Three Eagles Leftovers

Eagles Defensive Coordinator Bill Davis in thoughtFrom Chip Kelly on recruiting to Billy Davis’ personal satisfaction to Eagles playoff scenarios, here are three leftovers.

1. There are probably certain aspects of the college game that Kelly misses now that he’s 11 games into his NFL career. But recruiting is not one of them.

Kelly was asked about how he, personally, is holding up going into the bye. And he made it clear that he prefers the NFL calendar to the college calendar.


"My schedule, the day the season was over, was a lot worse than my schedule here because you're planes, trains and automobiles recruiting from Sunday night until Friday afternoon and hustling back and practicing, getting a practice in Friday afternoon, practice Saturday, practice Sunday, get back on a plane and fly around the country chasing down recruits," he said.

"Maybe a misconception is when you're a college coach and the last game is done and then the bowl game comes, you don't have a month off. I would argue my schedule was more hectic from a recruiting standpoint than it was here. So I'm looking forward to being in the office every day and watching tape. That is the fun part of our job."

Kelly is all football all the time. He likes to design offense, evaluate players, game-plan, watch tape and spend time brainstorming with his staff. Putting on a salesman hat and trying to convince 17- and 18-year-olds to play for him was a necessary part of his job at Oregon, but something he's happy to leave behind.

2. Davis was asked this week if he feels vindicated. The Eagles' defensive coordinator came under fire early in the season when that side of the ball looked like it would be a complete disaster.

But he and his unit have rebounded, having limited opponents to 21 points or less in seven straight games.

"I don't think vindicated is the word I'd use," Davis said. "Again, I like where we are in our stage. But we are so far from the finish line, so far from being a defense we want to be. It's a collective effort from the players and coaches. We just want to put our heads down and get better against Arizona than we were against Washington."

Davis has remained consistent and even-keeled throughout - not just in front of the media, but in front of his players as well. One thing that he has stressed since the day he was hired is that it's a personnel-driven league. He had previous defensive coordinator stints in Arizona and San Francisco. Davis has often said a lot of defensive coaches employ the same concepts. It's a matter of who can drill those concepts best into their players and which defenses have the most talent.

I asked him what this season has been like for him personally.

"It's nice," he said. "You never really lose confidence in yourself. There's so many factors. You take any team, any offensive coordinator, defensive coordinator, special teams, you can see where is their roster as far as how far along are they in a championship team. Where do you start, what tools are you using? There's so many different scenarios. I think there's a lot of great coaches that are struggling right now. Variations throughout the league."

There is still a talent deficit in certain areas on the defense, but the assistants on that side of the ball deserve credit for individual player improvement from Week 1 until now.

3. One game Eagles fans will have an eye on Sunday is Giants-Cowboys (4:25 p.m.). The question I've received from some this week is: Who should we root for?

My answer is: the Giants. New York is 4-6, but hasn't lost since Oct. 10. If we're assuming the Eagles need to go 9-7 to win the division, the Giants would have to go 5-1 in their final six for a first-place tie (and that would be a 9-1 run overall). Not an easy task when you consider they still play the Seahawks at home and have road trips to San Diego and Detroit. In other words, I don't think they're going to be there in the end.

The Cowboys, meanwhile, are 5-5. Three of their losses have been by three points or less. I think people are putting a little bit too much weight into that blowout loss to the Saints a couple weeks ago. The Cowboys can still be prolific through the air and have the second-best special teams in the NFL. Their defense has been a mess, but only seven teams have an easier remaining schedule, per Football Outsiders.

By the way, a wild card spot out of the NFC East is unlikely, but not totally out of the question. Right now, it looks like one spot will come out of the NFC South - the Saints are 9-2, the Panthers 7-3. But outside of division leaders, no other NFC team has more than six wins.

