Eagles Wake-Up Call: On Graham And Curry

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Brandon Graham
knows exactly how much playing time he received in 2013.

“Twenty seven percent [of the snaps], right?”

Right. Or 353 of a possible 1,307 defensive plays. That’s obviously not the kind of workload the former No. 13 overall pick envisioned for himself.


"It's one of them things where you can't control it, but I tried to make the best out of the opportunities I got, and I guess we'll see about my future whenever things start to happen," he said.

Vinny Curry, similarly, is out for a bigger role. He played 337 snaps, or 26 percent of the time. He started off the season as an inactive on game day. His agent was open to a trade. There were reports that the Eagles were listening to offers for him.

"I think I shut all that up," said Curry. "At the end of the day it was going to be what it was going to be. At the end of the day I'm an Eagle, I'm glad to be an Eagle. I was highly productive for our team and just want to continue to get better."

These two players were affected by the scheme change as much as anyone. Both natural pass-rushing defensive ends, Graham converted to linebacker while Curry bulked up almost 30 pounds to play as a 3-4 down lineman. Despite their limited playing time and position changes, Curry finished third on the team in hurries (11) and sacks (4) while Graham added three sacks, five hurries and a forced fumble.

Billy Davis' defense is not an ideal match for either player and, truth be told, their careers probably have a better chance of blossoming elsewhere. But they are both under contract at pretty manageable prices for next season (Curry is scheduled to make about $700,000  and Graham $1.6 million) and  Howie Roseman sees the value in both players.

"You have to give great credit to the coaching staff because, I think we talked about this in the offseason, normally when you change schemes, have such a drastic scheme change, you have a bunch of players that maybe don't fit, and they did a great job of trying to accentuate the strengths of some of the players here that we had drafted," he said. "And I think when you talk about both of those guys, you talk about guys that can get pressure on the quarterback. And I think another year of transitioning into the scheme will help those guys, and at the end of the day they're good players who have a unique skill set in an area that's hard to find."

Graham, a former first-round pick, and Curry, a second-round selection, both intend on being starters in this league. More than that, they have Pro Bowl aspirations. So far, they've only obtained supporting roles.

"I want to be here, but at the same time I want to be a starter, too. If that works, if that's the plan for me, I would love it," said Graham. "But if it's not, I guess somewhere else wouldn't hurt."

WHAT YOU MISSED

One national voice gave Chip Kelly a "C" for his efforts this season.

Sheil uses the All-22 to show why the offense stalled against New Orleans.

The Eagles signed center David Molk to a futures contract Thursday.

Once again, Roseman and company are on the hunt for safety help.

What's the next step for the defense? Kapadia takes a look.

WHAT THEY'RE SAYING

Jeff McLane says the Eagles probably won't restructure DeSean Jackson's contract.

There has been speculation that the Eagles may be open to restructuring Jackson’s deal to lower the 2014 salary cap number in exchange for more guaranteed money. While that is possible, it is also unlikely to happen, the source said.

The Eagles have close to $20 million in cap space as they head in to the offseason. While Jackson put up career numbers in coach Chip Kelly’s first season, he faded in the final three games of the season.

Pro Football Focus gave its first annual Bruce Matthews Award (best lineman of the year) to -- you guessed it -- Evan Mathis.

If you didn’t already know it, Evan Mathis is the best offensive guard in football, and has a real case to be the best offensive lineman in the game, period. This season he was again some distance clear atop the guard rankings and played well enough to earn a spot on the shortlist for our Offensive Player of the Year Award.

Consistency is the thing that separates Mathis from the rest of the field. While other players have down games, players they struggle with or games that you find yourself looking to ‘throw out’ when evaluating their seasons, Mathis hasn’t had a game with a negative overall grade in three years as a starter. You have to go all the way back to Week 17 of the 2010 season where the Baltimore Ravens handed him a -0.3 mark. His only game graded in the red during the PFF era came way back in 2009.

COMING UP

Sheil checks in with the rookies to get their take on the year.

  • Will

    Thank you Tim for all the hard work you put into this site…Graham wants to start, Curry wants to stay….we need a pass rush OLB in the worst way or a Safety….I really like Curry for a DT here….Graham would be better off in a 4-3…maybe Howie can work a trade for Graham…Both put up excellent numbers for playing 25% of the time…The Chicago Bears run a 4-3 maybe Howie could work a deal Graham for Major Wright…

    • GEAGLE

      Tom LAwlor wrote a nice piece the other day about how Curry is slowly developing into a ray McDonald type who was a very important bench contributor of the Niners….
      ..
      I really like having curry! because stylistically he is different then what we have. A lot of eagles had to go thru very difficult transitions this year into new scheme or positions, but I think Currys was the most difficult transition to undergo and I think he handled it pretty darn well, especially when this was basically his rookie season…and curry had NEVER two gapped before this year…..

      Graham wasn’t as impressive to be as Vinny! however Graham started to make some plays down the stretch that I didn’t think he was capable of. You could tell he was starting to get more comfortable rushing from the ROLB spot, he made some impressive open field tackles against dangerous skill players, and he also started to have some impressive drops in coverage…

      Both are good kids, who are confident and hungry and I think they can be counted on to work relentlessly.

