Earning It

Posted: November 18th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 116 Comments »

Site stuff…

There is some malicious code on the site right now. We’re in the process of removing it. My apologies for the problems. I don’t know why our Russian friends are so against the Eagles. Must be Dallas fans.

* * * * *

One of the things I love about this Eagles team is how Chip Kelly has gotten them to bend to his ways. No one is given anything. You have to earn your job.

Michael Vick and DeSean Jackson were highly frustrated by this in the spring. By summer time, both were playing great and thriving in Kelly’s offense. Fans and the media were shocked when some preseason stars weren’t rewarded with roster spots and/or playing time. Why? They weren’t doing what Kelly and his staff wanted.

The staff wasn’t going to reward guys just because of potential. Michael Bamiro is on the practice squad while Matt Tobin is on the roster. Tobin has a limited ceiling, but he earned his spot with better play.

The staff wasn’t going to reward guys just because of production. Making plays wasn’t good enough. You had to do them the right way in order to get full credit. Vinny Curry sat while Damion Square played. Emmanuel Acho lost his job because he wasn’t good enough on STs. Najee Goode was brought in and given his spot.

This led to some serious head-scratching. There were also questions about bias when Jeff Maehl made the team over some other WRs. Maehl has become a solid STs player and effective backup WR.

Kelly’s standards have frustrated some players (I get the feeling Brandon Graham isn’t a huge fan), but most guys have seen the light. Do what Kelly wants and you’ll get on the field. Don’t and you’ll sit. Simple as that. This mindset has helped the team. Players knew they had to deliver results or they would be benched.

It was incredibly frustrating last year when Andy Reid failed to call out Nnamdi Asomugha or DRC for their lack of effort. He finally did that toward the end of the year and they played a bit better. In my mind, Reid was far too patient with them and it sent a bad message. Guys can have bad games, but a lack of effort should not be tolerated. Play hard or else. Period. Effort is not an option.

Kelly’s style demands that everyone do their job as best they can. You don’t get a pass just because you’re “only a STer”. Everyone is held to a standard. I think that has paid dividends as backups have been forced to play on offense and defense. Allen Barbre stepped in for Jason Peters last week for about 3 quarters and he played just as good as Peters. Najee Goode has replaced Mychal Kendricks for almost 2 games now and Goode has looked terrific at times. Roc Carmichael has replaced Bradley Fletcher at CB and has done a solid job.

There is no panic when a starter goes down. The next player steps up and does his job. Good teams have a way of bringing the best out of backups. I think the backups sense the pressure of needing to play well so as not to let their teammates down. It also helps that Kelly has treated them as important pieces since Day One. Kelly has been demanding of them just like he has been with his star players. The backups might have physical limitations, but they are well prepared and should be confident. If Kelly didn’t believe in them, they wouldn’t have a spot on the roster.

There really is a different vibe with this team than in some recent years. This feels like a team rather than a collection of players.

That’s quite an accomplishment when you consider there is a new staff, new systems and a lot of new players. You could have very easily had a year of transition where the Andy Reid guys, Chip Kelly guys and total outsiders all battled. That hasn’t happened. Some players were very loyal to Reid and it took a bit to win them over,  but Kelly did that.

Players seem to genuinely like him. Kelly isn’t a dictator. Maybe benevolent tyrant would be a better description. Things are going to be done his way, but he’s not going to be confrontational about it. And a lot of the stuff he wants done is going to be favorable to the players. They have to practice at a faster tempo, but the practices are shorter in length. Players hate practice so they’re all for anything that gets them off the field faster.

Kelly earned the players respect very quickly. They could tell he was a smart coach and would make them better players.

This team has certainly earned Kelly’s respect. They are playing good football and winning games. Most importantly, they are doing it the Chip Kelly way.

* * * * *

It is official. Nick Foles leads the NFL in QB rating.

1 – Nick Foles – 128.0
2 – Peyton Manning – 118.3
3 – Aaron Rodgers – 108.0
4 – Drew Brees – 106.7
5 – Russell Wilson – 105.1

Foles also leads the NFL in yards per attempt at 9.59. Rodgers is second down at 8.84.

Any number above 8 is impressive. Above 9? That’s insane.

