Wake-Up Call: Turnaround Hinges On Offense

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When evaluating where the Eagles are after four games, words like expectations and potential have to enter the discussion.

The Birds were blown out 52-20 Sunday afternoon in Denver. The first number there is the one that will generate buzz around the country today. The Broncos set a franchise record for points scored, and Peyton Manning didn’t even play in the fourth quarter.


Four games in, we have a pretty good sense of what the Eagles' defense is. The front seven doesn't do a good-enough job of pressuring the quarterback. The secondary is shaky, as expected. And Billy Davis seems to be throwing darts at times when deploying his personnel. Maybe this group will show improvement in the coming weeks, but chances are, what you see is what you get.

The offense, however, could be a different story. Any hope of pulling out a victory or even keeping the game competitive against the Broncos hinged on Chip Kelly, Michael Vick and company piecing things together. The Eagles were in a one-possession game, 21-13, at halftime. But the team settled for field goals twice in the red zone in the first half and came away with no points on their first four possessions of the second half.

"We have to go back to the drawing board," Vick said. "We have to look at things we aren’t doing well and get them corrected. We need to find a way to get momentum going and get it back. Everything can be corrected, we just need to find ways to get them corrected."

Vick finished 14-for-27 for 248 yards. He started out 10-for-16 in the first half, but protection fell apart in the third quarter, and the Eagles' offense sputtered.

"I would like to have more time, but I have to go with what I got and keep fighting," Vick said. "Regardless with what I got, I have to keep fighting and working with those guys every day. I believe in myself, but at the end of the day we all have to look at the mistakes we’ve made and figure it out. I want to do my job to the best of my ability. Everybody has to feel the same way."

Kelly was a little more critical of the offensive line: "I think Mike played well. I thought he threw the ball very accurately and I do know this, and we’ve got to address it: We have to protect him better. We’ve got times where he is at the top of his drop and he is sticking his foot into the ground and there’s pressure on him. That’s not on Mike. I thought he put the ball in really good places, I thought he kept drives alive with his legs and I thought Mike played really well."

The problem right now is finding consistency in the passing game. Even against a tough Denver run D, the Eagles piled up 166 yards on the ground and averaged 4.7 YPC.

But Eagles receivers are struggling to give Vick options in the passing game. And the offense is making too many mistakes - penalties, breakdowns in protection, etc.

The offense has a higher ceiling than what it's shown so far. Even in a mostly disappointing performance against Denver, the Eagles piled up 450 yards.

Take a look at the NFC East standings, and you'll notice the Eagles could find themselves in a tie for first place with a win next week against the Giants.

After three straight losses, a turnaround hinges on the offense's ability to reduce mistakes and give this team an identity.

WHAT YOU MISSED

Kelly and fans search for progress, writes T-Mac.

Kelly weighs in on what went wrong vs. Denver.

Post-game observations from the Eagles' 32-point loss.

WHAT THEY'RE SAYING

Jimmy Kempski of Philly.com hands out his post-game awards:

The "Screw You, Peyton Manning" Award: Peyton Manning

In the week leading up to this game, Peyton Manning complained that the Eagles had 12 days of rest and preparation for this game, while the Broncos only had 6. Shut up, Peyton. That’s like Bill Gates complaining that the heated seats in his Bentley are set to 82 degrees, instead of the preferred 85.

Phil Sheridan of ESPN.com looks at some of Kelly's in-game decisions:

Earlier in the half, the Eagles scored a touchdown to make the score 14-12. Kelly kicked the extra point instead of going for two and the tie.

The bottom line is Kelly didn’t have confidence in his offense to pick up six yards, in his special teams to make a long field goal or in his defense to stop the Broncos.

COMING UP

We'll hear from Kelly at 1 p.m.

Follow Sheil Kapadia on Twitter and e-mail him at skapadia@phillymag.com.
Become a fan of Birds 24/7 on Facebook.

  • Kevin

    Does anyone else get the feeling that the offense is pressing too much? The more I watch them, the more I thought of Morpheus’s line from the Matrix, “Stop trying to hit me and hit me.” For 2 quarters of the Washington game, there was no thought, just fun and execution (and the same can be said for the D too). Everyone seems to be too far into their own heads right now.

    I rout of the Giants could be great for morale (fans and players).

    If nothing else, after 14 years, how about that running game.

    • anon

      defenses are slightly different.

    • JofreyRice

      The line I was thinking of was in “Major League” where the Japanese dudes are like “They’re still shitty”.

      • nicksaenz1

        We need Randy Quaid on the 50 behind Chippa.

    • Token

      I feel like they are still playing last years offense. Looks the same to me with more running plays. Still have Vick standing there waiting for a long pass to open up and then sliding or running around back there. It may not be all on him though. I dont like the play designs.

      It seemed in preseason wed get the quick hitting plays. Just little chunks of yards at a time. Thats how you keep the tempo up high. But ive seen little to none of that now. They rarely even attempt to go fast. Its back to the hope someone is open for a long bomb offense.

