Thoughts on the Defense

Posted: August 16th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 172 Comments »

The Eagles have really struggled on defense for the first 2 games and this was supposed to be an improved unit after a poor showing in 2013. Is it time to panic? What’s going on out there?

Let’s talk about a few things.

Curtis Marsh sucks. We need help at CB. There is one important thing to keep in mind with the struggles of Marsh vs the Pats and Roc Carmichael vs the Bears. They are the #6 and #7 CBs for the Eagles.

1 – Cary Williams
2 – Bradley Fletcher
3 – Brandon Boykin
4 – Nolan Carroll
5 – Jaylen Watkins

Fletcher didn’t look very good last week and Carroll could steal his job. Unfortunately, Carroll has been hurt for a couple of weeks. The Eagles need him to get healthy. It is no fun to watch Marsh or Carmichael get torched, but let’s not make too much of guys that aren’t likely to even make the team.

Where the heck is the pass rush? This is a tricky subject. The 3-4 is predicated on fooling offenses and getting rushers into favorable matchups. You do this by being creative. But…in the preseason you don’t want to show too much of your creative ideas. So the Eagles are being vanilla (sorry, I know some of you hate that word). This is not just some convenient coach’s excuse. It is reality.

That said, the Eagles just aren’t getting enough pressure. Even the 3-4 requires players to win some 1-on-1 matchups and get to the QB from base looks. That isn’t happening right now. Part of this may be veterans like Fletcher Cox, Trent Cole and Connor Barwin pacing themselves.

I also think the Eagles need to get the right combination of players on the field together. This means mixing in Vinny Curry with the starters in Nickel and Dime looks. Cole and Barwin as DEs, with Curry and Cox as DTs. Or Cole and Curry as 3-4 DEs with Cox at NT. There are plenty of options.

I don’t know what to say about Brandon Graham. He was relegated to the 3rd team last night. He did have a sack, but was unblocked on the play. I would like to see him mixed into the Nickel and Dime sets if he’s going to be here this year. I have no idea if he is, though.

Competition. The Eagles struggled against the Bears and Pats. Those teams finished 2nd and 3rd in scoring last year. They have good coaches, QBs and skill players. If the Eagles were getting lit up by the Jets, Jaguars or Browns, I’d be a lot more worried.

Bill Davis. Should he be getting more criticism? I don’t think so. This is the preseason. The goals are different here. You’d love the Eagles to go play well and look great, but he’s trying to evaluate individual players and find good combinations of players. That isn’t always conducive to getting top results.

For the sake of perspective, let’s remember that Davis and the D faced Chicago last year in a critical late season game. The Eagles held the Bears to just 11 points and won in a major blowout. Friday night sucked, but let’s keep it in perspective.

Hidden issue. The biggest complaint for me is all the mental mistakes. You see blown coverages. You see players failing to contain run plays. You see players taking poor pursuit angles. I’m referring to starters and backups here. No one group is to blame. Brandon Bokin let a runner get wide of him yesterday on a play that should have just gained a couple of yards. That is a rookie mistake. Being made by a 3rd year player.

I can live with players who get beat by players that are better than them. I can even live with missed tackles. I cannot stand mental mistakes like this. Covering a gifted WR is hard. Tackling a powerful or elusive RB is hard. It isn’t that hard to be in the right spot or to take the right angle.

Davis and his staff really need to get this stuff cleaned up.

_


  • SteveH

    I’m going to be beating the lack of a pass rush is going to kill us drum all season. Marcus Smith is at least a few years out from being an impact pass rusher and Trent Cole is not getting any younger. Vinny Curry and Brandon Graham are miscast in this defense. Fletcher Cox has regressed in the 3-4 and is not going to be the impact guy we thought after his good rookie season.

    I’ve said it before, and I know Chip has his reasons for wanting to use the 3-4, but it really hurts us to have so many young talented guys essentially being wasted on this different front. I think we’re still a couple years out from being able to field a fully functional 3-4 front.

    • makarov123

      Agree with everything, except being a couple years from a functional 3-4. I’m not convinced the talent exists in sufficient quantity to execute a 2 gap 3-4 in today’s NFL. Unless you have 4 pro-bowlers in your front 7, it isn’t going to work anymore. And that’s not drafting and executing well. That’s called getting really lucky.

      Watch the SF defense significantly regress this year due to starters being sidelined for part or all of the season.

      • GEAGLE

        Watch anyone defense regress when starters are sidelined..

        If you can’t run a 3-4 in the NFL then half of the franchises are really confused

    • Anders

      Above anything else, I really want to draft an impact 3-4 OLB next year.

      • GEAGLE

        Seems like a strong class for edge rushers… There are a ton of them, which do you have your eyes on?

      • Dominik

        I think we all want that, especially with Cole getting cut (and even if he takes a significant pay cut, his play will decline and his role will be different) next year. I feared our lack of pass rush before Preseason and I fear it now even more. Point is, though, they couldn’t have done something smart about it. Yeah, you could sign Ware for a lot of money – but he’s old. You could have traded up the house to get Mack – but that’s not smart, we have other holes. We couldn’t even fill all of these with the (added) draft picks we had.

        It sucks that we don’t have an elite pass rusher, but there weren’t any that made sense or were available in FA or the draft. But you’re right, let’s hope we have luck next year.

    • Nicodemus_09

      So based on reading what you said, are you in the camp that I’ve been from the junp? One of the things Chip said from the very beginning, is that ” show me my players & then I’ll build my systems accordingly” I can’t believe that as head coach he’s only referring to offense! Based on that philosophy, I’ve felt from the very start that defensive player wise, we were FAR more suited on the D side of the ball to run far more of a hybrid 3-4. That would allow guys like Curry, Cole & Graham amongst others to play their game & implement schemes that would allow them to one gap. I personally feel we rushed FAR to quickly into the 3-4 that Kelly/Davis so whole heartedly want to run. That’s fine & dandy, but we barrelled headlong into it WAY to quickly. Wanna play the traditional 3-4? FINE. I personally am not a fan of it, but fine,
      but for the love of GOD, please give it a draft or two to obtain the players we need to run that dang 3-4 correctly. What the heck is wrong with tailoring the D in the meantime to the talent we have? I’d like to know. Rant over….
      .

