Defensive Progress

Posted: October 23rd, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 103 Comments »

Sick of talking about QBs? Me too. So let’s shift over and talk about the defense.

Bill Davis and his players aren’t exactly Gang Green, but they are making progress. Look at the last 3 games.

* allowing 19.3 points per game

* 7 takeaways

* allowing just 74 rushing yards per game

The defense is still 32nd in yards allowed and 31st in passing yards allowed. They are up to 26th in scoring defense. Interestingly, the defense is 20th in opposing passer rating. It feels like that number should be worse.

Davis likes to focus on not giving up big pass plays. The Eagles have given up quite a few plays of 20 or more yards, but are one of the stingiest teams in allowing pass plays of 40 or more yards. The Eagles have only allowed 3 such pass plays. The Eagles are 20th in yards allowed per pass attempt.

If Davis is focusing on taking away the deep ball, it is a very good sign that the defense is doing that well. Every coach has a few things he focuses on. He better be able to get players to at least do those things well. When players can’t, it does make you question how good a job the coach is doing.

There isn’t one thing to point to in regard to the improved defense. Fletcher Cox has picked up his level of play. Earl Wolff has played better. Bradley Fletcher has had some good moments. Vinny Curry has remained disruptive. It does seem like the whole defense is more cohesive.

I also think Davis is doing a better job of using his players and coming up with gameplans. Davis is a veteran coach, but hasn’t run a defense in a few years and he’s totally new to the Eagles and these players. It was bound to take some time. As the players and Davis get more on the same page, the defense should continue to improve.

I’m still waiting for the one game when the defense plays great. For now, it just feels good to have some sense of encouragement. If the Eagles can tighten up their coverage on short and intermediate routes, the defense can take another step forward.

* * * * *

Here is a good column by Paul Domowitch on the same subject. He used stats as well as some good quotes from the players and Bill Davis.

“All of it is a growth that is happening,” Davis said yesterday. “Knowing what the strengths and weaknesses of the individual players are now that we have almost half a season under our belt. So that’s growing.

“More importantly, we as a staff see the players understanding the concepts of the coverage, the techniques within the coverage, and how they work with the concept. All of that is growing.

“We just got done doing the tape evaluation of the [Dallas] game with the coaches and players together. The biggest thing we came away with is we’ve got to make sure that individually, we’re getting better on the little things, then collectively the defense gets better. Effort to the ball has to be there. Tackling has to be there.

“Our turnovers [12 takeaways, including eight interceptions] are in a good place. We’ve got to continue to take the ball away. Our third down was a little better [against Dallas, 31 percent]. We’ve had some struggles with that. So that’s improving. The red zone [62.5 percent, 28th in the league] has to get better. The points per game are at 24 right now. That’s not good enough. We’ve got to get that lower and play really good enough defense to win the game. And last week we did.”

There is still a ton of room for improvement, but it does feel like there is a sense of hope now. That’s big. It’s hard for people on the inside or outside to buy into something new when the results are awful. Success, even a little, means hope and that can have a big impact.


103 Comments on “Defensive Progress”

  1. 1 SteveH said at 12:30 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Looking forward its depressing how many stopgap/aging players we have on the defense though. It’s nice that young guys like Ced Thornton, Cox, Kendricks and Wolfe look like they will be future players but we will need to either replace soon or upgrade NT, one OLB, at least one S, probably 1 CB, and one ILB.

    And that’s assuming Barwin and Bradley Fletcher stick around for 3-4 years and play well.

    My point being, I think the defensive rebuilding job really hinges on drafting well for a couple of years. We seem to have hit solidly on the last 2, but we’re still not there yet.

    Honestly I think NT is our biggest need. Having a difference maker there seems to be a real key for good 3-4 defenses. Unless you have JJ Watt, then you can start Tommy Lawlor and Jimmy Kempski at your other 2 DL and still be dominant.

  2. 2 Insomniac said at 12:38 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Wait…who the hell starts at NT for the Texans?

  3. 3 SteveH said at 12:53 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    According to the Texans website… Earl Mitchell?

    Evidently Joe Mays is also one of their starting ILB’s. Ex-Eagles pop up in the funniest places.