      • nicksaenz1

        I’ve been thinking the same. First game we were getting the ball to D-Jax by any means necessary, and he’s now faded into the vacuum of last year. He needs some bubble screens. Most importantly, we need to do something about the receiver situation. After D-Jax it’s a joke and teams can dedicate a CB and safety over the top. I haven’t seen many trips alignments to hide D-Jax more, and, as we all know, there haven’t been many 2 and 3 TE sets. Really just confused in what we’re seeing after the first two quarters of the ‘Skins game.

        • BlindChow

          I’d be happy with some quick slants.

    • BlindChow

      That’s the way it was last year, with the “pressing.” Every pass had to be a deep ball. Are they even running shorter routes?

      I wonder if this is the curse of Vick. Coaches start off with one set of plans, but then they see what Vick can do in practice, and, slowly…they begin to get corrupted…if we can only get the ball downfield in one play we’d be ahead that much faster…yes, a long pass, that’s what we need…after all, they’ve only got one high safety….come to me, my precious!!

      • aub32

        I feel you are being unfair. This is more about receivers not getting open and TEs dropping passes than it is about long routes. We have seen DeSean run more shorter routes than ever before in his career. The TEs are getting open over the middle at times but can’t haul in the catch. Vick seemed to be doing all he could yesterday. Imagine if we had Foles playing. The game would have been even worse, as he would not have been able to escape so many times.

        • #7

          We would’t have moved the ball at all had Foles been in the game.

          Not saying this with harsh intent

  • evanphilly

    Obviously this team can run the ball. So, just rotate Shady, Brown and Polk in there and force the D to play an extra man or two in the box and then hurt them in the passing game. I would say utilize the TEs more, but Ertz is slowly coming along (may be time to make him the #1) and Celek is a mess. I thought they had the right idea in the first quarter of the game, they were keeping the Broncos of the field (of course that ST gaffe didn’t help much) but they were controlling the ball at that point. That Mathis penalty in the third (I think?) was the backbreaker…they were moving the ball down the field very well, but the wind got sucked right out of the team.

    • aub32

      The problem is the TEs need to make catches. That Celeck drop hurt more than the Mathis penalty because had Mathis not blatently tackled his guy that completion to DJ never happens. Celck got hit in the chest at least twice without making the grab. We con’t do that and hope to sustain drives.

      • Token

        Celek blows. But it wouldnt have made a difference. Denver misfired on one or two TDs also.

        • aub32

          Every team does. The point is we have to be the team to limit those mistakes. Our defense isn’t good enough to cover the offensive mistkes we’ve had in Denver and SD despite good QB play.

  • Mike

    Phil Sheridan needs to shut the hell up. I’m tried of his mindless crap. What did Kelly do to you sleep with your wife?

    • anon

      I hear you but he’s right. Henery missed another 40+ in garbage time, total shank, like WTF.

      • Token

        They need to bring a kicker in. If not now absolutely in the offseason. Henery is done here. Another wasted 4th rounder, on a kicker.

        Its not only his shanks from beyond 40, which should still be in a comfort zone for a NFL kicker, its his kickoffs are usually short leading to kick off returns that shouldnt be happening. The NFL basically made that rule to eliminate kickoffs. Our guy has trouble kicking it that far consistently.

        • #7

          Ouch

        • BlindChow

          What really annoys me is last year three teams had rookie kickers who absolutely killed it.

        • aub32

          His kickoffs have actually improved. I think you are overreacting to yesterday, but he has had muc more touchbacks in recent games than he had as a rookie. His accuracy is definitely a concern. I don’t know what happened there but if he doesn’t fix it then he needs to be gone.

          • Always Hopeful

            Ha, ha, I was thinking the same thing about his kick-offs: WAY better than last year.

            Denver took one back 105 yards. Not that we kicked off much after that, but I remember him putting them out of the back of the end zone. Yes, it’s Denver air, but he seems to have found his groove in kick-offs. Now if he could just be a little more dependable…

    • #7

      How in the hell did he get a job with ESPN lol

      • nicksaenz1

        What do you mean? He’s the perfect hire for them. He’s a garbage writer.

        • #7

          Good point

  • JofreyRice

    I know he’s a rookie, but Lane Johnson looked really bad in this game, and that’s two in a row. Got beaten on inside moves and outside moves, alike. Shaun Phillips has some stats this year, but he’s far from the player he was. Johnson’s got to put it together with pass protection, and quick. We knew he was more raw than the other tackles, but he was the #4 overall pick, the highest since McNabb, and is being asked to play the right side of the formation–that’s really easing a guy in, as much as they can afford to.

    Vick was good enough. The line wasn’t. We know the identity of this team isn’t going to be defensive. For someone who grew up watching Reggie, Seth, Clyde, Wes, Eric, Jerome, etc. that’s a pretty tough pill to swallow. If they can’t make the offense work, either, it’s going to be a short era for Kelly.

    • Token

      Agree with your last sentence.

