Following the Eagles’ playoff loss to the Saints, Jeffrey Lurie was asked what needs to happen for his team to take the next step.
After noting that getting off to a better start would help in the future, he said: “This year we had a young team, and they were just finding out how good they were.”
But how young were the Eagles compared to the other 31 teams? Read more »
With the game tied at 14 in the fourth quarter, Deion Sanders thought about pulling Nick Foles from the Pro Bowl.
“Offensively, I know drafting young quarterbacks it was gonna be a dilemma,” Sanders said during a TV interview on NBC. “But I know I have [Andrew] Luck. And he’s with his scheme. So if we have to go back to Luck, we gotta go back to Luck.”
Ultimately, Sanders decided to stick with Foles, and the Eagles’ signal-caller rewarded him by engineering a five-play, 57-yard drive to give his team the lead. Foles delivered a beautiful ball to Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown down the right sideline for 39 yards. He then found Browns tight end Jordan Cameron for a 12-yard TD. Read more »
Earlier this month, Evan Mathis earned All-Pro honors.
Now, he’s headed to the Pro Bowl as well.
Mathis was originally named an alternate, but because three of the guards who made the squad at first – San Francisco Mike Iupati, Denver’s Louis Vasquez and New England’s Logan Mankins - are on teams that are still in the playoffs, he’s headed to Hawaii. Read more »
Evan Mathis may not have been voted into the Pro Bowl, but he is getting plenty of recognition elsewhere this offseason. The standout guard was named first-team All-Pro by the Associated Press earlier this month. On Monday, he was selected to the Pro Football Writers of America All-NFL team.
LeSean McCoy was also named to the All-NFL team, and Jason Peters made the All-NFC team.
While McCoy and Peters were both tabbed to represent the Eagles in the Pro Bowl (Peters has since opted out), the 32-year-old Mathis was named a second alternate along with DeSean Jackson. (Nick Foles, a first alternate, will be playing in Hawaii). Mathis has been cleaning up otherwise. He recently was given the Bruce Matthews Award by Pro Football Focus, which goes to the top offensive lineman in the league. Read more »
With 3:54 left in the third quarter of last week’s playoff game against the Saints, the Eagles’ offense took the field for the ninth time.
The results of the first eight drives were ugly: six punts, one missed field goal and a touchdown. The Saints finished fourth in the regular season in scoring defense, and for much of Saturday’s game, Rob Ryan’s group got the better of the Eagles.
Nick Foles and company scored on their final three possessions to give the Eagles a 24-23 lead, but ultimately, it wasn’t enough.
Defense and special teams certainly shared responsibility for the 26-24 loss, but given the way the offense had played all season, it’s worth exploring why that side of the ball struggled for the first 41 minutes of the game. Read more »
When asked why he was so confident that his program could work in the NFL, Chip Kelly offered a somewhat surprising response.
“I wasn’t confident,” he said. “I had a system and a plan that we were going to go in, but I didn’t know what the outcome was going to be until it was all finished. But I think we played sound fundamental football, and I think that’s what we preach on a daily basis to our players. I think it’s still a game of 11-on-11, and I think a lot of things we do schematically match up 11-on-11. It’s a fundamental game, and I think that’s what our coaches teach. I thought we brought in a bunch of really good teachers that could implement the plan that we had in place, and we felt this would be the best plan for us this year going forward.”
Going into next season, new faces will be added, but many of the core players from the 2013 squad will remain the same.
Keeping that in mind, I posed one simple question to the players earlier this week as they cleaned out their lockers:
What did Kelly do in Year One that makes you believe he can lead this franchise to greater heights going forward? Read more »
First-and-10 from the Saints’ 15, late in the opening quarter. Drew Brees had just thrown his first interception of the day, the crowd was smelling blood and the Eagles were threatening. It was the first chance to establish superiority. Instead, a nightmare sequence developed.
Brent Celek was dropped for an eight-yard loss on a screen play. Then Nick Foles, with all day to throw, never pulled the trigger and took an 11-yard sack. A play later, Alex Henery knuckled a 48-yard field goal attempt wide left.
“Part of the turnover thing as I’ve talked about before is if our defense does create them we need to do something with them offensively, and we didn’t capitalize the way we need to when our defense creates turnovers like that,” said Chip Kelly.
What went wrong? Let’s take a look: Read more »
Jan 4, 2014; Philadelphia, PA, USA; New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees (9) prepares to throw the ball as Philadelphia Eagles outside linebacker Trent Cole (58) and Eagles defensive end Fletcher Cox (91) chase in the first quarter during the 2013 NFC wild card playoff football game at Lincoln Financial Field. Photo | Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports
Going into Saturday night’s matchup with the Saints, the Eagles’ defensive gameplan focused on daring Sean Payton to take the football out of Drew Brees’ hands.
New Orleans has been a pass-first offense and was playing without its leading rusher in Pierre Thomas. Unlike most weeks, Davis figured he could pay less attention to the run game and instead scheme to limit big plays in the passing game. Payton responded by handing the ball off over and over again to the tune of 36 carries and 185 yards.
“That’s on me,” Davis said. “I made the calls for the passing game to make sure we keep the big plays off us. It was a lot more split safety and a lot more pass-oriented calls, so some of the runs leaked out. I could have called more of a run-based defensive game, shut that down, but we were trying to keep the points down and the big plays off us. So that run game comes down to me, not the players.” Read more »
Eagles safety Earl Wolff is listed as questionable for the team’s Saturday night playoff matchup against the New Orleans Saints.
Wolff told Birds 24/7 Thursday that his knee was improving.
“I just know that it felt a lot better today than it did before. They kind of recorded me moving around a little bit, doing some functional stuff, and it didn’t bother me,” he said.
“It was football activity, basically like what I would go through in a game, and it didn’t really bother me. Of course I felt it a little bit –I’m going to feel it a little bit — but it’s nothing that’s going to hold me back.” Read more »
The Eagles’ offense took the field with 11:46 left against the Cowboys in need of a serious boost.
Chip Kelly’s squad had come up empty on six of its previous seven possessions and clung to a 17-16 lead with the division on the line. So Kelly leaned on what the offense does best: running the football.
The Eagles put together an 11-play, 60-yard drive that resulted in a 6-yard Bryce Brown touchdown. Nine of the 11 plays were runs. And one run in particular gave the Eagles a boost: a new sweep play from an unbalanced line that was just installed during the week, according to players. Read more »