  4. 4 Anders said at 8:51 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Can you name me the starting NT for the Steelers?

    The need for a dominating NT is overblown. There is 1 truly difference making NT in the game right now in Poe, but the main reason that defense is so good is their 2 star OLBs.

    guys like Ngata or Raji is more DEs for the the Ravens than NTs.

  5. 5 TheRogerPodacter said at 9:50 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    yea, i don’t think we need a STAR player at NT. i think what we need is a guy that can be effective handling double teams vs the run and the pass. A guy that we don’t have to take off the field until we want to go to a pure pass rushing DL. but those kind of guys can be found late in the draft.
    and who knows, maybe Bennie Logan can be that guy. he’s played pretty well when he gets on the field so far.

  6. 6 Anders said at 9:53 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Logan looks like the real deal at NT so far. Give him 1 more season to learn the technique and gain some more strength and weight and he should be a very effective NT for us.

  7. 7 GEAGLE said at 10:11 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    I agree. Logan has shown enough to where you can’t invest in a stud NT, just yet..gotta see what he can grow into first, but in the next year or two at the very least we will need to find a backup, preferrably 330 plus….

    Even when you are ok on the Oline and Dline, I still like taking a late round flyer at both positions in every single draft trying to strike gold with a diamond in the rough.
    Anders, you managed to sway me into lowering NT on my list of 2014 needs,,,well done sir lol

  8. 8 Anders said at 10:15 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    I want a OT/OG prospect in around the 3rd round next year and a DE/NT prospect in the 4th round or lower next year.

    Draft them every year late and once in while draft one high.

  9. 9 GEAGLE said at 11:00 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Yeah we are on the same page…really really hoping that Kruger proves to be a great pick down the road…soap, Gaethers, Squares are just stop gaps…but we have a staring core that’s good enough to where we don’t need to invest high picks into….we need that rush OLB.
    QB,LT,DE, the three most valuable positions…well when you play 3-4, that rush OLB takes the place of the DE. We need a supreme talent opposite of Barwin to make it all work

  10. 10 Ben Hert said at 12:00 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Is Kruger even on the team anymore?

  11. 11 BlindChow said at 10:17 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    The 2-4 Steelers? Not sure.

    When they were good, it was Casey Hampton.

  12. 12 Anders said at 10:18 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    The Steelers defense is pretty decent even if they have lost a lot of talent.

  13. 13 Eagles4Life said at 2:28 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Exactly…it is being seen a bit more now how much Casey Hampton meant to that team.

  14. 14 Anders said at 2:33 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    How? Maybe the lose of multiple pro bowl OLB James Harrison is just as big? Or the decline in there CBs?

  15. 15 Eagles4Life said at 2:38 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    He was the linchpin that held it together. A lot of their blitz packages relied on him eating up multiple blockers. The absence of that has made LeBeau bring more people and consequentially get gashed more.

  16. 16 ztom6 said at 11:06 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Thornton is likely the NT of the future. If not him, Logan.

  17. 17 Jonathan said at 1:08 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Total Defense
    – Season average – 412.7 yards/game (32nd in the league)
    – Last 3 games – 367.3 ypg (23rd)

    Passing Defense
    – Season average – 311.6 ypg (31st)
    – Last 3 games – 293.7 ypg (30th)
    Rush Defense
    – Season average – 101.1 (12th)
    – Last 3 games – 73.7 (4th)

  18. 18 anon said at 8:42 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    so basically our stats don’t look bad if you take out the chargers and broncos games?

  19. 19 Anders said at 8:48 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    In terms of points the Broncos game is clear outlier

  20. 20 TheRogerPodacter said at 9:46 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    dont forget the fact that there were a number of defensive touchdowns early in the season. if we look at just points given up by our defense, i don’t think the slope is nearly as steep. though, maybe that shouldn’t be a factor as likely all teams will get a few of those over the course of a season…

  21. 21 Anders said at 9:49 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    All teams have those against them to some degree, but take the Eagles offense, they have 2 points from D/ST, where there is 28 against the Eagles on D/ST

  22. 22 eagleyankfan said at 9:47 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    yes. remove the two nfl teams and our team looks much better.

