Weekend Reading: Malcolm Jenkins Receiving High Marks

Plus: which Eagle had to deactivate his Twitter account?

Malcolm Jenkins. (Jeff Fusco)

Malcolm Jenkins. (Jeff Fusco)

Here’s this weekend’s roundup of the national stories about the Eagles:

Malcolm Jenkins is the team’s most underrated player, according to Vincent Verhei of Football Outsiders for ESPN.com.

Philadelphia Eagles

Defensive back Malcolm Jenkins

Jenkins had his best season in years while also juggling more roles than he has in some time. He played significant snaps as a box safety, deep safety and slot corner. No matter where he lined up, Jenkins performed against both the run and pass. Among all defensive backs, he ranked seventh in average rushing yards per tackle (4.8) and 23rd in adjusted yards per target in coverage (6.3).

He’s also the sixth best safety in the league, according to Cameron DaSilva of FoxSports.com.

6. Malcolm Jenkins, Philadelphia Eagles

On a team with Fletcher Cox, Connor Barwin and Mychal Kendricks, Malcolm Jenkins may very well be the best defender on the roster. The cornerback-turned-safety took his game to another level in 2015, his second season with the Eagles. Jenkins was a do-it-all player for Philadelphia, playing free safety over the top and even coming down into the slot to cover wide receivers. He was at his best when covering tight ends in man coverage, though. Jenkins used his past knowledge and skill set as a cornerback to stick with receivers, often blanketing them, forcing the quarterback to go elsewhere. And when the ball did come his way, he made a play to prevent a completion.

Jenkins finished the season with two interceptions and 109 tackles, forcing three fumbles, as well. He’s a terrific all-around player who can lay big hits and intercept passes 35 yards downfield, which most safeties can’t do. As long as he can stay healthy and continue to perform at an extremely high level both in the slot and over the top, Jenkins will be an All-Pro in 2016, or a Pro Bowler at the very least.

And, he’s the sixth best free safety according to Chris Burke of SI.com.

6. Malcolm Jenkins, Philadelphia Eagles

Jenkins is another member of the elite safety club who A.) recently received a juicy new contract extension (five years, $35 million), and B.) spent a great deal of his time last season covering the slot (47% of his snaps, per Philly.com). Jenkins, like [Tyrann] Mathieu, also landed on our countdown of the league’s top slot cornerbacks. The footwork Jenkins showed in sticking to those quick inside receivers also happens to be part of what helps him thrive from a safety alignment. He couples that quickness with the experience gained over nearly 100 career NFL starts to stay a step ahead of the offensive weapons he’s facing. He rightfully took his first Pro Bowl trip a year ago.

Eagles center Jason Kelce‘s Twitter account was reportedly hacked and has been taken down completely, writes Jonathan Tannenwald of Philly.com.

Eagles center Jason Kelce said Friday that his Twitter account had been hacked, leading to a post on his feed stating “Please kill yourself @HillaryClinton.”

Kelce said in a text message to Inquirer columnist Jeff McLane that he has emails proving he was hacked.

The tweet at Clinton was posted at 3:27 a.m. Friday. By 7 a.m., all of Kelce’s tweets were gone.

Just after 8:45, a tweet appeared on Kelce’s feed directing followers to another person’s Instagram account. That account was locked, but a link in the bio directed followers to a Twitter account that is unlocked and has just nine tweets and a few hundred followers.

Former Eagles head coach Dick Vermeil and former Eagles quarterback Ron Jaworski are bringing American arena football over to China, writes Ron Clements of Sporting News.

“This will be China’s first ever professional league of American-style football, played by the best players in the world,” said David Niu, president of AFL Global, the founding corporation headquartered in Conshohocken, Pa.

Initial plans for the CAFL were released in 2014 with the intention to play in 2015, but government approval delayed the league’s launch.

According to a release, the rosters of the six teams will be comprised mostly of Chinese players who have been training for the arena game at select Chinese universities.

With former Lions linebacker Stephen Tulloch on the market, the Eagles look like a prime spot for him to land, writes Darin Gantt of Pro Football Talk.

They have little depth at the position behind a passable starting group of Mychal Kendricks, Jordan Hicks and Nigel Bradham, so Tulloch would be a good insurance policy, if not a replacement.  There’s also the familiarity that comes with playing for Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz. When Schwartz was coaching the Lions, Tulloch topped 100 tackles each season, so there’s some top-of-mind awareness.

Of course, the biggest factor might be Tulloch’s health. He was recovering from arthroscopic ankle surgery, which was stated as the reason the Lions held onto him so long when it was clear he was surplus to requirements.

If he’s well, he could be a clear help to the Eagles defense, and they haven’t been shy about bringing in new guys this offseason.

Would the Eagles trade their starting quarterback for Eli Manning? Phil Sheridan from ESPN.com gives two sides to the question.

Phil Sheridan, Philadelphia Eagles reporter: This is a bit of a trick question when it comes to the Eagles. Would they trade Sam Bradford for Manning? They just might. Manning has two Super Bowl rings and would be a terrific guy to run the offense and help first-round pick Carson Wentz learn the ropes. Manning’s age — he’s 35 — wouldn’t be an issue because the Eagles would be looking for him to yield the floor to Wentz in a year or so. If the question is whether the Eagles would trade Wentz for Manning, the answer is heck no. The whole point here was to acquire a young quarterback with the potential to be a franchise player just as Manning and [Tony] Romo (and other NFL star quarterbacks in that age range) are on the way out.