      Even if curry just developed into a QB pressure specialist he would be valuable to this defense but he actually is showing potential to be more. The biggest philly media misconception about Curry is that he is bad against the run…I don’t know where they got that crap when he was a heckuva run defender at Marshall. Remember seeing him and thinking he reminded me of Trent Cole against the run…..obviously you can’t just snap your fingers! and tell a 4-3DE that he needs to gain 30lbs and be able to learn to two gap at a high level instantly…Transitions like that take time and curry actually progressed quicker then I expected. his explosion off the line is unique for a non 4-3DE and he is learning to use it inside instead of around the edge like he is accustomed to from playing DE..
      …….
      .much respect to coach Azz for knowing curry well from coaching him at Marshall. NO ONE expected him to be a DT. We all expected him to be transitioning to OLB with Cole and Graham! but coach Azz knew him well from Marshall! he knew how Violent and advanced his hand usage was for a young player. he knew his frame, and he bulked him into a 3-4 DE which is a 4-3DT(sort of), knowing that if Curry could pull it off, he could have rare explosion at that position…We use 4man lines enough to where we could have just kept Curry as a 4-3DE Nickle pass rush specialist and he would have had value,..props to coach Azz for knowing better then everyone else, and recognizing that he could become more…

      I think Graham will walk at the end of next season, but I’m excited about Vinnys future in philly. I would trade Graham if someone offered! but I wouldn’t hate bringing him back next year because I know he will be a better OLB then he was this year and I’m kind of curious to see how much better…but I wouldn’t turn down pics for a player I think will be gone after next year….Vinny to me is untouchable…you just don’t see kids who are starting to be able to two gap, explode off the LOS the way Vinny does…and when he is having a sharp day at anticipating the snap count, Vinny becomes a terror

      • GEAGLE

        Sorry, didn’t realize I wrote so much :)

      • Will

        Agree to the utmost on Curry he’s a Keeper who will only get better…

      • macadood

        did you see this morning’s post on The Chip Wagon?

        • GEAGLE

          No but I’m def gonna check out..good read?

          • macadood

            Just some good criticism of Curry, showing the problems that he is having. I love the guy too but he’s still got a ways to go

          • GEAGLE

            As he should…

  • GEAGLE

    ………………Cedrick/Kruger…Logan/Soliai..Cox/Curry
    Barwin/Graham…Mykal/Goode..Meco/Phillips….Attachuo/Cole
    Cary…Lamarcus Joyner…Jarius Byrd…Earl Wolf..Boykin..Brad Fletcher

    DEFENSE!! DEFENSE! DEFENSE! DEFENSE! DEFENSE! DEFENSE!!
    ..
    And we would still have a 3rd pick for a talented WR, money for a Danario Type of burner…If we don’t want to pay good money for a NT like Soliai, signing 350lb Mount Cody would be cheap, but if we actually want to spend some good money on the position, I would LOVE to play Miami’s Soliai ahead of Logan but that beast ain’t coming cheap..he would certainly fill our Samoan quota that every top defense needs…We would still have money to get Chip dexter mcLuster if he isn’t hell bent on drafting DAT

    • cliff henny

      3rd rd wr? joyner is 2nd, Atta-boy is in 3rd (for nickname alone i want the guy) can get 1st rd talent wr.

      • GEAGLE

        Better hope the Nigerian doesn’t have a crazy combine…I wouldn’t be that shocked if one of the contenders picking at the end of round 1 like your boy Landry

        • cliff henny

          only 32 picks a round, can all be taken in rd 1 and 2.

          • GEAGLE

            There are so many talented WR, and right now it’s really impossible trying to rank how they will come off the board..A guy like Landry might be the 12 WR drafted, but would you be that surprised if after the combine he shot up to like the 4th or 5th WR off the board?…I wouldn’t be that surprised if at the end of the process he is ranked in the top 50

      • GEAGLE

        Going crazy trying to figure out when Joyner comes off the board. Don’t even know how he is viewed. Nickle CB? Starting safety? Tough trying to figure out which safeties go ahead of him…I have seen mocks that had Dix,Pryor,Joyner all as first round picks…

        • cliff henny

          i’m trolling internet, everytime his name comes up i post ‘but he’s only 5-8 190!’ … goal is to have him drop to 4th

          • Reginald Pennypacker

            In First Round:

            Realistic Wish List:

            Ha-Ha Clinton-Dix

            Calvin Pryor

            Justin Gilbert

            Kelvin Benjamin

            Jeremiah Attaochu

            Trade Up Wish List:

            Sammy Watkins

            Anthony Barr

            Khalil Mack

            Mike Evans

          • cliff henny

            good names for sure. could dicker about rds on a couple. could show you draft ranking that get’s eagles 1. evans, 2. joyner 3. atta-guy without moving. and i wouldnt be able to sleep on my stomach for weeks

          • Reginald Pennypacker

            Thoughts on Gilbert and Pryor? Athletically seem to fit mold Roseman/Kelly like. Long guys. Pryor is particularly intriguing. 6-2 210 athlete who can hit.

          • cliff henny

            for sure. all comes down to rounds. safety in 1st is tough sell to me is all. if these guy jump up, pushes dare i say dawkins-esgue deone buchanan down some. watched 1 game and pulled up some highlites last night, rbs tes wrs all go backwards when he hits them, legally, and has range.

          • NickS1

            Just did a very brief read up on Buchanon and ahmad dixon and from what I’ve read I wouldn’t mind either. Or Loston even in the 3rd or 4th if he fell. Some of the weaknesses noted sound coachable, and lord knows we finally have coaching. Did some more read up, I hope Dion Bailey falls to the second and we can nab Zimmerman from KState as a UDFA.