If you're watching Red Zone this week, the teams you might want to root against are the Lions (6-4, vs. Tampa), the Bears (6-4, at St. Louis), the Packers (5-5, vs. Minnesota), the 49ers (6-4, at Washington) and the Cardinals (6-4, vs. Indianapolis).

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  • DirtyWaters

    As much as I liked Buddy Ryan’s 46 defense, I’m really enjoying Billy D’s Colt 45. The power of 45. It works every time.

    Or is it the Sex Panther defense right now? 60% of the time it works every time.

  • Will

    [URL=http://www.makeagif.com/Ib5RZp][IMG]http://cdn.makeagif.com/media/11-23-2013/Ib5RZp.gif[/IMG][/URL]
    The Eagles Defense is really impressive of late holding teams to under 21 points. The bend don’t break Billy D is working…Zero man coverage in the red zone nice…

  • Esther

    This team is in good hands with Chip. His style grows the confidence of the people around him. There is no doubt we now have an edge in coaching going forward, particularly in our division.

  • Will

    ***

  • Will

    [URL=http://www.makeagif.com/VkqyrP][IMG]http://cdn.makeagif.com/media/11-23-2013/VkqyrP.gif[/IMG][/URL] Great plays like this got me digging the New Philly D…

    • GEAGLE

      Brama Bull Barwin is prob one of the 3 biggest steals of last years free agent market…I knew we were getting a SERIOUS OLB, but he even managed to exceed my “Rosey optimist lol” expectations

      • anon

        Yeah i didn’t expect him to be as good in coverage and even setting the edge as he is. Probably the best FA pickup. I really like Fletcher too but he stays hurt. i like Sconces’ attitude but his CB skills can be frustrating.

        • GEAGLE

          Check out Barwins combine numbers. Anders posted the link on Blitz…dude is a FREAK for his size…one of the steals of last years FA

    • hillbillybirdsfan

      On top of a great hit, not shown is the class move by Barwin as he stays on hands and knees protecting Griffin’s helmetless head until the bodies stop flying around.

      • Will

        Saw that but the file was to large had to keep reducing the size of it to get it to load but you are so right….

  • theycallmerob

    Did Kelly ever have to actually do any recruiting? or would Phil Knight just show up with 18 different varieties of cleats?

    • Jerry Pomroy

      Well if you were a 17-18yr old kid, would you openly want to go to Oregon? Remember these are kids, so for many football isn’t their only sticking point. Losing out on guys like EJ & Manziel, Chip needed all the boosting he could get from Phil to help lure those not so concentrated on just football or those skeptical of going to a not so “sexy” destination like Oregon.

      • theycallmerob

        not sure why Oregon would be less sexy than, say, some backwoods southern town. have you seen their facilities? I think some of Chip’s earlier recruiting “losses” had more to do with building the program; Manziel backed out only because of distance from home. Even this past year (Chip’s last), he sure brought in some talented guys.
        SEC is still SEC, but I’d put Oregon right up there with the next tier

        http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/college-football/photos/1307/university-of-oregon-athletic-facility-behind-scenes/

        • DirtyWaters

          “Distance from home”. That’s the key right there. If you look at SEC rosters, 90% of these kids are from the southeast. Many have never traveled very far from home except to play away games. Rainy ass Oregon might as well be Alaska for a lot of these kids.

          Oregon is mostly grabbing California kids. Where would you rather go as an 18 year old? Los Angeles or Eugene? I think they’ve done well, all things considered.

          • theycallmerob

            yea, you’re right I reckon. Same goes for the Texas kids, for the most part. I took a look at the OU roster, I’d say at least half are west coast kids with midwest/south/pennsylvania mixed in. SBnation has their ’14 class as 22nd best.
            I do think, for a number of kids, national title hopes play more into their choice than “reputation”. Same with the whole Eugene vs. LA debate. A lot of these HS kids have been seeing OU in the Rose Bowl and contending for the championship the past few years. I’d take that over a lower SEC school, like Miss. st. or something.
            At least in my 2 HS, and some of my “rivals” with good players, the big names still carry weight- Nebraska, Miami, Penn St., and ‘Bama/LSU. but they all most certainly know of OU, and know it as the flashy school with the sweet unis. In fact, locally, Maryland and Underarmour have been teaming up to play into that whole “unique swag” aspect.