      • Always Hopeful

        Gotta install sometime. Gonna take your lumps either now or later. Rather take ‘em now and get it over with, and HOPE that the defense won’t be too much of a liability. Tommy makes good points about vanilla D, and also about the mental side of the game. Must improve in many ways on D.

        • Nicodemus_09

          That’s certainly the way we went. And that’s how Chipper wanted it. This is an extreme example I’m aware, but since I spent most of my adult life in the military & combat operations, I can only offer you this analogy. I would ALWAYS rather take the time to either train my men or find the right guys for the job. As opposed to charge in with untrained cherries. Regardless of what walk of life or situation, I don’t think I’m going way out on a limb predicting a much greater success rate going in with the right guys for the right job with the appropriate skills & personell. That’s my 2 cents anyway bro. That said, thanks for the response! : )

          • Always Hopeful

            I definitely see that point. I laugh because I’v been thrown into a work situation where I’m in over my head. Catching up, but my training could have been much beter.

            I’m not a coach, but I wonder if they could do it the way you mentioned, considering Chip’s appreciation for military training methods. I wonder if part of the pace for practice is to speed up the learning curve.

            Maybe they run a hybrid D (I remember reading about the 4-3 under and it’s similarities to 3-4 concepts) while they get more peices to fit the scheme.

            It’s cool to speculate. All I know is that I hope they can get some things worked out to be at least as good as last year.

            Too low of an expectation?

  • Mitchell

    I was just talking to my wife about why the defense might be struggling because of all the vanilla with the 3-4. I mean that’s why we changed over right? So we can be creative and exotic?

    • CrackSammich

      In the regular season, yes.

      • Mitchell

        Agreed, I’m not bashing them for their performance this preseason.

    • RobNE

      What did your wife say?

      • Mitchell

        Well she mostly just listens and has no idea what I’m saying.

        • P_P_K

          This is the basis for domestic bliss and tranquility.

      • James Skip Carl

        Asked nobody ever

    • makarov123

      It looked completely vanilla in Chicago. At least by the time Jimmy Garoppolo was in last night, they were mixing in the occasional blitz.

      Pass rush is my biggest concern with the entire team. Second is what Chip’s plan is when Maclin is out. There is no depth behind him right now. None. Zero. Hope everyone likes screens and 5 yard slants if Maclin goes down.

      • Mitchell

        Momah. That is all. But seriously the wr depth is an issue. Good thing we have great tight ends and talented backs.

      • stephenstempo

        two 5 yard slants is a first down and we have three chances. I like that math in this offense.

      • Maggie

        Personally don’t care how many screens or 5-yard slants are called. As long as they move the ball, score often and keep the defense off the field.

      • Buge Halls

        Well, when you have running backs and tight ends like we have, those are the plays they should be calling anyway!

    • Anders
      • Mitchell

        That was a very good link. Thank you.

    • Baloophi

      Mrs. Baloophi’s analysis of the game?

      “That Belichick guy has a woman’s body.”

      • Mitchell

        Definitely an apple shape.

        • BC1968

          What about Chip’s ass? It can damage your hand it’s so firm.

          • P_P_K

            I get the Shady reference.

        • Nicodemus_09

          Isn’t the rule of thumb that men are apples & women are shaped like pears? With most of their weight going south of the equator? Lol. : )

      • TommyLawlor

        Does that make my fantasies about him more acceptable?

        • kevinlied

          Note that she didn’t say an attractive woman’s body.

          • TommyLawlor

            Touche.

          • Buge Halls

            Enough frosty adult beverages and that doesn’t matter as much!

  • makarov123

    tldr: pass rush is a major problem

    When it comes to contain, missed assignments, and being out of position, Najee Goode looked Baade last night. Real bad. He got toasted on a wheel route where he looked to have back side responsibility for the FB. Something similar happened later in the game.

    I’m not overly concerned about the play of Carmichael and Marsh, since as Tommy noted they aren’t making this roster. I am concerned when 4 of the top 5 CBs are injured and the 5th is looking like a liability in the new, “hands off” pass coverage the NFL appears to be pushing. I guess Boykin isn’t actually injured – cramped up and left the game – but to have some many 1s and 2s out 3 weeks before the start of the season is still less than comforting when there are hamstring issues. A tweaked hamstring can be something you’re fully healed from in 2 weeks, or last over a month.

    If the NFL does call more illegal contact penalties this year, it makes the pass rush all the more important. The Eagles did exactly nothing to address one of the weakest points of the ’13 defense through the draft and free agency. I realize the pass rush options at pick 22 were probably all reaches, so I’m not criticizing the selection of Smith. At some point, though, if you can’t acquire the players to execute your defensive scheme (2 gap 3-4) at a high level, you have to question if the problem is lack of the right talent or failure to adopt your scheme to the talent available. I’d love a 6’3″ 265 pound OLB who can bend in a pass rush, run a 4.5 40 yard dash, chase down Mike Vick on a scramble from the opposite side of the field, and cover RBs like Darren Sproles and TEs like Jimmy Graham 10-20 yards down the field. That OLB does not exist, and probably never will.

    When people said Nick Foles couldn’t execute the Eagles offense because he couldn’t run, Kelly pointed out you tailor your offense to the abilities of the players in it. This season could well be the one where someone needs to point out the same thing to him and Billy Davis on the defensive side of the ball. You have Trent Cole, Vinny Curry, Brandon Graham, and Fletcher Cox who could all excel when attacking into the backfield off the snap. It seems to me the Eagles are trying to fit square pegs into the round holes of the 2 gap 3-4. If the pass rush isn’t improved this year, I wouldn’t blame Howie as much as I’d blame Chip and Bill. I certainly won’t be blaming the players.

