Five Eagles Numbers That Matter

desean_400_102713Here are five Eagles numbers that matter to get you through the bye week.

1 – The number of incompletions on passes thrown to DeSean Jackson in the last three games. According to Pro Football Focus, Nick Foles has targeted Jackson 14 times, and 13 of those have been completions for 312 yards. On the season, Jackson has caught 68.2 percent of the passes thrown his way. That number has never been higher than 61.3 percent during his first five seasons in the NFL.

And it’s not like the Eagles are dinking-and-dunking to Jackson. He has a league-leading 19 catches of 20+ yards on the season and is averaging 17.0 yards per catch. That would be his best average for since 2010.




Chip Kelly has done a masterful job of maximizing Jackson's ability as a big-play threat while making him a more efficient receiver.

42 - The number of big pass plays (20+ yards) the Eagles' defense has allowed on the season. That's tied for third-most in the NFL.

For a defense that prides itself on not giving up big plays, the Eagles have allowed their fair share. Overall, Billy Davis' group is giving up 7.2 yards per attempt (17th).

This is a number to revisit in a couple weeks when Detroit comes to town. Matthew Stafford, Calvin Johnson and the Lions rank fifth in the league with 43 pass plays of 20+ yards.

47.22 - Opponents' red-zone touchdown pecentage against the Eagles. That's seventh-best in the NFL and a big improvement from previous years. The Birds' defense ranked 19th in red-zone defense last year and 29th in 2011.

This is where the whole "bend but don't break" thing comes in. The Eagles are allowing 5.6 yards per play (21st) and 417.9 yards per game (31st). But they have moved all the way up to 15th in scoring defense (23.6 points per game). And the reason is they're keeping teams out of the end zone.

4 - The number of defensive players in the league who have played 800 or more snaps this season, per PFF. Three of those four play for the Eagles.

DeMeco Ryans has played more snaps (858) than any other defensive player in the league. Cary Williams is second with 842. Connor Barwin is third with 827.

And Nate Allen has played more snaps (792) than any other safety.

Part of that is because the Eagles haven't had a bye yet, but looking at the numbers, all those players will be first or second at their respective positions even after this weekend's games.

And the pace of the offense hasn't been a big factor. The Eagles' defense has been on the field for 131 drives, per Football Outsiders. The league average is 118. But after this weekend when all teams are through 11 games, the Eagles will likely only be slightly higher than the average.

A bigger factor has been third-down defense. The Birds are 25th, allowing conversions 41.2 percent of the time.

The sports science angle has gotten a lot of play this season. It will be fascinating to see if the Eagles' defensive players mentioned above are able to sustain their current level of play down the stretch, given the number of snaps they're logging.

16.0 - The percentage of Foles passes that have traveled 20+ yards from the line of scrimmage, per PFF. That's the third-highest number in the NFL. Foles has completed 50 percent of those attempts. That's fourth-best.

It's been the biggest difference from a year ago when only 10.6 percent of Foles' attempts traveled 20+ yards from the line of scrimmage (24th) and he only connected on 35.7 percent of those throws (24th). He averaged 6.4 yards per attempt, compared to 9.6 this year (the best mark in the league).

There have been several factors in the turnaround: a healthy offensive line, an effective Jackson, coaching etc. But Foles deserves a lot of credit for improving on the deep balls.

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

Be respectful of our online community and contribute to an engaging conversation. We reserve the right to ban impersonators and remove comments that contain personal attacks, threats, or profanity, or are flat-out offensive. By posting here, you are permitting Philadelphia magazine and Metro Corp. to edit and republish your comment in all media.

  • Kev_H

    Read in the Dallas news this morning that today’s game is a must win for them since it wouldn’t be a surprise to see the Eagles come to Dallas at 10-5.

    • Dominik

      As long as the comment doesn’t come from Jerry Jones I’m happy about it – because everything Jerry says means the exact opposite.

      But besides that: I guess you always look at your opponents and think they are a little bit better than they really are. At least that’s the way I think.

  • EagleinRVA

    I think the game has finally started to slow down for Foles.

  • Will

    http://the700level.com/eagles/gif-desean-jackson-gets-a-little-lucky-still-catches-55-yard-td DeSean great concentration…Well the bye week happy for the player’s they get a chance to heal up for the next stretch…Needless to say football won’t be the same this week…can’t bring myself to root for either team in the Gnat/cowgirl contest…

  • Media Mike

    92 (46 x 2) – The number of a-holes in uniform for the Giants / Cowboys game today.

  • Media Mike

    I’m rooting for the Cowboys because I enjoy seeing New York sports fans in abject misery. Plus it’ll be funnier to see the division come down to Dallas choking vs. us in the finale on Sunday night when we get flexed to prime time glory!