          • GEAGLE

            You guys are spot on…location,location,location!!

          • nicksaenz1

            Under Armour’s CEO is a MD football alum, I believe. They’re definitely doing everything in their power to help them improve. Moving to the BIG may help some. They’ve generally struggled to recruit outside of, say, a 200mi radius. A healthy portion of that roster is from MD, DC, and Northern VA.

          • theycallmerob

            yup, Kevin Plank. Lives a few min. away, been trying to get him to cut us a nice check for my non-profit/martial arts community program. I’ll throw his logo on anything if he helps us.

            He’s like our last, local rich guy/entrepreneur. Been putting a lot of money into the city

            http://www.underarmour.com/shop/us/en/win-baltimore

          • GEAGLE

            What martial arts you into Rob? Ju jitsu and Muy Tai have always been my passion..past few years I been obsessed with dUtch style kickboxing, but it’s very difficult to find people In PA well versed in the Dutch style…

          • theycallmerob

            Got into it when overseas, muay thai and krav maga. Since then, switched to boxing. Pretty much stick to instructing now, couple rough injuries.

            We teach very “mixed”; okinawan, shotokan, wing chun, hung gar kung fu. Use it as one component, more for the discipline/health aspect than a fitness/gym/competition center. Mostly recruit the young teens who are otherwise in the streets. No fees or membership…just commitment. We do a lot of violence prevention work.

            Our website is going live soon (working on it now, in fact); fundraising heavy to rebuild an old fire station into a traditional dojo. To give you a glimpse….

          • BlindChow

            Hard to find people in PA versed in Dutch style? Maybe you’re looking in the wrong place…

            http://www.padutchcountry.com/Uploads/images/amish-education-and-work.jpg

          • DirtyWaters

            They kick you in that Old World tradition. It’s lights out for you!

          • DirtyWaters

            I live in South Carolina now. There is that mentality here that if it isn’t SEC, it’s not really football. I don’t think they lose many 4 or 5 star recruits to other parts of the country. I never knew Signing Day was actually a big deal.

          • theycallmerob

            SC, huh? I’ll defer :) Can’t say I know a whole lot about college ball since I left. Stick mostly to northeast/midatlantic cities these days. Whole lot of untapped talent in these city schools, shame only a few of my guys are ever academically eligible….

          • cliff henny

            these poor rural cities, man, they make some crazy good players.

          • cliff henny

            toss in clemson and FSU. dabo can really recruit. live in myrtle, but yeah, could even include nfl in that. boys love their college football down here.

          • DirtyWaters

            Yeah, reasonable people throw those ACC teams in, but you know how those SEC snobs get. They hate it when I refer to it as “minor” league football.

  • Mikeq

    I’m not rooting for the Redskins to win anything. In fact, I hope they close the season 0-6 to finish at 3-13, and then enjoy handing the top5 pick over to the Rams.

    • G_WallyHunter

      Ah, wonderful to see as an Eagles fan. Rams are looking like they’ll have 2 top 10 picks? Damn, sucks to be a skins fan, they have to be FA masters this year to have a chance at competing.

      • DirtyWaters

        Trying to think of the last ‘skins FA to have success? Moss? I love the list of failures: Fat Albert, Deion, Archuleta, Bruce Smith, Stubblefield, Randel El, Trotter (hate to say it). Didn’t they give a bunch of cash to Jeff George? Racking my brain trying to think of a success???

        Fail to the Redskins!

        • Andy124

          Garcon has been fine. Not sure what his price tag is compared to his production though.

          • GEAGLE

            Yea I like him a lot…although I’m pretty su

          • BrickSquadMonopoly

            Don’t overlook the cowboys were not in the playoffs yet.

