What They’re Saying About The Eagles
Here is what the national media are saying about the Eagles during the days leading up to training camp.
Robert Mays of Grantland lists Jason Peters as the NFL’s top offensive tackle:
Where [Joe] Thomas or [Tyron] Smith are usually content to sit back and let a pass-rusher spin and juke however he wants to, there are plays where Peters can actually mirror those movements as they happen. It’s technically wrong, but his feet are so good that it doesn’t matter. More than any other offensive lineman, Peters has plays that make me laugh and shake my head. The way he can move defies any law of nature we have, and those feet are also what make him so devastating in the run game, especially in Chip Kelly’s offense. Kelly frequently asks Peters to make blocks no other left tackle in the league could. Thomas may be the steady standard on the left side, but Peters’s more spectacular approach gives him the edge over everyone right now.
Judy Battista of NFL.com with some things she’s watching for during training camp:
Be sure to grab a copy of Philadelphia’s roster, because the Eagles are practically unrecognizable after Kelly’s wild overhaul, which sent LeSean McCoy, Jeremy Maclin, Nick Foles and Evan Mathis, among others, packing — and brought in headliners like DeMarco Murray and Kiko Alonso. Kelly finally could have the team he wants, but everything hinges on quarterback Sam Bradford, who is expected to be ready when camp opens after recovering from his second ACL tear in as many years.
Robert Klemko of MMQB writes about Jay Glazer’s gym in California, a facility that hosted a handful of Eagles this offseason:
John Moffitt, the former Denver Broncos guard and now potential Eagles starter, came to Glazer after a nearly two-year hiatus from the sport during which he admits to letting his body go to a degree. He weighed 283 pounds, down from his playing weight of 320, and had the biggest gut of his life. The initial sessions were exhausting. Today he’s back above 300 pounds and slimmer than he was at 283.
“You keep hearing him say, ‘neutral face’ or ‘get your hands off your hips,’ ” Moffitt says of Glazer. “It’s very annoying when you first start that, but after a while it makes you stronger. It makes you used to being tired and used to being in pain and you don’t fight it anymore so it makes you more resilient. It just stacks on itself, on itself, on itself, to where you become a stronger individual.”
Four Eagles make Bill Barnwell’s top-100 list on Grantland: Murray, Fletcher Cox, Connor Barwin and Peters. Here’s the writeup on Cox (No. 89):
One of the more egregious absences from this year’s player rankings, Cox was the primary tackler on 43 running plays last year. That’s more than any other 3-4 defensive end in the league. Yes, even more than J.J. Watt (35). Cox still hasn’t arrived as an interior pass-rusher, which is why he’s below some similarly skilled players on this list, but he was a raw athlete coming out of Mississippi State. It wouldn’t surprise me to see him take a sudden leap and approach 10 sacks this season, and if he does that, he’s going to make a boatload of money next offseason.
Chris Burke of SI.com lists the Eagles 1992 draft class as the worst in NFL history:
Uh … wow. If we were retroactively handing out draft grades, this Eagles effort would get a ¯\_(ツ)_/¯. A Football Outsiders study two years ago, based on Pro Football Focus’s “Career Adjusted Value” metric, determined that Philadelphia’s ’92 class was the least productive in NFL history. (The ’75 Chiefs missed the cut because they did not have enough picks in the top 222 slots, which was a listed criteria.)
[Siron] Stacy was the Eagles’ highest selection—he played 16 career games and never attempted attempted a single carry in the regular season. Philadelphia had traded away its Round 1 pick the previous season so it could draft offensive lineman Antone Davis, who then spent four rather forgettable years with the team. [Quarterback Casey] Weldon, runner-up to Desmond Howard for the 1991 Heisman Trophy, never suited up for the Eagles after being taken in Round 4. He later served as a backup in Tampa Bay and Washington, with additional stops in NFL Europe and the XFL.
Evan Silva of Rotoworld offers his outlook for the Eagles in 2015:
The Eagles have won ten games in each of Chip Kelly’s two seasons on the job. As Kelly commandeered personnel control this offseason, Philadelphia took an aggressive approach to roster modification and enters camp with a ton of moving parts. Their Vegas Win Total is 9.5, tied with Baltimore and Dallas for sixth highest in the league. I’m going to take the under on Philly’s Win Total, not because I think they’ll suddenly become a bad team, but because I don’t feel confident enough in their outlook either way to bet on the Eagles reaching double-digit wins. While I fully expect the offense to continue racking up fantasy numbers and the Eagles to contend for the NFC East title, I have enough concerns with the quarterback situation, offensive line, and back seven on defense to guess Philly finishes at 8-8 or 9-7.
Vice Sports profiled Eagles special teams ace Bryan Braman: