Wake-Up Call: Celek And the Sports Science Factor

Photo | Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Photo | Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

The media hit the sports science angle pretty hard on Tuesday before players  took off to enjoy their bye week. With a grueling 11 weeks in the books and the stretch run fast approaching,  there is a natural curiosity about whether Chip Kelly‘s methods have led to fresher bodies, and if the Eagles will hold some kind of advantage over the competition in December because of their meticulous training, conditioning and recovery program.

Opinions vary. Some players and coaches insist it’s been a big difference-maker. Billy Davis said he’s “amazed at the energy and the lack of soft-tissue injuries.”

Cary Williams, meanwhile, said he feels no different at this point in the year than he has in the past. That there are players all across the league that are doing the necessary things to take care of their bodies — it just doesn’t get the attention like it does here in Philly under Kelly.

Pat Shurmur looks at one player in particular to gauge whether the approach is a success. Read more »

Making Sense Of the Eagles’ Inactives

kendricks_940_100113The following Eagles are inactive for today’s game against the Washington Redskins: QB Michael Vick, WR Damaris Johnson, CB Bradley Fletcher, safety Earl Wolff, LB Jake Knott, OT Dennis Kelly and LB Mychal Kendricks.

The good news for the Eagles is that Jason Peters is active and expected to start. He was listed as questionable with a pair of injuries (quadriceps, pectoral). If Peters has issues, Allen Barbre will step in. The Eagles also have Matt Tobin active, along with backup guard/center Julian Vandervelde. They usually go with only two backups on gameday, but because of Peters’ injury, they are going with three today. Read more »

Injury Report: Peters, Kendricks Questionable

Eagles Tackle Jason Peters without helmet at practiceHere is the Eagles’ injury report for Sunday’s game against Washington:

Out: LB Jake Knott (hamstring), S Earl Wolff (knee)

Questionable: CB Bradley Fletcher (pectoral), LB Mychal Kendricks (knee), T Jason Peters (quadricep, pectoral), QB Michael Vick (hamstring)

Probable: TE Brent Celek (hip), S Patrick Chung (shoulder), WR Riley Cooper (knee), DE Cedric Thornton (knee).

Plenty of injury concerns for the Eagles. Read more »

Notes: Goode Fined 10K; Injury Update

The league fined linebacker Najee Goode $10,000 for his hit to the head of Packers quarterback Scott Tolzien Sunday.

Goode, filling in for the injured Mychal Kendricks, was whistled for roughing the passer in the fourth quarter after his hands came in contact with Tolzien’s helmet.

“I can’t afford it,” said Goode, who is making $480,ooo this season, joking: “I’m going to make DeMeco [Ryans] pay for it.”

Goode says he plans on appealing the fine, though the evidence may be stacked against him. Read more »

Eagles Wake-Up Call: Three Kelly Leftovers

kelly_400_111113Below are three items that stood out from Chip Kelly’s day-after press conference.

1. I’ve received several questions on Twitter about injuries, but Kelly didn’t provide much information on that front.

“I do not have an update right now,” he said.

Pressed again later, Kelly said: “Mychal [Kendricks] said he felt good, didn’t think there was anything big-time wrong with him. But we’ll see. Jason [Peters] said he’s going to play. But every time Jason’s had anything, he’s told me he’s going to play. But the one thing about Jason is he has played. He hasn’t missed any time since I’ve been here.”

Kendricks and safety Earl Wolff both suffered knee injuries Sunday. Peters first suffered a head injury and then had a quad issue that knocked him out of the game. Read more »

Kendricks, Peters, Wolff Exit With Injuries

Mychal Kendricks (knee), Jason Peters (quad) and Earl Wolff (knee) all suffered injuries against the Packers and will not return.

Kendricks stayed on the ground following a run by Eddie Lacy on the Packers’ first possession of the game. He walked off under his own power but, after being examined by the medical staff on the trainers table, limped into the tunnel for x-rays. Najee Goode replaced him in the lineup.

Peters also went inside after being hit low by a Packers’ defender on a LeSean McCoy run in the first quarter. He returned briefly after being evaluated for a head injury, but lasted one play, leaving for good with a quad. Allen Barbre took his place at left tackle.

Wolff sustained a knee injury in the second quarter and was replaced in the lineup by Patrick Chung.
Read more »

Wake-Up Call: Kendricks ‘Humble And Hungry’

USATSI_7482059_168380503_lowresTen tackles per game.

That’s the number Mychal Kendricks guns for. His brother (also a football player) preached that if you reach that mark regularly, you’re set. And so that became the standard.

Earlier this season, the chase for 10 got him in trouble. He kept count in his head during the game. If he had only four, say, deep into the third quarter, Kendricks would start pressing. Would ask DeMeco Ryans how many he had. Ryans never had an answer because he knew better than to keep track. Read more »

Eagles Players Weigh In On Hazing

kendricks_940_100113The topic of hazing in the NFL has taken center stage following the recent reports out of Miami. Veteran guard Richie Incognito is being accused of bullying fellow lineman Jonathan Martin and sending him harassing messages containing racial slurs.

Incognito was suspended indefinitely by the Dolphins on Sunday night for conduct detrimental to the team. Martin is on a leave of absence.

Some Eagles players weighed in on the situation Tuesday while offering some insight into what it’s like being a neophyte in the NFL.

“I think two guys are at fault to me,” said Cary Williams. “Obviously Incognito had some racial slurs and all this other stuff that was going on that I’m not too enthusiastic about myself. I think Martin definitely could have handled the situation better. You have a player development director there that is in place that is supposed to make you feel at home, make you feel like you can talk to him in confidentiality. There are so many outlets for a player to go and talk. I’m not in his shoes, I wasn’t there so it’s hard for me to determine whether he used the right techniques or the right approach in dealing with the situation, I just know  that hazing is a part of the game and you have to have veteran leadership in there to make sure guys aren’t going too far.

“I think the situation got out of hand, and I still feel like Martin, if all else fails, put up your dukes, man. Read more »

Observations: Eagles 49, Raiders 20

foles_400_110313Here’s what we saw during today’s Eagles-Raiders game.

OFFENSE

* The question coming in was: How would Nick Foles rebound from his disastrous performance two weeks ago against the Cowboys? Even Foles’ biggest supporters could have never imagined he would come back with one of the best statistical performances in NFL history. Foles completed 22 of 28 passes for 406 yards and tied an NFL record with seven touchdowns. The Eagles routed the Raiders, 49-20, for their fourth win of the season. Read more »

Three-And-Out: Eagles-Raiders Predictions

Eagles TE Zach Ertz stretching at practicePlayer I’ll be watching

McManus: Zach Ertz.

This game is a homecoming of sorts for Ertz, who grew up  in nearby Danville, CA and played his college ball at Stanford. He has gotten tickets for about 20 friends and family members.

“Obviously, going home, I want to make some big plays out there,” said Ertz.

The offense could definitely use it. The 35th overall pick has 14 catches on 25 targets for 201 yards (14.4 avg.) this season and has yet to find the end zone. The reason tight ends outside of Brent Celek weren’t seeing the field more early on is because the run game was working just fine when the Eagles were in “11 personnel”. The run game has dried up of late, so there is logic in getting someone like Ertz on the field more — especially over a player like Jeff Maehl.

“I feel very comfortable. I’ve had some opportunities to make some plays and I think I’ve made the plays when I’ve had my number called,” said Ertz. “Hopefully that number continues to go up over the next eight games of the season, whether it’s blocking or in the pass game, wherever they need me.” Read more »

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