Kafka, Bell Update

Posted: August 11th, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 23 Comments »

Mike Kafka broke his non-throwing hand and is out for 3 or so weeks.  This will give Nick Foles a huge opportunity.  He gets to play with better players, but will also have to face better competition.  Can he step his game up and handle that?  He was terrific on Thursday, but NFL history is littered with guys who lit up 3rd stringers and that was as good as it got.

I’m excited to see what Foles can do.  If he struggles, that’s okay.  Good to know where he truly is in his development.  If he plays well, then maybe I’ve been underrating him this summer.  Foles hasn’t stood out in camp, but maybe he’s like AJ Feeley…a gamer.  Some guys just don’t shine in practice, but live games bring out the best in them.  I’ve got an open  mind on Foles.  I need to see him play more before I feel comfortable with buying into the hype or dismissing it totally.

* * * * *

King Dunlap got some reps today in the walkthrough with the 1’s.  Demetress Bell didn’t have a good game.  I’ll get more into that in the DGR.  Bell isn’t worried.  He says he’s still adjusting to the system.  Dave Spadaro says Howard Mudd is just sending a message to Bell.  I think there is some truth in that, but I also think Mudd isn’t afraid to mix things up.  He did a lot of experimentation last year until he found 5 guys he liked.  Mudd will play anyone that fits his system and gets the job done.

Let’s not go overboard with this news.  Bell was on the field for 7 snaps I think.  Very limited sample size.  Next week the starting offense will go for close to a half, maybe the whole half.  We’ll get a much better feel for Bell at that point.

As for Dunlap, I do trust King.  I’d rather not have him start, but he knows the offense, Mudd’s scheme, and has played well for us when called upon.

* * * * *

Some of you ask me fantasy football questions.  I know nothing about FF.  A buddy of mine is quite good at FF.  He just joined Twitter and you can fire off questions at him if you like.  He is a Carolina Panthers fan, but has a good excuse for that.  He’s was dropped on his head a lot when he was young.


  • iskar36

    In terms of the Kafka news, I think the bigger question to be asking is what does this mean for Kafka and the Eagles. Kafka is now going to get most likely 1 more preseason game at best to show what he can do. If he struggles, can we really trust him as the backup, regardless of if Foles plays well. To me, Kafka’s injury means the Eagles need to go look for a backup plan. They need to bring in someone now to pick up the offense in case Kafka can’t do it. On top of that, if Kafka does get beat out by Foles, is there any reason what-so-ever for him to stay on the team? I think Kafka’s injury is a very bad blow for the Eagles right now.

    As for Bell, yes, Mudd could be just sending a message, but until today, we did not think Bell was in any serious completion for the starting LT spot. Now, he certainly is.

    I know it is one preseason game, so there is still a lot that will change, but we all went into the game with a few questions we wanted to look at. Will Kafka be a good enough backup? Will our safeties be good enough? Can Juan really make this defense solid? Will Demetress Bell be able to protect Vick? For every single one of those questions, the answers were certainly not favorable. We still have a lot more preseason left to correct those problems but so far, things have not been encouraging.

    • austinfan

      Who are you going to bring in? A veteran scrub QB? Hey, we already have one of those! Maybe Arizona will trade Kolb back to us for a 6th rd pick if Skelator beats him out. You want McNabb out of enforced retirement?

      • iskar36

        The options are limited, but to be fair, I thought they needed to bring in someone at the start of the offseason. In terms of availability right now, I think trading for someone (McCoy is the obvious one that comes to mind) is our best chance of bringing in competition. It does mean giving up something though. I just don’t think Kafka has shown enough to be flat out handed the job, and with this injury, he could end up showing absolutely nothing and still win the job, which seems way to risky for the backup qb spot behind an injury prone starter.

        • SteveH

          We have a veteran backup, Trent Edwards just wins baby!

        • D3Keith

          Colt McCoy is a little bit intriguing, but like you, if we were going to do that, I wish we’d done it earlier so he could be ready to go when needed. Adding him now leaves us just as naked as we ever were for about the first four games.

      • D3Keith

        I doubt we bring in another QB.

        WE haven’t seen much of Kafka, but the coaching staff has. They were clearly impressed enough to let Foles and Edwards be his competition, and they’re well aware that a Vick backup will have to play at some point.

        I think the more likely takeaway from this is that Trent Edwards might well have a job for a couple weeks this season. Even if we cut him, he should stay by the phone.

