Wake-Up Call: Three Leftovers From Davis

Eagles Defensive Coordinator Bill Davis Explaining to Press

Billy Davis spoke with the media for about a half-hour before the team went on break. A few takeaways:

— Opinions vary on the state of the nose tackle position. Some saw enough out of Bennie Logan as a rookie to believe he is the answer. Others wonder whether this team would be better served with a  space-eater in the middle.




Davis was asked if having a giant nose tackle in this particular scheme is overrated.

“Well, those monster noses are ideal," he said. "There’s not very many of them out there and they come around every five years maybe. And what we do is we have good football players, like I said, and we get them at the heaviest weight that they can function well at and make ‘em fit and ask ‘em to do the things they can do the best. And when that monster comes along and you’re in a position to acquire him, you acquire him. And that’s the old 3-4 where the guy just eats up three blockers inside. But they’re hard to find. They really are. We’re really happy with the D-Linemen that we have and how they’re progressing. So we’re excited about the group that’s in there. It’s a good young group, really eager and energetic and they’ve been working hard.”

Howie Roseman noted at the combine that Logan's frame "can easily withstand 320 pounds." The 24-year-old played at 309 last season. He is currently listed at 315. Not quite Haloti Ngata (6-4, 340) but Davis seems comfortable with what he has.

“I think every player’s different with what they can handle and what they can’t. You get a good football player and you find the strongest and heaviest he can be and still get his job done and use the techniques we ask him to do," said Davis. "Bennie’s come a long way and he’s gaining some weight. He’s going in the right direction.”

Beau Allen (6-2, 333) has more of that traditional nose tackle build. He was on the field primarily on run downs last season for Wisconsin and finished with 20 tackles and 1 1/2 sacks.

-- Davis has been coaching in the NFL since 1992. He has coached for nine different teams, including stints as defensive coordinator for both Arizona and San Francisco -- neither of which went quite as well as Davis would have hoped. All things considered, his first year in Philly was encouraging. Does he believe this job could define him?

 “I hope so. I hope so partly because the staff I’m on right now and the group of men that I’m working with on the defensive side and the whole staff… Chip has really put together a great group of guys that have a pretty tight-knit chemistry," he said. "Defensive staff in particular is my world. We work extremely well together. There’s no egos. The best idea wins. It’s not my idea. It’s whoever has the best one. I think we’ve got a group of teachers Chip put together, which makes a huge difference. I think it’s highly undervalued, the ability of professional coaches to teach fundamentals at the fundamental level. And I think collectively as a group, we’re excited about being there. And I think that spreads into the players who see us excited about working with each other and how we interact. We pass it to them and they’re doing a similar thing. We’re excited about the second year.”

 The best idea wins...Who decides the winner?

“Well I do at the end of the day," Davis replied.

-- Kelly once said during his time at Oregon: "Instead of trying to outscheme your opponent, put your players in an environment where they can be successful because they understand exactly what they have to do."

The vibe coming from the offense is that there won't be any major schematic changes this season, but rather a focus on fine-tuning the system that is installed and familiar. Similar on the defensive side of the ball, sounds like.

“We didn’t add, change and re-name a bunch of stuff. We said, ‘Guys, we’ve installed it, we’ve re-taught it.’ So they’ve had a lot of time hearing us teach it. I think that’s gonna be a big difference for us,” said Davis.

"Defensively, when 11 men play as one with high energy, you’ve got a good defense no matter what your alignment. But when you have fractured communication and fractured understanding of what their job is, then you’re gonna lose no matter how talented you are. So we’re not trying to be cute, we’re not trying to out-wit anybody. We really need our players to be on the same page playing together. And that’s good defense.”

WHAT YOU MISSED

Josh catches us up on the latest happenings around the NFC East.

One national writer believes Nick Foles is the most overrated player on the Eagles. 

"He came back a different player." Ifeanyi Momah has a better chance this time around.