          • cliff henny

            looking at cbs’ draft, mason is 49th ranked overall.

          • NickS1

            Interesting. Still, RBs are valued less, might fall.

          • cliff henny

            DAT in 5th is interesting. like Landry, takes care of multiple issues with 1 pick.

          • NickS1

            Think DAT falls that far? What if he blows people away with his 40 in the combine? Think someone sees some semblance of Tavon Austin in him, despite the positional difference?

          • cliff henny

            what’s he going to do at combine that’s not already known? short and fast.

          • NickS1

            Add a few lbs of muscle while dropping the 40 from 4.38 to 4.30 or sub-4.3? I don’t know, bro. I’m spitballlin’ here.

          • cliff henny

            even then, might raise an eyebrow or two. i’d just think he went from nfl fast to world class fast. if he’s labeled 5th rdr, means anywhere from 3rd to 6th, all it takes is 1 team.

          • theycallmerob

            that’s just it, it seems like a lot of flaws for many of these guys are technique-related. a lot of really good athletes coming out of the draft. Having faith in our coaches really eases the mind.

          • Reginald Pennypacker

            What’s your ideal #1 pick granted we stay at 22?

          • cliff henny

            Mike Evans or benjamin, whichever falls. i’m not sold, live in SC seen almost every game, but if vic beasley there at 22 and WR’s are gone, i’d be ok. draft guru’s love him. what i really want is like 5 2nd and 3rd rd picks, though think i say that every yr.

          • GEAGLE

            Think there is a chance Benjamin goes ahead of Evans,,,what’s up with Marquis Lee? No chance he falls to round two?
            ..
            Ugh too many WRs…it drives me crazy.

          • Richard Colton

            I think that might be the guy cliff – Mike Evans. A team could fall in love with his measurables, which could even propel him top 10. But that sideline blowup was Dezbryant-ish.

          • GEAGLE

            Pryor is a stud and will be a first round pick…I’m not trying to start a rookie, next to young Wolff…we are contenders, so I’d rather sign our veteran safety…if we sign Byrd!Ward,Whitner,Clemons then I wouldn’t want to spend a first round pick on a safety…but I wouldn’t mind adding a safety/CB hybrid honey badger type like Joyner in round two or three and he can be our versatile chess piece in the secondary

          • theycallmerob

            I wouldn’t mind starting a S from day 1, barring the following happens:
            *DL stays healthy through camp, shows vast improvement in their ability to 2gap. don’t care so much about pressure, as long as they keep the LBs clean and maybe even eat up a double team.
            *immediate upgrade at pass rush, implying a new OLB. Maybe Davis gets more creative with scheme in 2nd year too, guys pulling off stunts and whatnot, but pressure has to be there
            *by virtue of the first 2, the CBs will have a much easier time pressing and throwing off timing routes, which would be necessary to keep our attacking front in check. Having a good safety with pass-first responsibilities is very possible.

            I guess my model for what I listed above would be (hate to even type it) the Saints. Vaccaro could play from day 1 because Ryan was getting great pressure up front, and their CBs were holding their own (at least until Greer went down).

            The Ravens were able to do the same with Elam, although he became a full-time starter later in the year. And we defend the run better than both those teams.
            Hopefully, if we’re scoring more, it makes life easy on the D as well (like DEN). Makes their job more one-dimensional

          • GEAGLE

            Cliff what you think of brandin cooks? Reminds me of a little Steve smith

          • cliff henny

            another guy i love! dude got in great shape, fearless over middle. too. many .WRs! i want them all. someone is falling to 4th.

          • GEAGLE

            Want them all!!!!!! Like a WR buffet this year

          • cliff henny

            matt millen needs to take over for the weekend. get to 7th and have to take olbr cause 1-5ths all wr

          • GEAGLE

            Starting to think Barr might fall to like 15 range which I know sounds crazy…but if he falls that far we would be dumb not to go get him

          • Richard Colton

            I does sound crazy. He may be the best defensive player in the draft. I’d take him ahead of Clowney. I’m looking at the board, trying to figure out a scenario where he falls to 15 and I can’t do it. I don’t know – high ankle sprain during the 3 cone drill?

          • GEAGLE

            When people rank prospects, not a mock, but an actual ranking…these days I’m always seeing Barr around #15..and those rankings don’t take into account the run on QBs we will probably see….I see some I lists that value Mack as a top 6 overall prospect, but Barr all the way at 15….if after the combine! he isn’t ranked as a top 10 overall prospect, then he could fall to 15 range….especially if guys like Kony Ealy move ahead of him…we know we will see a run on QBs, and we could end up seeing a run on OTs…someone always takes a CB if the 9-12 range. Sammy Watkins is probably going top 12…CJ MOsely could go top 12, Kelvin Benjamin could have a freak combine and go #12..teams like the rams could take haha Dix 12….
            4 QB
            4 OT
            Clowney
            Mack
            Watkins
            Dennard
            haha Clinton Dix
            Kony Ealy

            Then Barr? It’s possible
            ..
            If a few defensive minded coaches like Gus,Lovie, falcons pass on defenders and go QB or Oline, Barr could start to Fall..kind of will depend if a team like the falcons that always likes to trade up wants to move up to #2 to take Clowney, or if Clowney doesn’t come off the board til 5-7

          • Richard Colton

            Mack vs. Barr is a real debate, not absolute that one goes ahead of the other. I think 4OT and 4QB is correct (although it could just as easily be 5QB and 3OT – in which case I’d happily pull the trigger on OT). My only real disagreement with your very good list is Dennard/Dix/Kony – I’m finding it hard to believe Barr goes after all three. So best case scenario, we’re back to the 11-13 range. That leads us back to yesterday’s conversation – would the birds trade 1300 points worth of picks for this guy?