Donovan McNabb’s career high is 8.4 from back in 2006. Michael Vick’s high was 8.1 prior to this year. He’s up at 8.6 YPA this season.

I never expected Chip Kelly to throw the long ball this much. Of course, it also helps when screen passes (RB, TE, WR) are going for 20, 30 or 40 yards seemingly every week.

* * * * *

Apparently Bill Davis had the defense very well prepared.

“They did a good job of scheming us up,” quarterback Robert Griffin said. “They kind of knew what was coming before it was coming and that was disheartening. But like I told the guys, regardless of what’s going on out there, we’re the players and we have to make the plays work, and we just weren’t doing that in the first half.”

A number of times early in the game, Griffin performed his handoff fakes and looked to make a throw but then had to pull the ball down and either look for another receiver or run the ball.

Other times, Griffin looked for downfield throws, but the Eagles had taken away his deep reads as well.

The Redskins went with a run-heavy attack as a result, rushing the ball 28 times in the first half and only throwing the ball seven times.

“Obviously, we ran the ball well, but in the passing game a lot of times, they were tit for tat. They were there, where they needed to be and a lot of times they were taking the routes that needed to be run and that’s disheartening, but we have to come up with something for that.”

Love to read something like that.

I joked on Twitter during the game that is it funny that Mike Shanahan, Mr NFL Offense, is the guy running the gimmicky attack that looks like a college offense while Chip Kelly, Mr Gimmicky College Offense, is running more conventional stuff. Kelly does some unusual stuff, but which QB looks like he is running an actual NFL passing attack? The Eagles, Vick or Foles, and there’s no question about it.

_


  • T_S_O_P

    Really could be talking about Reid (circa ’00-’04) with some of those comments, particularly about unknowns stepping up for starters. Of course, that is a great compliment to Kelly and so it should be.

    • TommyLawlor

      Absolutely a lot like the good Reid years. Thought about getting into that comparison, but didn’t have the time to do it justice.

      • T_S_O_P

        Reid seems to have re discovered a bit of his old self too.

        • A_T_G

          Yeah, I thought he would regret not stepping away for a year or two, and it remains to be seen if he burns out more quickly in KC, but he does appear rejuvenated and to have examined some of the mistakes he made here. Good for him.

          I thought it was interesting during the game last night when they mentioned that he tried to hire Sutton twice before. That would be when he installed McDermitt and Castillo, right? Those were the only times he was shopping for DCs, weren’t they? I wonder how things would have turned out…

          • cliff henny

            if hali, houston, berry, johnson were a package deal, probably great.

          • T_S_O_P

            If the hire had of been in place McDermott, 3 of the 4 could have been.

          • cliff henny

            lol, kinda hurts! i drank alot the last 4yrs, fromm jj’s death to kelly’s hire is a blank, thank god

  • Anders

    Gonna post the link again.

    http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1854841-tale-of-the-tape-from-nfl-week-11

    This shows some of what RG3 was talking about. Davis knew he if he double Moss and Garcon with Reed out of the game, he would have a hard time, with his reads. It of course nice of Cox to bully his way trough.

    • TommyLawlor

      Great stuff.

      • Anders

        In general Matt Bowen is a great writer. Of course reading his stuff can be tough if you aint into x and o’s because he uses a lot of football terminology

    • theycallmerob

      fantastic job covering that backside slant (bringing the S down on the break), something that was killing the D early in the year. Good to see Davis adjust, and the players execute.

  • theycallmerob

    They are playing good football and winning games. Most importantly, they are doing it the Chip Kelly way.

    Tommy- one of Chip’s big chipisms is the turnover battle. Not just winning with respect to a positive differential, but creating points off turnovers and limiting points from giveaways.