      The question is does Lane look like hes ready to start at LT next year? Thats a very real possibility. I dont see Peters getting extended, and I dont see him getting 10 mil next year.

      Like I said before the draft, a tackle there was dumb. You need difference makers up that high. Especialy when we were talking about a guy whose raw and slated to play RT. They tried to play it safe in their mind and got burned. The only plus is we didnt get Dion Jordon who im sure would have been the pick if he was there.

      Meanwhile, Kenny Vaccaro continued to shine last week.

      • KobraKai7474

        Valid point about Johnson shifting over to the left side. Undoubtedly…. assuming he doesn’t morph into a bust… his future is a long term stint anchoring the left side of the Eagles line. HOWEVER, that doesn’t necessarily have to happen next season. The offensive tackle free agent market was shockingly soft last year. Some pretty good players only got a fraction of what they thought they’d get and, in a couple of cases, it took them quite a while to get it. Point being, the market for 30+ year old OTs with a recent injury history might not be so strong and maybe… just maybe… Peters might be willing to hang around for a year or two for a relatively economical contract with a decent bonus (or other guarantee)… especially if the Eagles can make some real progress as the season goes on.

      • aub32

        So JP wasn’t a difference make in 2011? A star tackle makes all the difference. We saw that when we went from Peters to Demet…(blah). Sorry I couldn’t get that name out without getting sick. Plenty of teams take tackles in the draft year in and year out. 3 of the top 4 picks this year were tackles. So your rationale that taking a tackle that early is silly. Yes Lane needs to improve, but we knew that whn he was picked. Though getting a stud tackle means much more than having a stud safety. Ask Manning, Brady, or Rodgers if they’d prefer to be on a team with a star safety or a star tackle.

    • cliff henny

      hear ya about LJ, but all rookies struggle. problem is when vets struggle next to him. just cant compound it. offense works, problem is personel. basically same guys that have struggled in redzone for last 3 yrs, struggling again. d-jax is great till you get there, celek drops all congested throws, rest cant get open. was hoping kelly would just run it. defense is a disaster, hoping the lack of quailty free agency signngs was to roll over cap for ’14. give kelly a year to see what he needs during live action.

      • Token

        How is the offense working? I know we all want to believe that. But how is it working? yardage wise? Who cares. You are gonna put yards up when coming from behind. They arent scoring. And im seeing nothing like the offense I thought I would see IMO. I see nothing that is making a opposing DC worry much.

        Teams a man covering on the outside. Yesterday with a single high safety it looked like. Chip has to beat that. Plain and simple. You have to figure out a way to get it done. Most QBs live for 1v1 coverage.

        • cliff henny

          shady leading league in rushing, d-jax looking like ’10 version at times. i know you enjoy being uber-negative, but there was a concern kelly’s offense would fizzle in nfl…it doesnt, it works, it’s the personel that doesnt. cooper is a waste of space, celek is still more like ’12 version than ’10. kelly took over a disater of a team, was a layer cake of issues. no way could he fix it in 6 months.

          • Token

            But how is it working? I dont see it.

            Didnt McCoy either lead the league or come in second in rushing under Reid? You really think his talent is a product of Kelly? He simply getting the ball more.

            Jackson is right back to where hes been for the last few years. Just not able to do anything and I dont see Kelly trying to get him better looks.

            Nobody is looking for a quick fix. We all know this roster isnt SB caliber. But is progress to much to ask for? This offense has some players on it. It should be able to score. Denver isnt even a good pass defense team.

            Defense is a mess and Davis wont be the guy to fix it. But I expected more out of the offense.

          • cliff henny

            dont see it? again, shady leading league in rushing, jax being used 1000 xs better, he’s caught more crosses this yr than last 3 combined. you dont want to see it. team isnt that good. easy to be negative, plenty to go around, but there’s some positves so far.

          • Token

            Again. Shady rushed well under Reid. He is a elite talent. Giving him the ball more = yards. Thats not Chips offense doing that.

            Jackson hasnt been better overall. Im not seeing him used differently. I saw DRC lock him down all day. Chip just keeps trotting him to the outside hoping for different results each play. What is he doing to try and get Jackson more space?

          • cliff henny

            feel bad for you as a fan…cant or unwilling to see the couple positives that are coming out of what seems like a rough yr. think we all wanted 10-6, but with all the change, knew 6-10 was odds on more likely. if you cant see that kelly’s offense is putting players like shady, jax and vick(i’m watching vick and projecting a marioti or boyd) in a better position to succeed, than i cant see why you’d even watch this yr. no doubt the negatives are 50-1, you must be in heaven

          • Token

            I predicted this was a 4 win team this year. Wins/losses means nothing to me this season. I just want progress. There has been slim to none. I just dont agree with your assessment that Kelly is running a great offense. I dont see it that way at all. I see a system thats failing on 3rd downs and not scoring points. The two biggest things you want to see out of an offense.