          • theycallmerob

            I think they’ll look long and hard at the “later” guys (atta-boy, van noy, jeffcoat, trent murphy, lynch). If they like any of those, grab ‘em in the 2nd or 3rd and go offense earlier. Howie and Chip both want a dominant O.

          • Richard Colton

            the more I look at the draft the more I think that’s the likelihood . I really could live with Sam or Van Noy in round 2.

          • JofreyRice

            I’m not big on Van Noy. Ham and egger like Berwin, IMO, without the athletics.

            I’ve seen an Elvis Dumervil comp from some former scouts with Sam. I’d much rather gamble on a guy that can be a standout in one area, than a guy that’s just solid at best, in multiple.

          • Richard Colton

            Berwin is a good comparison – Van Noy is versatile, high motor (don’t worry – just kicked my own a$$ for using that term). I’m confident that he’ll play. Would you rather roll the dice and take a high risk high reward player who might turn into that elite edge rusher? Attachou? I can live with that.

          • cliff henny

            atta-boy or atta-guy? being down here in south, more sensitive to those things, dont want to offend anyone

          • GEAGLE

            Well, no matter how good or bad a CB class has ever been, we have always seen a CB taken 9-12
            ..
            After the top 10, the teams that need pass rusher run a 4-3…..so Kony makes more sense then Barr for Titans,Giants,Cowboys…

            Titans don’t need OLB
            Rams don’t need OLB
            Giants don’t need OLB
            Cowboys prob staying with a 4-3
            Bears don’t need OLB
            ..
            Only scary team would be the steelers, but they probably go OT/Nix…we would have to trade ahead of the jets, packers and ravens

          • GEAGLE

            If Barr doesn’t go top 10 he could fall

          • Richard Colton

            Yeah. Agree. In fact – I think it’s likely that one of the defensive players you mentioned is taken ahead of Barr. I just have a hard time seeing him as the 5th defensive player taken in this draft.

          • GEAGLE

            We are REALLY fortunate that the rams just paid Chris Long, and they won’t want to slide him in at DT, and Mighty Quinn the top ranked DE in football….because they might actually have a chance at drafting Barr twice..once at #2, and again at #12

            Hahahahaha if the skins weren’t so dumb, we would have to face Clowney for 10years hahaha

          • theycallmerob

            they need a qb and ol help

          • theycallmerob

            I thought this was a pretty good one, if you haven’t seen it yet. they have Mack and Tuitt both going before Barr, but well-reasoned analysis.
            http://www.bleedinggreennation.com/2014/1/10/5292496/2014-nfl-mock-draft-round-pick-eagles-vic-beasley

          • Richard Colton

            Good piece – my biggest issue was the 3CBs going before Barr. Barr at 20? Wow. Imagine him lasting until right before we pick? Not sure I could take that.

          • theycallmerob

            if it works, I’ll drive down there day after draft with a bottle of JW blue for you.

          • cliff henny

            if it works, eagles draft goes 1. evans or benjamin2. buchanan or landry 3 atta-boy 4. joyner…after picking up byrd or ward in FA…you’ll pass me somewhere near raleigh, car packed, moving back to philly

          • NickS1

            Gotta few realtor buddies if ya need one.

          • cliff henny

            johnny geagles couch for all i care

          • NickS1

            Not sure you’ll wanna sit/sleep on all the stains that are the result of watching countless studs on film

          • GEAGLE

            Lol actually I l ke to watch games alone in bed….yes I’m aware of the ammo I gave you

          • NickS1

            This very quickly became creepy.

          • cliff henny

            that’s right, and isnt the bed covered with food?

          • GEAGLE

            Food, computer to stream redzone..TV for the live game, IPad for fantasy/blogging…cooler by the bed lol

          • theycallmerob

            joyner following boykin’s footsteps and going in the 4th? hell, I’ll move back to philly too

          • GEAGLE

            You can sleep in my dog house ..Cliff already called couch

          • theycallmerob

            uh…thanks?

          • cliff henny

            he has like 5 150lb russian or italian warrior dogs. migsht be a real nice doghouse. plus, can practice MMA on them all night

          • cliff henny

            pull-out? settle for futon.

          • Richard Colton

            just recently graduated from green to blue. nice.

          • theycallmerob

            man, wish I could afford that. got real excited the one time I got a bottle of black for the holidays.
            then again, I’d trade any and all for a bottle of bulleit rye

          • NickS1

            You try Angel’s Envy yet. If not, Angel’s Envy neat, do it, do it.

          • theycallmerob

            hahaha, I got a bottle now! I think it was after the saints game you mentioned it, next thing I know my better half shows up with this “new bottle I just had to try”.
            i mean, it’s like sex and pizza, bourbon is almost always good. I enjoyed it.
            ever have george dickel?

          • NickS1

            Wow, that’s a hell of a coincidence!
            I’m not as big on bourbon as you, more of a scotch guy. But I do like some. Never had George, but I have heard of it. I can’t stomach the bite so for me to enjoy a glass of something neat is extremely rare.