    I did a little research, and came up with the following. Shows the vast improvement made this year; I chalk it up to QB play and coaching, myself. *also posted this on B24/7

    re: Team Net Turnover Points
    2013- #8 in league, +23 (53 takeaway pts, 30 giveaway pts)*
    2012- #30 in league, -89 (40/-129). Also,

    Over the 2012 NFL season, the average Net Turnover Points among NFL teams was 0. The top 5 NFL teams averaged a Net Turnover Points of 61.8 while the bottom 5 teams averaged a Net Turnover Points of -80.2

    *- includes the Barkley Factor

    Kelly has stressed the importance of this. Nice to see progress
    http://www.sportingcharts.com/nfl/stats/team-net-turnover-points-statistics/2012/

    • theycallmerob

      I tried to separate out individual stats, but could not find it tracked anywhere. So, based on play-by-plays:

      vs. DAL: had 1 INT called back. 1st INT at the DAL 37; DAL did not score. 2nd INT on the Iggs 29, intercepted deep at DAL 37. DAL did not score. 3rd INT in the DAL end zone (cost at least 3, maybe 7).
      vs. DAL, -3 at least, maybe -7

      vs. NYG: fumbled at NYG 2. -3 at least, most likely -7. NYG did not score; right before half. Turned ball over on downs (fumble also on play, but picked up quickly) at NYG 32 in the 3rd. Cost us maybe -3; NYG did not score. Had last INT on the last drive from deep in own territory, NYG just knelt down after that.
      vs. NYG, -3 at least, more than likely -7

      vs. OAK: no TOs

      It appears Barkley cost us at minimum -6, at most -14. Let’s average that to -10. Would just move us up 1 spot in the rankings to #7 past the Pats (CHI is at #6, +41, 18 more than us).

      • A_T_G

        Does the stat work that way- trying to predict how many points the team would have scored if they kept the ball- or does it just look at how many points came from drives begun by a turnover?

        • theycallmerob

          I’m uncertain but based on my limited research I believe the latter

    • TommyLawlor

      Very interesting stuff. Kudos.

  • Anders

    Ryan Nissan ‏@nissaneagles14m
    The #Eagles have posted 9 games of 400+yards in 2013. In #NFL history, only 1 team had more in their first 11 games – the 2007 Patriots (10)

    WOW!

    • ACViking

      A more amplifying fact may be that the Patriots were 11-0.

      That’s a WOW.

      • Michael Jorden

        Given some of these stats and comparisons, I can’t help thinking our record should be a little better than it is. There are a few games ‘we should have won’ but truthfully. you are who your record says you are. Maybe this is why some teams seemed to take the Eagles lightly more recently and ended up shocked at game time (Raiders?). We easily might have been 7-4 or 8-3. Crazy to consider given it’s Chip’s first season and with all the change ups, I figured we would be headed for a 5 or 6 win season. Team is playing better than that.

  • nopain23

    IIggles’s fans are never satisfied it seems. So many message boards had fans ripping the team for almost choking. Really?..Have we all for forgottenTHE NIGHTMARE OF 2012??. Yesterday..Trent Cole came alive , back ups were stepping up big time ( see Goode sacking RG3) our stud nickle corner sealed the game with a pick..our free agent OLB ( which many have dogged all year) knocked the crap out of RG3. B Logan looks like a 3rd RD steal( Roseman can’t draft..blah..blah)..Nate Allen has been a legit safety the last 5 games or so….Cooper is a bonafide 2nd receiver and we lead the division. Oh and by the way our QB is playing mistake free football nad is carving up opposing defenses. to quote BiG Red that was a helluva game. 3 defensive starters OUTand we hold a team to 16 points. C’,mon man..let’s give credit where credit is due.
    Just imagine with 1 or 2 good free agent signings and another solid draft where this team will be. Let’s enjoy our 2013 Iggles….’cause say what you want..they play some damn entertaining football.
    LASTLY..remember when Ryans couldn’t possibly thrive in a 3-4 defense???
    Dude is heading to the probowl!!!
    It may be early but Khalil Mack is my dream 2013 RD1 iggles pick. Foles is forcing me to abandon my man crush on Johnny Football…for now

    • cliff henny

      i’ve switched my man crush on JM to Mike Evans.

      • nopain23

        Djax..Coop and Mike Evans….!!!!
        THat trio of receivers would wreak HAVOC on the NFC East for the next 5-7 years….throw in shady and you have an offensive juggernaut..book it
        I tip my hat to you Sir.

        • cliff henny

          idk about cooper. lot of nice recrs coming out that kelly will like outside evans. 2 guys at lsu, beckham and laundry, and moncrief out of ole miss. howie might have to sit down with kelly and find out how much of that is cooper and how much of it is offense/replacable. really hate to see cooper get a hartline type contract, 5yrs 30m 12m guarenteed…plus d-jax needs to be renegotiated. need to sign vet safety, wolff is too raw to have rookie next to him. logically byrd if healthy

          • Insomniac

            Landry would be awesome here. I think he’s exactly what Chip wants in a player.

