Let’s Meet the UDFAs

Posted: April 29th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 69 Comments »

DL Isaac Remington – Oregon – 6-6, 298

* Classic camp body. Has good size and has played for Chip Kelly for 2 years. Racked up 25 solo tackles, 2.5 sacks, and 3 batted passes. Didn’t stand out when I watched tape on him. Think of him as the DL version of Evan Mathis. Remington is a DL with long hair and a good personality. If only he had the athleticism and talent that Mathis does. Longshot even for the practice squad

OL Matt Tobin – Iowa – 6-6, 300 

* Played LG in 2011. Started off at LG in 2012 and then shifted to LT. Didn’t particularly stand out at either spot. Has a good build, but isn’t all that athletic. Didn’t get much movement in the run game. Good interior pass blocker. Excellent effort. Lacks the footwork to handle edge rushers in the NFL. Must get stronger. Can get moved back in pass pro at times. Limited upside, but is an experienced blocker coming from an NFL system. Longshot.

WR Russell Shepard – LSU – 6-1, 196

* Really interesting addition. Shepard went to LSU as a big time football star. He was going to be a 2-way QB for them and make the Tiger offense explosive. Didn’t exactly pan out as hoped. Shepard never came close to living up to the hype, but I was impressed by the fact he stuck it out there and carved out a role for himself as a WR/RB/STer. You see some star QBs get to a school and then leave to chase their dreams elsewhere, but most fail at the new school just like the old one. Shepard made something of himself.  Finished his LSU career 104-716-5 as runner. 58-570-5 as receiver. He even helped on STs.  Shepard covered KOs and punts.

Shepard is a good fit for the Chip Kelly offense. If he can develop his receiver skills, he could be a slot receiver and offensive weapon. Shepard is very good on end arounds and gadget running plays. Kelly loves to do that type of stuff with receivers. I assume Shepard will bust his butt on STs in the NFL since he did that in college. If he can become a backup RS as well, that could help. Shepard is ideal for the practice squad. I don’t think it is likely he makes a strong run at the roster this year, but never say never. The guy has NFL athleticism (4.46 in the 40 and a 38.5 inch VJ).

DL Damion Square – Alabama – 6-2, 293

* Square is an interesting prospect. He started 31 games for Alabama. That tells you that Nick Saban thinks he can play and trusts him on the field. Square has average size and is maybe an average athlete. He has short arms for a DL. Those factors won’t help his transition to the NFL. If you watch his 2012 tape, Square isn’t all that impressive. I need to go back and study 2010 & 2011. Square racked up 7 TFLs in each of those years, showing him to be more of a playmaker. What changed (only 4 as a Senior)?

Square is more than a camp body, but he has an uphill battle. He uses his hands pretty well. He’s got some quickness off the ball, but nothing special. You just don’t see anything special from him on tape. Solid college player, but limited pro prospect. The Eagles want guys that are versatile and Square can play 5-tech, 1-tech, or 3-tech. He’s got experience in a hybrid defense from his time at Bama.

P Brad Wing – LSU – 6-2, 205 

* Let’s start with the punting first. Wing is a gifted Punter. He finished 11th in the nation with 44.8 yards per punt this year. LSU was 8th in net punting, and consider that Wing was 2nd in the nation with 11 touchbacks. Returners averaged just over 3 yards per return. Wing has a very strong leg. He can boom the ball. He has the 2 longest punts in the history of the SEC Championship Game. The longest was 67 yards and he had a total of 6 punts go more than 50 yards in that game. Wing easily could have been worth a mid-round pick based on his punting ability.

But Wing isn’t a typical Punter. Rather than tell you the story, go read this great piece from Bob McGinn and you’ll understand that Wing is a handful, on and off the field.  If Wing can get his act together, he is talented enough to be the Eagles Punter for the next decade.