            But you are blinded by your Kelly love and thats ok. We just allowed more points then we have since the 1970s. Im not thrilled with that. And I believe that Denver came in at the bottom of the league in pass defense. We did nothing. If thats all positive to you, so be it. We will have to disagree.

          • evanphilly

            I want progress to, but there are 12 games left in the season. Plenty of time to show progress

          • EaglePete

            you are right, Im with you, offense has not been that creative lately. Some of the run plays are the same every time and no creative use of TEs. They are terrible, and I mean terrible in the red zone once again and theres the difference. Rack up all the yds you want between the 20s and you end up the 2nd rated offense in the league. Doesnt do much when you cant finish and your FG kicker stinks. I still think however that they are better and Denver is just too good right now for most teams. That being said, this next stretch of games will say a lot. Losing isnt the worst thing right now but showing improvement is a must. Still a bit early in this crappy division. My issue is the red zone. That celek drop was awful.

          • aub32

            Drops and missed FGs are not the fault of the scheme.

          • EaglePete

            ya thats me being a little objective but it doesnt account for everything or lack of production in the red zone. Defenses are still shutting djax down and when youre QB is running that often its really not a good sign of the scheme working. Once again Vick waits too long, does his dance to the outside and tries to create a sandlot play. Hes been way better this year but I want more timing plays. Thats scheme and QB play. The line breaks down and the WR not getting open is all part of that but its dishonest to just blame one or the other. Its all connected. You sort of knew youd read comments ripping them today but Im willing to see how they do the next 6 game stretch. It will tell us more, this team just never plays well against good competition.

          • aub32

            I get what you’re saying, but what good are timing plays when your WRs can’t get off the LOS? Look at that fade to Thomas. That works because Thomas can bully our CBs. What would happen if we tried that with our WRs. The ball would sail over their heads as they struggled to get off the initial jam.

            You say Vick is playing sandlot ball, but he’s playing his best football since 2010, better even. He’s going through his progressions, holding the ball for as long as he can for anyone to get any type of separation, then getting what he can and going down before taking big hits. You can’t clame Vick or the scheme if players can’t win their one on one matchups or drop the ball when they do.

          • EaglePete

            ya but thats saying every single time Vick scrambles out of the pocket its because the WRs arent getting open. Unless you watch every play on coachs tape and see that I highly doubt thats the case. Its prob a little of both if youre honest. Sometimes a WR doesnt need that much separation to complete a play if you time it fast enough before the defender can react. Thats been the way Vick has played his entire career. Im also not seeing plays called to get that 3 yd catch to complete a first down that often. It seems like theyve gotten away from that. Some teams master those short plays to convert and make it looks easy.

          • aub32

            Getting those 3 yard completions aren’t as easy as you make it seem. Again that depends on your personnel. The don’t really have guys that can box outt defenders for a 3 yard gain. I know you don’t think the QB should run as much, but what if part of Kelly’s plan is to have deeper routes on 3rd and short because he knows his QB can get those yards and defenses will be playing the quick hitch routes. Also, you forgot to mention O line. Poor protection will lead to a lot of QB scrambles as well. I’m not saying none of it is on Vick. I am saying I would much rather him play like yesterday than throw into coverage. Maybe Cooper gets a little separation, but is it enough that Vick feels Cooper will come down with the catch. I think you want Vick to be Brady or Manning esque. That’s not going to happen. I read a lot of comments from people that just wanted Vick to play smart, run when needed, and protect the ball. He is leaps and bounds better at this, and yet some of you still want him to do more. That’s funny to me when a lot (not you in particular) didn’t even think he could get back to this level.

          • EaglePete

            ya true, I guess I am wanting more Brady/Manning style pocket throws and its not going to happen. While he is leaps n bounds better what does that really equate to? Average QB play or better than average in a scheme lacking in so many other places, how far does that take a team. Best answer is it fits Kellys system I suppose in the read option realm but maybe not in other places. I just wonder as fans then, what is the expectation, at what point do you go younger to see what you really have. Too soon for that imo, but I dont think it will be by wk 10 -12 if the team has a losing record and out of the hunt. Same questions as in the off season really. Best players play up to the point they arent producing. Similar to what Tomlin said in Pittsburgh, mix it up to get better results or effort. Kelly just needs his players in year 2 or 3.

          • aub32

            I don’t think any more can be asked of Vick. He isn’t a top 5 QB, but he is playing really well. He needs help. Look at how Eli and Flacco are doing. Vick is playing better than them, but he’s not as good as Brady to make scrubs look better or overcome a terrible defense. It’s far too early to talk young guys when this division is so awful. If Vick can maintain this level of play we will have a really good chance to beat our division foes and teams like TB and Oakland.

          • http://abigbuttandasmile.com/ A Big Butt and a Smile

            Hell Brady is barely making it with scrubs. Atlanta game aside (and Atlanta is not a good team this year) – but the Pats would have easily lost those first few games had their comp been better.

            My point being. Somebody has got to catch the damn ball. Your QB can’t do much if folk aren’t open, and can’t catch when they are.