          • cliff henny

            take vannoy at 20, laundry in 2nd, moncrief in 3rd, cant ever go wrong taking bpa in cbs or ol rest of the way, scoop up lyoria with extra 5th. have shady ertz lyoria laundry moncreif and d-jax…i’d could play qb, and i have torn labrum

          • bentheimmigrant

            I could easily see Allen coming back. Unless there’s clearly someone we expect to grab it could be hard letting him walk.

          • cliff henny

            kelly, davis and howie have built up alot of goodwill quickly…signing him to free agent contract would certainly test that. not often do teams let plays get to be unrestricted and resign them.

          • cliff henny

            kelly, davis and howie have built up alot of goodwill quickly…signing him to free agent contract would certainly test that. not often do teams let plays get to be unrestricted and resign them.

          • bentheimmigrant

            Yeah. So we’d have to decide to replace him before FA, and not extend him. Which is somewhat high risk when you consider how far his game has come this season. Plus the amount of change we may see across the rest of the roster.

          • cliff henny

            he might be in same boat as cooper, teams willing to overpay for production brought on by better coaching. if either get 4-5m a yr, multi yr deal, just have to wave bye bye. just have to trust howie to get kelly some talent, let kelly/davis coach them up.

          • bentheimmigrant

            Definitely agree. But if he’s willing to extend for a reasonable amount I don’t think I’d mind or be surprised at seeing him in green next year.

          • anon

            He’d be cheap and we can start getting rid of colt anderson, etc. make chung / allen / wolff rotational players along w/ whoever else we grab. Can only imagine allen will get better.

    • A_T_G

      Yeah, but it would be a lot of work to think up new things to complain about. It is so much easier to stick with the old standbys.

  • Ryan

    We found our franchise QB. You heard it here first.

    • P_P_K

      I hope you’re right. The signs are good. However, if you’ve screwed up Nick’s mojo with this call, we’ll be coming for you with our torches and pitchforks.

  • Weapon Y

    Part of me would like to see Shanahan receive his comeuppance for almost destroying RG3′s career, just from respecting RG3. On the other hand, as an Eagles fan, I love watching the Redskins be dysfunctional and hope they are just mediocre enough to keep Shanahan around. You hit the nail on the head with Chip. He might be a benevolent tyrant, but Shanahan is a full-blown dictator. I don’t think any Redskins quarterback has ever respected him. McNabb sure didn’t. I have no idea about Grossman. I’m honestly interpreting RG3′s comments as a subtle criticism of Shanahan’s gameplan. He’s basically saying the coaching staff was outmatched by the Eagles. And I agree. Chip Kelly is a higher caliber of coach. Shanahan went into the season thinking Chip was in over his head, Steve Spurrier 2.0. It turns out Shanahan had it backwards. He has no idea how to respond to Chip’s gameplan. Boy, it felt good to put down an NFC East rival. What a breath of fresh air from last year.

    • Anders

      I think it is really telling that Shanahan, the suppose NFL offensive genius cant even make a solid offensive game plan for his star QB. I know they lack talent and it didnt help them that Reed was out most of the game, but their game plan is so vanilla and gimmicked.

  • Thorin

    Hey, when I view this site on my smartphone now, i don’t see a bunch of floating text offering spam links! Much improved.

  • bentheimmigrant

    Mrs. Immigrant had our third anchor baby yesterday morning. I guess he was eager to make it here for game day. Unfortunately that meant I missed the game. Watched it this morning… Really impressed by Davis, but I’m worried that teams are going to really start isolating Williams and attacking him with sharp cuts. He looked like a real liability out there. Hopefully Billy can come up with something to make up for that.

    • D3FB

      Congrats!

    • theycallmerob

      I’m counting on Howie to fix that more than Billy. It does seem that the closer an opponent gets to the red zone, the more S help is rolled to his side. Functions well enough in bend-but-don’t-break to make it through the year.
      The only receivers I see left on the schedule who should eat Sconces’ lunch is Megatron, and maybe B. Marshall.
      and congrats!