  23. 23 Anders said at 9:50 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    depends on who you remove 😛 if you take out the Jags and Bucs, we look worse 😛

  24. 24 eagleyankfan said at 9:51 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Thank goodness for the jags …

  25. 25 Ben Hert said at 10:25 AM on October 23rd, 2013:


    I’ve just started thinking of the Bronco’s this year as the Monstars from Space Jams. They aren’t a normal NFL team.

  26. 26 Mike Flick said at 9:15 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    One big problem that I have. If you look at Billy Davis’s history, all his defenses were ranked there.

    Every defense he had was at the bottom few positions in yards allowed. So when I see him running a defense that is bottom position, I tend to think he is on par for what he normally does.

    The number of excuses for his crappy and consistent rating is growing each season. He does a good press conference though, so he has that going for him.
    Which is nice.

  27. 27 Anders said at 9:27 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    You can take out his Niners years as that was not his defense. That was 100% Nolan’s defense (it was 4-3 and Davis is a 3-4 guy mainly). Davis was the DC by name, just as Shurmur is OC by name here, but this is 100% Kelly’s offense and his play calling.

    So are you going to judge a guy on two seasons of work?

  28. 28 GEAGLE said at 9:47 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Considering we judge players on like 3 starts worth of work, by those standards Billy should have produced the next Gang Green by now…I mean, COME ON, it’s been 7 months already….lol hope you sense the sarcasm….liked the way your boy Nate played Sunday!!

    If you go back and watch the Dallas game! and fast forward thru ALL our offensive possessions, it was a pretty entertaining game lol

  29. 29 Anders said at 9:50 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    3 games worth of data? Dont you know Barkley is 100% not the future based on 1 quarter of work?

  30. 30 GEAGLE said at 9:54 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Sorry…I’m having a bad day. I will get with the program…..BUST!!! FIRE HOWIE, Gamble is a joke!!!

  31. 31 Anders said at 9:57 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    That is the spirit!!!

  32. 32 Mike Flick said at 2:30 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Yes, we judge on his body of work. It is all we got to go off of. Except we hope he does better.

    The point it when he was DC his defenses have been bottom of the league.

    Now that he is DC, we are last in yardage.

    Being last is something, but when you are last and your DC has a track record for being last. His body of work suggests he is a horrible DC. He may not be, but the evidence is mounting.

  33. 33 Anders said at 2:35 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    and yards matter why? we are 26th in points and we played the Broncos when they was on top of the world.

    We lack talent in a lot of spots, no matter how good of a DC, you cant overcome lack of talent.

  34. 34 Mike Flick said at 6:27 AM on October 24th, 2013:

    What criteria should we use to judge a defense? Pick a concrete method.

    3rd down %
    Redzone %

    Not a whole lot of positives on any Davis defense in history.

  35. 35 Anders said at 6:57 AM on October 24th, 2013:

    Points, turnovers and adjusted passer rating (takes sacks into account).

    While we isnt gang green, we are better than last year in all 3 and we have progressed well over the last 3 games. Consider the lack of talent at key positions such as OLB and CB, that is good.

  36. 36 Neil said at 2:35 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    There’s a lot more input into defensive rank than the effect of the coordinator. He’s never had particularly good players, position coaches or more than two years to create a chemistry in his units. And the 49er years really should be disregarded because Nolan has much more responsibility than he did.

  37. 37 GEAGLE said at 4:30 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    To you it suggests he is a horrible DC…I personally was excited the day he was hired and to this day I’m thrilled to have him, and will remain this way until proven wrong about him….but to each his own

  38. 38 Mike Flick said at 6:25 AM on October 24th, 2013:

    I like the guy, love his press conferences and he seems like a great co-coach and nice fit.

    All that said, it is a good idea to back up your wishes with actual numbers. Being last in the league in yards is bad. The fact that he has a history of leading teams with bad defenses, and no history of him leading a good defense. My initial point is that it is more troubling than if he had no background and had a low ranked D.

    You are thrilled to have him, why? He seems to me to be a guy who has a good grasp of defenses. He is a lifer as a D-coordinator. But I am guessing he is not a good tacktiton, things like knowing when to blitz and the chess match between offensive coordinators.

