You know the drill. Here are 10 things to know about this matchup. Read more »
Brian Westbrook, one of the great screen running backs in the history of the league, continues to be a guiding voice in the ear of LeSean McCoy. It probably came as little surprise, then, that McCoy had a message waiting for him on his phone following the Tampa game on Sunday.
“He texted me after the game and said, ‘Come on, bro. You’re supposed to score on that play.’ ”
The play was a screen pass to McCoy on the Eagles’ first offensive snap of the game. Everything was perfect, from design to execution. What’s more, the Bucs were in the worst possible defense for this particular play call. The seas parted and McCoy was in the wide open field with blockers set up in front of him. He got 44. He could have had the whole thing.
“I should have scored,” McCoy admitted.
Let’s take a look at the anatomy of a near-perfect screen play with the help of the players involved and the screen maestro himself, Westbrook. Read more »
Here’s a position-by-position look at what we saw from the Eagles’ offense after having re-watched Sunday’s game.
* Nick Foles’ numbers speak for themselves: 22-for-31 (71 percent) for 296 yards (9.5 YPA), three touchdowns and no interceptions. Foles also ran in for a score. This was different than last week’s game. He was going up against a Bucs defense that has some talent, specifically in the secondary. We spent much of the offseason discussing how the offense fits Michael Vick’s skill set. But so far (small sample size, granted), it looks like it fits Foles as well. As a rookie, he completed 60.8 percent of his passes and averaged 6.4 YPA. On 61 passes the past two weeks, those numbers are 67.2 percent and 8.9 YPA. Read more »
TAMPA, Fla. — Jason Kelce did not get yelled at. He didn’t have to go to his room or write I will not let the nose guard get past me a hundred times on the chalkboard after practice.
Instead, he just went to work and listened closely as Chip Kelly and the coaching staff devised a plan to eliminate the issues that plagued the Eagles’ ground game a week ago against the Giants.
Kelly has built part of his reputation on coming up with creative and effective ways to run the football. So when the concepts he installs in the game-plan don’t work, he takes offense. But this time around, that feeling led to a solution, as LeSean McCoy piled up 116 yards on 25 carries against a stout Bucs defense. Read more »
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Back in 2009, Chip Kelly was speaking at a coaches clinic about Oregon’s zone-read game, and he said something that applies to this weekend’s matchup with the Bucs.
“This may sound like a contradiction, but we do not read anything,” Kelly said. “When you read, you become uncertain. We want the ball in the running back’s hands. We do not want the quarterback carrying the ball. The option can put the ball in his hands, but the defense can force it out of his hands. We want the quarterback to give the ball unless he cannot.
“If the running back is continually getting tackled by the defensive end, the quarterback should be pulling the ball.”
Through four-and-a-half games, Michael Vick kept the ball on read-option plays eight times. But he made defenses pay when they didn’t account for him, picking up 122 yards (15.3 YPC).
Keeping that in mind, the big question this week is: How will the run game change if Nick Foles is the quarterback? Read more »
Below is a position-by-position review of how the Eagles’ offense performed against the Giants after having re-watched the game. Read more »
The offensive line hasn’t faced many exotic looks through the first four games. In fact, when asked about the need to change protections at the line of scrimmage to account for extra rushers, Jason Kelce‘s mind traveled all the way back to one specific play against San Diego, when the Chargers brought a free safety on the weakside. There obviously weren’t a lot of examples in his mental Rolodex to choose from.
“With the type of offense we have, it’s very tough to be able to blitz and blitz effectively, because if you’re getting guys out of position, if you’re too many to one side, then all of a sudden you’re leaving things open,” Kelce said.
So the looks have been vanilla. Communication has rarely been an issue. The line has consistently been in the right calls, according to the center. Everyone understands their assignments.
So why the issues in pass protection? Read more »
Here’s a position-by-position review of the Eagles’ offensive performance against the Broncos. Read more »