    Before anyone points out the Eagles sack rate improved throughout the season in 2013, go back and watch week 17 and the wild card game. Tell me how often Orton and Brees were pressured. Neither of those QBs are a significant running threat like Wilson or Caepernick. They aren’t even known for good mobility. Hell, look at Nick Foles. Give an NFL QB, or even quality backup, all day to throw, and you’re toast.

    Maybe a second year in Davis’ 3-4 is all the front 7 needs in order to improve. If it doesn’t, the problem is the scheme not the players.

    • Buge Halls

      I’m thinking that if the pass rush isn’t improved this season they need to start looking for a new coach as well as talent!

  • Sean

    In this whole 3-4/4-3 discussion, everyone seems to be conveniently forgetting that they had a 4-3 with all these same guys everyone wanted in their natural positions in 2012 (Cox, Curry, Graham) and they were a WORSE defense than they are now.

    • Sean Stott

      a 4-3 like many other teams run is significantly different than the Wide-9 scheme we ran that year.

      • Sean

        Two things. 1) Shouldn’t that scheme have played to their strengths, allowing their obviously undeniable pass rush prowess to really shine through? 2) They moved away from that alignment after Washburn was fired and Tommy Brasher took over, yet the D remained awful.

        • ICDogg

          Furthermore, while we have some guys who are not ideally suited for a 3-4, at this point we also have others that are not ideally suited for a 4-3.

          • GEAGLE

            Think the more different schemes you can throw at QBs, the better off you will be.
            ..,
            4-3 teams don’t have any 3-4 in their arsenal..l
            Every 3-4 team has some 4man lines in it’s playbook…
            Why would we only want one of those schemes in our tool belt, when we have both right now..

            Like most eagles fans I talk to. I was also a 4-3 guy my entire life. I loved the eagles 4-3, I only played in a 4-3… But I am thrilled with the schematic direction of our defense…

            We are building a defense that has the ability to be multiple, attacking QBs in various different ways, more for offenses to prepare for…we are also trying to become really solid at disguising our intentions presnap… When we get good enough to face the top QBs in the playoffs, if they know what our defense is doing on every play, they will pick us apart.

            So far fans are only seeing the hard part of the scheme switch… Once we get comfortable in our new defense, fans will see all the good that comes from switching from a 4-3

        • GEAGLE

          Asking rookie LBs to be responsible for two gaps, probably isn’t going to be a winning formula…

          Ask Kendricks about the defense we ran his rookie year, he basically thought it was the most retarded Braindead situation imaginable… Quotes like “they saw my 40 time at the combine and must have thought I was superman”

    • makarov123

      Secondary was one of the worst in team history in 2012. The first DC was a former OL coach, and his mid-season replacement was basically forced to live within the established scheme.

      While they did run a Wide 9 front in alignment, the same scheme featured a 270 pound + Trent Cole dropping back into zone coverage on 3rd and long.

      All that, some other things, and the fact that most of the team flat out gave up half way through the season.

      • GEAGLE

        When your secondary isn’t excellent, good idea to play a 3-4, it’s easier on your safeties… 3-4 you can stop the run. While letting your safeties worry about the pass

        4-3 is out dated… The teams that play 3-4, ALL also use 4 man lines… Yet the teams that play 4-3, DONT use any 3 man lines..,
        ..
        Why wouldn’t we want both in our arsenal?

    • Nicodemus_09

      Two words hung us IMO in our last 4-3 incarnation
      WIDE NINE.

      • Angry Amishman

        I miss the wide nine…..sigh. It was going to change everything.

        • Nicodemus_09

          Are you being serious bro? I can’t tell. I mean it sure allowed some guys to rack up some crazy sacks , but it also gave up monster chunks of realestate in the run game. So, sarcasm ? Or do you really miss it?

          • Angry Amishman

            Total sarcasm

  • Sconces

    good read as always, but:

    “let’s remember that Davis and the D faced Chicago last year in a critical late season game.”

    That Chicago game meant nothing for us

    • Anders

      and it meant everything for the Bears, yet we destroyed em

      • Sconces

        I was speaking from our point of view, it didn’t make sense to call it a critical game

        • BC1968

          I think you’re missing his point.

          • Sconces

            I think I am too, what made the game critical for us?

          • stephenstempo

            Tommy Meant that in the grand scheme of the NFL it was a critical game. Specifically for the bears, but if you were a major sports news outlet you were covering that game because it was REALLY important to the nfc north.

            He never said it was a critical game for us, just that it was a critical game.

          • BC1968

            I think critical was the wrong word, it was their best at an important time for them and the Eagles kicked the crap out of them.

          • Nicodemus_09

            Just the “coveted 3 seed” if you feel that was going all out for anyway. Opinions varied on that one. That and needing to get back on the horse after the Minnesota debacle. Plus, we’re from Philadelphia, we fight!” lol

      • Maggie

        Let’s not forget that the Bears were missing 2 good players with injury last year and have added a couple new weapons this year. The Chicago D historically never seems to be down for long.

  • CaliEaglesFan

    I don’t believe Graham was regulated to the third team. He said he was suffering from back tightness in the first half and that is why he didn’t play and it loosened up and he got in a bit later.

    • GEAGLE

      Found it odd that he played so many ST snaps, but not many OLB snaps

  • Sean Stott

    “Brandon Bokin let a runner get wide of him yesterday on a play that should have just gained a couple of yards.”

    On review that looked a lot more like Najee was supposed to be there as they swapped zones.

    • Anders

      No, Boykin did the Cardinal sin and forget to keep contain.

    • A Roy

      Boykin was there to contain, but it didn’t look to be his assignment. Two errors there.

  • ICDogg

    In the Benn vs Momah vs Maehl competition, “none of the above” has taken the lead for the time being

    • TommyLawlor

      Sadly, yes.

    • A Roy

      It looks like Tim McManus may be right and we go with 5 WR.

      • ICDogg

        If everyone is healthy by then, yes.

      • GEAGLE

        I honestly thought McManus roster projection was terrible. He had:
        4 RBs
        4 TEs (why the hell would we keep Emil again?)
        6 DL…I’d bet we keep 7
        9 or 10 OL which is impossible..

