What They’re Saying About the Eagles

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

ESPN.com’s Dan Graziano thinks the Eagles should make a play for Darrelle Revis:

With eight picks in the upcoming draft and about $33 million in salary cap room right now ($44 million if they cut Asomugha), the Eagles have the wherewithal to make any move they want. Assuming the Jets are as motivated as they seem to be to trade Revis, the Eagles might be able to get him with a package led by their high third-round pick. That’s a better pick than the Jets are likely to get as compensation if Revis leaves via free agency next year, and if the Jets wait for that to happen, Revis could end up signing with the Patriots and terrorizing the Jets twice a season for the rest of his career.

Elliot Harrison of NFL.com thinks 49ers safety Dashon Goldson would be a nice addition for the Eagles:

The Eagles’ secondary has been a real problem. The draft is a great tool, but Philly could potentially use three new players in the secondary; in order for it to get better, some work must be done in free agency. Nnamdi Asomugha could be cut. Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie is a free agent. The safety position is no great shakes, either. Philadelphia’s back four made every quarterback — save for maybe Brandon Weeden — look like the love child of Aaron Rodgers and Dan Fouts, allowing 33 touchdown passes while picking off just eight. That’s unbelievable futility. Philadelphia has more than $30 million in cap space. Perhaps making a push to sign safety Dashon Goldson might be the first, most appropriate move (although signing Ed Reed would be cool, too).

Gregg Rosenthal of NFL.com has Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie 29th on his list of free agents:

It’s not a great sign that two teams have seemingly given up on DRC in his young career. But how much cash would he have commanded if on the market after his second pro season?

Pete Prisco of CBSSports.com has Rodgers-Cromartie 19th:

He wasn’t great last season, but he has a ton of athletic ability. It’s almost as if people are waiting for it to show.

Clark Judge of CBSSports.com offers up his free-agency plan for the Birds:

The Eagles haven’t had a quality safety since Brian Dawkins left four years ago, and while this draft is loaded at the position I might start there when looking for veteran help. There is quality up and down the line, with someone young like a Chris Clemons of Miami or William Moore of Atlanta available. Of course, so is San Francisco’s Dashon Goldson, but reports have him seeking $8 million a year. Plus, he turns 29 in May. They could look for cornerback help here, too, with guys like Shaun Smith, Cary Williams or Greg Toler expected to hit the market.

Doug Farrar of Yahoo Sports has the Eagles taking Oklahoma offensive tackle Lane Johnson with the fourth pick:

Johnson’s stock has been rising since a dominant Senior Bowl, and his combine tests proved what he already knew — he’s a very mobile lineman with freakish athletic tendencies. New head coach Chip Kelly may adapt some of his Oregon offensive principles for the NFL, but don’t expect him to stray from the idea of a multiple zone-blocking system that provides optimal flexibility. Perhaps more than any other lineman in this class, Johnson has the pure athleticism to bring it in Kelly’s schemes.

Chris Burke of SI.com includes Rodgers-Cromartie on his list of free agents who hurt their value in 2012:

Let’s just say that things never really worked out for DRC in Philadelphia. He was looked upon as one of the game’s premier young cornerbacks when the Eagles acquired him in that Kevin Kolb trade. Two years later, he’s probably in the second-tier of available corners.

Khaled Elsayed of Pro Football Focus calls Nnamdi Asomugha one of the most over-valued players in the NFL:

Safe to say the Eagles didn’t really get what they were expecting out of Asomugha. Looking a step slower, Asomugha gave up completions on 66.7 percent of balls into his coverage, with five of those being touchdowns. His 15.9 yards per reception allowed was the seventh-highest in the league as he struggled to keep up with the NFL’s top receivers.

Dave Dameshek of NFL.com includes Michael Vick on his list of quarterbacks who can’t win the Super Bowl:

Not even Vick can delude himself into believing he’s anything more than a placeholder in new coach Chip Kelly’s system.

Obstacle: Inaccuracy; slowing foot speed; never-ending string of injuries.