      • bentheimmigrant

        Yeah once we’re in the red zone we can protect him. But I just can’t see him stopping an O that decides to get all their yardage from him.

        • cliff henny

          every once in awhile, he does make a play. he’s playing a game within the game…how much can he annoy and get fans to despise him, till he makes a play.

          • bentheimmigrant

            Haha. It does seem that way sometimes. And he’s serviceable enough for most plays. But there have been a bunch of comeback routes and such, and he just can’t turn with the WR. Easy yards every time.

          • cliff henny

            he’s fine. problem is, he’s #2/#3cb playing against #1 wr’s. why when people say eagles’ll go cb early, i’m not sure. kelly seems to feel corner is a dependent position. get better front 7, corners will be better.

          • bentheimmigrant

            Maybe. I just don’t think you need a good WR to shake him. Don’t get me wrong – I appreciate that he keeps the play in front of him and hasn’t been burnt regularly. I just think he makes the bend but don’t break thing a little too… bendy.

          • A Roy

            You get a stud OLB to pressure the QB and upgrade the DL a touch, and the CBs only have to cover for 3 seconds…like the old (2002) days.

      • A Roy

        Is our front 7 strong enough at this point to play some sort of Tampa 2 where we can always roll a safety and have Megatron doubled?

    • TommyLawlor

      Congrats to you and Mrs Immigrant.

      I assume you celebrated by playing Led Zeppelin’s Immigrant Song over and over.

      • bentheimmigrant

        Sometimes you’ve just got to get the Led out.

        It’s also really hard to resist doing the Lion King scene all the time.

        Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah sevenyaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa…

      • P_P_K

        Hammer of the Gods.

      • A Roy

        Did they come from the land of the ice and snow? From the midnight sun where the hot springs flow?

    • A_T_G

      Congratulations!

    • OregonDucker

      Congratulations! Another Eagles fan is born!

      • bentheimmigrant

        It’s how we grow the fanbase. My six year old nephew came in last week and asked if Dallas were losing. Then said “I hope they don’t score any points in the fourth quarter.” Incredible.

    • P_P_K

      Congrats!

    • Gary

      Remember that the third child is the best! (I may or may not have been the 3rd born in my family.)

      But seriously, that’s awesome and congrats!

  • GermanEagle

    Glad igglesblitz is back on, however it wasn’t the Russians, Tommy! It was Angela Merkel’s revenge for her phone being hacked lately…

    • A_T_G

      See, I noticed that the hacking was a short disruption, too late to impact the game commenting and was squashed before it amounted to anything significant. I assumed it originated from the D.C. area.

    • T_S_O_P

      Is that where the nude beach pics of her arose? Do we blame the bush shots on the G W Bush?

      • GermanEagle

        No, ACViking took those pics. ;)

        • A Roy

          I thought by now we’d have a story from AC about how, in the 1963 season, she visited and they went to the shore after the game and it was magical.

        • A Roy

          I thought by now we’d have a story from AC about how, in the 1963 season, she visited and they went to the shore after the game and it was magical.

  • OregonDucker

    Chippah has replaced “Just win, Babe” with “Just win and have fun, Babe”

    Explosive plays are part of Chip’s strategy in countering defensive adjustments that give him single coverage. Maehl was great at burning defenses with explosive plays. I am so happy Foles can pull-off the challenge of explosive play potential.

  • Joseph Dubyk

    I guess I have to eat crow with Billy Davis. With a lot of players playing out of position hes getting the most out of what he has…… Arizona is going to be a great test for Foles n co. Hell, even with Arizona sucks they give us fits…. I was grounded many times in the early 90s for cursing at the TV due to the then “Phoenix Cardinals.”

  • Insomniac

    So that explains why my Google Chrome wanted to translate some stuff from Russian. I’ll be sad when Shanny gets fired. Hopefully Snyder remains incompetent.

    • cliff henny

      no worries, maybe he’ll promote shanarat jr

      • bentheimmigrant

        Can never have enough Shanahanigans.

        • A Roy

          I don’t know who’s scowl I love to see more. Shanahanan’s or Coughlin’s. Think I prefer Coughlin’s when he couples it with the clipboard spike.