WHAT THEY'RE SAYING

Vinny Curry went back to his old stomping grounds to encourage the youth at a free football camp in Neptune, NJ. From the Asbury Park Press. 

The proper perspective can serve as a powerful instrument for change, and Vinny Curry's viewpoint is clear and focused.

To him, they weren't just 300 or so local kids spread out on the football field behind Neptune High School on Saturday morning. What he saw as the free camp got under way was a collection of dreams lined up arms' length from each other, most of which will require some level of nurturing to become reality...

"Now hopefully I can help the next kid in line. The next kid can see another example that there is a promising world outside and that anything is possible. Me being from here, I'm somebody you can touch, somebody who can relate to your story. Just know that anything is possible and stick to your dreams."

LeSean McCoy did some good for his community as well. From Pennlive.

Rainbow Hills pool in Swatara Township is set to reopen soon thanks to a nearly $10,000 donation from the charity of Philadelphia Eagles running back LeSean McCoy.

Tom Connolly, manager and pool board president, said via email that Shades of Greatness, Inc., the LeSean McCoy Foundation donated $9,743 to the private swim club as reimbursement for a filtration pump and well pump installed at the pool.

"Before we had the funds, we did not have funds to open," Connolly said.

COMING UP

Hard to believe it's the last day of June already. Football is creeping closer.

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.

  • Dominik

    “Well, those monster noses are ideal,” said Davis. “There’s not very many of them out there and they come around every five years maybe.”

    Well, Allen looks like a monster to me. Question is: can they play? Can they move.

    I think that’s what Davis meant. It’s interesting nonetheless because it means that Logan is not ideal for them. Doesn’t mean they don’t like him, of course, but they would like to add that good monster NT. That sounds more obsolete than it is, because you could read last year and in the offseason that they liked those agile DT/NTs over the monsters. That’s not the case, apparently.

    And the price for a monster NT doesn’t have to be too high. Wilfork was the 21th pick, Ngata the 12th. High, of course, but not top 5 material like good QBs or great LTs.

    We all hope we won’t pick before #28 or something like that for years to come, but if there’s a monster NT in a draftclass, maybe they will one day move up to get one.

    The beauty about Logan is that he can play DE if that happens. He wouldn’t have to be a career back-up if we pick a monster NT someday.

    • MediaMike

      Exactly. I love Logan’s level of compete, but having a 3 down war pig at NT who can clog the run and push the pocket on pass downs is ideal. Davis is correct that a player of that nature is a rare breed, but the most correct one for NT nonetheless.

      • ICDogg

        Yep. Having Wilfork in his prime allowed NE to do so many things for so long.

        • MediaMike

          It was very nice for NE to draft a player in 2004 with pro bowl talent who actually wanted to play in the NFL as opposed to a giant version of Ricky Williams who should kill himself right after getting his Michael Phelps on.

    • Cmeans66

      Just to touch on “can beau Allen play” comment, from what I saw of him in college, no. The dude was pushed back with ease with a strong center, or two sub par college offensive lineman double teaming him. Has no agility or anything. Hopefully, he can contribute on goal line situations, and I hope he ends up being a fantastic player of course, but I don’t think he will.

    • http://www.corcommunity.com/ theycallmerob

      I mean, yea they weren’t super high picks, but the fact that only those 2 are named says a lot. Wilfork IMO is a hall-of-famer, maybe Ngata depending on the rest of his career. Those guys aren’t just huge, they’re nimble freaks of nature. It’s like the DL version of Jason Peters.
      So I don’t see it as much of a condemnation of Logan/Allen (although I have no expectations of Allen, kid was a 7th rounder for a reason). Just that Davis/Kelly do value the DL (they’re not just plug-and-play 2-gapping big men) and value explosive monsters wreaking havoc up front.
      I’m also curious to follow the progress of 2 rookie DTs I thought the Eagles might have liked this year, Justin Ellis (OAK 4th) and Zach Kerr (IND udfa).