          • theycallmerob

            that’s fair. let’s all just agree to leave that clear liquor alone. I’ll only buy vodka for disinfectant purposes

          • NickS1

            And club nights.

          • NickS1

            I refuse to drink the last glass in bottle of Blue, because seeing it empty will give me the blues.

          • GEAGLE

            Blue is my baby
            Black is acceptable
            Haven’t tasted red in years

  • cliff henny

    on d-jax, that’s all front office post season posturing. there’s 3 choices, 1.cut jax 6m dead, not happening, plus no one let’s 4.2/4.3 1200+ yards walk, like him hate him, that’s hard to find 2. play out contract 12m cap number not happening 3.restructure/renegotiate 2 or 3 yrs and howie doesnt want to sit down with jax’s agent knowing eagles are about 99.9% set on doing this option.

    • GEAGLE

      Yup…the day he signed we all knew we would have to revisit it this year….posturing

      • Will

        The sqeakest wheel gets the most oil…we still need more production out of DJax next year….1400-1500 yds…

      • cliff henny

        3 things are guarenteed in life death, taxes and eagles lying about off-season money

        • Will

          LMAO…good one…lol…

        • GEAGLE

          Howie learned the banner way. only Howie is more deadly then banner because he kills you with kindness
          ..
          Who watched last season of Boardwalk empire? The baby faced Federal Agent with the school boy smile hiding his viscious nature that tried to turn Nuckys brother….,that’s Howie

          • Mr. Wu

            hahaha…..good one ….so Howie is a psycho?

          • GEAGLE

            YES!!!! But he is OUR pyscho

          • cliff henny

            have no idea how Banner is able to negotiate. if he told me the sky was blue, i’d have to look out the window to varify. Banner is so scummy looking, 1970′s used car salemen look cleancut next to him.

          • NickS1

            So, in essence, Banner has a great career in politics if he ever left the front office gig.

          • cliff henny

            in chicago

          • GEAGLE

            Wouldn’t be surprised if he was smelly too..

          • cliff henny

            he always looked like he just got out of non AC’d car on a hot summer’s day, even in middle of feb.

          • GEAGLE

            TJ Ward can’t be too excited about negotiation time

          • cliff henny

            bet banner’s own mother doesnt enjoy being in same room with him…gawd i hate banner, but sure did love his sal caps. least when banner threatens to franchise tag ward, tj and agent can laugh at him, everyone knows that aint happening. maybe fg kicker, but that’s about it

          • GEAGLE

            Bet his mother even dreads negotiating with him over splitting a check at dinner…

          • RIP illa

            To your original post, pre-edit: I wouldn’t be surprised. I’d be more surprised and pissed if he wasn’t!!! I mean…that’s so Banner right there!!!

          • cliff henny

            Banner negotiating tactic, just come in to meeting room last, have receptionist turn off air and lock the doors from outside. sit down with fan to his back, smelling like fresh hot 3 day unshowered @ss.

          • RIP illa

            LMAO…priceless. So that’s why he always has that look on his face…cuz he’s smelling himself. It all makes sense now!!!

          • RIP illa

            Lol. Banner doesn’t necessarily negotiate. He looks and lives for the moment when he has the player/situation by the balls and the upper hand. I think the 70′s used car salesman is a little harsh, but not too far from the truth. To me he’s more akin to a corrupt 70′s investment banker!!!

            Truth is his main “negotiation” tactic was to find young talent on the team that showed good to great promise, and throw a bunch of cash at them (through an extension) to lock them up for awhile keep them away from the cash that they would have seen after their original contracts played out. Then if they wanted more money, via another extension, as they realized their not making what their peers who put up the same numbers are, he would just flip it on them like…’We gave you a boat load of money when no one else would…’ and treat them as if they were ingrates. F’n genius!!! Not fair but it saved us a shitload of money and hardly anyone else in the league was doing it at the time.

          • GEAGLE

            Would anyone be surprised to find out banner was operating an underground sweat shop with Runaway foster kids, to cut the cost on manufacturing Browns Jerseys?

          • JofreyRice

            The fact that he gave the shaft to Brian Dawkins is an unpardonable sin for many, but you make some good points here. Banner did some things that helped the team enjoy all that success in the middle part of the decade. Hurt them at times, too, but you can’t ignore the points you mentioned.

          • NickS1

            Knox. I wanted to punch that dude every episode. He was such a douche. It’s almost unfair to Howie to compare him to that.

  • GEAGLE

    Bill Conlin died

    • cliff henny

      too bad, used to enjoy him on daily new live, sure that’s dating how long i’ve been out of philly.

      • GEAGLE

        Sandusky like predator

        • cliff henny

          what?!…looking…or for real?

          • guest

            He molested his niece. Google it. Or just read any article talking about his death. Great writer. But obviously a scumbag

          • cliff henny

            ugh. just dont understand it. russian had this one right. regardless of when, get 5 mins to say goodbyes and off to shallow pit with drain in the middle.

          • GEAGLE

            You didn’t know he was a predator?

          • cliff henny

            nope…been out of philly for 12 yrs except for brief 1 yr stint about 4 yrs ago.

          • GEAGLE

            Gotcha..yeah this happened right after Sandusky but the statute of limitations expired so they can’t arrest him

          • Richard Colton

            And right after he wrote a really weird article defending Penn State and mocking people who were upset about Sandusky. Blowhard – in the pantheon of Philly sports writers, he’ll always be looking up at Bill Lyon.

