What They’re Saying About the Eagles
Here’s a roundup of what the local and national media are saying about the Eagles today.
Peter King of The MMQB has had a section in his column titled CHIP KELLY WISDOM OF THE WEEK. King seemed to like and appreciate Chip Kelly’s philosophies and practices.
But he apparently didn’t consider the possibility that the Eagles might not be that great this year, so the column section has now been axed:
This column section is being retired, mercifully, after the Eagles, who controlled the NFC East 15 mornings ago, lost their third straight game, committed 13 penalties, and had their 34th and 35th turnovers of the year.
Not saying Kelly has lost his touch, or his football brain. But his team is just too careless. The Eagles have had two fumble-free games all season. They’ve had 197 penalty yards marked off in the two biggest games of the year the last two weeks.
King also looks at how the Eagles got here:
Chip Kelly has got to be tearing his hair out with all the turnovers (35 by the quarterbacks alone in 15 games) and thinking about a totally new depth chart at the position for 2015. A three-game losing streak with the talent on that team, particularly with the good young defensive talent, is hard to fathom. One more offseason priority: cornerbacks. Philly’s stink.
It will be tough for the Eagles to find a QB upgrade this offseason, writes Mike Sando of ESPN.com:
The Eagles are one of six teams to lose their past three games, but with nine victories, they stand 18th in the projected draft order entering Week 17. Closing with a road defeat against the New York Giants would not push them high enough in the order to realistically contend for Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota, who would be an obvious fit for Kelly’s offense. Trading up is a long shot for a couple reasons. One, QB-needy teams drafting ahead of the Eagles could resist trading down. Two, it’s no sure thing the Eagles would want to trade up when they know first-round picks succeed about 60 percent of the time, which means having additional picks is usually better than having a single higher pick.
Don Banks of SI.com on DeSean Jackson:
If DeSean Jackson could only face his old team every week, he’d be a first-ballot Hall of Famer some day. The ex-Eagles’ receiver burns with the motivation of one who has been scorned, and he got plenty of revenge this season against Philadelphia, the team that unceremoniously and surprisingly released him this spring. Jackson did his part on Saturday to ruin the Eagles’ shriveling playoff chances, catching four passes for 126 yards and surpassing 1,000 yards receiving on the season. He abused Eagles cornerback Bradley Fletcher and exposed the still-shaky Philly secondary.
In Week 3 in Philadelphia, Jackson hung up five catches for 117 yards, including a long scoring pass from then-Washington starter Kirk Cousins. Nine catches for 243 yards and a touchdown, with three receptions in excess of 50 yards, but the Eagles didn’t need Jackson this year. Right.
Tell me again how it was strictly a football decision, Chip Kelly?
Bill Barnwell of Grantland assesses the wreckage:
It’s a tough lesson to learn for the Eagles. For as incredible as they look at times and as smart as they are as an organization, they still have a long ways to go. Chip Kelly’s emphasis on sport science and retaining endurance through the end of the season seemed to pay off when Philadelphia won seven of their final eight games a year ago, but even with an enlightened process, the Eagles have gone 0-3 this December. They’ve pieced together a patchwork secondary from free agency and gotten by with mediocre quarterbacks in a great scheme. To take the next step, they’ll need to improve in both those areas.
Paul Domowitch of the Daily News takes a look at the Eagles’ offensive line:
The Eagles’ offensive line isn’t getting any younger. While Kelce and Johnson both still are young, Mathis is 33 and will count $6.5 million against the cap in 2015. Peters will turn 33 in January and has an $8.5 million cap number in 2015.
Herremans, who has suffered season-ending injuries in two of the last three seasons that have caused him to miss 15 of the last 39 games, is 32 with a $5.2 million cap number next season.
If they can stay healthy and play at a level comparable to last season, that is money well spent. If they can’t and play as inconsistently as they did this season, it’s going to be a problem for a team that already has quite a few of them.
Jeff McLane of the Inquirer talked to players after the game about Jackson:
The way the Eagles lost on Saturday, with Jackson delivering daggers to the defense, prompted two players to lament his absence to me. “And then [Jackson] burns us,” one starter said. “That hurt because you think, ‘Damn, he should be on our team. Why he isn’t he on our team?’” Another player: “I miss him. We miss him. … It was a mistake.”