          • Pennguino

            Vick is not going through his progressions. He is locking onto his first read the majority of the time. Rewatching the All 22 shows this.

          • aub32

            I think the biggest improvement is the QB play. I don’t know how you of all people can’t acknowledge that. Even yesterday Vick played really well. He made smart decisions. He got first downs. He threw balls away. He didn’t fumble. Is that not an improvement of what we have seen the last two years?

            You say what Chip is doing with Shady isn’t impressive, but you forget Shady had just over 1200 rushing yards in 2011. Sure that was amongst the leaders then, but he would not have even been top 5 with those numbers in 2012.

            As far as Jackson, I think we saw from the first 2 games that Kelly is using Jackson much better than Reid. Jackson doesn’t just run decoy and catch the long ball anymore. I think your expectations are too high. Let’s face it, DJax is good, he’s my favorite Eagle, but he’s limited due to his size. There are going to be CBs that are too physical that can take him away on short routes. There are also going to be CBs like DRC who is just as much an athletic freak. DRC isn’t terrible. He just doesn’t tackle well and needs motivation.

            Our TEs have been getting open in this scheme. They just can’t consistently make catches. That’s not on Kelly’s scheme. All in all there are indeed positives if you actually look at what’s going on instead of being negeative and casually dismissing the good.

          • anon

            “But you are blinded by your Kelly love and thats ok. We just allowed more points then we have since the 1970s.”

            Just had to laugh at that like the first sentence has anything to do with the second.

            We only have one playmaking WR and he’s 5’9″ and plays on the outside. It’s amazing he’s done so much with so little.

          • #7

            Token, I’m not understanding your logic man. There is improvement, but none of it matters if your playmakers continue to drop the ball and the o-line kills good drives with holding penalties. They just just suck the momentum out of teams.

          • jon h

            The fast break offense we saw in week 1 really didn’t seem to be there yesterday (except when foles came in). I think Vick is a better talent than Foles, but Foles seems to fit the system better. By that, I mean he seems to be able to read the coverages more quickly. Seems like Vick needs to see the separation when in this offense you really need to anticipate it.

          • anon

            Hear you but Foles ran it in garbage time.

          • jon h

            totally valid. But he still made it work. Just saying the offense looked much closer to week 1 than at any other point in the game.

      • JofreyRice

        Cliff, you’re an optimist I can respect. You don’t condescend or dismiss the points. That being said, yeah,Lane’s one guy among many that have to be better. On the plays where he was beaten inside, it sure looked like a straight domination by the LB, but maybe Herremans was supposed to provide help there. There’s really no excuse for the times when he was just beaten around the corner.

        What would this have looked like with Von Miller starting?

        The bright side is that Johnson definitely has the athletic ability to correct this. No way he just didn’t have the footspeed to stay with Phillips. He just wasn’t sure that it was a pure speed rush, and didn’t sell out to protect the edge. Hopefully he can figure this stuff out over time.

        In regards to the offense, I’m not so sure this form of it is as effective. I mean, wasn’t Kelly’s thing about taking teams without as much natural talent (UNH, Oregon) and scheming ways to get them to play with the big boys? They got hammered into the turf yesterday. Even isolating the play of the offense, it was not a very nice picture. Beating man coverage is checkers, not chess, for an NFL coach.

        • anon

          Think he’s getting welcomed to the NFL and also getting used to our play makers. I think this offense looks a lot different with 2 more (legit) WRs.

          Puts a lot of pressure on your O when your D / special teams just gives up TDs like that. 21-38 looks a lot more respectable (really 24/38 if we had a kicker not in a sophmore slump).

          • JofreyRice

            I get what you’re saying, but in order for Kelly’s O to be successful, he needs a top 3 running back in the league, a true #1 WR, his own FA Tight End, a 2nd round TE, and 2 other legit receivers?

            I think you make a valid point about the pressure on the O. I don’t know what is to be done though, because Davis makes some bizarre decisions to waste the talent we have, and they have not seriously invested in making the talent on D better in any concrete way. They just haven’t. If Kelly is sabotaging his offense by neglecting his defense, then he’s going to have to figure that out pretty quickly.

        • cliff henny

          thanks JR…glass half full, we’re still in the Bridgwater/ Marioti/ Clowney sweepstakes. think we’re just seeing how much of a mess Reid really left. maybe kelly/Davis could have massaged the 3-4 transition easier, but they’re ripping it off like a bandaid. if these defensive struggles make Eagles better in late ’14, ’15, than i’m good with that.
          Johnson has at least showed he can play. everyone knew he was raw, cant be surprised when he shows hiccups. Herrmanns more the issue. lane’s on the uphill side of his arch, TH is on downhill side of his. ’13 draft bothers me for 3 reason, ertz, barkley and 6th on Benn. Ertz doesnt look like 34th best player and ton of TEs in 5th+ rds he could of traded back gotten another pick. wasted 4th and 6th. defense sure could use a young play maker or 2