  • JofreyRice

    I think Curry’s going to end up being pretty valuable. I think he’d be a starter on a lot of 3-4 teams running a one-gap attack, but I think he showed pretty well, even in a role he’s somewhat miscast for, here. He’s extremely valuable as depth–I hope they use him as an interior passrush specialist next year. Imagine if we get an OLB that has a great feel for twisting and stunting with the DL? The penetration Curry can get when the ball is snapped is special. He’s moving at a different speed than most Guards or Centers.

    I thought Graham was better against Tyron Smith and Armstead than Cole. He’s a player that got dealt a bad hand. Fastball DE used as an undersized nickel DT by McDoormat, torn ACL balloons up to 285 pounds, comes back to find he’s stuck behind big $$ free agent (Babin), As soon as he gets his sea legs a DE, he’s converted to OLB–which probably suited him pre-ACL–and is now stuck behind vet leader with big $$ contract in Cole. And if I get my way, he’d be contending with another high-draft pick ROLB on the depth chart after this offseason. He’s probably better off playing somewhere else, in all honesty.

    • Token

      I agree with everything.

      Curry is a disruptive player. I really wouldnt let him get away. You can probably put him in a couple different spots and he can be a problem. Could use some more snaps.

      Graham I dont really care either way. He can probably play somewhere. Will anyone give up a middle round pick for him?

      One of the multiple reasons they lost last week is they didnt adjust to personel performing badly. The way they were scheming, it may not have mattered. But Graham and Curry were outperforming their counterparts and kept getting taken out simply because they were lower on the depth chart. I wish Davis would have noticed a couple guys are making plays while the starters are doing badly and increased their snaps.

      Graham in particular was absolutely doing much better than Cole. Not even close. But Hes Trent Cole, hes gonna start. Thats why I dont want that dynamic on the team next year. Hes done, get him out of here. He wont be a backup if hes on the roster next year. And thats bad for the team.;

      • anon

        funny i thought Cole was in b/c he was better against the run and we were getting ran on all game. If they aren’t passing VC is never going to see the field which is another issue with him. Agree Cole was ineffective on pass rush, but it’s hard to bench your starters midgame in any league especially when that starter has notched 8 sacks in as many games. but agree w you more adjustments needed.

        • Token

          I remember atleast one big run stop Curry made during the Saints game. Which is one more play than Cole made all game. I dont care what Chipwagon says.

          • anon

            Well Cole had 5 tackles including a sack, so he made 1 play i not 5. Curry had 1 tackle. Impact is often more than stats but just saying.

          • Token

            Coles “sack” was when Brees took off up the middle, Cole who was getting dominated by the LT took of to the side and caught Brees. But, im sure you watched the game and saw that.

      • anon

        Actually see Chipwagon: http://chipwagon.typepad.com/eagles/2014/01/sadly-this-curry-isnt-hot.html#more

        Curry was playing like hot a**.

        • NickS1

          Well that was depressing

        • JofreyRice

          Don’t you think that is cherrypicked, a little? The author says he likes Curry, but clearly he’s got some entrenched opinion that Curry can’t be a 2 gap 3-4 End–which is not crazy, by the way, and doesn’t mean that he doesn’t “like” him, just that there may be some confirmation bias at work.

          Hard for me to disregard the guy contributing 5 sacks to the football team, playing on 330 snaps. Compare that to Cox, Thornton and Logan, who contributed 7 sacks on about 2200 snaps. Now, in a 2 gap 3-4, we all know you’re clearly not prioritizing pass rush with your DL, but this group had opportunities in packages. Curry contributed pressures and sacks in big spots, when the edge rushing LB’s–the guys that are supposed to be performing that role–were doing bupkis.

    • Adam

      I love Curry too, but I was reading a All-22 review on one of the other blogs I check out from time to time and apparently (according to this guy) he had a rough game against the Saints. But I guess all the passrushers did.

      http://chipwagon.typepad.com/eagles/2014/01/sadly-this-curry-isnt-hot.html

      • anon

        Yeah i saw that too i think that guy made the point that technically he hasn’t really improved from what he was in pre-season. Maybe bad game, but if that’s the case I’d try to move him. Both him and graham for mid round picks so we can try to move up. You’re going to lose graham next year anyway & he’ll likely be fighting someone other than cole for space on the depth chart.

        • NickS1

          Maybe a combo of bad game/technique while facing a good line with 2 pro bowlers, one of which, Evans (and fellow bloom alum, also Philly boy) has been an All-Pro. Gotta credit their line at least a litte, they played a hell of a game.

      • DLRJ

        That is an incredibly depressing–albeit interesting–post. As much as people were screaming for him to get more time because we notice the hurries/sacks, that sure seems like a solid argument that the coaches had a reason for not getting him in there more.

      • JofreyRice

        I feel ya, but that’s a tough grading scale. Losing a a 1 v 1 against Jahri Evans, and allowing Brees to find a passing lane; both those guys have made a career of being able to do those things a much greater percentage of the time than not.

        At the risk of sounding like a Curry defender, I’ll say it was really just a bad game for the whole team. As you mentioned, guys like Ced Thornton, or Fletcher Cox were pretty invisible, too, and Davis blitzed much less than he normally does, opting to drop guys out in coverage. I think the DL were more predictable.