    • Maggie

      Yup and he would only have to lose 10 pounds or so, which he could do by cutting out a couple of snacks a day for a week.

  • JosephR2225

    Strange that they didn’t at least roll the dice on Nix. He was sitting there for them at 83. I’m sure they weren’t thrilled with the shape he was in last season, but when he was on his game in 2012 he was that kind of monster inside guy Davis is describing.

    • MediaMike

      If a guy has “motor issues” I cannot see Kelly drafting him, ever. Nix, from a 100% healthy physical standpoint, would have been ideal. I guess the unhealthy knee, less than ideal level of effort, and 2nd tier university background were all things that kept the Eagles from having a true interest.

  • MediaMike

    I hope that pool has “Knowshon Sucks” written somewhere inside of it.

  • Token

    For anyone who still thought Boykin would get a chance, or that talent wins out over size with this staff……

    http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2014/06/30/eagles-db-coach-brandon-boykins-size-gets-exposed-by-bigger-wrs/

    “secondary coach John Lovett says, the 5-foot-10 Boykin just can’t match up with bigger receivers on the outside.

    “He did a great job there,” Lovett told the Times of Trenton. “His biggest drawback is his size. When you put him outside, he can get exposed because of that. Like I said, he did a great job inside, and we’re going to keep him there.”

    Luckily for him he only has to deal with it for another what, 2 years? Hope for the Eagles sake this rookie can play the slot by then at least.

    I know everyone thinks this staff walks on water. But they say some things that really make you take a step back. Like to me this is the type of thing fans believe that corners under 6’2 cant play outside. Thats just ridiculous. Most of the league is 5’10 and 5’11 corners. These talented 6’2 corners everyone thinks are out there dont come along often.

    This goes along with Davis saying “And what we do is we have good football players, like I said, and we get them at the heaviest weight that they can function well at and make ‘em fit and ask ‘em to do the things they can do the best”.

    I dont feel all that good about that philosophy. Asking a player to add a big amount of weight doesnt always work out well. You could essentially be having a kid like Logan gain weight to become of marginal NT. Which also in turn makes him too heavy and not as quick so he may not even excel at his more natural position of 3-4 DE. Can end up as a lose-lose for a early rounder like that.

    We have to really hope that the Kelly era turns out to be a success. Because this is the type of coach and staff that will could leave the team fairly screwed up roster wise for the next coach if it goes south. Forcing your best corner out the door. Taking a potentially darn good 3-4 DE prospect in Logan and shoehorning him into NT. Those arent things you really like to see. Especially since I thought everyone was supposed to be formulated around the talent you have.

    • eaglefansocal

      Yes, you are the expert and Kelly and his staff just can’t see what you see! Results are what count, and after this year you will have a hard time being negative about this staff again, but if you try hard enough you can always be negative.

      • knighn

        Look, just because a guy has been coaching football his whole life doesn’t mean he’s perfect. Andy Reid, lifelong football coach, did things that were obviously questionable to any kind of football fan:
        – Starting many seasons with Reno Mahe as Punt Returner
        – Starting a season without any Punt Returner
        – Starting a season without any Fullback other than Tony Hunt and Dan Klecko
        – Starting Casey Matthews as MLB
        – Switching Juan Castillo, O-Line Coach to Defensive Coordinator and then asking him to coach an entirely new scheme centered around the new D-line coach…
        And that’s just to start with!

        Now: we like to think that Chip Kelly is smarter than Andy Reid. We like to think that Chip Kelly will ultimately be more successful than Reid. What we should never think is that Chip Kelly is perfect or beyond question. That line of thinking never helps anyone.

        • Maggie

          Who said Chip Kelly is perfect? Kelly and his coaches are smart and experienced, AND, see the big picture. Perfect? Off course not. More knowledgeable than us? Yes. Question. Move Boykin into a position he might not play as well, and replace him with who?? Is there someone on the team that you know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, like you know all about Boykin, that could play his position better?