Alex Marvez of FoxSports.com looks at the QB outlook for all 32 teams:

Vick agreed to a restructured contract to play under new head coach Chip Kelly, whose wide-open offensive system may be a better fit for him than Reid’s West Coast-style scheme. Foles isn’t as athletic as Vick, but the Eagles feel strongly enough about his potential that overtures about a potential trade to Kansas City where Reid is now head coach were rebuffed.

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  • All due respect to Dave Dameshek, but I would argue that Vick’s biggest obstacle is not knowing where to throw the ball. His accuracy is decent, he simply chooses the wrong receiver to throw to all too often.

    • ICDogg

      I think it’s that he waits for a big play to develop instead of quickly taking a smaller play that’s already available.

    • Mr. Magee

      Agree – not good at reading the situation and making a quick decision.

  • theycallmerob

    Does anyone know why Lane Johnson is deemed to be one notch below Joeckel and Fisher? I understand the Joeckel vs. SEC defenses angle, but every report of Johnson seems to be glowing.
    Say, hypothetically, the Eagles are eyeing a guy like Star or Jordan, who are gone at 4. Would it be a stretch to trade down a few spots and grab Johnson? He seems just as NFL-ready, and an extra draft pick would be great.

    • JofreyRice

      it’s the postseason love-affair process. Johnson is extremely athletic, having played both QB and TE, and is considered by some as an “ascending” player. This is only his first year at LT. He put on a combine performance similar to what Fisher did, and both outpaced Joeckel by a huge margin in those tests–which is why he’s not the “hot name” anymore. Everyone pays lip-service to how the workouts in spandex shouldn’t affect your grade of a player, but then like clockwork, each March, things are shuffled around dramatically based on combine performances. How many people were talking about Dion Jordan as a top 5 overall pick before he ran a 4.5 or whatever he ran?

      I think Farrar is wrong for him to go that high. I would guess he doesn’t get past San Diego, but I really doubt he goes at #4 overall, and I think there is a lot more “boom or bust” to Johnson than either of the other 2 guys.

      • ICDogg

        The combine only serves to confirm or refute what we know about the players. Are they really as fast as we thought? Are they as strong? Are they as smart?

        In the case of Lane Johnson, he’s been considered a notch below the other guys because of his lesser experience and not because he’s been any lesser of a player.

        He may be the best of the bunch when all is said and done.

        • JofreyRice

          I don’t know I necessarily agree with that. Lane Johnson was not as good a LT as Joeckel or Fisher on the college level. Just nowhere near the technician of Joeckel, and not as naturally nasty and balanced on the move as Fisher. He got better each week protecting Landry Jones, but he was a work in progress. He wasn’t even in the conversation about top T prospects 2 months ago.

          I think a part of the combine process is looking at objective athletic traits, projecting them to the NFL (and your system) and the idea that NFL coaches can get the most out of those traits.

      • Because of how Chip seems to like his guys to be very athletic I would not completely dismiss any buzz coming out of the combine when a person tests well. My guess would be that Chip would be more likely to take a less polished prospect if he had more athletic ability than someone else.

        • JofreyRice

          Well, if he drafts Jordan at 4, you know he definitely believes in the kid.

      • Watched a ton on Jordan and Ansah yesterday. Don’t care what Jordan ran, I do not see anything to confirm the possibility of him becoming an Aldon Smith type player outside of his height. At the #4 pick, you need to do more than just cover and be a situational speed rusher. I was drinking the koolaid on him until I saw him at length yesterday. I wrote a pretty detailed analysis of what i saw under another subject on 24/7, so I won’t go too far into details here except to say that Ansah & Jordan are light years apart.

        Please, oh please Howie/Chip…stay away from Jordan.

        • JofreyRice

          Interesting perspective. I think there’s a lot of truth in what you’re saying. I think Mayock is a little off when comparing him to Aldon Smith, I don’t think they compare at all. It’s weird, Mayock, like anyone, makes some good calls, and some bad ones. The difference is that his take is regarded as gospel. I remember him sky high on Michael Floyd last year, and had Blaine Gabbert as his #1 QB in 2011. I’m not trying to shit on the guy, he does a very good job, but let’s keep it in perspective, he could be as wrong as any of us.