ILB Jake Knott – Iowa State – 6-2, 243

* Knott is sorta like the Iowa State version of Dan Connor. He’s the guy who was a star LB in college and did all kinds of amazing things and then the NFL picked apart his game and said “you really weren’t that good”.  I see Knott as the ultimate tweener LB. He isn’t physical enough to be the thumper inside. He’s not fast/athletic enough to be the playmaker. Make him just a tad faster and he’d have a chance.  I think he could make it in the NFL, but only if he adjusts his game. In college Knott didn’t use good form in dealing with blockers. He would go around them. Or he’s use his shoulder to try and scrape off them. Some players can get away with that, but he lacks the athleticism to be that guy in the NFL. Knott must learn to use his hands. He must stay square and aggressively engage blockers. No more trying to get by. Take them on, defeat the block, and go get the ball.

Knott was a big time playmaker at ISU. He picked off 8 passes and had 10 career FFs. He broke up 15 passes. He had 224 solo tackles and 18 TFLs. Knott has good instincts. He is a wrap-up tackler. He has moments where he is a very impressive player. I just don’t know how he’ll adjust to the NFL game.

RB Miguel Maysonet – Stony Brook – 5-9, 209

* Highly productive I-AA runner. Ran for 4,725 yards and 48 TDs in college. Unfortunately, has average size and average speed. Limited athlete. And he only caught 18 career passes. These factors made him a lesser NFL prospect. I do think Maysonet has NFL potential. He is a downhill runner. He shows a good feel for how to run. There are plays when he attacks upfield. Other times he is patient and lets his blockers do their job. Maysonet might not be big, but he runs strong. He doesn’t go down on first contact. He has good balance, allowing him to take hits and continue going. Maysonet isn’t a dancer. He is always moving forward. He’s not a daylight runner. He goes where the play is supposed to. I have no idea how good a blocker or receiver Maysonet is.

I do think Maysonet is a good fit in Kelly’s offense. Kelly loves his RBs to get upfield. His goal is to spread the defense and attack seams with quick hitters. Maysonet has the style of running to fit this. He lacks the speed that Kelly prefers, but at least runs hard. You know that Maysonte will maximize every run he can. And he does have some big play ability. Against Syracuse, Maysonet hurdled a tackler and then raced 60 yards down the sideline for a TD.

RB Matthew Tucker – TCU – 6-0, 221

* Tucker is bigger than Maysonet. He is faster, stronger, and more athletic. I don’t think Tucker has as good a feel for being a RB as Maysonet. I didn’t see anything special in terms of vision or instincts.  Tucker is a N-S runner with good burst. Runs with good strength. He’s definitely not going down on first contact. TCU believes in using a group of RBs and that was true in Tucker’s time there. Only twice in his 4-year career did he have 20 or more carries in a game. Tucker finished with 2,602 yards and 33 TDs.  He caught 29 passes. I’ve seen a couple of grabs from him and he looked okay.

Tucker could be a good #3 RB for an NFL team. He has NFL size and speed (4.50). He isn’t a guy that was used to tons of carries in college so being part of a group of RBs isn’t an adjustment for him. He will need to show that he can be good at covering kicks/punts. Tucker has the size and physicality to do that.

C Kyle Quinn – Arizona – 6-4, 297

* 2-year starter for the Wildcats. Not a flashy player in any way, but a good, solid C. Put on the Utah game and watch Quinn vs Star Lotulelei and you’ll be impressed. There were a few times when Star body-slammed Quinn to the ground, but Arizona ran for 320 yards that day, much of it up the middle. Quinn was a big part of that. He would handle a DT on his own at times. He double-teamed on others. Quinn was able to get to the second level and take on LBs. Good game. Quinn is quick off the ball. He uses his hands well and has pretty good agility. He isn’t going to overpower anyone. He shows good awareness and always seems to be in the right spot to block the right guy. Quinn is very good with shotgun snaps.

That last point helps his cause with trying to make the Eagles. Dallas Reynolds is the backup C for now, but he had some real troubles with shotgun snaps last year, especially down the stretch. I’m sure he’s worked on that religiously since, but he can’t afford to have any problems in practice. Quinn has a chance to challenge for the backup C spot. If not, he could be an excellent practice squad candidate. Quinn only started at C in college, but did play some G early on. Teams want backup OL to be versatile.