        One of the worst roster projections I saw IMO

        • Anders

          I think we keep keep 8 OL and 9 when Johnson comes back.

          Babre, Gardner, Molk and Tobin as backups.

          I think we only keep 3 TEs and have 1 on PS. I cant see how we only keep 6 DLs.

          Curry, Bair, Allen, Hart as the backups

          • GEAGLE

            Yeah, you figure Billy Davis wants to use 6 DL in every game, so how can he not have 1 back up? 6 DL aren’t going to stay healthy for 16 games… Why the hell would ABYONE want to keep Emil iguana Iguadala or whatever the hell his name is over a 7th DL?
            ..,
            …agreed on the OL ATleast initially. I don’t think it’s a lock that all 4 of the backup OL get to stay when Lane comes back from suspension. Think it’s up to how Gardner looks in practice during September! to decide if he gets to stay on the roster when Lane comes back and has to count against the 53… If all 4 backups look good, then I can see us end the year with 9 of them…
            But there is no way, I repeat NO WAY that we keep 10 of them, that’s just absurd

        • Nicodemus_09

          Geagle, do you think Mcmanus was counting Trey Button as the 4th? Instead of Emil? Or is Trey maybe PS bound. Either or, 4 is one to many!

          • GEAGLE

            No, he literally listed Emil as the 4th.. Not sure if he was drunk at the time because that’s just absurd

          • Nicodemus_09

            It truly IS absurd. Just the prospect of keeping 4 TE’s on the roster seems crazy. But Emil Igwenagu? He’s still alive?? lol

    • Anders

      I say Momah has been the best

      • ICDogg

        Didn’t secure the ball, twice. Fortunately the second time bounced into Benn’s arms, but that’s not going to earn him a spot.

        • Anders

          The 2nd time was an imcomplete pass, no clue why they didnt rule that

          • sonofdman

            Never hit the ground.

      • GEAGLE

        Don’t think either has separated himself from the other enough at this point… Thursday will be BIG for those two…
        .,
        Of course it’s possible we don’t even keep a 6th WR, but the fringe players they are competing with at other positions didn’t step up yesterday…

        Momah was only given 4 ST snaps, but I’m not sure what to make of that because he played the most WR snaps out of necessity…hopefully Maclin, Coop and Brad all play Thursday so easier to gauge where these WR stands when they aren’t given snaps due to neccessity

        • Anders

          even if we only keep 5 WRs I think there is a spot for one of them, because Huff’s shoulder might land him on IR

          • GEAGLE

            Interesting… Anyone hear anything about the extent of that shoulder? I know nothing about it at this point…

            I’m fine with IR any rookie! I don’t believe in counting on rookies during their first season…if we have to IR one, to keep a player we don’t want to lose, so we can prolong a decision on a players future til next year after another year of coaching, I will always be ok with it…

            You could tell me we are IR Marcus smith or Jordan Mathews and I would be OK with it…
            ….
            I would assume that we end up sticking ATleast 1 player on IR

          • Anders

            While im not the biggest Matthews supporter, I would hate if he landed on IR. He is clearly our best slot WR and consider how often we go to 11 personel, he is needed

          • GEAGLE

            Just speaking in theory… It be pretty dumb to stick him on IR…

            I guess what I was asking is… I don’t hate your idea of huff on IR, but where is it coming from? Are you saying he jacked up his shoulder bad? Or that we would just use the shoulder as an excuse to IR him?
            ..
            I’m fine with him on IR, but what’s up with his shoulder? Was it a serious injury or are you talking about it being a phantom injury we use an excuse?
            ..
            And it doesn’t have to be a situation where we IR a WR, to keep another WR…. We could just as easily IR Reynolds to make room for momah

          • Anders

            Huff has done zero as WR, so the shoulder injury is a good excuse to IR.

            I think we have enough KRs with Carroll and Boyking

          • GEAGLE

            Oh ok…, I haven’t seen anything on the shoulder.. I didn’t understand if you were saying it was a serious injury or not…..get it now..,

            If huff doesn’t return kickoffs, who do you go with? Sproles and Nolan?

          • Anders

            Most likely Sproles or Nolan as primery KR

          • GEAGLE

            Think both are ahead of huff on the depth chart as KR anyway

          • Anders

            yea, Kelly is just saving Sproles and Carroll has been injured

    • makarov123

      Someone please remind me what Brad Smith has done. I guess a lot of media have him penciled in as a lock to make the 53 man. I haven’t seen anything approaching that on the field.

      If it’s based on camp performance, I guess Marsh is a lock too lol.

      • Anders

        Smith is a very good >ST player

      • GEAGLE

        One of the best ST players league wide
        One of our few WR we can lineup inside or out
        Emergency QB on Gameday
        Chips gadget play toy

        Is that enough to answer your question? We can argue til we are blue in the face about Brad, but I guarentee he is a lock to make this team

        • Insomniac

          Brad Smith hasn’t played any QB since college. Emergency QB? Don’t make us laugh.

          • GEAGLE

            Laugh at Chip, not me….Not my decision…Chip always says Brad is his emergency QB on Gameday. So we only dress two QBs…

            If you see us dress 3 QBs, than Chip is full of crap. If we only dress two on Gameday, then yes Brad is our emergency QB

          • Anders

            Smith has played QB as wildcat QB for the Bills

    • RIP Worms

      It’s gotten so bad that one of those players (Momah) is literally trying to give his spot to another (Benn) by gifting him a TD that he could have simply kept for himself.

      As I think about it, perhaps Momah’s fumble on the opening offensive play was actually a planned fumblerooski intended for Maehl…

    • RIP Worms

      You misspelled “none of the above.” It’s H-E-N-R-Y J-O-S-E-Y.