          • knighn

            No one said “perfect”. The implication was that we lowly fans should neither question nor criticize Chip Kelly and his staff as their experience puts them beyond our limited understanding.
            Brandon Boykin only played 51% of the defensive snaps last season. That is because opposing Os don’t always play 3 wide so our D doesn’t always need 3 CBs. Wouldn’t it make more sense to give our best DB more than half of the snaps?
            He is better than Fletcher and Williams. At the very least he should be getting some of their snaps.
            Still disagree?

          • Maggie

            The point under discussion originally was, why isn’t Boykin playing outside, because he wants to? Size shouldn’t matter. Token took a comment made about one player and turned it into a statement a coach allegedly made about all short corners. Now you are discussing the number of snaps Boykin played, a different topic. I agree that it seems he should play more, in the slot. It’s where he’s good. I just don’t agree with blanket statements and I hope we are all intelligent enough to remember that it is highly unlikely the coaching staff ever reads our opinions. Or much cares. ;~)

          • knighn

            “Now you are discussing the number of snaps Boykin played, a different topic. I agree that it seems he should play more, in the slot.”
            You do realize that the nickel/slot CB is usually only on the field when the opposing offense is playing 3 WRs?
            Which do you think is a more likely solution to getting Boykin more snaps?
            A) Letting Boykin take more snaps outside (instead of Fletcher or Williams) when the Eagles only have 2 CBs on the field.
            B) Demanding that opposing teams play more 3-wide.

            I believe most of us our cognizant enough to realize that this is a public forum for fans and not a Suggestion Box for the coaching staff. As a public forum we are very entitled to state our opinions and back up those opinions with facts that include statistics, history and basic fundamentals of the game.

      • Token

        Not thinking for yourself and questioning things is a bad way to go thru life. And now by taking that stance I hope I never hear you question a coaching decision, cuz hey I’m sure they know more then you……

      • Maggie

        It’s odd, isn’t it. There will always be people who think in a little box or in absolutes. If you put down everybody then you are wise and thoughtful. If you think someone is doing a good job you must be drinking the koolaid. There is just no middle ground. Stating that the coaching staff, who have 200 years experience between them, might just know more than a commenter on here is almost blasphemy!! Go for it anyway, I say!

      • paul from nc

        I don’t usually agree with TOken, but he made some valid points.
        I like Kelly and hope he succeeds.
        But ,IMO, many have anointed him too fast. To those who say he took a terrible team to the playoffs last year, so did Reid. Do you want him back?
        I love that he is an offensive genius and can make ordinary players very good ones. We saw that with several of them last year. But there have been several questionable moves also.
        Versatile has become the new “high motor” and physical measurement has become overemphasised. These are both fine, but to exclude heart and performance ie: Boykin, is a fair point to question.
        Kelly may turn out to be fantastic, and I hope so. but let’s give it a few years before you say he can do no wrong.

    • Andy124

      and we get them at the heaviest weight that they can function well at

      Don’t ignore the bolded text just because it gives you one less thing to complain about.

    • JofreyRice

      Seems like winning with the talent at hand was really about year 0. It’s quite clear that Kelly’s got his guys, with his personality, athletic and physical requirements, and that any and all of the leftovers that don’t be fit will have their roles minimized or be shipped out.

      Like you said, hopefully this works. Hard for me to get too broken up about churning the roster of players that posted a better record in 2012 than they should have, at 8-8, and a 4-12 record in 2013, but I think they’re making a mistake with Boykin.

    • Engwrite

      Darrell Green who is 5’ 8” and 185 lbs played cornerback for the Redskins from 1983 to 2002 and is considered to be one of the greatest cornerbacks to ever play football. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2008.
      Boykin is taller albeit not as fast.
      I remember Boykin on his rookie year out jumping a taller Raven wideout down the middle to seal the win for the Eagles. (We didn’t make the playoffs and the Ravens won the Superbowl)
      So yeah, I agree with you. Ideally you should have corners who are taller and faster that the wideouts they cover. Ideally I would be rich and good looking but alas, we succeed by doing the best we can with what we have.