          • GoBirds1

            Chip has influence on Jordan’s stock, the only reason they would want it to rise, if in fact he wanted a different player, which cold very well be the case. Otherwise hype to push Jordan into the top 5 helps Eagles either to trade down or get who they are actually targeting.

        • When you watch tape on Jordan at Oregon, the inside linebacker Clay sticks out. He looked like the pace setter on that Oregon Defense. Here’s a 5′ 11″ linebacker disrupting those offenses Oregon faced. Clay played circles around Jordan and pretty much in my opinion carried the Oregon defense.

          • Token

            Jordan is just a odd situation to me. Love the measurables. But where is the production? Its not like hes was playing elite competition every week. Chip knows him better than anyone though. But I hope he doesnt fall in love with the idea of picking him just because he may be a good kid.

    • Token

      If it happens that a tackle is the BPA at #4 then they had better hope someone wants to trade up. A tackle dropping to us may be good trade bait. Picking up a extra high pick next year gives us more trade up ammo in a QB rich draft.

      Just dont take a offensive lineman at 4.

    • I’m a believer in Johnson over Fisher simply because of the conference which Johnson plays in and the competition he face week in and week out. His is a resume that closely resembles Jason Peters. High football IQ and a good flexible athlete with nice foot speed.

  • JofreyRice

    Wow, so Doug Farrar thinks the third tackle is off the board by #4? Weird. I don’t see that happening. Neither KC, Jacksonville nor Oakland needs a LT. I could see the Eagles having the pick of Fisher, Joeckel or Johnson there–and I’m hoping they pass them all up.

    There is not one team in the toilet of their division that is there because of left tackle play–including the Eagles. You have guys like Joe Thomas, Jared Veldheer, Michael Roos, and Donald Penn playing the position at a really high level for really bad teams. The Dolphins thought they were being smart by taking Jake Long over Matt Ryan, because Long was the Best Player Available. It’s pretty clear that it was a mistake, as they’ve only started turning around since they got a viable QB to develop.

    • knighn

      So you’re saying that the Eagles should take a QB a #4? Geno Smith?

      • JofreyRice

        I’m not as down on Smith as some, but it’s very hard for me to say they should take Geno Smith when they haven’t talked about what they’re doing offensively yet, and it’s unclear what Chip wants to do in the future. Geno could run a zone-read system, but he also has some inconsistencies, and is coming out of the Air-Raid, which might be a tough transition. I wouldn’t be pissed if they took Geno, but I can’t exactly stump for him, either, because I just don’t know what Kelly intends.

        QB, at this point, is a logjam with a lot of question marks. I’d prefer they take a developmental guy like Matt Scott, or EJ Manuel, later.

        I think the Eagles have to do something to fix the defense at 4. I think they should take Kenny Vaccaro, because they’ve allowed too many big plays as a result of awful safety play in the past 2 years. I think Vaccaro is a very good player, that can improve the defense dramatically, and eventually develop into a leader in the locker room. I think a player like that can change the entire chemistry of the defense. Barring that, I guess I’d want a powerful 5 Technique that can set the edge and create more passrush inside on third downs–a fully checked out Star L., S. Floyd, or Sheldon Richardson. My next choice would probably be Dee Milliner–I just don’t think he’s as good as either Patrick Peterson or Mo Claiborne, so it’d be a bit of a bitter pill to have to spend #4 overall on him.

        • theycallmerob

          I have absolutely no qualms with any of the names you mentioned, though I feel all could be had at a spot well below #4. If a team falls in love with Geno (Jets? Bills? Cardinals?) or one of the OLB, I would absolutely trade down and grab another pick or two. And still take Vaccaro. Or a DT, and a guy like Elam or Cyprien in the 2nd.

          • JofreyRice

            Hey, if they can move down and grab Vaccaro, I’d be happy. Thing is, I think a lot of teams are thinking the same thing. A lot of years, the #1 pick is the hot potato–this year, I think there is a certain element of that with the top 5; that doesn’t mean there aren’t players that can be really good, I just think there are more questions, and you have to count on your scouting department to have gotten the answers to those questions right.