          • levdog

            You mean the “Rainmaker”.

          • DirtyWaters

            Oh right. Forgot about him. Yeah, he’s doing well there.

        • Brennan Hildebrandt

          Mcnabb sad to say it was a failure as well.

          • GEAGLE

            Why does that make you sad?

          • Brennan Hildebrandt

            I liked Mcnabb and with him we had a great run. He had his flaws but overall did as well as you could ask of him besides winning a Super Bowl which is a big deal hahaha. I wanted to see him succeed in Washington just not against us. So it makes you wonder was it the scheme and the coach that made the QB here in Philly or was it the QB that made the coach (Andy Reid). It also helped that we had one of the greatest defensive minds in Jim Johnson on the other side of the ball. He was definitely on the decline because of his age but I feel that he was a better option then kolb who would of gotten hurt by just hearing footsteps by the defense by curling up in the fetal position only to get trampled on and also the swoosh of the wind brushing up against him because of a defensive lineman running by him and not necessarily hitting him its not his fault he was born with delicate features and fragile body for an NFL QB the guy needs to drink more milk. And Vick who just got out of jail at the time. Mcnabb was even worse in Washington granted the coaching was new to him plus the scheme. Reid had a good run in 2010 but then went downhill after that. Reid is doing wonders for the chiefs but that’s a talented team that didn’t have good coaching overall. It was always frustrating to watch the eagles play with Mcnabb and Reid I didn’t know who to blame when we were playing bad, choked in big games, or couldn’t just execute on key third downs and 3rd and short. I feel like I would always blame the play calling but you as the quarter back have to execute and if you don’t like the play call at the line because of what the defense is giving you then call an audible. But most of the time Reid wanted the play that was called on the sideline and that is where his in game adjustments and time management made me go nuts. But then there were times where Mcnabb would just throw to the open receivers feet, away from them, or over their head to the point where even a spectacular effort would have still been impossible to catch some of the balls he threw. But overall he was a very good quarterback. So the point is that I liked Mcnabb when he was here or playing somewhere else and wanted to see him succeed but not to our expense and now he’s on fox sports talk show so I hope he does well on that. The same goes for Reid as well. But besides the post that you just replied to this is my first time posting so I’m trying to figure this out on an iPad at work so I apologize for the jumbled mess of a post.

          • GEAGLE

            I respect McNabb and appreciated him…but I certainly don’t want to see him have success with a rival..we will have to agree to I disagree on this…I hate everything about each one of our rivals, and to see McNabb giddy after beating us, acting like e did something in his 11-24 or something horrible like that, made me want to put my head thru the wall

          • DirtyWaters

            technically a trade. i think we got Nate Allen for him.

        • G_WallyHunter

          Yea, same with Dallas, it’s great to see them miss in FA. Just as it was probably great for them to see us in 2011-2012, but hey, look where we are now HA

      • GEAGLE

        Eagles will trade up to the rams spot!!! rams won’t want to draft another top pass rusher, and instead of not taking the best player on the Board, they will trade back and aquire more picks, and let us trade up and get our OLB..M ack or Barr depending on how bad Washingtons record is lol

      • anon

        Yeah but they are going to waste one on a QB.

      • jon h

        well, you have to root for them the two times they play the giants.

  • GEAGLE

    Cardinals, bears and cowboys will all lose this week

  • GEAGLE

    This time last year:
    Manti Teo’s GF exsistent and he was a top 5 pick
    Ziggy Ansah was valued in the 20′s but he was moving up every month
    Lane Johnson wasn’t a 1st round pick
    Geno smith was a likely top 10 pick
    Dee Millner was a top 5 pick hahahahah
    Dion Jordan like Ziggy was still thought of as a prospect who could go in the 20s but was moving up..
    Erik Fisher wasn’t getting much attention…

    The point is that Today, there are a handful of prospects that we all assume we have no shot in hell at but will fall significantly by the time the draft process unfolds..Today, there are also players we think as the 20th pick who will climb all the way into the top 7. Today there are guys slated to go in round 2, who end up going in the first round and vice versa…I wonder who these guys are.,.