    • sprawl

      I translated the Russian text but it was something about Ivan Drago getting his revenge against Rocky Balboa and some kind of 10-game losing streak curse.

      • A Roy

        Good one!

  • A Roy

    I dunno, Tommy. A lot of guys bounce around from one blog to another without protection. Just because you’re the prettier blog doesn’t mean someone didn’t visit Jimmy’s at Philly, pick up a CTD, and give it to you. Hope you’re well inoculated now.

    • Anthony Hart

      I accidentally read some ProFootballTalk comments. You should get tested…

  • truehaynes

    I know this has nothing to do with this post but i really dont get all of the anger over the graham vs JPP pick. Baring graham’s injury, i think he would be great player. You can’t plan for someone needing microfracture surgery. Furthermore, graham was by far the more polished product coming our of college and for all we know JPP wouldnt be the same on a different defenseive line. Also JPP wouldn’t be great as on OLB now, so the point is almost mute. I think the real issue was not drafting earl thomas. He was a known ball hawk coming out a college and a guy that was more of a need than DE. Imagine how good our defense would be with a player like him on ourbackend

    • Anders

      Nate Allen was also a ball hawk coming out of college and again, you cant predict him tearing his ACL.

      DE > S any day in terms of value, also Allen had a great rookie year before his ACL and then 2 years of terrible coaching.

      No way you can know if Earl Thomas would have been good for us (also before this year, Earl Thomas was more hype than substance, tho he has taken a step forward this year).

  • BlindChow

    Former Eagle Update!

    Jamar Chaney is working out for Dallas.

    • Alex Karklins

      Oh dear.

    • A_T_G

      I’d like to see him and Sims out there together.

      • disqus_jB7dl5fzvO

        McCoy will be licking his chops if that happens

      • disqus_jB7dl5fzvO

        McCoy will be licking his chops if that happens

      • theycallmerob

        Move Chaney to SAM, there’s a new MIKE in town….Joe Mays! perfect trio. Kiffin the Elder salivates at Chaney-Mays-Sims on paper.

  • ojdiddoit

    Carmichael got exposed sunday lawlor

    • anon

      he almost had a hand on that TD pass.

      • A Roy

        Good that that’s all he had a hand on, given that his pants were down.

    • A_T_G

      Exposed as what? A backup, developmental player and special teamer pressed into service by injury?

      • BlindChow

        His pants were pulled down slightly after a tackle.

  • Alex Karklins

    I don’t know. I’m not sold on Billy Davis yet. Everyone in the league knows that you can’t let All-World FB Darrel Young beat you deep.

    • BlindChow

      What was Davis thinking having Chung charge into Cole like that? That kind of thing might fly in Pop Warner, but this here’s the pros!

      • Alex Karklins

        I know, right? Is this the “technique” he’s always talking about? If so, then thanks but no thanks, Mr. Davis!

    • BlindChow

      What was Davis thinking having Chung charge into Cole like that? That kind of thing might fly in Pop Warner, but this here’s the pros!

  • anon

    Heard a stat that during the win streak we are second in points allowed (to the Panthers)…frankly that’s gotta extend to the last 5 games b/c we didn’t allow many pts against cowboys or giants. We get at least 2 TOs a game which is crazy and we get it more b/c of creating pressure upfront NOT ballhawking in the secondary.

    Remember last we when we had that sack / turnover drought?

  • Vick or Nick

    Nick Foles. Franchise Quarterback.

  • A Roy

    I know this is way off subject, but on my old phone, I was able to buy a ‘Fly, Eagles, Fly’ ringtone. I have a Droid Razr. Any help?

  • ACViking

    Re: Foles v. NFL QB-Rating History

    Over at “Eagles Rewind,” Brent Cohen asked if any BAD quarterbacks have ever had a run of games like Foles has over the past two seasons, 15 games and 11 starts.
    http://eaglesrewind.com/2013/11/19/notes-from-yesterday/

    Looking at the best individual seasons for QB ratings (as I can’t find an inter-season 15-game breakdown), a couple of things are clear.

    First, well over 90% of the 100 best QB rating seasons are associated with (a) really good, to (b) great, to (c) HOF quarterbacks. Guys like Peyton Manning, Tom Brady, Steve Young and Joe Montana, Drew Brees, Dan Marino are the best of the best. There are several more with multiple seasons.

