What They’re Saying About the Eagles
Here’s a roundup of what the national media are saying about the Eagles this week.
The Birds dropped two spots to ninth in the NFL.com power rankings:
Who didn’t think the Eagles had the Sunday nighter in the bag after Darren Sproles took that little counter run in for a touchdown, putting Philly up three, capping off a 24-point spree and whipping the home folks into a frenzy? The Eagles played the run hard, bottling up DeMarco Murray for most of the evening. Unfortunately for them, there was that Dez guy …
Todd McShay of ESPN.com has a way-too-early, but fun to look at mock draft out. He has the Eagles picking 20th and selecting Michigan State CB Trae Waynes:
The Eagles have been better on defense this season, but cornerback remains a position of need and Waynes would be a good fit. He has good length and speed for the corner position, and he’s a sure tackler who isn’t afraid to come up and assist in run support. His field awareness is very impressive as well.
The Eagles also fell two spots to ninth in the ESPN.com power rankings:
Even with wins at the Redskins and Giants, an 11-win Eagles team could be out of the playoffs with a little bad luck. Thank the horrific NFC South.
In an MMQB piece, Keith Goldner breaks down whether the Mark Sanchez/Nick Foles potential decision even matters:
Which quarterback is the higher variance? Both are extremely volatile—although Foles has shown much higher upside with his 2013 campaign. This season, Sanchez is responsible for six of the Eagles’ fifteen worst offensive plays—including the two worst—while Foles is responsible for eight of them. Foles owns the rights to six of the Eagles’ best fifteen plays, while Sanchez has been a part of five.
Chip Kelly can’t really go wrong with his final decision—though he may never have the opportunity to make it if the Eagles fail to make the postseason.
Chris Wesseling of NFL.com has Fletcher Cox 10th on his list of top 10 defensive players:
We noted on a recent edition of the Around The NFL Podcast that Cox has been one of the three or four most dominant defensive players in the league over the past month. He and Watt have been the NFL’s most complete defensive lineman in the second half of the season.
Peter King of The MMQB ranks the Birds ninth in his Fine Fifteen:
9. Philadelphia (9-5). Bradley Cooper sure looked sad sitting in Jeffrey Lurie’s box, his beloved Philadelphia Silverlining Playbooks down 21-7 to the Cowboys in the second quarter. Cooper was dancing in the second half, but Mark Sanchez just couldn’t make enough plays to win this one.
In the ninth spot again, the Eagles fall three spots in the FoxSports.com power rankings.
Ryan Wilson of CBSSports.com covers Bradley Fletcher‘s poor play in his Week 15 Coach Killers:
The problem is that Fletcher remains a huge liability in the Eagles’ secondary. And while he’s had good games — see Week 10 against the Panthers, when he was targeted nine times and allowed just two receptions — those have been rare and always against offenses not particularly adept at the forward pass.
Meanwhile, there seems to be no pattern to his worst efforts this season, which came against the Redskins (Week 3, when we still Kirk Cousins was the future in Washington), Cardinals (Week 8), Packers (Week 11), Titans (Week 12) and Cowboys.
Just how bad was it for Fletcher on Sunday night? Dez Bryant had three touchdowns with Fletcher supposedly in coverage. When it was over, Tony Romo had targeted Fletcher five times, thrown five completions for 88 yards, and had a perfect passer rating of 158.3 against the cornerback.
Chris Trapasso of CBSSports.com gives the five most interesting statistics for the Eagles-Washington game:
Robert Griffin III’s Deceiving Numbers
RG3, the No. 2 overall pick in the 2012 draft and that season’s Offensive Rookie of the Year, has had a nightmare of season. And that’s probably putting it lightly. With Colt McCoy on IR, the embattled former star who’s experienced an unprecedentedly speedy fall from grace, will be the Redskins starter for the final two weeks of the year.
In a season in which he was injured, then benched and repeatedly blasted by his head coach, Jay Gruden, RG3 has actually been quite accurate. Check where he ranks in Pro Football Focus’ Accuracy Percentage (AP) going into this contest.
The Birds fall two spots to eighth in the CBSSports.com power rankings:
Two straight home losses have this team in second place and in need of winning out. The secondary had a rough go of it against the Cowboys.
Pat Kirwan of CBSSports.com also has the Eagles eighth in his power rankings:
Eagles (6): The Eagles rallied from a 21-0 deficit to take the lead vs. the Cowboys, but let Dallas march straight down the field to re-take the lead Sunday night. Even if they get Nick Foles back — he won’t play Saturday vs. Washington — it may not be enough to secure a playoff spot.
Pro Football Talk drops Philadelphia four spots to tenth in its power rankings:
10. Philadelphia Eagles (No. 6; 9-5): Demoralized after a pair of home losses, the Eagles are still only a pair of road wins and a Cowboys stumble away from winning the division.
The Eagles move down from fifth to tenth in the SB Nation power rankings.
Matt Cassidy is a journalism student at Temple and an intern at Birds 24/7.