Some weekend reading for you to check out on this Saturday. As always, we’ll hit you with the NFC East roundup from Josh on Sunday.
Chris Wesseling of NFL.com ranks all the quarterbacks going into 2014. He’s got Nick Foles in his “Borderline Franchise” group with Alex Smith, Andy Dalton, Carson Palmer, Ryan Tannehill and Josh McCown. There are 17 QBs ranked ahead of this group:
Smith graduated from glorified game manager to playmaker down the stretch last season, but the Chiefs did nothing significant to help the offense during free agency and the draft. … Foles’ numbers are more impressive than his game tape. … Dalton’s surrounding talent makes him look better than he is; it should work the other way around. Entering a contract year, Dalton remains the prime meridian of NFL quarterbacks.
Andrew Garda of Sports On Earth provides his take on the Eagles:
Unfortunately, this year Foles takes a step back. It’s going to be tough to replace Jackson and I don’t believe Cooper will live up to his paycheck.
The amazing thing will be watching the team do enough to get into the playoffs, carried by a defense which has needed to prove itself for some time.
Elliot Harrison of NFL.com ranks the top-20 players from the 2000s. He’s got Terrell Owens at No. 7:
Sure, he could be a distraction, but, oh, was T.O. a force. A five-time first-team All-Pro, Owens was a production machine, posting 1,000-yard seasons for three different clubs in the 2000s: the 49ers, Eagles and Cowboys. The chatty receiver recorded seven double-digit touchdown seasons in the ’00s.
Evan Silva of Rotoworld has Jeremy Maclin 53rd in his overall fantasy football top-100 list:
Maclin has something of a boom-or-bust outlook as the Eagles’ primary replacement for DeSean Jackson (fantasy WR10 in ’14), albeit one who’s coming off an ACL tear and has more competition for targets with second-rounder Jordan Matthews joining the equation, and second-year TE Zach Ertz ascending. The Eagles won’t ask Maclin to do the heavylifting D-Jax did last year. That said, Maclin would only need to match about 75% of Jackson’s 2013 stats to return rock-solid WR2 stats. Still only 26, Maclin is a compelling contract-year breakout pick.