Rule Emphasis Affects Man Coverage, Benefits Eagles

Photo by: Jeff Fusco.

Photo by: Jeff Fusco.

Billy Davis felt like words alone couldn’t get his message across, so he reached over and grabbed the sleeve of a reporter’s shirt with his thumb and index finger.

“They’re throwing everything. They’re not playing. That one that got us off the field… [Tom] Brady to Curtis Marsh, the 3rd-and-3. I swear, it was that,” he said, barely yanking on the sleeve. “But it was that. He did it. So the flag was our’s. But it was only that. It wasn’t the pull where it moved his body. It was a feeler cloth deal. Can’t complain because we did it, but…”

Defensive coaches at the NovaCare Complex are walking a fine line. They don’t want to make excuses when asked about the new emphasis on illegal contact downfield. But they want to be honest in explaining that the job of defenders in coverage just got a whole lot more difficult.

What’s perhaps more fascinating, though, when it comes to the Eagles is how the emphasis affects the other side of the ball. Read more »

Bicknell On DeSean, State Of Receivers

Jeremy Maclin

Many of the offseason questions for the Eagles surround the wide receiver position, so we spent a good portion of Monday’s session with the assistant coaches at Bob Bicknell‘s table for his read on the state of the receivers. Here’s what we came away with:

Bicknell might be best known in Philadelphia for his flap with DeSean Jackson on the sidelines in Minnesota back in December. This led to speculation that the coach and player had a strained relationship — a theory that gained steam when Jackson was shown the door back in March. Not so, according to the receivers coach. Read more »

Eagles Wake-Up Call: Weighing In On DeSean

Eagles wide receiver DeSean Jackson (10) returns a punt return against the Detroit Lions during the fourth quarter of the Snow Bowl

In the past week or so, there’s been a lot of talk about DeSean Jackson’s future with the Eagles and the possibility of the organization moving on without him.

Jimmy Kempski of Philly.com offered his take over the weekend on why trading Jackson could make sense. Geoff Mosher of CSNPhilly.com and Jeff McLane of The Inquirer weighed in yesterday.

The way I see it the only thing that really matters in this scenario is Chip Kelly’s opinion. Forget Jackson’s salary, the team’s decision to re-sign Jeremy Maclin and Riley Cooper and everything else. The bottom line is simply if the head coach – for one reason or another – thinks trading Jackson is the right move to get the organization closer to a Super Bowl, then that’s what the Eagles will do.

But barring a slam dunk deal, I think such a move would be an enormous mistake for the following reasons: Read more »

Chip: Starters Will Play Sunday Regardless

Chip Kelly sideline talks to referee
If the Cowboys beat the Redskins Sunday afternoon, the night time tilt between the Eagles and Bears becomes meaningless in terms of determining a division winner. In that scenario, the NFC East would be decided in Week 17 when the Eagles and Cowboys square off in Dallas.

Would Chip Kelly rest his starters against Chicago if it plays out that way?

“No,” he said. “We’ve got to play. We’re not in a situation where we’ve gotta rest anybody. We’ve got to play, we’ve got to get back on the winning track and we’ve got to be ready to play winning football. Our philosophy has always been, it’s on the line every single time you play, it’s not what goes on outside of there. We need to get better as a football team, everybody needs to play.” Read more »