    • Richard Colton

      you can’t. you just can’t. good points MM, but you still can’t do it.

      • Media Mike

        I need every loss possible on the Giants. I need to see Eli throw more picks. I need to see Tom Coughlin die on the sideline of a screaming fit induced heart attack. I need to see Giants fans jumping off of the top of the stadium to their doom. I need to see JPP’s back snap in half as he goes on the IR. And I need to make sure that no matter what, Eli Manning never gets into the HOF.
        I can always rest assured Dallas will make fools of themselves on other multiple opportunities.

        • Richard Colton

          I don’t have a logical comeback. Your points are all well made. Extra points for colorful Giants hate. I just can’t bring myself to root for the Cowboys under any circumstance. Especially now – we control our own destiny.

          • Andy124

            I’m with you. Hate the Cowboys. Strongly dislike the Giants. Maybe he wasn’t around during the Michael Irvin days?

          • GEAGLE

            I simply root for month long injuries on both sides….I actually want the giants and cowboys to win as many games as possible without making the playoffs, get a crappy draft pick…I want the skins to lose every game, as long as shanty don’t get fired, get a high pick and then deliver it to the rams, who in return will trade it to us(that’s my story, and I’m sticking to it)

          • Richard Colton

            Cullen Jenkins keeps racking up sacks like this, and the Giants might pass on Barr or Mack and go O-line.

          • Media Mike

            I was around for all for the stuff with the small window of “recent” Cowboy greatness, I simply hate the Giants more due to their fans. I’ve have more interactions with annoying New York fans than I have with Cowboys fans. That doesn’t give me any warmer memories of the refs cheating the Eagles in 91 (illegal block on the Kelvin Martin punt return) or Reggie White taking the game vs. the Cowboys off in the 92 season playoffs, but I simply seethe with hatred towards New York sports fans.

  • cliff henny

    lots of flip flopping on this dallas vs giants game, either team losing i can justify some happiness. gun to head, have to be for giants, just cant see them getting to 10-6, figure 9-7 at best, but that is still long shot. they are just to average to see a 9-1/10-0 stretch. but, losing would make it 2 team race, less competition is always better. and dallas, every loss is a good loss. also, pretty average team, even with win, think last game will be for nfc east. and a loss, the same, since they’ll be able to come in game back, most likely. if everything falls correctly, losing to both giants and skins, cowboys wont necessarily own tiebreaker, win or lose vs eagles, mostly likely scenerio today they will. for eagles playoff chances, giants win is best. eagles/playoffs…figuring scenerios in late Nov, 6 months ago, never in my wildest dreams…thank you Chippah!!!! shouldnt look ahead, but i cant wait for ’14 draft and season.

    • Johnny Domino

      The only good outcome today is a crash of the two team busses.

      • cliff henny

        lol, not very PC, but wouldnt mind couple soft tissue injuries. watching miles austin pull up with a hammy is always nice. see ware aggrivate the quad, maybe broken thumb by romo.

      • hillbillybirdsfan
        • Johnny Domino

          I think I remember Kruk in San Diego outlining a playoff scenario that required a bus crash and a Martian invasion.

  • theycallmerob

    But Foles deserves a lot of credit for improving on the deep balls.
    Reckon so. Ain’t that right, big butt?

    • cliff henny

      upvote for calling out someone who hasnt posted on article.

      • Richard Colton

        she and the gang will show up game day to give credit to Donnie Jones and tell us how any QB could have beaten Patrick Peterson and Honey Badger.

        • Andy124

          And time. The passage of time has made all the difference…

          Every time I look at these all-22s I see where Vick could be gashing these defenses with the run or the pass.

          What people seem to forget is that the TEAM was still learning/getting used to the offense in the first couple of weeks. Now, the team isn’t even thinking out there at all…just playing fast. Foles is doing what Foles can do and we’re winning so I’m good, but we’re going to need big play potential if we make the POs. Yes, I know that Foles is making big plays…right now…but he needs to convince all of us if he can make the throws in the POs, on the road perhaps in bad weather.

          Kelly has a preference for a dual threat QB ’cause it opes up his offense more. But right now you have to run with Foles – not simply b/c he’s playing well – Vick would have played well along the same stretch of teams – but you need to know if Foles is going to be your guy moving forward. Foles is a guy with limited upside playing well – can you imagine what a a QB with a high upside could do in this offense.

          • Richard Colton

            well jeez Andy, if you keep throwing their words in their faces, how will they continue to misrepresent their own arguments?