          the arguement is kelly/sceme vs personnel. i’m just saying the scheme works and we hoped it would, but really we didnt know…we hoped. now, i’m also willing to agree there’s alot of blurred lines when discussing scheme vs personel. like, if kelly’s such a genius, how couldnt he recoginze cooper was huge f’n issue. i’m hoping kelly is still learning what works and doesnt on nfl level. college, you can push opponent then wait for them to lose (hey, joepa won 409 games…in reality, what he did was not lose 409…it’s a solid college stratefy). in nfl, you better figure out how to win. my hopes are he taking a redshirt yr, figuring what work, what doesnt, left a huge number on cap for next off season. that theory really sux for shady, cause rbs are on the clock. kelly’s fielding a team 90% of ’11/’12 players and b-grade bandaid signings, and we’re surprised the results are similar? personnel is my issue…eagles love for cheap ACL guys and bringing back mediocre players is more my issue, not scheme.

    • #7

      Far too early to consider Lane a bust obviously, but this is a tough spot for him to be put in. No excuses though. Fisher and Joekel are both playing..and struggling. We just have to play him and hope for the best.

      • evanphilly

        Kind of curious to see how the other high first rounders are performing this year. I liked the Johnson pick, Kelly’s line needs athleticism, and that is what he brings. He is going to get knocked down before he learns to pick himself back up. End of the year, he will shine.

        • LeClaw

          He did well against Washington’s rushers but struggled against an underrated Denver defense and a highly underrated pass rush of KC…he is a rookie, let him learn. No rookie truly comes in and blows it up…the Cowboys used Doug Free that awful year to not expose tyron as a rookie who is a better lineman

      • ian

        I think he has played better than both Fisher and Joekel over the first 4 games. They have looked like a fish out of water while Johnson has only looked subpar around half of the passing plays. I think by the 9th game we should start seeing some real improvement from him.

    • https://www.skinnypost.com/ GayleSaunders

      Veteran defensive lineman love rookie O-lineman. Truth is he’ll have to learn all of the tricks of the trade before he becomes really good. I’m hoping in time he gets better JR!

      • JofreyRice

        I’m hanging my hat on the fact that when he’s dictating the action–runblocking–he looks good. It’s when he’s got to sit back and try and figure out what rushers are going to try to do on him that he looks lost.

        You can’t deny the kid’s athletic ability. Hopefully he learns the ins and outs of the position quickly.

  • KobraKai7474

    Even more troubling than Henery’s mediocrity at kicking FGs, is the fact that even at a mile above sea level, he can’t consistently boot a kickoff out of the end zone for the touchback. That must particularly galling for a guy like Chip Kelly who genuinely believes and emphasizes that special teams can and will win his teams football games.

  • phillyeagle77

    Im having trouble trying to figure out why we are not running these three tightends formations? If you were to have three tightend formations going against the defensive backs, you are able to run the ball more and set up more play action. The defensive backs would struggle getting off blocks and most important they would be able to run play action block. Riley Cooper has been probably the best blocker on the team besides mathis. He’s not able get any separation on defender’s..

    In all honesty you very much tell vick and his tightends are not on the same page. We are in desperate need of maclin but we have to make the best of it. Benns healthy next year would absolutely be another upgrade at receiver. He’s as good of a pass blocker as Cooper and also gets separation from backs. His problem is catching and holding on to passes.

    This offense would flourish if these tight ends are used in open space and pass blocking. No one else is getting up. Force these defensive coordinators put that extra man in the box to open up these deep passes and deep crossing routes for the tight ends. This is the only option we have right now. I seen how the broncos used there three backs in the game.

    Shady should get 18-20 carries with bryce brown and chris polk getting 15-20 carries a game. Polk looked good when had the opportunity. I seen on a play he received a dump off and it took 5 defenders to take him down. We have a lot of talent on offense. Defenses win championships but our defensive coordinator wont last forever running zone against teams.

    Davis is not doing well with running zone coverage because i observed cary williams having mix communication and along with Fletcher. Our corners are better off running man. We have safety support on double moves if put in the right position. Im a defensive guy and if we continue to run more zone than man we are absolutely screwed with out a doubt. I hope davis get it together because offenses gain more confidence when your giving another opportunity to score knowing they help stop the other offense from scoring. My opinion..

    • Token

      You cant have morons running zone. Just doesnt work.

    • BlindChow

      Even last year, with our corners who specialized in man coverage, the coaches insisted on using soft zones. What is it with Eagles coaches??

      • phillyeagle77

        Its not the coaches. This is what the gm and front office including personnel because i dont see no other reason to implement a zone scheme defense with a defensive backs with a chemistry scale level of 3 out of 1-10. Im not understanding this either. We have man cover corners and a linebacker in Kendrick to cover tight ends. I also seen ryan cover backs out of the back field on pass situations. Its hard to be comprehensive when watching eagle games while figuring out why in the hell is our “slow” but physical corners are playing 5 to damn near 10yrds from the receivers. These corners we have are press corners including boykins. Man coverage is the only scheme that will benefit our defensive personnel.