* * * * *

This isn’t a great UDFA class. If I had to put them in order of most likely to make the team, it would go like this:

1 – Brad Wing
2 – Kyle Quinn
3 – Matt Tucker
4 – Miguel Maysonet
5 – Russell Shepard
6 – Jake Knott
7 – Damion Square
8 – Matt Tobin
9 – Isaac Remington

Knott is the guy I’m most fascinated by. I love playmakers. Can he play in the NFL?  Shepard is a close second. He’s just such a Chip Kelly player.

* * * * *

I’ll post more on the draft and Matt Barkley tonight. I know Matt is the hot topic. We’ve got a few months to cover every angle with him.  I will also talk about the lack of trades and things like that.

_


  • Iskar36

    Are you surprised with the UDFA group we brought in. Outside of Brad Wing, none of these guys are particularly compelling. Usually we seem to bring in a bunch more guys that seem to have a legitimate chance to make it in the NFL but for whatever reason (injuries, character concerns, odd background) didn’t get drafted. Brad Wing seems to be the only one that fits that category. A guy like Square, who played at a school like Alabama and doesn’t seem to have any major odd circumstances just doesn’t seem to be a guy that is likely to push for a roster spot.

    • D-von

      Well Shepard is interesting. He could become our PR/KR. He also can get the ball out of the backfield. Maysonet and Tucker seem interesting too.

      • Iskar36

        The issue with Shepard though is that coming from a big program like LSU, seemingly with good character as Tommy pointed out, why did he not get drafted? The only significant reason is because he was not particularly talented relative to the rest of the draft class. That’s not to say it is impossible for him to end up proving himself to be NFL worthy, but unless there is some reason not known publicly, 32 NFL teams determined he was not worth a draft pick based on talent alone.

        Compare that to a guy who had success in college but had an injury problem or a character concern, or even coming from a DIV III school for example. The assessment is now fairly different. 32 NFL teams passed on him, but the reason was not necessarily entirely because of talent but because they deemed that player to much of a risk/problem from a character or injury stand point or didn’t have a great evaluation on him because his competition didn’t have NFL talent. To me, a guy coming from that background seems more compelling from the standpoint of a player having a legitimate shot ant making the roster.

        At the end of the day, it is an uphill battle for any UDFA to make an NFL team, but poor talent (relative to the rest of the draft class) is extremely difficult to overcome. Character/injury/background concerns, while also difficult to overcome, to me seem like a lot more likely of an issue that can be fixed.

        • http://twitter.com/ThomasOLeary8 Thomas O’Leary

          It doesn’t sound like talent is the issue. He’s extraordinarily talented/toolsy, he just doesn’t have NFL caliber skills yet.

          • Iskar36

            I guess my argument with that is if he couldn’t develop that at a school like LSU, what makes it likely that he will develop it in the NFL? If we were talking about a guy who went to a school with only a small program, I’d believe that argument a lot more, but he’s coming from LSU.

            I’m not saying it is impossible for a guy like him to develop NFL caliber skills. I just think guys like him have limited upside.

          • Baloophi

            Just to throw another potential wrinkle into the argument, could it simply be that LSU didn’t know where best to put him? LSU (and many SEC schools) were trying that double-quarterback / small H-back receiver garbage a lot in the last couple years. Clearly Shepard didn’t have enough skills to be the out-and-out QB, and (possibly) not enough polish to be a top WR (perhaps because he wasn’t focused on that spot by virtue of being a wildcat… no pun intended).

            In other (and hopefully clearer) words, did he suffer because there wasn’t a clear plan for him at LSU?

          • Iskar36

            That’s absolutely a possibility, and that’s why I am trying to be careful not to suggest that it is impossible for a guy like Shepard or Square to make it in the NFL. Circumstances certainly affect each draft pick differently and you’d have to imagine that the Eagles believe that Shepard or Square can benefit from the environment the Eagles will provide. Still, the upside for those kinds of players seems limited when compared to guys coming from small programs who are not producing a steady stream of NFL-ready talent, or guys that have all the physical skills, but lacked the mental focus or were derailed by injuries.