    • theycallmerob

      I agree on both players, but 1 or both have to be moved. The risk with keeping them now, as depth, while they’re cheap is that they end up playing well and sign elsewhere when the time comes. Or, conversely, they continue to have mediocre results which hurts their value.
      If Chip and Howie both realize neither is in the long-term vision for the team (as you mentioned, getting a great OLB next year would also eat into his snaps, and Cole might stay another year), then you may as well sell high. I like both guys, I see their value, but sometimes the fit is more important. Luckily, DL is our deepest position group.

      • GEAGLE

        Move Graham! keep Curry!

        • theycallmerob

          I could live with that scenario. But, if Curry were to go, I wouldn’t be too devastated. Especially if Kruger looks like he can play DE next year, and they get another NT (making Logan depth as well).
          Just like WR, I’m very curious to see what preferences Chip looks for. He can say what he wants, but his actions will speak.

          • jesse

            I believe Curry is signed for two more years so no harm keeping him however Grahm gone next year so should get something for him now even a late middle round is better then just letting him walk next year right?

      • JofreyRice

        As far as “value”. I don’t know that either have very much at all, in terms of return in trade. Is a 5th or 6th rounder we may get more valuable than either of those guys stepping in if there is an injury?

        Yeah, I’d move Graham if they add a young rusher behind Cole, but I just don’t see him bringing much back in return. The production just isn’t there.

        • cliff henny

          eagles fans are the only ones seeing value in graham cause we attach 1st rd label to him. that doesnt matter at all to anyone else, all he shown is backup potential. why pay a backup guy 3.3m for a draft pick making 600k, 5 yrs younger, no knee history.

          • JofreyRice

            I mean, I just go back to thinking about Demeco. 26 year old player, no lingering injury he was returning from, there was a year’s worth of tape to check out the leg for any prospective buyers. The 3-4 misfit wasn’t a “thing”, it was that Wade Phillips just wanted to tighten up a miserable pass D by running dime against multiple WR personnel, and only put 1 LB on the field–Cushing. Demeco had played well in the base defense, they just didn’t want to pay him 6 mil a year to play on 60% of their defensive plays.

            And we only had to give up a 5th for him. A proven, starting MLB. You just don’t get high draft picks for football players other than QBs, generally.

        • theycallmerob

          I’d think a 3rd or 4th? Or a 4th and 6th? It’s not like he’s a complete bust, at that value a team is getting a DE for a 43. I wouldn’t trade for 5th or 6th.
          But if Cole stays, another OLB comes in, Travis Long or Kaddu play their way onto a roster, I’d almost take any value over having him sit on the bench and get 15-20% of snaps.
          And we still live in the world where a team gives up a 1st for Trent Richardson. I refuse to give up hope!

          • JofreyRice

            I really liked Kaddu out of Oregon. He played on the strong side there, and I think he was actually very good in that role. I see him as a long term backup/developmental guy behind Berwin. Much better than Casey Matthews.

            If they could get a 3rd or 4th for Graham, I’d say they should.

            When we moved Clemons for Tapp, we also had to throw in a 4th rounder. That ended up being a pretty nice deal for Seattle. I think Graham is about as valuable as Tapp. We just need to get an underperforming ROLB, poised for a huge breakout in return for Brandon, along with the 4th.

  • Andy

    I think he’s a great player, but man, PFF’s infatuation with Evan Mathis is getting a little creepy. I’m a little embarrassed for them.

  • Tom W

    Can anybody explain how much of a dead money cap hit it would be in 2014 to:

    1) Trade Cole
    2) Cut Cole (after june 1st)
    3) Trade Graham (unlikely I know)
    4) Cut Graham (after june 1st)

    And is it true we also still take a cap hit/dead money hit if we trade Cole or Graham?

    Thanks

    • NickS1

      4.8 for Cole, 3.4/3.3 for Graham, can’t remember which. It applies in both cases of trade/cut. Check out eaglescap.com. Gives salary cap and a good breakdown of players’ contracts.

      EDIT: Sorry, didn’t see the June 1st. In a June 1st Cut only the current year’s portion of signing bonus counts against the this year’s cap and the rest the following year. Cole would be 1.6 this year but 3.2 next year, and Graham would be 1.7 this year as well as next.

      • Tom W

        Thanks much. I don’t see anyway how we don’t address edge pass rusher in the draft (Murphy, Beasley, Van Noy, Atta-Boy!, Sam, Breslin) w no one available in free agency except maybe Worilds from Pittsburgh who is 25 yr old former 2d round pick and I dont think he is a game changer. Orapko aint coming.

        I guess they both could be back but then I don’t see how we would’ve improved our pass rush even if we draft a olb in the first 3 rounds to get reps behind Barwin.

        Think we would need to cut one of them (most likely Graham) to get the new olb quality reps to make a difference to improve our pass rush and part ways w Cole the following year. If we thought Travis Long could play well behind Barwin that would help too.

        • NickS1

          Cliff and I have gone back and forth, for a while I thought Cole would be gone, but he’s not going anywhere until after ’14. Graham is a different story. It’s 3.4 to cut/trade this year, not including 6/1 option, but his cap hit is 3.3. You can stash him for depth, try and get a later round pick for him, (don’t see more than a 5th coming) or just June 1st him and spread his dead money hit out.
          Having a family of Steelers fans, I can tell you that they weren’t impressed with Worilds, and they know good linebackers, obv having been spoiled with good linebackers for years. We both know Orakpo ain’t happening. I know you’re wholeheartedly opposed, but I would think if Suggs were released, you at least have to inquire. I think he’s extended though. I just don’t want to see Cole start, and I think if you draft a pass rush OLB, Cole’s starting and because the OLB is likely not coming in day 1 and taking the #1 spot from Cole, because of name and because they don’t want the pressure on him, much like Ertz’s situation. If he does, great, I just don’t see it likely. Been wrong before though.