    I want to look at 5 recent update mocks, and make a consensus mock round 1 and 2, copy it down….and then in March, see how much it has changed

    • cliff henny

      one thing that wont change is eagles’ needs. long as they go wr/olb or olb/wr 1/2, i’m fine. should work out that need and bpa will fall inline saw one taking okpre-olomu cb out of oregon. i’d only question that because a, think eagles are showing they believe you can make good corners better thru scheme and coaching and b, elite wr/olb talent doesnt hit free agency market, need to draft these guys. i’d crap tyffany cufflinks if evans falls and shazier or murphy are in 2nd. then in 5th, take lyoria and crowell to be backup rb, ex georgia rb. never been this hyped for a draft, feel like this could be the grand slam year for howie and the boys. weird sensation, trusting howie…going to take 2 advils and shot of tequila, hope it passes

      • GEAGLE

        Hahahahah totally agree!
        ..
        I like OLOMU! I. Just don’t like him on a team with Boykin.

        I despise drafting CBs in round 1..who was the last one to have a good rookie year? Janoris Jenkins? Pass rusher is much more valuable than CB, it’s a bigger NEED for us, there are NONE in FA, and oh by the way it’s one of the strengths of this draft…how in the world can NONE of these Mocks have us going WR or OLB? All ii see is this lazy QB, or CB in round 1 for us….CB is one of the more difficult positions to evaluate/draft…pass rusher is much easier and much more important….
        ….
        I like our corners just fine when you stick a 12 plus sack guy across from Barwin and a playmaking stud safety behind them..However, we have a rich tradition of stud CBs, so if Howie wants to try and make that splash and sign Altturan Verner away from the titans, he is such a good player that I can get behind that move. we look like we will be read to compete next year if FOles keeps developing, so there aren’t going to be any rookie CBs that give us better play then Cary and Brad a year older and a year more comfortable on this Team…
        ….
        I would RATHER draft the friggin Guard from Baylor in round 1 instead of these CBs. ATleast Cyril can be a stud replacement from Herremans who is perfect for a spread attack..I would rather add ANOTHER 1st round Dlinemen than a CB..nix or hagemen would be a nasty addition? I certainly would rather draft sammyWatkins, J ordan mathews(who ii view as Jordy Nelson) and of Course Mike Evans..unfortunately Evans won’t get passed the ravens…
        ..
        I can get excited about drafting safety haha Dix, but no way I’m down to take a CB…if we had to take a CB, it would be the kid from TCU, Jason V. I hope….heck I d rather draft TEs Jace,Ebron or Jenkins instead of a CB

        • anon

          isn’t riley cooper jordy nelson?

          • pjcostello

            Because they’re both white?? Jordy Nelson is faster than Cooper, has better hands and runs better routes.

        • RIP illa

          Can’t say that I agree whole heartedly w/ you on your dislike of picking CBs in the 1st. So many of your reasons for that dislike are flawed, which i’ll get to.

          First I hate picking guards in the 1st unless my team is coming off a very deep playoff/Super Bowl run. You can always, and I do mean always find good guards in FA for a good price. Hell you can even draft some good ones on day 3.
          I wouldn’t mind seeing Nix or Hageman on the squad…especially Shede!!! Was hoping against hope that he could slide under the radar and not hit the 1st rd or at least fall to us since last year.
          Also if the FO has a WR rated higher than a CB and makes that pick then I won’t and can’t be mad at that (as long as it’s not Lee). However, to draft a TE in the 1st would just be an irresponsible waste of a pick, unless the team thinks Ertz’s ceiling is at it’s peak, Celek is let go, and Casey remains an unused waste of money.
          And if we don’t make a play and get Byrd then, as of now, I wouldn’t be mad at the Dix pick either. But if we don’t do everything in our power, and get Bryd then I think it’ll be one of the dumbest offseason move/non-move of the teams history. Right up there w/ letting Dawk walk…but that’s just me.