    • anon

      You mean like AR? Boykin has no chance on a guy like Marshall, Megatron, Jeffrey, Fitz, Evans, etc. The list goes on and on. We want big corners b/c (a) they can match up with big WRs and (b) they dominate smaller WRs. Boykin is a dominant slot corner – why move him?

      • Token

        Do you pro “keep Boykin in the slot forever” types honestly believe Boykin doesnt go up against tall WRs just because hes the slot corner? Because you would be wrong.

        Cary Williams is a tall corner and he has gotten smoked up and down the field by WRs big and small. So I fail to see the correlation between size and being a good corner. Talent wins.

        You are choosing to have Cary Williams on the field 95% of snaps while Boykin plays 50% of snaps. That hurts my head its so stupid. Boykin is one of if not the only playmaker on the defensive side of the ball.

        • Maggie

          Well, so far you’ve dissed many of the players and nearly all of the coaches. Why not finish off the roster and then maybe you’ll be a happy camper.
          The coaches/management are tasked with running a WHOLE team as best they can. In competition with 31 other teams’ management. You are nitpicking one detail here or one player there. Or half of another statement.
          The details that put the team in the best position to win are the only ones that count. How they fit the big picture. Etc. etc. etc.

    • NickS1

      I saw this article. Few things sadden me so much. What a waste.

    • Maggie

      Lovett did not say that all shorter corners can’t play the taller receivers. H said he thinks that BOYKIN wouldn’t be able to match up.

      “And what we do is we have good football players…..and ask ‘em to do the things they can do the best”.
      Gotta read the whole piece.

      • Token

        Hes mentioning Boykin because thats who they were talking about. It confirms what we already know, they prefer size over talent.

  • usmcnole

    Yeah! Football creep!

  • Explorer51

    If Logan does put on a dozen extra pounds to get to 320 (which is not unusual for a 6’2″ 24 year old professional athlete) he will be same height and five lbs shy of Wilfork.

    • George

      *wilforks listed weight. that dudes a big mf’er. he’s the kind of NT billt was talking about. once in five years. him and ngata are those type of players

    • jmkrav

      Living in MA… Seen Wilfork play. That dude hasn’t been 325lbs since high school.

      The comment about adding strength and weight but stating functional is key. Sports science is all about understanding their bodies. They aren’t asking Bennie to eat cheesteaks all at and get to 340. Just want him lifting right and adding weight/strength in a healthy way to his frame.

  • myeaglescantwin

    McCullers was there for the picking in rd’s 5 & 6.
    You don’t get much bigger than 6’7 355.

    who else but the Pittsburgh steelers came out and grabbed him. I’d like to have seen that drafted over Baue Allen.
    (don’t correct my spelling , i don’t French)

    • http://www.corcommunity.com/ theycallmerob

      McCullers was a softie. There are big guys, and guys who play big.

      *beau

      • myeaglescantwin

        hahah, nice work le’ Rob

        yeah, high level and no motor were his knocks. That and him weighing in @ 355 was considered light. They said he was over 450 at one point.
        thats nuts.

        • MarkCValdez

          Google is paying 80$ per hour! Work for few hours and have more time with

          friends & family! On tuesday I got a great new Land Rover Range Rover from

          having earned $4151 this last four weeks… Its the most-financialy rewarding I’ve

          had. It sounds unbelievable but you wont forgive yourself if you don’t check it

          ———————————————-

          Here ­­­­­­­­­is ­­­­­­­­­I ­­­­­­­­­started,————,, http://WWW.HULUJOB.COM...

          ——————————————————–

          GO TO THE SITE AND CLICK NEXT TAB FOR MORE INFO AND HELP