    I am still holding out hope, but the numbers give me pause.

  39. 39 Scott J said at 5:45 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    It’s nice to see improvement with the defense.

  40. 40 Daniel Norman Richwine said at 5:55 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    The optimist in me wants the Dallas game to be mostly Foles fault for some hidden injury, and wants the improved defense to be real. If those two things are true, I can believe us winning 8-9 games this year and possibly the East.

  41. 41 jshort said at 7:35 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    I was reading the article, with the same thoughts running through my head.

  42. 42 ceedubya9 said at 7:54 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    I see 8-9 as highly possible, even if the defense is up and down. If the defense truly is improved, then may they can squeak in 1 or 2 more wins.

  43. 43 anon said at 8:40 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    check this article.

  44. 44 GEAGLE said at 7:57 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Shocker a young n brand new defense improves as the season goes along

  45. 45 eagleyankfan said at 8:20 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    from day 1, I think we’ve said records don’t matter — let’s see improvement as the season goes. Hopefully that is what we’re seeing here. Offense — hiccup last week is all :). Just keep swimming….

  46. 46 GEAGLE said at 8:28 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Yes sir….I’m amazed at how these losses don’t bother me…it’s all about building something, improvement…why would I expect Chip to be great when he is coaching 70% of Andy’s trash? keep gelling, keep improving…and by next year, when they reinforcements come riding in during the offseason, we will start having a nice team on our hands…

    The defense is making a ton of improvement…Billy dialed up brand new blitzes that we haven’t shown against Dallas, and we exceed them well…our disguise was also much better. We have come a long way since Rivers looked like our puppet master at the line of scrimmage….

    Keep growing, keep gelling, add that stud safety, and stud pass rushiñg OLB and we will be on our way

  47. 47 Buge Halls said at 9:52 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    I agree – I’ve been remarkably calm this year in the losses, as I think we all should be. I get excited when something good happens, and of course, upset when we make a bonehead play, but overall, I’m kind of resigned to the fact that this is a throwaway season. My blood pressure is much better!

  48. 48 GEAGLE said at 10:17 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    I get fired up on Saturdays and Sundays, but I don’t wake up depressed on Mondays, which is nice for a change…I guess it’s all about expectations..the more rational your expectations, the easier it is to deal with this year….it also helps that we were so damn dysfunctional last year, and we were such a soft group of sissy quitters, that it’s comforting watching this team claw, scratch and fight through the bad times this year…watching Cary tackle, and back down from NO MAN is exactly what our returning young players needed to see after witnessing last years gutless group!!

    I like Billy Davis! I like “The Lord of Bones” Azzinaro, I like Meco and Mykal in the hands of Minter…and I like our leadership…I think Good Cop Meco, and Bad Cop Cary is a really solid combo of veteran leadership for our young guys

  49. 49 OregonDucker said at 12:02 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    You are a hard, hard man GEagle. The recent loss just killed me. The poor execution by everyone on offense was offensive. I have turned to drink!

  50. 50 GEAGLE said at 12:59 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Lol last year toughened me up a bit….hey ducker, any word on what happened with Lyeria yet?

  51. 51 OregonDucker said at 1:33 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Well, there are two theories on Lyeria. One, he quit the team because of dispute with the coach. He felt the coach hinted that a recent absence was due to personal issues even though Lyeria was really sick. (Lyeria has a history with drink.)

    Second theory, Lyeria decided to preserve his health and not get a draft hit like Barkley.

    I believe it is the former explanation. Lyeria is a hot head who does still drink. Could be a problem in the NFL.

  52. 52 GEAGLE said at 1:41 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Thanks for the intel mate..

    We have seen Chip take on problem child’s in the past like Kyle Long(love that dude) I’m selfishly hoping Lyerias problems drop him to rounds 5-6, and Chippah take a flier on him. I just like that kids talent

    If they Eagles wrote off every player with a drinking problem there would never have been Brian Dawkins!!!