  • GEAGLE

    Let’s look into my crystal ball, GEAGLE EYE, whatever u wanna call it lol
    ..
    Next year Vinny Curry either
    A) gets traded for Dion Jordan
    B) Vinny gets moved to OLB. When we moved him to DE we were loaded with Predators. After this season both BG and Cole could be gone. We would be left with Barwin and Marcus who can play as mirrored OLBs, but whenever one needs a break, Vinny can go in at Predator and Marcus or Barwin can revert to the Jack role..

    As a 3-4DE Curry is a liability against the run if we ask him to two gap, BUT as a 3-4OLB he can be really solid against the run. He was good at setting the edge against offensive tackles.. He goes from liability, to really strong as a run defender. He will provide the pass rush that he always does, and we will have two JACKS so have no need to ask Vinny to drop rotating in at OLB
    ..
    Again, when we asked Vinny to switch to DE, we were loaded with predators and we were thin at DL.. After this year, Cole and BG are gone, not only do we have OLB openings but, our DL is getting crowded with young two gappers now that we have two NTs, Cox,Ced!hart!Bair!Kruger.,,

    We all know if we keep Vinny at 3-4 DE we will lose him in free agency to a 4-3 team who will pay him as a 3 down player, so why NOT try to salvage his long term eagle career, by trying him out as OLB during the last year on his contract? If we works out as an OLB, easier for us to justify paying him to keep him here long term…and now that he is on a crazy diet it won’t be hard to ask him to revert to his edge rusher body

    One way or another, via trade for Dion Jordan or moving to OLB, Vinny Curry saves the day and brings us our edge rusher that we are missing

    • Insomniac

      You better hope Jordan shows anything this year then.

      • GEAGLE

        I hope Jordan has a horrible year and I hope curry gets 6-8 sacks in a limited pass rush role…why would I want Dion to play well? Chip doesn’t need to see him play well to trade for him…
        ..Phylbin continues to insist that he will only play 4-3DE, when their LBs sack and could desperately use Dions help in coverage…Phylbin basically wants Dion to become what Curry already is..,plus after this year, Miami will already have paid two years of Dions contract, be easier to get them to trade him if he struggles agaim

        • Insomniac

          Jordan is exactly what Marcus is right now. A raw project that’s better going backwards and side to side than forward. Even if we got him next year, he’ll probably just back up Barwin’s role.

          • GEAGLE

            If we trade for Dion, we won’t get him til his 3rd year…. Can’t sit here and guarentee he will be a polished wrecking machine next year, but I find it hard to believe that next year, he will be operating at Margus smiths rookie level…

            Marcus is a natural in coverage but still raw….think ATleast in terms of dropping into coverage, Dion is more advanced… Doubt Marcus is ready to play Gronk the way Dion defended him early in his rookie year…

            Curious to see what Dions body looks like when he comes back from his PED suspension…
            .,,
            You wouldn’t be excited to see the eagles trade for Dion?

  • GEAGLE

    Maybe we don’t need to keep 5 safeties…

    When We had Colt Anderson he was our 5th safety, but he is only a safety by name. No one wants to play him on defense in an NFL game. He made our roster as a ST player who happened to count as a Safety..

    Now, our special teams ace, maragos, can actually be a backup safety. We don’t need to keep him as a ST ace and keep 4 other safeties…
    ..
    Maybe we should take advantage of no longer having to keep a ST player who is worthless to the defense.. Consolidate backup safety with ST ace, and only keep 4 safeties.
    ,,,
    We could IR Ed Reynolds, to keep 8 defensive lineman instead of 7. I don’t want to make a habit of keeping 8 DL because it’s not neccessary. Normally we will keep 7, rotate 6 in a game, and the 7th doesn’t dress until one of the 6 gets hurt… But it may be a good idea to IR Reynolds and keep 8, just so we can wait til next year to decide between Kruger and Bair. Neither will have a monster impact this year, but I don’t want to lose one until we see what they look like with anther year of development and coaching….

  • GEAGLE

    Didn’t record the game last night. It’s airing again tonight, which means if I want to watch the game again, I have to sir thru all the flags again… God bless

  • wee242442

    Hey guys…maybe you can help me with something. When i found out we drafted a LB in first round i was ecstatic. I just figured it was going to be Coles replacment at some point. Theni started to do research on Smith and i dont really get the pick. He seems to be an.ideal WILL LB in a 4-3 D. Now please understsnd i am not knocking on him. What we really needed was a good pass rushing LB to supplant Cole at some point. Instead we drafted a LB that is very athletic and great in coverage, which is great. But he is basicly going to be Barwins backup. He had that one season in college in where he had 14 sacks. Prior to that not much. Everyone seems to realize and admitt he needs alot of work in that department. I just dont see where our first round pick.is going to see the feild as a starter anytime this year or the next unless it is Barwins backup. I am also worried about him against the run. If i am blatantly wrong about something let me know. Moved to florida last year so i cant watch any of the games. Kills me. Havent missed a game for like 7 years prior to that.

    • GEAGLE

      He will be our 3 down OLB of the future and projects to develop into a kid that can grow into a good pass rush, run defender, and coverage LB…but it’s not going to happen overnight…

      The players you are talking about who are NFL ready always get picked really high in the draft… Take a top 10 pick to get guys like Mack, Clowney or Barr…

      If you want to get an OLB and you don’t have a top 10 pick, you can find two different types:
      1) an OLB who can contribute quickly, might be able to do one thing well, but doesn’t have much of a ceiling…. Like the skins got with Trent Murphy

      Or
      2) a Raw talemt, with a high ceiling who has the tools to be a quality well rounded OLB, but will need to grow into that role…like Marcus smith
      ….
      Now this year, Murphy is probably going to bring more to the skins then we get out of Maaaaaarcus daaaaarling. BUT, if Marcus gets quality coaching and his work ethic is legit, 3 years from now he should be significantly better than Murphy..not just as a pass rusher, but all facets of the game….. If you find an NFL ready edge rusher outside the top 10, he will have his limits….because if he was BOTH ready to terrorize the NFL AND he had an elite ceiling to grow into, he wouldn’t have made it out of the top 10

      We are supposed to have quality coaching staff, filled with good teachers…. Marcus has the ceiling of a fantastic OLB, the trick is now to get him to realize all that potential and grow into the STUD he is capable of becoming…

      Kid was a brilliant pick. It will take time, but he will be fantastic come 2016

      after QBs…edge rushers are the most coveted pick in the draft. You can still find OTs in round 5… But edge,rushers get snatched up quickly
      ….
      This is supposed to be a really good draft class coming up for edge rushers, OLB and DE

      • wee242442

        Both good points. Do you tjink it is possible that next year Barwin moves over to Coles spot and Marcus stays at Barwins?

