Eagles Reading: Connor Barwin, NFL Hipster
Robert Mays of Grantland wrote a feature on Barwin, Eagles linebacker and NFL hipster.
In a league where single-minded football obsession and the purposeful snuffing out of personality seems to be encouraged among players, Barwin has established himself as a unique character. From his promotion of green living and energy conservation to his public endorsement of marriage equality, he’s an individual in a profession where individualism is often demonized.
Doug Farrar of SI.com has the Eagles 11th in his power rankings and thinks they could make a run in the final five games:
Every season it seems that there’s one team that jumps out of the woods in the last month to take a division and scare the daylights out of its potential postseason opponents. Right now, the Eagles look to be the NFL’s best bet. Nick Foles still hasn’t thrown a pick this season, defensive coordinator Billy Davis is mixing scheme and personnel in ways that have shown definite improvement and the NFC East is a lukewarm dumpster fire.
Dan Graziano of ESPN.com has two Eagles on his top-1o MVP Watch list. LeSean McCoy comes in at No. 4 and Foles at No. 10:
And here it is. The second Eagle. The second-year quarterback who’s not even the MVP on his own team. Who’s not even assured of keeping the job all season, let alone into next season. He’s here and Tom Brady isn’t. He’s here and Luke Kuechly isn’t. Foles is here because he’s got the highest passer rating and yards-per-attempt average in the league, as well as 16 touchdown passes and — most importantly — no interceptions. Chip Kelly’s offense isn’t about quarterback foot speed. It’s about the quarterback knowing what to do on every play to maximize the chances for success and minimize the chances for disaster. Nobody — not even Kelly — knows what Foles will be next year or even next week. But based on what he’s done this year, and the fact that the Eagles are 5-1 in his games, he belongs here. Unlike his movie look-alike, he appears to have a number of good skills.
Mike Tanier of Sports On Earth classifies all 32 teams animal-vegetable-mineral style:
Unstable Elements: Kelly’s particle accelerator offensive experiments. One quarterback we know too well and another we cannot quite figure out. A secondary cobbled together from guys hanging around the Lowe’s home improvement department.
Week 11 Update: Chip Kelly was feeling his genius oats in the first half of the 24-16 win over the Redskins. He even lined right tackle Lane Johnson up at wide receiver, just to fake a screen pass! Johnson played tight end early in his college career and has played right tackle like a tight end for much of the season.