          • Tom w

            I would be excited about Suggs if they cut him or he came in under 5 mil a yr … Just didn’t wanna have to splurge cause don’t think it’s what we would do this year.

            Sound like its cole and the draft pick and Barwin and Long and the Oregon kid once we cut or trade graham … I could live w that if we dialed back Coles snaps

          • NickS1

            I could def live with 5 for Suggs, would consider up to 7, if it were me. I’d trade or June 1st Graham at that point, and have a rotation of Suggs/Cole/Draft pick, Cole’s gone after ’14, then it’s Suggs/pick in ’15, ’16 n beyond it’s the pick. Obviously it wouldn’t happen, so it’s likely it’s Cole and the pick with Barwin, Long and whoever. Curious if Goode can play both spots.

  • NickS1

    Some idiot argued with me in preseason that Mathis was only good because of Peters, that Peters made him better, and that the only reason he was good last year was because all of the pressure went to the other side or to Dunlap, basically insinuating that he had no one to block. There’s all kinds of holes to poke in that argument. Fact is, this is one of, if not THE, best lineman in the game right now, whether or not Peters is there.

    • GEAGLE

      I’m hoping Mathis kidnaps Logan and Cox this offseason, forces them to lift weights with him, and just brawl against Mathis every day lol

      • NickS1

        Eagles OL/DL Training and Fight Club. Toughen these young pups up a little.

        • GEAGLE

          This man gets it!! You are a visionary!

        • cliff henny

          draft a DT named ron paulson in 7th

          • GEAGLE

            Any relation to Erik Paulson?

          • NickS1

            Or Hank Paulson?

        • GEAGLE

          Every other Friday is special guest appearence by…..Richie Incongnito dressed in Clan attire ….and if they do well against Richie, them southern boys win a 5minute congegal visit with Sookie Stackhouse….

        • theycallmerob

          maybe that’s why they picked up molk?

          • NickS1

            Would be a good reason. Seems to have a knack for legally hurting people. Imagine him in a fight club where anything goes…

    • JofreyRice

      was probably Dutch. Did he mention anything about unicorns?

      • NickS1

        The original discussion started with Dutch, but then the Rhode’s Scholar that chimed in took it to a new level. I won’t mention his name. No one who posts regularly.

  • GEAGLE

    When do we set odds on who the first NFL arrest will be, and which team has most players arrested this summer?

    • NickS1

      I’m saying Antonio Rodgers-Cromartie will be first for some child-support issue. Team with most? Shot in the dark, but I’m going to say Miami.

      • GEAGLE

        Thanks for not cheating and waiting to find out who signs Colt Lyeria

        • NickS1

          Come on, Miami, draft you some Lyeria! We brought it up yesterday, but that kid would be in jail before the season started in MIA

          • cliff henny

            or morgue.

          • theycallmerob

            more likely

          • GEAGLE

            We still have to see who signs Richie poo

    • theycallmerob

      ernie sims, with the candlestick, in the billiard room

      • GEAGLE

        +1 awesome board game ref…now let’s see you tie in “where in the world is Carmen sandiego” and “Oregon trail”

      • GEAGLE

        Suh, with the roid needle, in the locker room showers

  • mksp

    Not sure why you guys are so in love with Curry. Remember the uproar when Vinny was inactive the first couple games?

    He’s disruptive, and can get to the quarterback, but he’s a bad fit for our scheme. And I guarantee you he doesn’t have the size / length that Chip truly wants from his DEs.

    He’s more valuable to a 4-3 team than to a 3-4 team, so lets trade him and extract that value. Both he and Graham are taking up roster spots that we could be using on a true 3-4 DE that we trade for / sign / draft / develop.

    • Richard Colton

      who was lining up to give us a 2nd or 3rd for Vinny Curry? at any rate, I thought he was very disruptive when he got on the field. I feel comfortable with him and possibly Kruger as our 2nd string DEs.

      • anon

        He’s only ever been good on passing downs. I agree he’s a gifted pass rusher but he’s not versatile enough to stay on the field.

        • Richard Colton

          Yeah – say, for example, they draft a legit NT, Logan starts seeing more snaps at DE, and Kruger becomes a monster. In that scenario, there might not be room for Curry, but man, what a great problem to have.

    • Andy

      You never extract full value in an NFL trade, more like maybe half. So given that, the question is are we better of with VC and BG playing passing downs and hoping they develop into better fits for the scheme or getting back half their value in picks or players?

      • mksp

        Depends. I’d take a 3rd for VC and a 4th for BG all day. I trust Howie and personnel people to find guys for Chip and the coaches to develop them. Neither of those guys fits the mold of what Chip wants.

  • southy

    For contract reasons, I could see these guys getting another year. They are decent young players. At this point though, they have no one to blame but themselves. If you can’t clearly outplay Cole at this point in his career and people like Ced Thornton to get your butt on the field more, you need to step it up or move to another situation.

  • Mr. Magee

    Change in scheme or not, did anyone really think graham was good value at the 13th pick?