        • wee242442

          To be honest with you the real issue i have is the 3-4. I have always liked the 4-3, but i was excited to see what the 3-4 would bring. I understand it will take a few years for the eagles to grow into the 3-4 if not more. At tbe same time however the eagles have the making for a great 4-3 DLINE. Cox is best as a 43 DT. Then yu wpuld have the combo of cole, graham and curry as ypur ends. All of these players with the exception of Cole are all young 1st and 2nd rnd picks. Thorton would be grwat to come in as a DE on obvious rushing downs. Ryans would still be your MLB, Kendricks at WILL, and IF we still took Barwin in FA he seems to have the makings of a good SAM. The secondary would automaticaly be better due to the better pass rush. I tink this year with the emphasis on the holding and PI penalties it just makes it that much more important for the ball to come out of the QBs hands quicker, or better not at all. Keep in mind we have very physical CBs, the longer the Q can hold tht ball the more likely a flag will get thrown against our corners. Maybe last year if we used the 43 we would have won another game or 2 and would have skipped the first round of the playoffs. Or maybe we would have straight up beat the Saints. Just playing devils advocate with that one. And sorry, i am on smart phone and it doesnt have tab to create paragraphs.

        • GEAGLE

          Yes and No…. I don’t really think it matters because with both Barwin and Marcus in the game we will play mirrored style OLBs, instead of the predator and Jack role that we now use for Cole and Barwin…

          But yes, Marcus ability in coverage will undoubtably free up Barwin to go after QBs more, where as he is often handcuffed in coverage when he has to play opposite of Cole

    • Anders

      Kelly and Davis ideal 3-4 scheme has 2 Barwins with slightly better pass rushing skills.

      • wee242442

        With the litle rush tbe Dline is making you are going to need more then 2 Barwins to create a strong enough pass rush.

        • GEAGLE

          Upcoming draft class will be really strong for edge rushers.
          ..Part or me just wished we can go with a Jevon Kearse free agent splash… I like our approach of not being players in free agency…but I’d open the checkbook up and hand the Mighty Robert Quinn 50million with a smile on my face if he ever reached the open market

          • Anders

            Greg Hardy, JPP, Worilds and Orakpo are the only good pass rushers who might hit FA next year (I think Hardy has to hit FA consider he is tagged and therefor cant get a new contract before next season)

          • GEAGLE

            Can’t pay hardy!!! don’t want to pay a friggin idiot that goes and domestically abuses his girl a week after he was given a 10 million dollar deal

            JPP is over rated fraud,. Who knows how much lazy he gets when he gets Longterm security..

            Worlids I like but probably not at the price he would fetch on open market if he has a good year.

            Orakpo isn’t fooling anyone! I sniffed that fool out. Just watch him continue to play well enough til he gets a Longterm deal, he will cash in, kick his feet up and never be as good as he was before he got the deal…
            ….
            I’m done wanting to buy other teams studs…. It would have to take someone special for me to want to see the eagles drop 40-50 mil on a free agent… It would have to be someone special like the Mighty Quinn, those rare players that can take over an entire game from their position….but Those players don’t hit the open market often…

        • Anders

          I said with better better pass rush. Also a good part of the pressure from a 3-4 comes from the blitz and the fact the OL do not know who is rushing.

          • wee242442

            My apologies, misread your post.

      • A_T_G

        Agreed. In addition, the idea seems to me to be that surprise will make them both more effective rushers.

        Also, consider what would have happened to us last year if Barwin had gone down for a few games. We desperately needed another player who could do what he does. There is no way to scheme around that.

    • D3FB

      Marcus Smith’s best fit is as a 34 OLB. He is certainly not a 43 Will. A 43 Will is usually an undersized linebacker who is hyperathletic and the playmaker of the defense. Think Derrick Brooks, Lance Briggs, Lavonte David, Thomas Davis, Christian Kirksey, Kevin Pierre Louis, type players.
      Marcus has plenty of room to grow as a pass rusher. However he has a high ceiling in that regard. Many of his sacks in college were simply from stunts or beating an inferior athlete, but he also flashed the ability and understanding of how to use moves to beat opponents. It may take a year or two to completely grasp, but during that learning period he can use his ability in coverage, and his outstanding ability to set the edge in the run game to earn playing time.

      The other thing people need to realize is the whole “our first round player should play, and play alot THIS YEAR!” mentality. I think that shows how quickly people forget after a few bad years. Players drafted at the back end of the first round don’t make the same type of impact as those drafted in the top 10 to 15. Certainly not in year one. Lets look at the tail end of the first round:
      23. Dee Ford- Not gonna start. Behind Hali and Houston, will only see a small minority of snaps this year.

      24. Darqueze Dennard- Not going to start. Bengals have a multitude of veterans at the position, being groomed to take over next year.
      25. Jason Verrett- May be the nickel corner. Has been dinged up and was unfortunate the Chargers were able to pick up Brandon Flowers off waivers.
      27. Deonne Buchannon- Will play LB in Nickel, may start later in the season in second year UDFA Tony Jefferson stumbles.
      28. Kelvin Benjamin- Sometimes a team is in such cap hell because of a stupid GM they have to play a rookie as their number 1 receiver.
      29. Dominique Easley- It looks like he may be slightly ahead of schedule, but the Patriots were totally willing to give him a medical redshirt year in 2014.

