What They’re Saying About The Eagles

Photo By Jeff Fusco

Photo By Jeff Fusco

Here’s a roundup of what the local and national media are saying about the Eagles.

Grantland’s Robert Mays writes that Chip Kelly’s plan to revitalize Sam Bradford could very well work.

Kelly’s approach this offseason — wheeling and dealing like few personnel people ever have — has looked insane at times. Plenty of coaches with 20 wins in two years would feel comfortable moving forward with a familiar quantity at quarterback. But the thinking behind the move for Bradford was a bold and commendable one — it seems that Kelly was projecting that both Bradford and his offense could be better than anyone imagined.

It’s still (extremely) early, but the factors that could have led a more optimistic person to feel good about how Bradford translated to Kelly’s style have been on display all preseason. The inhuman accuracy from his first two college seasons — when he completed a combined 68.5 percent of his passes — has been there in both of his preseason starts. Bradford’s 10-for-10 line on Saturday was impressive, but seeing him perfectly locate throws to receivers in reasonably tight coverage was even more encouraging.

Mark Maske of the Washington Post lists Kelly as one of the head coaches on the “hot seat”.

It’s all about Kelly this season in Philadelphia. He probably would have it no other way.

Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie made Kelly the winner in the coach’s power struggle with Howie Roseman, who lost the general manager title but remained in the team’s front office.

Kelly put his new power to use with an offseason roster overhaul in which he parted with tailback LeSean McCoy, quarterback Nick Foles and wide receiver Jeremy Maclin while adding quarterback Sam Bradford and running back DeMarco Murray. Kelly has stocked his roster with his former Oregon players and ignored the prevailing league-wide sentiment about Tim Tebow as an NFL passer by bringing in the quarterback to vie for a spot on the team.

Kelly has won so far and this is not to say there is any immediate danger that Lurie would fire him if things don’t go well this season. But Kelly clearly has put his reputation on the line and there will be no one else to share the credit or the blame for the Eagles’ 2015 fortunes.

NFL.com’s Gregg Rosenthal previewed the Eagles’ 2015 season, and his biggest concern is durability.

The Eagles are putting their sports science secret formulas to the test. So many of Philadelphia’s pickups are coming off serious injury or at extra risk of injury: Bradford, Murray, Mathews, Alonso and safety Walter Thurmond. Kelly also spent big money to retain DeMeco Ryans, coming off an Achilles tear. An avalanche of injuries is a worst-case scenario and another injury to Bradford would put Philadelphia right back into the Sanchez Zone: Good enough to win games, but not as a real Super Bowl contender.

Gary Davenport of Bleacher Report handed out his Preseason Week 3 awards, and Bradford snared the best QB performance.

Sam Bradford fared pretty well with the Eagles on Saturday night. That is, if you call completing every pass you attempt and leading touchdown drives every time you touch the ball “pretty well.”

Bradford’s passer rating in the game? 156.7. A perfect rating is 158.3. No idea where he lost the 1.6 at.

The former No. 1 overall pick in the 2010 NFL draft told Les Bowen of the Philadelphia Daily News he couldn’t be happier with life with his new team.

If this keeps up and Bradford can stay on the field (that second “if” is a whopper), then the 2015 NFL Comeback Player of the Year race is over.

Four Eagles were named to ESPN’s ‘#NFLRank’ of the top 100 players in the league: DeMarco Murray (38), Jason Peters (47), Fletcher Cox (95), and Connor Barwin (96).

95. “The Fletcher Cox show is about to begin,” said one voter. The voting bloc of over 70 NFL analysts, reporters, former coaches, scouts, and front-office members is clearly on board. Cox hasn’t been to a Pro Bowl yet, but the potential is obvious. “He’s dominant against the run, and only J.J. Watt had more hurries last season among 3-4 defensive ends,” said another. The former No. 12 overall pick can no longer be called overlooked.

96. Question: How many NFL players had more sacks than Connor Barwin last season? Answer: Two (Justin Houston and J.J. Watt). Surprised? Well, Barwin isn’t a dominant run defender, but when you cut him loose, he has the pass-rushing skills to match his coiffure. Along with Fletcher Cox and Bennie Logan, Barwin will help form what is, on paper, one of the more disruptive D-lines in the NFL.

MMQB’s Andy Benoit thinks the Eagles’ revamped defense can turn a weakness into a strength:

Philly’s cumulative defensive numbers will rarely look good because Kelly’s fast-paced offense puts the D on the field for extra snaps. (Extra snaps, of course, often means more yardage, and sometimes even more points allowed.) But make no mistake: this team, known for its offense, can now win games on the strength of its defense. Assuming its expensive new corner lives up to expectations.