          • Iskar36

            I should also make the point that I am making this argument based on generalizations, not specifically based on Square and/or Shepard’s skills. I can’t claim to know anything about either guy or their background outside of what I have read on here and a few other places. I’m simply focusing on the fact that a good character guy, coming from a big program, who had a healthy senior year has a lot fewer reasons for not being a sought after prospect than a guy who has one or more of the above question marks on their resume. There are just less unknowns with the former compared to the latter, meaning there is a higher probability to be surprised by the outcome, if that makes sense.

          • Neil

            College practice time is very limited by the NCAA. I remember someone saying they have almost no time to work on players’ technique because they use all the time on teaching the broader offensive and defensive systems.

    • TommyLawlor

      We don’t know who the Eagles tried to get, but missed on. Or maybe these were the players the Eagles targeted.

      You also have to understand that the Eagles were very active in FA. Kelly wanted veteran players battling for jobs. Was a UDFA Safety going to sign here when Kurt Coleman is the #5 Safety as of now? We’re already 6-deep with WRs that have a legit shot to make the roster. And so on.

      • Iskar36

        Just to be clear, I wasn’t arguing whether it was a surprise that they could or couldn’t land better UDFA. In fact, I wasn’t really considering that angle at all. I meant the question as more are you surprised about the kind of players they targeted.

        Your point about having veterans battling for backup positions is well taken though. They may not have felt the need to target many UDFAs because they feel comfortable with the competition already.

      • Miami_Adam

        I was kinda hoping for Ray Ray Armstrong

  • xlGmanlx

    So wing is like all the other football players – criminals, liars, arrests, attitudes, ego’s, but because he is a punter it’s a big deal? If he was a 5* DL, he would need to go to a “strong locker room”, I didn’t read anything that stood out as different. Looks like a good punter on the cheap.

    • Iskar36

      Here is the problem with that though. You only carry one punter. If he gets into off the field trouble, you are left without a punter and forced to find a replacement after presumably all the quality punters have been signed. With a player on offense or defense however, if he gets into off the field trouble, you have backups that can fill in for a few games. Also, you can bench a player if he doesn’t have the right attitude, and hopefully even the threat of being benched is a form of motivation for that player to behave the way you expect, on and off the field. You can’t do the same thing with a punter. Your only option really is to cut him if he creates a problem, which in turn creates a problem for the team.

      • A_T_G

        If we get in a pinch, I’m sure Sheppard can punt. He reportedly can do everything.

  • T_S_O_P

    Knott is my favourite ever since some hack did a piece on him and his buddy at Iowa St.

  • miked718

    So the guy wants revolutionize punting and become the best punter in the league? Sounds good. He beat up his ex-gf’s boyfriend? Fights for what he believes in. Had a drinking problem in college? Give him the faux-rum smoothie. This guy sounds like a more badass Sav Rocca, who I was a big fan of. And maybe Henery will get more respect with Wing-man like that. Seriously, every time they show Henery on TV it looks like a teenager stole an Eagles jersey and ran out on the field.

    • D3Center

      I’m just afraid Dorenbos is going to murder Wing when Wing tries to sleep with his wife.

      • Arby1

        No, he won’t murder him, he’ll just make him disappear.

        • TommyLawlor

          Brilliant

  • http://twitter.com/PhiIs_Goodman Phils Goodman

    Shepard wanted to transfer a year or two ago, apparently was told he would carry a bigger load in the offense and winded up with an even more marginal role than he had before. He was bitter and unhappy in his final year at LSU and regretted his decision to stay.

  • D-von

    Anybody else concerned with the eagles pass rush situation. As of right now they are only projected to have Barwin, Cole, Graham, and Hunt (who might not even make the team) as the rush LBs.

    • Ark87

      Wouldn’t surprise me if we signed a rotational guy in FA.

      • D-von

        If they asked Vinny to be a OLB after he gained weight expecting to be a D-linemen…
        That would just be low down.

