man roster projection allows us to at least get a handle on what camp battles should be taken seriously come August.

It’s also just a fun exercise for the sleepy days of late June. And we’re pro-fun here at Birds 24/7. So here you go: Read more »

Eagles Wake-Up Call: On Matthews’ Role in 2015

Photo By Jeff Fusco

Photo By Jeff Fusco

During his first practices as a rookie, Jordan Matthews made a habit of finding the end zone.

Whenever he caught the ball, he would take off in a sprint towards the goal line before eventually returning to the line of scrimmage. Chip Kelly was asked last week about Matthews’ routine.

“In football, the play ends on a whistle,” Kelly said. “So when the whistle blows, stop running. That was the conversation.”

When the regular season started, Matthews had no problem finding the end zone, scoring eight touchdowns as a rookie.

Raymond Summerlin of Rotoworld recently put together a piece on red zone production. He found that Matthews scored on 38 percent of his red zone targets, ranking 16th among all wide receivers and ninth among those who were targeted 10 times or more. Read more »

Three Eagles Numbers That Matter

Photo By Jeff Fusco

Photo By Jeff Fusco

From red zone production to play-action passes to the in-season travel schedule, here are three Eagles numbers that matter.

36.5 – DeMarco Murray’s TD rate on carries inside the opponents’ 10 the last two years, according to writer Graham Barfield. Murray scored 19 times on 52 attempts. That’s the fifth-best mark among running backs since 2013.

LeSean McCoy, meanwhile, ranked 35th in this category, converting just eight of 46 attempts (17.4 percent) into touchdowns. While there are plenty of factors that go into this – play-calling, the offensive line, etc. – it seems reasonable to expect that the Eagles could get more from Murray than McCoy when they get into scoring range. Read more »

Wake-Up Call: Eagles Still Leaning On Peters

Photo By Jeff Fusco

Photo By Jeff Fusco

At center and right tackle, the Eagles have two young, ascending players in Jason Kelce and Lane Johnson.

At right guard and left guard, we know they’re going into the season with question marks in Allen Barbre and either Matt TobinAndrew Gardner or Dennis Kelly.

Then there’s left tackle.

At 33, Jason Peters is still the guy that everyone looks up to. Is he the same player he was four or five years ago? Probably not. But coaches and teammates still are in awe when they witness Peters’ athleticism and power up close. Read more »

Eagles Wake-Up Call: What We Learned This Spring

Photo courtesy of USA Today

Photo courtesy of USA Today

Given that the Eagles’ spring program wrapped up last week with the mandatory minicamp, now seems like a good time to take stock of what we’ve learned the past two months.

Below are three items worth taking a closer look at.

1. A lot is riding on Walter Thurmond.

The 27 year old made the transition from corner to safety in the spring and is the clear frontrunner to start alongside Malcolm Jenkins. The Eagles need their safeties to cover man to man against tight ends and slot receivers; play center field in single-high looks; and provide run support. Thurmond has played as a nickel, so he has the first part down. It’s the other two areas where he’ll have to prove himself. Read more »

Eagles Practice Observations

Photo courtesy of USA Today

Photo courtesy of USA Today

Given the rain and the shortened practice, we didn’t have enough to fill a running diary today, but here are observations from the Eagles’ last session of the spring.

* Coaches around the league like Bill Belichick and Bill O’Brien canceled the final day of minicamp practices to reward their players. That was not the case with the Eagles. It’s just not in Chip Kelly’s DNA, although the coaches did end the session a little early. Read more »

Running Diary: Eagles Practice Observations

Photo By Jeff Fusco

Photo By Jeff Fusco

Here’s what we saw during today’s Eagles practice session.

11:51 a.m. – I have joked before about being the lone passenger on the Marcus Smith bandwagon, but I swear that watching him move in practice, he looks like an NFL player. He’s long, athletic, and effort doesn’t seem to be an issue.

Maybe after being ping-ponged from outside linebacker to inside linebacker, it was the mental part that tripped him up last season. We’ll see if that’s the case once the pads come on.

By the way, speaking of the outside linebacker spot, Vinny Curry is getting some reps there, according to Chip Kelly. We know Curry can get after the passer, and he should have no problem setting the edge in the run game. But the question will be whether he can drop into coverage. Read more »

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