          • Will

            Except MV#7 doesn’t stay healthy….The season is16 games of which he sits out 4-6 every year which hurts the continuity of the Offense. I love Vick and supported him before, during and after the dog thing, but time to move on. After 2 1/2 seasons Mike’s just not the guy….

          • Will

            [URL=http://www.makeagif.com/YA4teD][IMG]http://cdn.makeagif.com/media/11-25-2013/YA4teD.gif[/IMG][/URL]
            This one play always bother me about Vick, he misses the Safety walking up to the line, knows McCoy is going to his right, and drops back and never scans to his left….

          • aub32

            The fact that McCoy stated after the game that he missed his block is completely irrelevant I guess.

          • Bird of Prey

            Vick has to change the formation at the line if he still intended to pass, and he’s left handed which means he should have seen it coming. But not calling an audible to a run play to the b-gap with no LB support there makes it irrelevant as well.

          • Chippah

            oh god. I was at that game near the opposite endzone. Watching that run back all the way was awful.

    • Richard Colton

      what must it be like watching the possible emergence of the next franchise QB in Eagles history, but not being able to participate because you’ve taken an idiotic intransigent position? at least the memory of Vick will keep them warm at night.

      • GEAGLE

        Ha..it doesn’t stop prince Joeffry

    • Wilbert31

      Foles is ranked 3rd in passes over 20 yards. But but but he is Charlie checkdown! And there’s no way he can improve f
      rom one year to the next – Dutch said so!

  • Will

    [URL=http://www.makeagif.com/aiH6XZ][IMG]http://cdn.makeagif.com/media/11-24-2013/aiH6XZ.gif[/IMG][/URL] This was a Sweet Catch hope this helps with Game Day withdraw…

  • Will

    [URL=http://www.makeagif.com/aiH6XZ][IMG]http://cdn.makeagif.com/media/11-24-2013/aiH6XZ.gif[/IMG][/URL]

  • Will

    ***

  • addicted2mula

    I’m rooting for Giants , they have a tougher schedule

  • d.j

    Hats off to Nate Allen. He has played well and improved tremendously..

  • cliff henny
    • knighn

      That is some funny stuff right there.
      In the 16 full seasons from 1997 through 2012, the Cowboys only won a single playoff game. They have not made the playoffs for the last three seasons. Any other GM for any other team would have been fired at least three times by now.
      As long as things keep plugging along as is, you can keep living, Jerry. If the Cowboys ever win another playoff game, it’s time for you to die, Jerry.

  • Will

    [URL=http://www.makeagif.com/TGQDVS][IMG]http://cdn.makeagif.com/media/11-24-2013/TGQDVS.gif[/IMG][/URL] Sweet Catch to help fellow Eagle Fans and myself with Eagle Withdraw…

  • Johnny Domino

    Grey Cup tonight, 6 PM NBCSN

    Ti-Cats v. Riders, who you got?

    • Richard Colton

      going to defer to Adam.

      • Johnny Domino

        Some freak atmospheric condition had me getting games from Hamilton on my car radio at night all summer, so I am leaning that way.

      • Adam

        Alls I know is that the great TOM HANKS IS IN ATTENDANCE FEATURING MARTIN SHORT *audible gasps*

        • Johnny Domino

          Is that really Martin Short or it just Burris playing like Ed Grimley?

          • G_WallyHunter

            Fantuz, best WR in the CFL, can’t even make the Bears as a WR4 or WR5 (or practice squad, for that matter), really shows that separation between the leagues lol, once in a blue moon a player makes the jump (ie. Cameron Wake, Brandon Browner, Danny Watkins (lol) )

    • G_WallyHunter

      GO TICATS, that stinky Hamilton’s about 40 min drive, I cheer for local

      • Johnny Domino

        They got to buck the fact it’s a Rider home game, looks like the crowd is into it. Wonder what the temp is? Take notes for the 2022 Linc Super Bowl.

        • G_WallyHunter

          Was roughly 30 F, no colder than the New England game I imagine. Was at (-10) – (-15) C all week and supposed to be that cold this week, fans got a lucky break as it went up to closer to (-5) – 0 C for yesterday. They call that place Riderville, crowd was VERY into it, funny last year Toronto won it in Toronto, this year Riders win it in Saskatoon.

          Hamilton was big underdog going in, they’ve really turned their franchise around in last 5 years and this appearance is a great start to getting something good going, new coach and plenty of rookies on the team, Hamilton’s future looks real bright.

  • Marilyn Monbroe

    Should be a live chat for the gmen vs cowboys game

  • anon

    All the NFC North teams lost or tied — Wild card possibilities opening up. Carolina won again though…

    • Media Mike

      If the Niners lose to Skins, I’ll feel better about a 2nd wild card being open to us if we don’t win the division.