        • http://www.facebook.com/justin.sengstock.7 Justin Sengstock

          Well seeing as they drafted guys better suited to being defensive linemen, but weren’t able to acquire a linebacker….kinda sucks for Vinny having to yo-yo his weight, but it would also improve his chances of seeing playing time and perhaps give us another viable option at OLB.

    • Davesbeard

      Yeah, it does seem like we are incredibly thin at the most important position on D.

    • Telmert

      I’m intrigued by Everette Brown. He was picked early in the 2nd in 2009. Three picks ahead of Connor Barwin, 14 picks before Paul Kruger. He was widely projected as a mid first rounder going in, and Carolina traded their 2010 1st rounder to move up and get him. He’s a tweener who lots of people projected as an edge rush OLB, but unlike the two guys who went behind him, he went to a 4-3 team. You wonder whether he can be a reverse of Babin. He’s a little short (just under 6’2″), especially for Chip Kelly, but you work with what you have.

      The coaches had to see something (him or McCoy or someone else) to give them enough confidence to completely ignore that position…

  • bridgecoach

    “Clearly, one of the themes of the Eagles’ draft was selecting players with high character.” – Jimmy Bama

    Eagles sign Brad Wing.

    Clearly Brad Wing is a high character guy.

    • qwerty uiop

      Brad Wing wasn’t drafted, though. No risk in signing an UDFA. You don’t waste a pick and of course you can cut them at any time.

      • bridgecoach

        Disagree. Whether drafted or not, either you want guys in your locker room or you don’t. They won’t take a chance on Da’Rick Rogers but are willing to give Wing a shot?

    • Mac

      Your logic starts to fall apart when you bring in Kempski as a source. Only he can take a typical a=b b=c a=c and turn it into a pbr/funyun/pudding smoothie.

  • goeagles55

    Brian Solomon posted a link to pre-order/support this year’s Eagles Almanac on the r/eagles subreddit.
    http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/2059540275/eagles-almanac-2013

  • http://www.facebook.com/watkinsont Tom Watkinson

    Tommy or anyone who knows — I didnt see Tristan Okpalaugo get drafted or signed by anyone ..am I wrong?.. based on his freakish size and athleticism (and the tape I saw against Oregon) isn’t he worth a look by somebody (even the eagles)?

    • TommyLawlor

      Tristan is fast, but lacks good agility and balance. He didn’t look good in his positional workout at his Pro Day. Some team will bring him in for a tryout, or maybe he’s still negotiating with teams.

      • HazletonEagle

        Did you think he lacked agility based on tape you watched? Or based on workout numbers? I have heard about this subpar workout, but watching him in that Oregon game… he got everywhere he needed to be. I thought he looked really athletic.

  • Steven Dileo

    If I could choose two UDFAs to make the roster it would be Brad WIng and Russell Sheppard. If Russell Sheppard makes the roster it will be because he flashes some potential and the Eagles don’t want to risk losing that talent. Imagine a roster where you have a LT and a WR who can both pass out of the backfield :)

  • Neil

    Tommy, who is the best current player when it comes to shedding blocks in your opinion? I’d like to see a good model of the form you talk about in the Knott section.

    • TommyLawlor

      DeMeco Ryans

      • Neil

        Convenient. Thanks.

  • Ark87

    Previously we had a discussion on value of D-line in a 3-4. I guessed you either go with a blue chip guy that is absolutely dominant. Or you just get solid guys who don’t give ground, take up blockers to let the speed behind them make plays. Basically I was arguing against taking Start Lotulelei because while he is way more talented than most of the other DT’s in the draft, he wouldn’t be notably better at doing his role in a 3-4 than some of the later round guys. You need someone special to merit a high pick for a 3-4 D-lineman (JJ Watt and his sort, that said he is the 1-gap variety that gets to use his ability to be a play maker)