        Outside of somebody like McNabb or Kolb — dare I say Garcia — who will pick up the offense quickly, there’s not really a QB you can bring in at this time of year who would be ready to be your backup Week 1. And if we want somebody to develop into the backup later in the season, that guy is probably Foles.

        So I think we’re stuck with what we’ve got at this point. Hopefully we never have to find out if it’s good enough.

    • P_P_K

      Your wording of your stated questions is appropriate. I still think Kafka is our best bet to be “good enough” at backup qb. Likewise our safties. If the D line is as strong as they seem to be, and if the CBs do their jobs, I think the safties will be “good enough.”

      Because Bell has a track record, I am optomistic he can do his job. Because Juan does not, I just don’t know.

    • TommyLawlor

      We do have some legit questions to be answered at this point. The Eagles will likely sit tight and see how the next game goes, then decide on if action is needed.

      Kafka needs to get back for PS finale. No question. I’m sure the FO will discuss QB options. If clear upgrade is available, they could make a move. Just don’t mistake change for upgrade.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Kanin-Faan/100000790557328 Kanin Faan

        “Mike Kafka broke his non-throwing hand and is out for 3 or so weeks.”
        How did this happen, when did this happen and what exactly is “broken”?
        A partial fracture on one of the bones not directly associated with gripping is no problem at all, a couple of fractures on bones directly associated with gripping would mean that Kafka might have problems throughout the season, making the “lets get a qb”-discussion relevant.
        So, what is it? (if anyone knows…)

        (and why do I have to get a google+ acct all of a sudden?)

  • austinfan

    I’m not that excited by Foles, everyone focuses on two big passes, but stop and take a breath. His first two series were just like Kafka, because they started every QB out with the quick throws, and he badly missed a wide open McNutt on a slant. Demetrius was wide open, good but not great arm strength, nice job getting free from pressure. The pass to Gilyard was a beautiful spiral, unfortunately it was a couple yards short and to the inside, if the defender turns his head, it could have been an Int instead of a TD. What really helped Foles was the defense kept coming up with 3 and outs, so he wasn’t spending a lot of time on the sideline. A good start, but don’t read too much into it.

    The defense made a bunch of preseason mistakes, but I didn’t see receivers running open downfield all game. A mixup in the end zone, Aso got beat on a great move by Antonio Brown (who’s no slouch at WR), that was about it. The big plays by Pittsburgh, draw and a trap at the end of the first half, exploiting backup DTs who were over aggressive (and a blatant hold on Landri), a big screen play in the 4th Q against scrubs. That was pretty much it.

    Who knows about the offense? Never had enough time to get comfortable (see Foles). When Kafka got into a rhythm, that bizarro play that was really the fault of Vandervelde (who is now on thin ice after that game) turned things around – otherwise it’s a nice gain by Brown, at least a FG and no one is talking about how bad the Eagles looked the first half. And DRC’s stupid penalty kept Leftwich on the field.

    What you worry about in preseason in the first half is getting physically dominated, though with a veteran team that will happen against a fired up team (or why young teams often go 4-0 preseason then 4-12 once games count).

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Anders-Jensen/748307140 Anders Jensen

      Also we missed 3/4 of the starting DL and our best safety. Also I think Chaney should start over Rolle.

  • ACViking

    T-Law:

    What amount of responsibility should be assumed by Zordich and Bowles for the performance of: (1) Jarrett, and (2) the apparent communication problems in the d-backfield?

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Anders-Jensen/748307140 Anders Jensen

      I think point 2 is overblown. On the first TD, it was clear that everybody except Jar-Jar and Rolle was doing there job (Jar-Jar was to slow to react to the man entering hos zone, because he had focus on the man Rolle was responsible for, but wasnt covering)

    • Neil

      My view on Jarrett:

      I’m sure there’s a good bit on the coaches for the blown coverage in the endzone. While I tend to give Nnamdi the benefit of the doubt, we can’t prove that either he alone or Jarrett and he both simulataneously mixed up the call because we don’t know what the call was. I tend to think, if it was indeed Jarrett alone (something i would estimate at 90%+ probability), that him playing essentially out of position didn’t help, yet with what I’ve heard about the interchangeability of the safety positions that’s not an excuse.

      As far as tackling the wrong player, that is possibly the worst angle I’ve seen taken to a ball carrier at this level. The coaches’ responsibility for that is probably almost 0%. To me, what it looks like is Jarrett is in over his head at this level. Like he panics and can’t play sound football because of nerves or something else. He’s been fine in practice, yet for him to blow something that badly in the game, he must not have the mental makeup or stability to be able to play at game speed. Might change with time, might not.