    • Justin

      In regards to the tight ends, part of the problem is they’re dropping damn near everything thrown their way, even if the ball is place right in their chest. So we either have receivers who can’t get open, or tight ends who can’t catch. Pick your poison.

      • phillyeagle77

        Justin do you honestly think vick is throwing to all these tightends during practice during 11 on 11? Its called chemistry. If its not implemented at practice its not implemented in the game. Absolutely they are dropping unnecessary passes but why not keep throwing to these tight ends to build chemistry in the passing game. The receivers are not getting open. F^*)( it and take those chances. They aren’t going to get better by not throwing it to them. What other choice we have? Maclin? Benns? Not at all. What do we have to lose?

        • aub32

          The counter would be that at least lining up WRs will force the defense to put more DBs on the field, making it easier to run the ball.

  • #7

    Man what a game. I really felt that we were in it during the first half, but drops and penalties killed us. I’m not really understanding what Chip Kelly is doing on offense. Where are the bubble screens and quick hitting plays? Usage of TEs? I’m not even sure that I want the TEs to be utilized anymore since they have hands of stone.

    Celek needs to be flat out benched. That drop inside the 5 yard line was unacceptable. My Eagles hat should be broken since I probably slammed it on the floor 15 times.

    I figure that I will get killed for this, but this game was not on Vick. He made the throws and kept drives alive in the first half and was hitting guys in the hands. Zero turnovers. What the hell else can he do? We were all under the assumption that WE would be dictating how the defense would play us, yet it’s vice versa.

    The defense….just no words man. DEs out covering WRs against Peyton Manning…hell against any NFL QB. They will eat that alive. Hell i could make that throw. Unbelievable.

    • ian

      So many drops it was insane. I was screaming at the TV. Besides the penalties that killed drives and the fact that nobody could catch perfectly thrown balls it is no wonder that we couldnt score. I felt bad for Vick. He gets the “incompletion” but the receivers caused at least 9 of them.

  • MAC

    I feel like we have stopped the quick passing game. I know defenses have adjusted to the bubble screen by bringing corners up and shading safety to Desean, but there are times where they are playing off man. I feel like this offense has become very good and steady run game, and pass attack is longer developing plays than I expected consistently.
    I would really like to know with our WR inability to get open why we are not playing James Casey barely at all. I stopped watching yesterday when broncos went up big toward end of 3rd quarter. Casey had one catch and for that matter we are barely using Ertz. Cooper is clearly not capable of being a #2. It’s time to start using those TE’s and more screen game and quick hitters. This o line has shown they are good in run game but if defensive line’s run any kind of stunts or have talented edge rushers they have struggled.
    I just think this offense might as well use Casey and Ertz bc we see that Cooper and other WR’s not getting it done. Casey got paid enough that i expected him to at least contribute. It’s time to see what these TE’s have. Also Lets move Desean more to slot and go back to getting ball to guys in space. The offense does move the ball up and down field, but in red zone I feel they get away from run to quickly, McCoy is excellent runner inside red zone and it seems we try to play action or get away from run down there quickly. Time to get back to some of stuff we saw in game 1 and hit guys in space. This offense has to get touchdowns.

    • aub32

      I agree with using the TEs more, but I will try playing Devil’s advocate. I think Kelly lines up more 11 personnel because of the matchup he gets in the run game. Cooper and Avant aren’t the best at getting open, but they can likely block DBs better than Ertz and Celeck can block LBs. Also the DBs aren’t going to be as good of tacklers. I do get the mismatch that Ertz and Casey would present in the passing game, but they and Celeck have all had problems with drops. So Kelly may not trust them to take advantage when getting open.

      • phillyeagle77

        Not if you spread the tight ends out. You want a prime example? Go on you tube and type in the patriots tightend formations. You will have some defensive backs covering our tight ends which will lead to blocking these much smaller backs and not to mention utilizing the bubble screens.

        • aub32

          Agreed, but would Celeck or Ertz really do that much better of a job of blocking DBs than Cooper or Avant? If not, then what’s the point. In 11 personel, we are looking at facing nickle and dime looks. With 3 TEs we are looking at base, nickle, or heavy looks. If the D goes nickle against 2-3 TEs, then we need to ask is Ertz a better blocking option than Cooper or Avant. If the the D decides to go base or heavy, then we need to ask can our TEs take advantage of LBs in the passing game. They have all shown the ability to get open, especially Ertz. However, they have not been able to make catches consistently. So again I ask what’s the point?

