Greg Bedard’s piece on Chip Kelly for Sports Illustrated is now available online. It contains some good nuggets and is worth a read if you haven’t checked it out yet.
Here’s what stood out to us: Read more »
Let’s take a look at what the media are saying about the Eagles as OTAs roll on.
Jerry Jones told USA Today that he isn’t too pleased with losing DeMarco Murray:
Jones said the biggest gamble of all this offseason might have been failing to keep reigning NFL rushing champion DeMarco Murray, who fled to the division rival Philadelphia Eagles.
As it stands, the Cowboys will head into the season with veteran Darren McFadden and returning backup Joseph Randle as the top backs.
“We’d love to have Murray,” Jones said. “We had to take a little step back to go forward. We needed that cap room. That’s risky. Yet it freed up the cap room that we could use to make other moves.”
Today’s question comes from Brad via email:
Any sense if we’ll be better and more consistent in the red zone this season? Thanks.
During his end of season press conference inside the visitors locker room at MetLife Stadium, Jeffrey Lurie identified three problem areas that he believes led to the downfall of the 2014 Eagles: big plays allowed, turnovers and red zone offense.
To help address the first issue, the team parted ways with three-fourths of the starting secondary, inked Byron Maxwell to a six-year, $63 million deal and dedicated five of their six draft picks to the defensive side of the ball (including three defensive backs). As for the second, Chip Kelly traded in many of his top skill position players for what he hopes are better system fits that will theoretically enable the offense to run cleaner. What about the third item on Lurie’s list? What did they do to try and fix a red-zone offense that ranked 23rd in the NFL with a 49 percent TD success rate?
You can make the case that the change at running back is the answer.
Read more »
Evan Mathis did not show up for the start of the Eagles’ Organized Team Activities Tuesday, a league source confirmed. CSN’s Derrick Gunn was first with the news.
The Pro Bowl guard has not participated in the team’s offseason training program to date. Spring workouts are voluntary. The first time players are obligated to be in attendance is for the team’s mandatory minicamp from June 16-18. Should he skip those, he’ll face a hefty penalty. Read more »
Much of the angst surrounding the Sam Bradford acquisition is tied to that twice surgically-repaired left knee of his.
The 27-year-old first ruptured the ACL in October, 2013 against the Panthers when he planted awkwardly while being pushed out of bounds late in the game. He suffered the same injury 10 months later in a preseason contest against the Browns as his hyperextended leg momentarily bore the weight of a falling pass rusher. Two tears in the span of a year does not exactly inspire confidence that the knee will hold up moving forward. And it seems logical to conclude that a player who has multiple ACL injuries on his resume would be more susceptible to a third.
But that’s not necessarily the case.
To get a better understanding for the situation, we spoke with Dr. James L. Carey, Director of the Penn Center for Advanced Cartilage Repair and Assistant Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. From Dr. Carey’s vantage point, does the fact that Bradford is coming off two ACL ruptures make it more likely that he will sustain a third?
“No,” he replied. “In my opinion, I don’t think that he’s at an increased risk for a third injury any more so than his other knee or the knees of any other NFL quarterback.” Read more »
Today marks the start of Organized Team Activities (OTAs) for the Eagles. What are OTAs? Non-contact practices, basically. Now in Phase Three of the offseason conditioning program, the team is allowed to engage in 7-on-7 and 11-on-11 drills.
A total of 10 practices are permitted over the next several weeks. The Eagles’ OTA schedule breaks down as follows: Read more »
Thank you very much to the men and women who serve and sacrifice for our country, including those in our Birds 24/7 community.
We hope everyone is getting some down time in over this long weekend. Like many of us, the Eagles will be back at it tomorrow as OTAs begin. We’ll give a more detailed preview in the morning.
If you need a fix in the meantime, take a listen to Mike Missanelli’s interview with Jon Runyan. The former Eagle and U.S. Representative believes that we should reserve judgment on Chip Kelly until he’s had the chance to build the roster in his vision, and has no issues with his decision to “hit the reset button” prior to Year 3. But Runyan cautions that said transition might be a bumpy one at first. Read more »
Here’s a look at the latest from around the NFC East:
Mike Shanahan offered some thoughts on his former quarterback, Robert Griffin III, during a recent radio appearance. From CSN Washington:
“I don’t think getting hurt has anything to do with it,” Shanahan said of RG3 on the Grant and Danny Show on 106.7 The Fan.
The struggles, per Shanahan, are due to system changes.
After his rookie season, where Griffin’s running ability catapulted the Redskins offense but also caused the QB to take a lot of tough hits, Shanahan said the word came from Griffin as well as owner Dan Snyder to have less quarterback runs. With less running for Griffin, the second year player was forced into more of a drop back passer role. Shanahan said RG3 was not ready for that, and while he has the physical tools, becoming a drop back passer will continue to take time for Griffin because he has no experience doing it.
“In college he didn’t have a route tree, didn’t have a playbook,” Shanahan said of Griffin’s transition to a pocket passer. “That does take some time.”
Dave Spadaro of philadelphiaeagles.com reports on Lane Johnson’s offseason MMA workouts in California:
Johnson enrolled at MMA Athletics, a program founded by Mixed Martial Arts legend Randy Couture and FOX NFL insider Jay Glazer, an established program that takes athletes’ conditioning to an entirely different level.
“I want to be elite at my position in the NFL, and I felt that this would help me get there,” Johnson says now, fresh off a training session at the NovaCare Complex. “I have a lot of confidence about what’s ahead of me.
“I think I’m getting close to being elite. Last year was a big stepping stone from my rookie year and I just have to be more aggressive and more violent going into Year 3.”
Read more »
Yesterday, Eagles second-round pick Eric Rowe joined the 97.5 morning show to talk about his first impressions of the city, the fans and, most importantly Chip Kelly. During his introductory press conference, Rowe explained how he was intimidated by Kelly when they first met at the Senior Bowl, but after being drafted by the team, Kelly was much more friendly to the rookie defensive back.
Rowe elaborated on what it was like in that meeting room.
“[Kelly] wasn’t doing anything, he just had his arms crossed,” Rowe said. “He didn’t ask any of the questions. Everything I would say, he was jotting it down. It was just really intimidating.
“When I left the room, I was just like, ‘man, that was tough.’ They were asking me questions left and right.”
But what kind kind of questions were the Eagles asking Rowe? Read more »