        • knighn

          Yeah, I’m not crazy about either Geno Smith or Dee Milliner at #4 either. For that matter, I think Vaccaro could be had later in round 1 too. Crazy to say, but I’m hoping they trade back in this year’s draft – just hope they can get someone who will be willing to give them a decent trade!

    • Token

      yep exactly. Bad teams stay bad picking tackles that high. Sure its a important position. But talented enough guys can be had later, It matters most that you have a good coach at that spot. A QB makes a huge difference too. Vick isnt helping any line look good. Manning made Ryan Clady look like the best tackle in football this year.

      A tackle doesnt help you turn your franchise around and you are most likely passing up guys that can when you take one so high.

      • JofreyRice

        Look at Pittsburgh the last time they won the SB, the line was a nightmare. Or Eli, being protected by David Diehl. Or Green Bay. Or the Ravens, who reshuffled their starting OL and inserted a new LT when they went into the playoffs!

    • Reyco

      So you think it’s a coincidence that the Eagles played well in the beginning of the season when they had their starting O-Line and played progressivly worse on offense as they lost more and more? You also think Peters and Herremans will both be here more than a few more years?
      You don’t draft today’s need at #4, you draft the best value building block that will be here for 5-10 years. That means drafting a player with skill sets that don’t peak in just a few years and trail off. That’s why you see tackles, whos skill sets are built on size and strength, both of which keep growing well into a man’s 30s, and quarterbacks, who intellect makes them better and better with experience, drafted this high. You don’t see many running backs or speedster guys who take tons of wear and tear or who’s skills start declining at 27 unless they are incredible stand outs. Offensive and defense tackles re the guys who tend to play for the long haul and are who you tend to get the most value out over time, that’s why you invest the high picks in them.

      • JofreyRice

        I think the QB play determines a lot about how the line looks. I’m bracing myself for the reaction to this but: King Dunlap was an atrocious move blocker, but was actually an OK passblocker, for the most part. In pass-pro, he got the job done ENOUGH to let a QB get the ball out. Neither Foles nor Vick got it out quickly enough, though.

        I think getting the most value for a player means wins on the field. Blue-chip left tackles just don’t have that kind of effect, anymore, and probably are even less important if Kelly runs a zone-read thing.

        This team needs to stop opponents from throwing TD’s on them constantly–that means fixing the D. Of course Peters and Herremans need to be replaced eventually, but if their intellect, size, and strength keep growing well into their 30’s, that time isn’t now, right?

    • peteike

      flawed logic. You have a good tackle for up to 10 yrs, whos to say one of those bad teams doesnt get it right once they find a QB, then they dont have to backfill oline spots. Its all relative. Take the best player available, your logic says take the most important position for your team. That leads to a lot more futility than getting a quality lineman. Bad teams have a ton of holes to fill and many teams take years to find a QB. Clady is a bad example also because the donkeys spent how long replacing Elway, they had to get a Manning in the last years of his career to finally put it together.

      • JofreyRice

        How long have the Browns had Joe Thomas now? or the Jaguars with Eugene Monroe? How come the Dolphins were picking so high again last year? Even a tackle is not a surefire safe pick, either. The Dolphins are a good example of a team that thought they were making a safe pick and ended up with bupkis–don’t even have that good tackle to show for it. But even if the guy doesn’t bust out, who cares if you have ten years of a guy playing at a high level your W’s and L’s are the same every year? I think this is antiquated thinking. The Patriots, Packers, Ravens, Giants and Saints all had their mediocre left tackles hoisting Lombardis over their heads while those franchises were enjoying their stellar blindside tackle play from September to December.

        That best player available stuff is bunk, in a lot of cases. Teams draft based on need and scheme fit, it just may not be apparent at the time. The Giants believe in their front 4 passrush, so they grab passrushers. You’re not playing in a vacuum, you have to address the positions you believe you need to win. Again, scheme fit here–are the Eagles planning on running a scheme where they drop back 45 times and have long developing passroutes down field? Doesn’t look like it. If it did, I think a classic blindside protector makes more sense. Every indication is that they’ll be running some kind of zone/read. The Eagles failed on Danny Watkins and Jaiquawn Jarrett in the evaluation, not the decision to address those glaring needs.

