What They’re Saying About the Eagles
Here is what the national media have to say about Chip Kelly’s squad this week.
KC Joyner of ESPN.com named the Eagles as his favorite to win the NFC East:
It’s hard to remember a 10-win campaign that was received worse than the Philadelphia Eagles’ double-digit win total last season. It was the second year in a row the organization won 10 games, and yet the general perception of this team is that it is closer the middle of the pack than it is to the top of the league.
Part of that image stems from uncertainty of what to make of the myriad of personnel changes coach Chip Kelly has implemented since he took over the team.
As understandable as those concerns are, the reality of the situation is there are many reasons to think the Eagles are the favorites to win the NFC East in 2015.
Peter King of The MMQB ranked the Eagles seventh in his latest power rankings, six slots ahead of anyone else in the division:
Mike Trout says: In Chip We Trust. For the Eagles to be seventh in the NFL, he’s going to have to say: In Sam Bradford We Trust.
Will Brinson of CBS Sports predicts the Eagles will finish over the 9.5-win mark Vegas has set for them in 2015:
Meanwhile the Eagles are a mystery wrapped in an enigma. Chip Kelly continues to do the craziest things and no one really knows how Sam Bradford is going to work out. I do know this: Kelly has dumped a ton of assets into his defense and it should result in an improved unit. On offense, adding Nelson Agholor in the draft does a lot to improve the receiver corps. It’s not star-studded but it’s full of dudes who are going to run precise routes and fit in Chip’s system. DeMarco Murray is a better north-south runner than LeSean McCoy. There’s lots of depth here too. If Bradford flops, Mark Sanchez is there to step in quickly.
According to Mike Reiss of ESPN Boston, the Eagles were considering extending Bradley Fletcher prior to the 2014 season:
Seven-year veteran cornerback Bradley Fletcher is going to be one of the more interesting players to follow for the Patriots. If the season started today, he’s probably one of the team’s starters. What some might not realize is that prior to the 6-foot, 200-pound Fletcher flaming out in Philadelphia last season, the Eagles were considering signing him to a contract extension that would have reflected his value as a solid starter. Can he recapture that form in New England? At a position where there has been great turnover, it’s one of the team’s biggest questions to answer.
Chris Chase of USA Today has an intriguing theory as to why Kelly decided to take a flier on Tim Tebow:
The coach spent the offseason making the personnel moves a drunk college kid would make while playing Madden at 2:30 a.m. on a Tuesday. He jettisoned his best player, traded for a quarterback for whom staying healthy is as impossible as levitation, got rid of a perfectly serviceable quarterback who once provided him a 8-2 record and 27 TD/2 INT season and then overpaid a running back that his division rival deemed unworthy, mainly due to the fact that DeMarco Murray’s legs might actually fall off this season after being used so much in 2014.
Enter Tim Tebow. Eagles OTAs on Thursday originally would have featured a hostile media, ready to have a feeding frenzy about Kelly’s offseason moves. Instead, it turned into a circus about Tim Tebow. Other than covering a quote of Kelly responding to LeSean McCoy’s allegations of racism, something that no one took seriously anyway because McCoy doesn’t seem to be the most thoughtful player who’s ever donned an NFL jersey, every national outlet focused on Tebow and Tebow only.