Wake-Up Call: Daniel Says Eagles Ahead Of the Game
It’s been a bit of a bumpy ride over the last handful of months if you haven’t gathered, what with Chip Kelly getting booted out and Howie Roseman moving back in; a coaching and personnel head search that didn’t go according to script; Sam Bradford disappearing and Fletcher Cox not appearing at all; turnover and trades and scheme changes and such. When it comes many facets of the organization this offseason, things have been less than settled.
On the field, though, it’s been smoother sailing — at least as Chase Daniel views it from his perch. His first year in Kansas City coincided with Andy Reid‘s. Having seen both Year Ones up close, he’s concluded that the 2016 Eagles are “light years ahead” of where the Chiefs were at this stage of the game.
“I think we are way further ahead now in terms of installing the offense, guys picking it up,” he said. “It’s not an easy offense to learn — just point blank it’s not — so I think guys have really shown that they are studying at home, that they really care about what’s going on and they’re making plays out there, they really are.”
Daniel is a big Doug Pederson guy and he’s going to say pro-Pederson things, and that’s just the way it is. What was interesting about this particular exchange was that he didn’t realize that he was handing Pederson a pretty monster compliment. Asked why he thought this group was so far ahead of the ’13 Chiefs, he struggled to come up with an answer.
“I don’t know. I think we have some really smart guys in this locker room — not that we didn’t in Kansas City — but I think guys are just picking it up faster. I don’t know what to attribute that to. Maybe they’re studying more, maybe it just makes sense to them,” he said. “It’s hard to tell, but I feel light years ahead of where we were maybe the first year when we installed it.”
Maybe it’s a feather in the cap of the head coach?
“There you go,” Daniel responded. “Doug heard three years of installs from Andy. Andy installed there. I’m sitting next to Doug in Kansas City and he’s taking copious amounts of notes. He knew what he was in for. He’s going to be a head coach, he’s going to run this offense, he’s going to have his own twists on some stuff. And you could really tell. Like for me, it’s a little different because I’m like, ‘Oh yeah, he hit that point. He hit that point.’ Maybe stuff that he wouldn’t think of but we both heard [from Reid]. I’ve been truly impressed with how well he’s installed the offense, so maybe that could be attributed to it, yeah.”
Pederson’s attention to detail is one thing that has stuck out early to some of the offensive players, including former Rams receiver Chris Givens.
“I think he’s doing a great job. Our meetings are very detailed,” he said. “If you pay attention during the meetings you’re going to know what to do when you go out onto the field. He doesn’t really leave any stone unturned when it comes to meetings. Sometimes we go over the time because he’s so detailed. That’s something that for me makes it easier just hearing what he expects and what he sees and what’s going to happen today.”
Givens noted that Pederson’s offense is “more aggressive” than what he was accustomed to with the Rams. There are deeper patterns, more shots downfield and they’re running “the whole route tree” which opens up more possibilities for the receivers.
It’s the time of year for optimism. Every record is unblemished and every new hire is a good hire. So it goes. Reid inherited a 2-14 team and went 11-5 his first year despite allegedly being on a slower learning curve than what Pederson is dealing with in Philly. It’s to be determined whether Pederson can mirror some of the success of his mentor, but it’s at least worth noting that he is holding his own at the moment — at least according to one man who has seen both operations up close.
WHAT YOU MISSED
“The players, I think, really gravitate toward him, in a human way. … And that’s important.” What They’re Saying
“I think he’s on a level that a lot of guys aren’t.” Some positive reactions as Nelson Agholor transitions into Year 2.
Which Eagle could disappoint this season, and who could be dark horses? Josh takes a look.
WHAT THEY’RE SAYING
Frank Reich clarified his comments regarding the quarterback situation, writes Les Bowen.
Reich said he wasn’t hinting at an accelerated time frame for Wentz, the second overall pick in the draft, or disagreeing with head coach Doug Pederson last week when he went on 94WIP and said it was “probably not” accurate to call Bradford the unquestioned starter.
“I said there’s order – the order is, Sam’s No. 1, Chase’s No. 2 and Carson’s No. 3. But you compete every day out of practice,” Reich said Wednesday. “And that’s the same – Jason Peters is the No. 1 left tackle, and so on and so forth . . . You compete every day.”…
“The benefit of what we have is that the head coach stated very early who our starting quarterback is,” DeFilippo said. “That kind of set the tone of what our mindset is in the quarterback room at this point. There’s hierarchy in the quarterback room . . . Everyone’s on board with the head coach’s message . . . I think it’s helped everybody, that he came out and said that . . . everyone knows where they’re at, and I think everyone operates better when they know where they’re at.”
With the addition of Rodney McLeod at safety, Malcolm Jenkins will be able to share communication duties writes CSN Philly’s Corey Seidman.
So on top of Jenkins now playing alongside a natural safety who has experience making calls and communicating with the rest of the defense, he has a partner that he already has a short-hand with because of their common backgrounds.
“We both came up under Gregg Williams so we speak the same language,” Jenkins said. “We see the same stuff because we’ve been taught by the same person. When we talk, we’re already kind of in sync.
“So from a communication standpoint, it takes a big load off of me and allows me to focus in more on my tips and keys. It also gives us a lot of flexibility — me and him can tweak something in the defense that no one else knows about, but it’s just us being on the same page and can put us in some better positions.”
OTAs continue from the NovaCare.