          Anyway all that is a matter of opinion and taste. I’m not gonna try and demean you for your opinion. Back to the flaws though…
          Jenkins was a 2nd rd pick, not a 1st.
          Besides last year’s draft, CBs picked in the 1st rd have faired pretty well and contributed to their teams either instantly, in some cases, or are at least in a spot to provide good to very good depth, if they have not fully reached their potential yet. You can look up the names for yourself but I stopped looking after going back to the 2008 draft class. The statement didn’t sit right w/ me so I had to make sure.

          Out of the consensus top 3 pass rusher in the draft (Clowney, Barr, Mack) everyone else so far is just “meh”! Yes I know OLB is the biggest need but if your not taking one of those guys, and picking in the range we’re going to be picking in (as it stands now), then taking one of the “lesser” OLB prospects would be the definition of a reach!!! Don’t need another Jarret! Trust…in a perfect world I would have us drafting one of those 3 for pass rusher, then we would also have two picks in the 2nd so we could grab a WR and a CB! But, being what it is, and not seeing anyway we come away w/ the excellent pass rusher we need, outside of giving up a decent amount to move up, I think we gotta go on to address the other issues. Ideally that would be CB.

          And that’s the last thing. Anyone who doesn’t think that CB is our next biggest “need” after OLB should check again! Well i’ll put WR up there too, bit still CB is definetely tied for #2 (IMO). We all agree that C-Will is not good enough for coverage and needs to be upgraded. Even if he’s sticks around as the starter for next year, which is very probable, then we still have to worry about Fletcher…and he’s always injured and has his career history to back that up! The only saving grace, on the roster, would be if Roc steps his game up to improbable levels to negate this need. We could try and sign someone through FA again, and I’m not really opposed to that, but there are only a handful of guys and most are gonna come w/ a hefty price tag. We need that $ for Byrd, and to take a shot at Asamoah (if he doesn’t get tagged or extended), plus others. We don’t even have any developmental corners on the PS. The cupboards pretty bare!!!

          I have my favorite right now (Louchiez) and even my favorite developmental/4th-5th rounder (Stanley Jean-Baptiste), but really haven’t put in the time I normally would put into studying the guys as of yet. So luckily my fav is most likely a day two/2nd rd pick as of now. I do think a terrific combine could push him up to somewhat late 1st. Especially if the so called “top CB prospects” run in the 4.5′s like some have been projected. Yet as I said, if all holds up, and w/o any other pass rusher making a push to be in mention w/ the top 3…then I’d go ‘Shede in the 1st, Purifoy 2nd, WR 3rd. But if ‘Shede is gone along w/ the big 3 pass rushers…and I doubt the top WRs will be there either (in any scenario) then CB it is or should be.

    • Mr. Wu

      Well I for one want to see the rest of the games before I can write off drafting a QB in April. I never expected Foles to play the way he is playing and I really hope this is the real Foles, but 5 more weeks for me.
      But in review I never thought Foles would be anything but a career backup, I hated the Billy Davis Hiring, when they named Pat Shurmur I vomited in my mouth and I thought Cooper was a waste of space so it is begining to look like my opinion isn’t worth a steaming pile of sh*t (hopefully)

      • GEAGLE

        FOles is your QB next year

  • Andy124

    Hmmm, looks like those Oregon Mariotas are getting whooped up on pretty bad so far.

    • anon

      yeah he might just fall to us at the end of the day. heisman is gone.

  • ia

    Nick Foles Wildcats are destroying the Ducks. Look at Denkers numbers 19/21, 187 yards, 2TD’s, QB rating 193.

  • ia

    Mariota under pressure is not as good anymore. 2 INT’s