      • D3Keith

        If you re-watch the play and the body language, I’m almost certain it was on Jarrett. That’s not me saying that because of Nnamdi’s rep, it’s just where he moved to after the snap, and where Jarrett looks, hesitates, then runs toward. Nnamdi gives Jarrett a “WTF was that?” and Baldy picked up on it, which is why NA originally took the blame.

        Playing zone in the end zone can be very effective, but there can be five zones and everyone has to pass people off seamlessly. There’s no room for one guy not knowing what they’re doing because everything at the goal line is compressed, in terms of both time and space.

    • TommyLawlor

      Kurt Coleman looked fine. I didn’t see much confusion by the backup Safeties. When one guy stands out, he’s usually the issue, not the coaches.

      The other plays where CBs went for the QB…those were plays that test every player. Do you go for the QB or stick with your guy? There is no right answer, universally. Each situation is different. I’d have let Big Ben run. Limited threat.

    • austinfan

      Jar Jar just doesn’t have it. Period.

      Forget the bad angles and the mistakes in coverage, that you could accept in the first preseason game for an inexperienced player.

      Watch him play, period. On the short yardage play where Rolle jumps too soon, Jarrett takes a step back off the snap, instead of reading the play, then hesitates coming forward to make the tackle. In fact, that’s what I saw all game, he hesitates, like he doesn’t trust what he sees and has to wait until he’s sure, then lacks explosion to the play.

      How they drafted him before the 5th rd is beyond me, didn’t like the pick at the time, now really hate it. It’s one think to draft a really sharp, instinctive, explosive undersized safety who lacks top end speed, it’s quite another to draft a safety who is undersized for SS, too slow for FS and lacks the instincts to compensate.

      What hurts is they used a high pick on him, if I’m Howie, I’m trying to trade Tapp for a real safety right now.

      • ICDogg

        I’m ready to pull the plug on Jarrett myself.

  • ACViking

    RE: Lurie Retains Control / Kevin Kolb

    With Jeff Lurie’s retention of control over the Eagles, I’m resurrecting my hopes that the team will return to their traditional Kelly Green and White . . . their colors when the team won it’s last Championship.

    I know lots of fans like the current Midnight Green look.

    But — as the story goes — the Eagles abandoned Kelly Green because Mr. Lurie’s soon-to-be ex-wife didn’t like the color.

    Here’s a chance for the owner to put the past behind him and return to the future.
    _____________

    I’d take Kevin Kolb back in a heart-beat as the backup. He did okay in that job under Reid. And, while his throwing arm (as I complained) was not the strongest, it seems stronger than Kafka’s.

    The problem with a Kolb deal could be his salary, the details of which I don’t recall. But he’s playing his value down to a 6th to 7th round pick.
    _____________

    Really liked that Lurie came out strong against Reid’s agent’s attempt to drum up a story line that “we’ll be sorry if Andy’s not under contract to be the head coach here for 5 more years.”

    Lurie’s severed ties with Joe Banner and his wife. The most critical decisions for the Eagles are now entirely all his . . . with no more pillow-talk.

    He’s openly asserting himself.

    That said, I don’t expect to see him become another Jerry Jones.

    On the other hand, I don’t think he’d mind some attention. His moves at the top make it all but inevitable.

    • iceberg584

      To me, those kelly greens are synonymous with losing. Plus, I’m guessing that in Lurie’s mind, the midnight green delineates the start of his era of ownership (and greatest period of sustained success); I doubt he will abandon that.

      • ACViking

        I agree with you that that Lurie sees midnight green as “his” team.

        But he’s won 3 less championship in midnight green than all the preceding owners fielding teams in kelly green.

        What can I say . . . I’m from the Eagles’ Franklin Field school era.

        And I thought the Eagles looked pretty sharp on opening day in 2010.

        • ICDogg

          I did not like those Kelly Green throwbacks at all, and they didn’t capture the image of the old uniforms to me. The throwbacks were shiny and garish looking. The originals were non-glossy and rougher looking.

          Given the choice of those throwbacks or the midnight greens, I would take the latter any day.

  • ian_no_2

    Kafka is a low ceiling QB who is taking his sweet time attaining that low ceiling. I said here last April that Edwards was a better potential backup than Kafka. Here, the rationalization of a draft pick is buttressed by the fact that they have a complicated WCO and Kafka is considered a smart guy who knows the offense. Foles is showing every indication he would be as ready to back up on day one as a first round pick, and Edwards can come in and get the job done.