          • phillyeagle77

            This would work in all circumstances. Think of this. If you were to have a formation which consist of celeck, Ertz, and Casey. If you were to line casey next to the tackle, celeck in the slot, and ertz playing outside with desean on the other side by himself. The defense is running nickel. You have damn near six options in this formation.. im going to name a few. The corners are playing man so we pound it and let shady pick a lane. You could run a pass option if the defense are creeping up there safety and bring desean right over the top or put him in open space with a crossing route only if man. If the defense were to run zone, this is when our tight ends pick apart the zone with there tall long frames. You could also run a play to desean on a quick route (remind you desean is by himself). Leave him with open space. Theres so much you can do with our tight ends. You can even line casey next to vick in shot gun with shady on the other side. What would you rather have? Two receivers pass block just as good or you would rather have 2 tight ends when not lined next to the tackles get in open space a being 6’4-6’7 blocking as good as 2 receiver whome are as big as the corners they are facing. Aaron and gran exposed that for the patriots.

          • aub32

            Here’s the problem with your scenario. I don’t know a single team that’s going to go nickle vs a 3 TE set. That’s just silly. So with a 3 TE set you are now looking at facing a base or heavy defense. Say a team wants to stack the box and double DJax. Is Ertz really going to beat a CB one on one? So now you have to depend on Celck beating coverage in the slot. Can Celeck beat a LB? Yes. Can Celeck catch the ball? Uh oh. The arguement for Kelly is that he’d rather see Avant either block or run a route against a DB than have Celck go against a LB because you trust Avant to catch the ball. That brings me to Casey, who personally I would love to see more of. He could be your one mismatch, but the benefit gained also means losing the space for McCoy, as the opposing defense could crowd the box and have more LBs on the field.

          • phillyeagle77

            It just all depend on how the defense set up. I gave you a prime example sonce you mentioned the nickle formation but in your case run it and see if that tight end isnt getting separation but if you double desean thats even better to catch the defense off guard. Our tight ends have got sseparation they are not executing the plays. Crowd the box run a screen or a boot. If theres a way. I see having the use of tight ends in this offense is a strong possibility.

          • aub32

            I mentioned nickle for 2 TE sets. In no way would I believe an actual NFL DC would even think of going nickle against a 3 TE look. Plus, though I omitted this earlier, teams will only go nickle against our 2 TE set once one of our TEs earn the respect that they need to be covered by a big CB or a S. Again I have said our TEs can get open, though I’m no where near as confident that Ertz would beat a CB, but the problem is catching the ball. You can’t continue to play players who drop the ball. This was Andy’s downfall when he left this team with absolutely zero accountability. Kelly can’t allow that in his first year.

      • MAC

        I agree with you on some of that. Casey has not even had a chance and the dude is athletic. He switched positions all over in college and showed in Houston he has good hands and an ability to get open. It’s time to use more personnel groupings period.

        Our run game has been fantastic and I agree the spread personnel is helping that. However I feel like I am seeing the 3 x 1 formation a lot more than any other formation. I could be wrong, but seems like they could use Ertz and Casey in slot and get good blocking match ups with smaller DB’s or safeties. Also then could use TE’s size against corners. You can still spread them out with our TE’s in the game.

        I do see what your saying. I just would like the coaches to start trying different personnel bc outside of Jackson no one is winning there matchups. Time to get back to quick hitters also. I feel like Chip is falling in love with Vick’s big arm and choosing slower, longer, developing routes. Vick has been good and I will admit I am impressed. He has protected football and seems to be playing much smarter. I just want to start mixing it up more with personnel and get guys in space again. Time to use screen game more in my opinion. When we do use screens they have been successful. Look at Bryce Brown screen where he fell down or would have scored.

  • EaglePete

    can someone who watched game on TV tell me if all 3 of those defensive offsides were offsides and not a single one was a false start? Maybe it was PM snap count but I thought a defender, if he didnt get too deep was allowed to reset his stance if the ball wasnt hiked. Also that PI in the endzone was maybe the worst call Ive seen in a while. Not that it mattered much in the end but the refs didnt need to help that team, it was ridiculous. Our red zone plays stink. Anytime we get past the 30 or so its just comes to a halt. Broncos ran a play to the one side of the defense and had a WR or TE wide open about 6 times during the game, it was comical. Guy had nobody around and ran for another 10 plus yds every time.

  • jon h

    I live in North Jersey so it’s hard to get 94.1, but was at a business meeting and listening to it on the ride back to work. Boy the Philly reports ask some stupid questions. All of the questions seem like they’re trying to prove they’re smarter than the coach. No wonder Reid was always such an ass. Stop asking him about guys filling the two gap on certain plays. It doesn’t matter. Focus on how he’s going to turn things around – what is he seeing from the Giants that makes him nervous, gives him home. Stop trying to get a headline and start asknig him questions that will inform the stories (note: this does not include Sheil or Tim)

  • KimbaFuzz

    One other possible silver lining…. At the end of 9/30/2012, the Eagles were 3-1. Look how that turned out. Just because we start off 1-3 doesn’t necessarily spell the end.

  • Chali

    I’m really shocked that the blame isn’t on Vick. . . Have we evolved?? I thought I was going to come into everyone screaming for Foles since he scored against their backup D in Zone coverage with the Maehl-Man. . . We now realize the receiver issue?? Too early?? Sorry =)

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