    NOTE: The most impressive seasons may belong to two Cleveland QBs working under the great Paul Brown: Otto Graham (#12) and Milt Plum (#10). They both played when WRs were mugged all over the field.

    Second, a few QBs pop up who probably fall in the class Brent calls “mediocre.”

    The clearest examples are Brian Griese — appearing twice in the Top 100. And David Garrard, Matt Hasselbeck, Mark Rypien, and Vinnie Testeverde, who make the top 100 once each.

    _______________

    But Brent’s question zeroed in on “BAD” quarterbacks. Has a bad QB ever put up numbers like Nick Foles?

    Among the 100 best QB-rating seasons, I think you’ll find only one “BAD” quarterback.

    That’s DAMON HUARD . . . of the 2006 KC Chiefs, when he played only 8 games and posted a 98 QBR. And Huard never came close to that number in any other season.

    _________________

    So, to Brent’s point, it would seem Nick Foles projects to being at the very least a “mediocre” QB — of the Brian Griese – David Garrard kind.

    But Foles may, as Brent suggests, be on his way to being a very much better than mediocre.

    Maybe it’s Kelly’s system. Maybe it’s Foles. Hard to know yet.

    But so what if it’s Kelly’s system . . . .

    Joe Montana and Steve Young became HOF QBs in the original Bill Walsh WCO. Maybe they’d have been a couple of mediocre nothings but for Walsh’s genius, his system, the 49ers defense, and the talented players around them like Rice, Taylor, Brent Jones, and Roger Craig.

    I don’t know. I only know that a great coach came along with a great system and those 2 guys are HOFers.
    _______________

    I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention Russell Wilson.

    He’s currently listed, based on his 2013 season, at No. 25.

    It’s been suggested that Wilson’s great performance is a product of the other 21 Seahawks. Maybe so.

    Maybe Wilson’s just a 1-hit wonder. Maybe Wilson will never put up similar numbers again. Randall Cunningham was unconscious in 1998 — but he had 3 great WRs, including 1 HOFer and 1 HOF-level talent, and a great RB. I don’t see Wilson having comparable weapons. Not even close.

    I’m not even sure Wilson has as much offensive talent around him as Nick Foles.

    Using Brent’s logic (if I’m representing it accurately), Wilson’s projects to be at least mediocre.
    _______________

    In any event, Brent posed a great question. And looking at the QBs on the single-season QBR list, it sure seems that — absent Foles turning into Damon Huard — he’ll have, at a minimum, a very solid NFL career.
    _______________

    Here’s the list of the Top 250:
    http://www.pro-football-reference.com/leaders/pass_rating_single_season.htm

    • Tumtum

      I don’t see Wilson regressing. Maybe the numbers won’t be there with the philosophy they have, but that guy is the real deal. He just has that – Tom Brady – about him. Guy is a winner.

      • ACViking

        Tumtum . . .

        I think a lot of people would agree with you.

        • Tumtum

          You are right about that. I was one of the slower ones to come around.

          Not sold on Foles yet, but to your point that he could probably be at least mediocre. I can agree with that I think. Almost nothing worse than a QB that is too good to get rid of but not good enough to win it all with though, so I hope he is more.

          • ACViking

            TT:

            You never can have enough good QBs around.

            Although, inevitably, one of them disappears for a draft choice with a 50-50 chance of succeeding.

  • Tumtum

    So I’ve been trying not to look ahead this season, but took a gander at the remaining schedule. As early as yesterday I thought 9-7 was very unlikely, but it could very well happen. Not to say there are push over games on the schedule. Each team could very feasibly beat the Eagles.

    I’ll attach my name to it though. Calling 9-7 finish. Not looking like that will be good enough for a wild card so it better win the division if the play-offs are to be made.

  • ACViking

    Re: the Eagles 2012-13 Draft Foundation

    Things are looking good . . . per Jimmy Bama.
    http://www.philly.com/philly/blogs/red_zone/The-Eagles-2012-and-2013-draft-classes-could-be-the-franchises-foundation.html

    2012′s Fletcher Cox is the defensive anchor. I’ve conjectured to T-Law several times that FCox is the next Richard Seymour — and he’s the guy around whom Belicheck built his SB teams of the ’00s.