      30. Jimmie Ward- The 49ers used the 30th overall pick on a guy who won’t be a starting safety for them for 3 years, and in the interim may play nickelback. (the position not the shitty band)
      31. Bradley Roby- May see some rotational reps this year, but not being counted on to contribute much to super bowl contenders.

  • GEAGLE

    Think most fans will be pleasantly surprised by the caliber of defense we show this year… I expect this time next year to all be talking about going into the season with a top 10 defense

    • Anders

      I just want us to be a top 15 scoring defene and better on 3rd down, so we can fucking score more points

      • GEAGLE

        Yeah I should have clarified… With our offense we probably can’t judge defenses the way we have traditionally. I care about:
        1) Point Allowed
        2) Turnover Margin
        3) 3rd down conversion percentage

        If we can operate around the level of the last two months last year In terms of points allowed. maintain our stellar turnover margin from last year, while showing significant improvement in 3rd down conversion, we will have all the defense we need
        .,,
        Really if you look at what our defense grew into last year, they are an improved 3rd down conversion percentage away from being Set at defense!

        • bridgecoach

          4) big plays allowed.
          5) Passes defended
          6) drives extended by penalties.

    • wee242442

      Would love to agree, and i am normally a glass half full type of guy, but if that pass rush doesnt get better we are still in some trouble on D. Safety play will be better, i think Nate will have a pretty good uear compared to years past. Our CB depth is better. I see us as a middle of the pack D. I think our D really hinges on whether Cox can take a step forward and how effective Cole will be at rushing the passer. Hopefully he carries on from the end of last year. Thorton getting a little better at rushing will also go a long way. I liked what Logan did last year but it would be a bonus if Allen pushes him for his spot.

      • GEAGLE

        There is no pass rush, like pressure up the middle. It effects all the best QBs… We don’t have the traditional edge terror but the tandem of Cox/curry should perform as one of the best interior pass rushing tandems….on top of that, we do all types of twisting and stunting with our Dline on 3rd, often combined with blitzing the LB up the A gap…
        ….
        We don’t have the traditional edge terrors, but we should be able to compensate with heavy blitzing and our interior pass rushers… I mean, what Fletcher cox have in his second year, 39 QB hurries? He didn’t rack up sacks, but ATleast two of those hurries resulted in bad throws that Boykin picked off.. curry should be good for 6-8 sacks.. We also are probably going to be one of the better defenses at tipping passes at the line., Barwin is good for ten tip passes per year and we have a lot of lOng Defensive lineman and coaches constantly have them working on batting balls down….

        Also expect some quality blitzing. Meco just had a career year in sacks.. Since college Kendrick has been a great Blitzer? Malcolm Jenkins was the #1 ranked safety in blitzing and pressuring QBs, Boykin and Cary should have a decent CB blitz or two in them….when Wolff is in for Allen, he athletic enough to send after QBs… Pass rush by committee this year!

        I think we will show some really nice improvement on the defensive side of the ball this year…

      • GEAGLE

        Cox, Kendrick! Boykin, Thornton, Bennie! Wolff. Curry..

        You can’t look at these kids as the same players they were last year….. Unless you think one of them is lazy, doesn’t love the game, or is being coached by an Incompetent position coach, you can’t expect them to be the same players they were last year…
        ….
        I don’t care what we are talking about football. Algebra, learning a different language,,, if you work hard at something for a year, you will be better at it then you were a year ago..
        .
        We have a lot of defenders who haven’t shown their best ball yet… Add up all their small improvements, technique improvement, mental improvement, pre snap disguise improvement and it should manifest into an obviously improved unit

  • Pingback: FEATURED POST: Thoughts on the Defense | Eagles Nest Online | Philadelphia Eagles Blog

  • eagleyankfan

    it is pre-season. And the defense has stunk. I want to say — how can we expect anything different as the only change on D is at safety. Our number 1 pick will be a monster — in 2-3 years. But it’s pre-season and pre-season doesn’t mean much. Can’t complain much really. Ok, yes I can. Can someone please tell me what the h3ll Nate Allen was doing on that 3rd TD? He was in perfect position. He was playing center field. He had an offensive player headed right towards him. Allen takes off and starts running to ????? I can’t figure out where the h3ll he was going.
    Love me some Ertz and JM.

    • GEAGLE

      U will be pleasantly surprised by this years defense.

      Remember what I told you this time last year: we already have 70% of our eventual top ranked defense already in place. Since I made that statement we added Malcolm Jenkins! Marcus darling, Beau The War Pig Allen, Taylor hart! Jaylen and Reynolds,,,

      We are like a player or two away, and another year of young plays maturing and we will be a Baaaaaaaad Man!!…

      I’m sure you have to expect that we will be improved at getting off the field on 3rd down, which was our Achilles heal last year. Improve that conversion rate, and our defense will be tough enough to compete with the big boys

      So many small but important improvements will be made from last year and they will add up to defensive improvement… Something so small as improving our presnap disguise is going to have a positive effect,,

      • bsuperfi

        There are some things you can glean from preseason and many you can’t. You can’t tell how a unit will play over the course of a year. You can’t tell how a vet will play because they don’t always go all out. Preseason is useful to see how the rookies et al. are doing.

        But then there are the tricky cases. If our defense makes a big jump, it’s going to be because players like cox and Kendricks become impact players on a consistent basis. You’d like to see them show up in preseason so we could get a good vibe about whether this will happen. They’re still young and have something to prove. But they also have some good experience and may not go hard, be put in the best position by the coaches, etc.

        I guess I think our defense has a decent chance to be better than last year, but I’m not sure by how much. I wish preseason gave me a reason to be as confident in these key players as you are.

        • GEAGLE

          You can tell a guy like Cox, comfortable in his starting spot is taking the Demeco approach to preseason. Relax, stay healthy, conserve yourself for September. You can see the difference between his effort and Beau Allen’s who is out there playing like his life depends on it…

          Personally, I just want Cox to go into September as healthy and fresh as possible… I can live with not seeing him terrorize a preseason game…problem is that I share this team with a ridiculous fanbase.. Every time a player dpesmt perform like a hall of famer in a preseason game, the sky is Falling in philly

          We call ourselves a smart fanbase…yet last week I had to sit thru all the sky is falling crap. And maybe Sanchez should start instead of FOles over a friggin preseason game lo…. It’s one thing to hear silly fans talk like that. But to turn on CSN and see media members talk that crap is just crazy.