  53. 53 BreakinAnklez said at 12:51 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Rivers has been tormenting everyone this year. He has to have one of the highest completion percentages so far

  54. 54 GEAGLE said at 1:01 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Yes he has been awesome….but I hated watching him toy with our LBs pre snap and for night em to tip their hand with the slow play clock…that’s why I’m soo happy with the defensive disguise of late

  55. 55 GEAGLE said at 7:59 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Loved seeing Graham,Barwin and Curry deliver the boom to R(h)omo

  56. 56 eagleyankfan said at 8:14 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    I think they can do the same to Eli. I’m predicting 2 picks by the defense.

  57. 57 GEAGLE said at 8:15 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Hell yeah….Eli is dumb, he won’t take sacks….time to cough up that chicken

  58. 58 Buge Halls said at 9:54 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    I’d like to see Graham get more time – he seems to perform well whenever he’s on the field. I’m not sure where Cole has been all season. But I’m wondering if he is getting ore playing time based upon his past performance rather than this year’s. I expect him to be traded to a team that has a 4-3 – he’s just not cut out to be an OLB.

  59. 59 GEAGLE said at 10:01 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Preach….I’m begging to get to the point where Curry and Graham are on The field for 35 snaps a game..
    Cole clearly isn’t the answer, Graham doesn’t look to be either. Then again, I’m not sure how he could possibly look to be our answer when he barely gets 20 snaps a game…I would be ok with it, if Coles was producing, but it’s clearly one of those high paid players must play situation….at the very least Graham/Cole should be on a 50-50 time share…If Cole is better, he damn sure ain’t THAT MUCH better, so it’s maddening to see him keep Graham on the bench for the majority of the plays….
    Brandon Graham, Barkley, FOles….we don’t know if these guys our these answer, and it’s disgusting to me that we aren’t committed to finding out, especially when their is very little drop off between them, and the starter playing ahead of them(with the exception of Barkley)….Graham’s contract is winding down! he should have been given every opportunity to prove himself

  60. 60 Stormbringer said at 12:37 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    I want to see Graham play for multiple reasons.

    First, he is outproducing Cole in 1/3 of the snaps. I think people need to reflect on this as to what it really means numbers wise. That means Cole has had more than 230+ snaps than Graham and is less productive. So, if Graham had another 230 snaps does anyone question who’d be more productive? The “better in coverage” item people brought up is a canard. They did a post on Bleeding Green Nation where every single time Cole was in coverage and the pass was catchable (3 times) he gave up the reception. We know what Cole can do, he was great before (but then is not now) and he’s gone at the end of the year anyway. People crab about Graham not panning out but he really hasn’t been given a chance.

    Second, at this point, I feel they a. know he is not a fit or b. assume he can’t fit and is gone. Fine, they want a 3-4 and Davis can’t tailor their system to what he does well. But if they play him more now and let him do what he does well, they can get something for him in return. Even if it is a 5th round pick, this is very strong draft and that pick could be useful. Right now, we’ll get nothing for a former high #1 pick.

  61. 61 GEAGLE said at 1:33 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    There is literally no reason in my mind why Graham shouldn’t be at the very least playing a 50-50 time share with Trent….fortunate for us Graham fans, Cole always wears down in The second half of the season and it’s safe to expect it again this year considering how much he is playing, so Graham’s snaps should start going up soon..

  62. 62 Eagles4Life said at 2:56 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Not great on passing downs any more, but he helps out in the run game A LOT.

  63. 63 Stormbringer said at 3:05 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Cole does not measure that well as a run defender in PFF, Football Outsiders or NFL Advanced Stats. We already know what he can do anyway.

    They should let Graham play and see if we have something or if they can bring up his value and can trade him for a pick or someone who is a better fit. We are driving his value down not playing him. We do not know he is not a better run defender than Cole as he does not get many snaps. The last time he had a lot of snaps he led the NCAA in tackles for loss (and he’s 6th all time in NCAA TFLs).