    Jimmy Bama got some stats up in an effort to tear the Cowboys (I’m always onboard) for not valuing D-line. As I look at this list, almost everyone on the bottom runs a 3-4. Obviously there are less D-line positions to fill in a 3-4, but you’ll notice the picks they do take are late rounders.

    http://bloggingthebeast.com/2013/04/28/the-cowboys-have-put-the-lowest-premium-on-drafting-defensive-linemen-in-the-nfl-post-parcells/#more-9933

  • HazletonEagle

    Russell Shepard seemed to be used very similarly to Percy Harvin. Maybe its a long shot that he ever reaches Harvin’s level in the NFL, but Im excited that we have the chance to try to develop him.
    He and Knot are my favorite signings.
    I am disapointed to see that nobody signed my bloomburg alum Larry Webster as a UDFA.
    And I am bewildered as all hell that nobody gave Tristan Okpalaugo a shot.

    • TommyLawlor

      Tristan might get a tryout at a mini-camp. Wouldn’t surprise me to see him here. Reportedly had a bad Pro Day.

      • HazletonEagle

        I hope so. I definitely understand that we passed on OLB in this draft because BPA just didnt happen to be an OLB. But Im surprised we didnt sign any as UDFAs. Cole, Graham, and Curry vying for the position opposite Barwin is a good group of players, but Im still uneasy about counting on those guys since none have 3-4 OLB experience in the NFL. Not to say Tristan Okpalaugo would win the starting job- very unlikely. But it would be nice to have competition from someone with experience at the position rather than this blind leading the blind situation we have currently. Not only is the starter going to be new to playing the position, but so is the backup. Yikes.

  • http://twitter.com/mannafromkevin Kevin

    Tommy,

    I had read that Shepard had also participated in DB drills (either at the combine or pro day, not sure which) and have seen at least one write-up on him indicate that he might be a considered as a DB at the NFL level.

    Any thoughts?

    • TommyLawlor

      His value is as a weapon with the ball in his hands. If he can’t catch the ball consistently, then try him at DB.

  • Mac

    Someone has already done this I’m sure…

    • A_T_G

      I’m sure you are right, but unless that is Kirby dressed for a masquerade ball, I’m at a loss.

      • Mac

        p wing

  • Davesbeard

    Found a great video of Zach Ertz earlier. Shows how versatile he is, how comfortable in the open field he is, and surprisingly, how willing and effective a blocker he can be! Got to say I’m pretty excited for this pick now!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=As0CURAoiUA

    Q: Tommy, what sort of secondary scheme has Billy Davis run in the past? Does he prefer man or zone coverage? I only ask because Jordan Poyer seems like a potentially great pick in a zone D but someone who will struggle in man coverage due to his mediocre speed.

    • deg0ey

      I think Poyer is one of those guys that will get a chance at CB, but if his speed makes him a liability I think he can bulk up and play FS where his speed is less of a factor than his ability to read the game.

    • A_T_G

      I love how he played. Finesse was not part of his game as one would expect from the description of a smooth, pass catching guy. He looked excited to run block, seeking out someone else to block when he put the first guy on the ground, and dealing out punish instead of absorbing it after a catch.

  • mark_in_jax

    We need a backup C especially with Kelce coming off injury. On gameday we might plan on using Mathis as needed but we should be carrying another C on the roster or practice squad. Quinn played at Arizona with Foles and vs Chip.

  • A_T_G

    So, to summarize,

    Wing’s nuts,

    Shepard plays a whole flock of positions but kind of lost his way,

    Matt is a tucker and goer kind of runner,

    Jake Knott equal to Dan Conner and gets tied up on blocks,

    Square’s appeal is he is multi-dimensional, and

    Remington lacks the ammo to compete. Is that about right?

    • Crus57

      If Remington survives the cuts it’ll be a close shave.
      Square may be multi-dimensional but he’s not well-rounded.
      Maysonet will feel at home, you can bet the house on it.

    • laeagle

      I want to up and down vote this at the same time.

      • A_T_G

        That is how I define a successful comment.

    • TommyLawlor

      Glad to see you’re in midseason form and it’s only April.