    So what if in 2011, instead of reaching for Danny Watkins, the Eagles drafted — I don’t know, but sticking to the board — DE Cameron Jordan or DE Muhammad Wilkerson?

    Imagine a D-line of Cox and Thornton with Jordan or Wilkerson.

    Fuhgedahboutit.

    But something comparable can still happen.

    The Eagles look like they’ll be drafting in the late teens at best.

    Jordan was the 24th player taken in 2011 (with the pick immediately after Watkins). Wilkerson was 31st in the 2011 draft.

    Someone good will be there in 2014 for this team. Someone very good.

    • Anders

      Problem was Jordan and Wilkerson was not 4-3 players, so picking them would have made zero sense.

      • ACViking

        Really?

        Both played in 4-3 college defenses, I think.

        How much different were they from Cox?

        I remember T-Lawlor talking about C-Jordan as a possible pick.

        Wilkerson easily could have slid inside as a DT.

        What about “Stick to Your Board”?

        Make the system fit the talent, right?

        • ACViking

          Rising from the delusion of the hour reminds me now that Jordan was a 3-4 DE when Kendricks was a 3-4 ILB.

          Right?

          Regardless, Vinny Curry’s now a DT on pass rushing downs.

          Hey . . . I’m just dreaming.

          They couldn’t have been worse than Watkins.

          The problem was the scheme.

          • Anders

            The last part is so full of hindsight. Watkins was a fit, very highly rated guard prospect and the only reason people had him rate low was his age.

          • ACViking

            Not hindsighting on Watkins’ worthiness as a selection in the early rounds.

            But I never liked Watkins at No. 1 because . . .

            TOO OLD.

            All I thought at the time — thinking back to the Chargers’ 1972 selection of 29 year-old RB Leon Burns in Rd 1 — was never take a player that old.

            But like I said, I’m just musing.

          • ACViking

            Burns was actually the 13th pick of Rd 1 in 1971.

            He was out of football by 1973.

          • Anders

            Okay, I wasnt against, because if he lived up to his grade, he would have been an 6-7 year pro.

            Its just hard to know if its hindsight or not because a lot of fans are like:

            OMG SHOULD HAVE PICKED EARL THOMAS AND CARLOS DUNLAP, HOWIE ROSEMAN IS THE WORST!

          • ACViking

            Understand.

            Watkins was the best guard on the board by all accounts. No question.

            But, for me, age and position (which I should have also mentioned, plus lack of experience) merited pushing him down.

            The O-line in 2011 definitely needed new blood. Unfortunately Watkins was a reach at No. 23.

            And the D-line, conversely, in 2011 didn’t need any help at all. Well, not in Rd 1.
            ____________

            A –
            All great stuff from you. Enjoyed it.

        • Anders

          I cant remember there size, but stick to your board includes taking players who is not fits off. I mean this year I can guarantee DJ Fluker was not on the board because of his lack of any fit at all.

          Also you take BPA, but you also has to take system fits or you get something very odd in the length.

          • ACViking

            True, True, True.

            With the selection of Cox in 2012, I think Jordan — a college 3-4 DE (revised in other comment) and Wilkerson (just, nasty, quick) — would have fit a conventional 4-3.

            Regardless, that 2011 draft had O-Line written in ink for Rd 1. Too bad.

            But I’m with you on arraying the board in the context of your scheme

    • Tumtum

      Lito Sheppard was the 26th overall pick Shawn Andrews 16th. I could live with one of those guys.

  • RC5000

    Excellent point about Kelly and Shanahan and Kelly running more pro type of offense while Shanahan seemed to be running more of a Baylor type of offense without the deep passing until late. Shanahan waited until late in the game to even try anything downfield, whether completely by design or not, RG3 was running early and often.

  • Gary

    Maybe they were Russian Cowboys fans trying to defect to the Eagles.

  • Jeffrey Stover

    Speaking of McDermott, he is doing a great job in Carolina! Case in point is the Monday night game. I wonder where we would be the right now had we kept him? Jj’s shoes were too big for him to fill and the expectations were never tempered since Sean had spent time with him. Granted having keuchly as your mlb can’t hurt. I am all eagle but I am glad to see Sean doing well!