  64. 64 GEAGLE said at 5:10 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Sad but true my friend….what bothers me most is Graham is effective and comfortable on there left side…yet he is getting Coles left over scraps on the right side….Barwin can play either side, so playing Trent on the right caters to Trent and does a dis service to Graham..and when you consider the difference in age between the two, Cole should have to be light years better than Graham to be playing this much and keep Graham off the left side and buried on the right bench…

    We should be finding out what we have with Graham and FOles but sadly we just aren’t…

  65. 65 Stormbringer said at 5:34 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    There is nothing to gain playing Cole right now. He made the team as he has a contract where we are shafted cap wise to release him. He is not part of the future.

    If we play Graham and he plays well, he is young and cheap and he would be attractive for a team playing the 4-3. We could probably get a draft pick or would exchange him for someone to better fit our 3-4.

    We have a lot of holes on D right now, probably more than we can fill in this coming draft year. If we can either a. make Graham into a contributor here, b. flip him for a draft pick or c. flip him for someone suited to a 3-4 or someone on the offensive side of the ball then we have saved ourselves from having to fill another slot.

  66. 66 GEAGLE said at 4:44 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    I have nothing bad to say about him in the run game…but that’s NOT good enough!!!
    When you switch to a 3-4, the OLB becomes your most important position. In a 4-3 the most valued position is a DE, and we put a premium on a DE’s ability to rush the passer..well same thing goes with the OLB in this defense. We would NEVER be ok with a DE who is a good run defender but can’t rush the passer if we still played a 4 man line, so that can not be acceptable out of our OLBs..

    So while I really am pleased with Trent’s ability to play the run, if he isn’t pressuring QBs, then it’s not good enough…in Fairness to him, It looks like he has gotten more pressure on QBs these past two weeks, but he needs to turn it up a notch and show more during these next 4 games…I never thought Graham played bad? He usually makes something happen in the limited snaps he is given…right now he is a failure, but he hasn’t exactly been put in a position to succeed….Graham should be playing more snaps. At the very least a 50-50 time share with Cole, especially considering how prone Trent has been traditionally to wearing down in the second half of seasons

  67. 67 BreakinAnklez said at 8:52 AM on October 24th, 2013:

    I hope we give Graham more time…And I hope he lives with Woodley during the offseason. Woodley sat most of his rookie year to learn how to play OLB in Steelers scheme, so I think he can only get better.

  68. 68 ceedubya9 said at 7:59 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    A couple of pieces and this Defense can be good next season. Not great, but good. Safety, OLB, NT: upgrades there can really make a difference for this defense next season. Should be able to get a quality nose somewhere in the first 3 rounds. Is Orakpo hitting FA after this season?

  69. 69 GEAGLE said at 8:00 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Yes he is

  70. 70 eagleyankfan said at 8:01 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    how can you not “improve” vs. Giants/Tampa and a hurting Dallas team? That’s like waiting til 3 am at a bar and staring at the last lady in there and saying “she’s looking good”…..

  71. 71 GEAGLE said at 8:06 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Lol chill out Namath!!!

  72. 72 eagleyankfan said at 8:08 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    LOL. One thing I do know 100% — it’s not JC running this defense, so right now, I don’t care who is running it. I still say Reid should have been fined for that move.

  73. 73 GEAGLE said at 8:12 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    He should have been sued for Malpractice,,.andy Reid vs. The city of P hiladelphia’s all the way to the Supreme Court

  74. 74 GEAGLE said at 8:05 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    I’m hearing that both Barkley and FOles will start this week…we are playing them simultaneously….sort of like a sniper team. FOles is the spotter, he does all the “looking”, telling Barkley “NO, that guy is wearing a blue and white jersey”, and Barkley will do the throwing….

  75. 75 eagleyankfan said at 8:12 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Now about the QB’s — just kidding. Loved the piece in the Giants game on how teams are blitzing the A gaps and that the Giants are having a hard time picking that up. That blitz is giving Eli happy feet. If the Vikings were ANY good, that would have been win for them. Giants are primed for the picking…time to capitalize. PS — Giants ARE good vs. the run. PSS — can we not try and run to the outside over and over and over? AP was open for dump off passes all day…Shady will be too….