      • Mr. Magee

        Wow, great discussion here… You guys know your stuff and can run the entire draft as far as I’m concerned!

        One thing I will add at this point is this: Ultimately, to win a Super Bowl, you need to be able to control the line of scrimmage. You need to be able to pick up a critical first down by rushing the ball on 3rd and 1 or 3rd and 2. Similarly, on the defensive side, you need to be able to stuff the run on 3rd and short. The Super Bowl runs of the giants and ravens of recent years best illustrates this in my mind. Doesn’t mean you can’t be successful based purely on scheme and guile – you can be a perennial playoff team with that kind of stuff – but when you need power football, it’s gotta be there, or you won’t get over the hump.

        So, given where the Eagles are at right now and with the long-term in mind, if there’s a true “building block” on either side of the line available in this draft, I’m taking him.

  • Sensei

    How bad does the teams secondary have to be where you could draft four rookies to start and they would be an upgrade…

    • Umm, I’ll take the bait on this one…See ’11-’12 Eagles and you’ll regrettably have the answer.

    • knighn

      Starting 4 UDFA Rookies would still be an improvement!

  • Zys

    Why didn’t Sheil comment that on Dave Dameshek’s post he lists Nick Foles as a QB who can win the SB?

    • knighn

      Good question! Maybe Sheil didn’t want this blog-space to turn into an all out war between the Vick-lovers, Vick-haters, Foles-lovers and Foles-haters?! Or maybe the Negadelphians have rubbed off on Sheil and he doesn’t believe that any Eagles QB could ever win a SB?

      I did find Dameshek’s comments on Foles to be interesting. Worth a read (as an opinion piece, not as journalism). From http://davedameshek.nfl.com/2013/03/04/cant-do-attitude/?module=HP11_content_stream

      Nick Foles
      Tricky for a number of reasons, not the least of which is the small sample size, especially considering his playing time came while the Eagles were circling the drain. He’s got a big arm and is young, and those are good places to start.

      Obstacle: Chip Kelly’s offense – Foles needs to get out of Philly; Arizona, the Jets & Cleveland would all make more sense

      • GoBirds1

        Both Sheil and Tim don’t like Foles. At least for the Eagles.

  • FMWarner

    Nobody’s been talking about Greg Toler in regard to the Eagles until Clark Judge just did, and I hope it stays that way. He’d be a great pickup that wouldn’t break the bank. Of all the defensive back free agents, he’s the one I want most.

    • ICDogg

      not a bad thought.

  • flea28

    Me personally, with the stable of running backs the Eagles have, establish the run and that passing lanes will come, don’t so pass happy and run the ball and everything else will fall in place.

  • BT

    Instead of trading a pick to the Jets for Revis, how about the idea of swapping 1st round picks and will most probably still be able to get either Johnson or Jordan at #9.

    • travispapa

      Swap 4th for 9th & throw in a 3rdnext yr sounds like a done deal. Draft jordan johnson ansah or vacarro in that order. Exactly what I’ve been saying

      • BT

        I agree…but I don’t think you would have to give the Jets that extra pick…they want a deal to get rid of Revis. But if they played hard ball I would do what you are suggesting too.

    • GoBirds1

      There are plenty of reasons to not want Revis, one is $100million. He is going to want a monster contract before he steps on the field again. Aside from the ACL, he is going to breakdown. He is not a CB that plays 12-14 years. He missed games last year with a concussion and has chronic hamstring issues. He is only 5-9 185, when he loses half a step, he is done, and he may have just lost that half step. But worst of all he is an ultimate primadonna, which as a young developing team we do not need. He will hold out until he gets his money, and when that happens it never works. Let someone else guarantee him $30 million.

  • KingEagleNation

    We ought to draft Dion Jordan with the 4th pick, sign Sean Smith (CB), Glover Quin and Dashon Goldston (Safeties), and trade for Darrell Revis only if no 1st Rd Pick is involved or draft a another CB with 2-4 Rd Pick. Then if we are able to draft a top tier, young, and mobile QB like Teddy Bridgewater from Louisville then we’ll have a DYNASTY!

  • The Honey Badger will look good in Eagles green.