Eagles Notes: Texans Wanted Barkley?
Before the Houston Texans acquired Ryan Mallett from the Patriots, they tried getting Matt Barkley from the Eagles.
That’s what two sources told Lance Zierlein, a host on Sports Talk 790 in Houston.
Obviously, a deal never got done, and Barkley remains with the Eagles as their No. 3 quarterback. In the preseason, he went 41-for-65 for 495 yards, three touchdowns and three interceptions.
The trade rumor makes sense, considering the Eagles tried out veteran QB Thad Lewis last week.
The Texans eventually gave up a conditional seventh-round pick for Mallett. In all likelihood, the Eagles were asking for more than that, or a deal would have been struck.
Wide receiver Josh Huff (shoulder)and offensive lineman Matt Tobin (ankle) have been ruled out for Sunday’s game against the Jaguars. Nolan Carroll II is expected to return kicks in Huff’s place. Dennis Kelly or Andrew Gardner will replace Tobin as the top guard/tackle backup.
Chris Polk (hamstring) and Jaylen Watkins (hamstring) are questionable. If Polk can’t go, the Eagles will only have two true active running backs: LeSean McCoy and Darren Sproles.
Riley Cooper (ankle) and Brad Smith (groin) are probable.
WHAT THEY’RE SAYING
Some other links to get to…
Jags worked out kickers Derek Dimke and Alex Henery, liked what they saw, but sent them home w/ Josh Scobey feeling better from Quad injury.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) September 5, 2014
Robert Mays of Grantland asks one question about every NFC team:
Was their late-season defensive improvement for real?
Even if the Eagles take a small step back on offense (with coordinators catching up to Chip Kelly, and Philadelphia experiencing some injuries the team avoided a year ago), there’s still a good chance they’ll finish near the top of the league. That might be enough to take the division, but to gain ground on teams like Seattle, they have to hope their defense is closer to what it was at the end of last season. Philly finished 15th in weighted DVOA (which gives more importance to late-season performance), wedged right between the Chiefs and the Jets. With all the young talent the Eagles have, especially up front, there’s reason to believe that improvement carries over.
In a Yahoo Sports article, Greg Cosell discusses how teams might try to defend the Eagles this year:
I expect the Denver Broncos to see a lot of “man-free lurk” with one deep safety and another safety lurking near the line of scrimmage, because that’s what the Seattle Seahawks used to beat them in the Super Bowl. Also, the Eagles saw a lot of “man free lurk” against the New England Patriots this preseason, and that could be a trend against Philadelphia.
Rick Maese of The Washington Post has a profile on Adam Schefter, and apparently, the Eagles were looking to trade for a wide receiver at some point:
Adam Schefter had some news to share. On this morning, the audience numbered only one: an AFC executive who had just called.
“Well, I got a few things for you,” Schefter said. “Number one, you got the Titans and Eagles, both very anxious to trade for a wide receiver. They’re both in the wide receiver market. So they’re looking and my understanding is your team is loaded at receiver. . . ”
Will Leitch of Sports On Earth has the Eagles holding off the Cowboys for the division:
The Eagles get revenge for the Thanksgiving loss with a home win over Dallas that essentially clinches them the division with two weeks to go. They’ve got the tiebreaker, and Dallas can’t win the wild card, so that’ll take care of them.
He predicts that the Eagles lose to the 49ers in the wild-card round.