  76. 76 anon said at 8:35 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

  77. 77 Ben Hert said at 9:14 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    If you’re going to be a defense that focuses on taking away the big play, and forfeiting the small underneath plays, then you have to have an excellent red zone defense. Teams are going to make it to the 20 in a defense like that, and once that threat of the big play is gone, you have to be able to buckle down and take away the short stuff. Combine that bend and not break philosophy with decent turnover differential, and I can see this defense being exactly what we need to compliment this offense. Even moreso with some upgraded talent over the next few years.

    The aggressiveness, the taking away of the big play, the bend and not break, the 17 ppg target. Seems like Mr. Davis has become a sort of disciple of the late, great, Jim Johnson.

    Although, I still wonder what could have been if we had given Sean McDermott a bit more of a chance. That Panther’s D is looking real good.

  78. 78 Anders said at 9:25 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Ron Rivera is a defensive minded HC, so I doubt it is pure McDermott. Also the Panthers have drafted a lot of defensive players high the last couple of years.

    The real change is Star in the middle (more so than Kuechly who was better last year, but overall defense was worse)

  79. 79 Ben Hert said at 9:35 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    I’m sure having Rivera as a mentor helps, but from the sounds of that piece, it looks like he’s The Man over there for the defense. I think he deserves the recognition for putting together that defense and having them consistently perform at a high level each week.

  80. 80 GEAGLE said at 10:06 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    They have drafted really well on defense…and they certainly aren’t 7 months into a new defense like us

  81. 81 Anders said at 6:13 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    It really helps when you draft well on defense

  82. 82 GEAGLE said at 10:05 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    I love me some lane, but it’s hard not to wonder how Thornton and Cox would look with Star anchoring the middle, or even Sheldon Richardson who many of us knew would be a stud..
    Can anyone tell me what Sharrif Floyd is up to? Is he doing anything at all? Literally have no idea what kind of year he is having

  83. 83 Anders said at 10:14 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Star would have been a good NT for us, but the stars on that defense just with the Chiefs is their 2 stud pass rushers.

  84. 84 GEAGLE said at 10:20 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    I drool everytime I see Tamba Hali. that is really a fun defense to watch

  85. 85 Anders said at 10:43 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    That is why I want an OLB so bad in next years draft

  86. 86 GEAGLE said at 10:50 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Dude, get me Barr or Veasley and I will do BAckflips and skip down the street…add one of the two…then in 3-4 years when Dion Jordan comes home, we will have a scary duo. Barwin is young and good enough to hold the spot warm for the next couple years until Dion is freed from his Miami Shackles

  87. 87 Anders said at 6:12 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    My dream is Von Miller or Aldon Smith in 2015, but there is no way that is happening.

  88. 88 Buge Halls said at 9:47 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    I just hate the whole “Bend, don’t break” mentality. The problem is, you routinely give up a ton of yards and all it takes is one or two blown plays (every defense has them) to make that ton of yards turn into a ton of points! This defense needs to get more pressure from the front three (or four) to take some of the burden off of the secondary and linebackers. More push equals less time for quarterbacks to pick them apart. I have a feeling the main problem is lack of talent after several years of bad drafting by the previous administration have decimated the defense (all parts of it). Over the next two years or so, I expect great improvement – I just hope that the Ol’ Chipper can last that long in Philly!

  89. 89 GEAGLE said at 9:52 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    It’s not really a lack of talent…it’s a lack of cohesion and continuity…the defense does NOT lack talent, it lacks that special game changer or two…basically we have some Solid Robins, and we need to add a Batman or two either by drafting, FA, or our existing guys taking that next step….
    An OLB like Barr or Orakpo opposite of Barwin would make a world of a difference, especially if you can also add a play making Safety like Byrd…orakpo pass rush and Byrds playmaking would really solidify our secondary, and a guy like Bradley Fletch is only going to improve when given some continuity…he had gotten very little in St Louis

  90. 90 A_T_G said at 11:57 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    But… after your first thought you started explaining why we need to add more talent. If we need cohesion and continuity, then we shouldn’t add new players. If we need to replace two of the current, non-probowl players with probowl players, then we need to add talent.