  • HazletonEagle

    Tommy, college football season didnt start yet, but Im eagerly anticipating some scouting reports on Taylor Hart, and would like to know how/if Walker May and Chaz Sutton project to OLB.
    Love those guys and cant wait to see them this season. Im looking forward to next years draft already.

  • http://twitter.com/alex_karklins Alex Karklins
  • Lukekelly65

    This doesnt have to do with the UDFA but i was thinking about the current O-line and it hit me that this may be the most athletic group in the league.. Granted Johnson is a rookie but his combine numbers were some of the best a linemen has put up… his numbers were comparable to one of his new teammates Evan Mathis who also had one of the best combines ever for a O-linemen ( i think Jimmy had a post on their numbers compared to each other) also before the injury Kelce was considered a very athletic big man so hopefully he still has that quickness when he comes back..same thing with Peters before the injury he was by far the most athletic LT in the NFL so if he returns even at 80% he will still have great athleticism..and finally Herremans i would say he is the least athletic of the whole group but he can still move.. i really think the O-Line has the chance to be extremely good… im just really excited for this year to start

  • http://www.facebook.com/richard.hartles.3 Richard Hartles
  • deg0ey

    OT, but Klausner wrote an interesting draft recap on BGN earlier and included some comments about Barkley:

    “(-)
    Doesn’t always handle pressure well, can get skittish in the pocket if protection isn’t up to snuff
    Minimal zip on his passes (no “zing” quality), which is especially troublesome when having to squeeze the ball into tight windows (as is necessary in the NFL)
    Lack of natural arm strength can’t make up for feet not being set, struggles when forced to shuffle/reset and unable to step into throws
    Ball hangs in the air, doesn’t (can’t?) consistently drive throws outside the numbers
    Misses some wide open throws
    Below average athlete
    Makes some baffling decisions, even when he has time, and throws into coverage
    Sometimes appears too nonchalant, question poise and sense of urgency under pressure

    I think the best way I can sum up Barkley is thusly: His physical skill set is such that he needs to be perfect — and needs his surrounding cast to be perfect — in order to succeed. When Barkley — and his team — falls short of that, he doesn’t have the special tools to compensate. However, protect him capably, surround him with talented weapons, install an offense predicated on short-drops and quick decisions (which is what Chip wants)… and you might end up getting that franchise QB. For now, I’m still on Team Foles.”

    I really feel like those are pretty much exactly the criticisms that people levelled at Brady when he came out of college:

    “Can get pushed down more easily than you’d like. Lacks mobility and ability to avoid the rush. Lacks a really strong arm. Can’t drive the ball down the field and does not throw a really tight spiral. System-type player who can get exposed if he must ad-lib and do things on his own.

    Is not what you’re looking for in terms of physical stature, strength, arm strength and mobility, but he has the intangibles and production. Could make it in the right system but will not be for everyone.”

    Bill put him in a system that worked, with quality receivers, a short passing game and a rock-solid line to stand behind. Maybe it’ll work the same way for Chip and maybe it won’t, but I wouldn’t be surprised if he saw a bit of Tom in Matt and decided to take a swing and hope for a similar outcome. Can’t knock him for that and it’ll sure be interesting to see whether it pays off.

  • Steven Dileo

    Tommy, can you make a depth chart to show what you think Chip’s offense and Davis’ defense will look like? I’m still a little confused over how the roster will be constructed. Andy was here for 14 years that I’m used to seeing a roster constructed the same way. The lack of OLBs on this team worries me a little. Connor Barwin is the only one, while Brandon Graham and Trent Cole spent their entire careers as 4-3 DEs.

    With Andy the format was:
    3QBs, 3RBs, 1FB, 3TEs, 8-10OL, 5-7WRs,

    8-10 DL, 5-7LBs, 4S, and 5-7CBs

  • mark_in_jax

    Thanks for another year of great draft info Tommy! Any chance we could use Shepard as an “emergency” QB/3rd QB and cut Dixon? I know it’s a different subject altogether but my thinking at QB is Foles/Barkley/”someone not named Vick”.