  91. 91 GEAGLE said at 1:08 PM on October 23rd, 2013: response to not needing talent comes from all the bullshit I had to read this offseason BY EVERYONE about how we had NO talent…The consensus was that we had practically NOTHING on defense….needing to improve two players with talent! is drastically different then the defensive doom and gloom everyone else wrote about….I’m asking for two players while everyone was hoping for like 8 new players…What team doesn’t hope to add two probowl talents each offseason?…..not having talent means we would need to turnover the entire defense, and I don’t see that as the case for us, thus even tho I want to add two probowlers, I don’t view us lacking the talent that everyone else seemed to think..

    At the beginning of the season I would have been crucified if I said that we are only two good defenders away

  92. 92 Tom33 said at 10:31 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Giants HC Tom Coughlin was on the NFL channel on SiriusXM this morning. When asked about the biggest difference in the Eagles this year, he said that while the offense gets all the press, he sees a much-improved defense over what they’ve faced the past few years.

    Hopefully the defense and Eli can collaborate to create some more classic Coughlin sideline moments this week.

  93. 93 GEAGLE said at 10:54 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    “by the end of the season we will all be pleased with the direction our defense is headed” GEAGLE lol

  94. 94 A Roy said at 12:56 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    I so love watching clipboards being thrown down…

  95. 95 RIPJJ said at 11:32 AM on October 23rd, 2013:

    I would not get too high on the Defense…true they had a good game – but maybe Romo too had an off day – there were a few throws which he usually makes that he did not….again too small a sample size to say that the D is great…..I was surprised that flags were not thrown against Cary Williams….most of the time he is grabbing onto a receiver….I always seem to find the blitzing to be really slow – meaning usually gets picked up or the ball is out by the time the blitzer arrives…I would think the score may have been more lopsided if Murray had played…

    PS: A commenter from another blog had come up with a good name of Nick….Nick Folds…

  96. 96 anon said at 1:16 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    We got sacks pressures and picks. As for our DBs it’s only a penalty if the refs call it.

  97. 97 GEAGLE said at 1:57 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Just think at all the intentional grounding and holding penalties our front 7 has forced this past month!!!

  98. 98 Mitchell said at 12:05 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    Another interesting stat: we only had 13 takeaways last year and already have 12 this year. A vast improvement I would say.

  99. 99 GEAGLE said at 1:10 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    just the fact that we don’t completely quit during second quarters when we are down by 10 points is a vast improvement from last years pathetic crap

  100. 100 anon said at 1:14 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    D hasn’t rolled over in the 4th quarter even.

  101. 101 GEAGLE said at 1:51 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    LOL @ Shurmer…”when you look at Shaun Rogers on film, he looks like the state of Rhode Island”…
    Chip: “Jason takes everything to heart and that’s what’s awesome about him. he demands perfection from himself even tho perfection isn’t possible. If Kelce graded out at a 99% he would be pissed off at himself! that’s just the type of guy he is and that’s why he’s awesome to have on this team. I(Chip) didn’t think he played as bad against the Giants as he said he played but he is a competitor and he thinks he should make every block and every correct call and that’s why he has been a real anchore for us in these middle”
    Chip dished out some heavy praise on Meco today, and threw some Currys way. Talked about how today Curry is a 3rd down pass rush specialist, 3rd down player but we are trying to develope him into a 1st, 2nd and 3rd down player which was nice to hear..

    Really would have liked to see what Jason Phillips could have done for our coverage units,,,
    Has anyone read any analysis on our KR blocking units? Should Damaris be getting more yards or is the blocking not giving him much to work with?

  102. 102 anon said at 1:57 PM on October 23rd, 2013:

    thatd be an interesting all 22 breakdown.

  103. 103 ceteris_paribus1776 said at 9:33 PM on October 24th, 2013:

    Before I put too much into the last 3 weeks I remind myself that 2 of the three offenses are among the 6 worst in the nfl, not one is in the top 2/3 of the league in rushing, one played a rookie QB in his second start, and one was against a QB playing the worst 7 game stretch one could possibly imagine. The performance against Dallas was encouraging, but I need to see a few more weeks against decent offenses to start thinking this is a unit that isn’t a liability. The next two weeks unfortunately won’t help too much seeing as they play the Giants and Raiders. I don’t think we’ll know really what they are until the four game stretch against GB, Was, Zona, and Det.