      • eagleyankfan

        you nailed it about getting off the field on 3rd down. One would think that is a point of concern and a point being made by the coaching staff. Yet, after 2 games there is no improvement. No signs of a pass rush. I’m cautiously optimistic but I’d to see a sign, any sign, that we’re improving. I know some players turn on that “switch” once the season starts. Hoping that’s the case here.

        • GEAGLE

          You really expect them to waste blitz packages in the preseason?
          ..
          Pass rush is a lot like running back.. Need a few touches under your belt to get some Rythem..
          .
          Really don’t understand what the big deal is, we are lucky if our starting defense gets two drives worth of continuity in a preseason game…they don’t even get enough of a sample size to concern us

  • GEAGLE

    Replay just started on comcast network.. Didn’t realize how well Cox and Ryan were playing the run

    Looking forward to toms special team DGR..crazy how much is riding on the special teams snaps of these last 3 preseason games… I don’t mind watching special teams, but kinda sucks to have to watch second and third string special team to see how these roster decisions will shake out

  • GEAGLE

    What do people think about FOles comparing Ertz to Gronk?
    ..
    Mosher: “FOles compared Ertz to Gronk for Ertz ability to stretch the defense, make tough catches and thrive on athleticism”

    Gronk was FOles Tight End at University of Arizona.
    Ertz ran a faster 40 time to Gronk: 4.67 > 4.68
    Ertz had a better vertical to Gronk: 35 1/2 > 33 1/2
    Gronk is 1 inch taller and has 9lbs on Ertz

    Curtosy of Mosher via Rotoworld

    • anon

      gronk way more physical, but ertz will be that guy for us and has a better head on his shoulders.

  • anon

    They let in 45 points in 3 quarters. I thought pats were going to make 60. Thats bad. I kno it’s preseason but they were also tying to bounce back from the Chicago game where they played poorly and now more mental mistakes.

    • GEAGLE

      If,you think yesterday was any sort of representation of the level of defense you will see this year, I promise you are in for a big surprise.

      I watched the same game as you. And I’m watching it again as we speak on comcast network…. You should not be concerned about what you saw yesterday defensively… Yesterday and what you will see in septembers is apples and oranges… Actually it’s more like Apples, and filet mignon… Don’t let this preseason crap worry you

  • SteveH

    Something to be thankful for in the aftermath of another ugly preseason game: No serious long term injuries.

    Sam Baker just went down this evening with an ACL, brutal setback for the Falcons who struggle on the OL already. Zach Miller (who was murdered us in the first preseason game) went down for the year last night.

    For us, losing Lane Johnson for the first 4 games hurts, but at least we get him back for the last 12. Let’s hope our spat of soft tissue injuries ends and we get into the regular season at 100% health.

    • Anders

      Im so happy Eli is really struggling. I heard sooooooooo many Giants fan say he would bounce back in McAdo’s scheme, despite McAdo’s claim to fame is been Aaron Rodgers QB coach (aka Rodgers was already very good before him). Also Manning’s skill set does not fit a WCO at all. Eli is only good in the run and shoot

      • GEAGLE

        Watching the Giants experience similar to our 4-12 implosion this year will be very satisfying…

        Dallas fielding a defense worse than our NNamdi/DRC defense, worse than the historically bad saints defense when Sean Payton was suspended is going to be very satisfying… But the best is that the Rams will knock Romo out for the season in week 4… Romo won’t get to see October football this year

    • Crus57

      What about your liver? That has to have taken a beating.

  • Richaud Jeaffreson

    If Curtis Marsh just learned the simple act of turning his head around to look for the ball, he would be pretty decent.

    • GEAGLE

      Watched all his snaps again last night… Embarressing how bad his technique was. Too frequently he wouldn’t turn his head and had no idea the ball was coming his way… He has been here for years, he can’t be having performances like that. It’s one thing for a WR to out battle. CB for a ball, but Curtis didn’t stand a chance..,

      He was never a natural CB.. Seems like he has never gotten comfortable since they moved him from RB… .. Clearly craps his pants when the ball is in the air, worse is that too of often he doesn’t even know that the ball is in the air…. How many years has he been a CB in the NFL already? 4 years? To still have a showing like that is just bad…

      Cornerbacks need ice water in their veins.. They have to be able to trust their technique! the bad ones freeze up when the ball is in the air and fear failure of getting beat.. The good ones step up, and go after the ball trying to make a play when the ball is in the air..

      Pull a plug On the Marsh experiement, it’s OVER!! No way a 4 year veteran should have a performance like that… Jaylen Watkins took his lumps in his first NFL, but it wasn’t Curtis marsh type bad…
      ,.,
      I don’t care how well Marsh plays the rest of the preseason, I find it disturbing that he would be capable of such a horrible performance. Years into his NFL career.. I don’t know that I could forgive a rookie CB for a performance like that…

      Trade or cut Marsh TODAY!! No reason he should occupy any more snaps as an Eagle… Use his spot to take a look at some other young player

      • jshort

        Davon Morgan…Anyone catch if he received any playing time? Had to look at the roster to remember his name. Read the story about how he ended up here, just wondering if he’s doing much to take notice.

        • GEAGLE

          The kid from the V-tech workouts right?
          ..
          Good question, but I haven’t paid attention to any of the LONGSHOT DBs.. Figured the ones who make the team are barely good enough lol…

          No idea if Morgan, Keelen Johnson or the other LONGSHOT safety have done anything. Prob should go back and watch the 4th quarter…but everytime it’s the 4th, I tend to focus on Villanueva and mays.. Be nice if one grows into a long 6’9 monster two years from now..

          If Vallanueva ever makes the roster. You know Chip will be tempted to put Lane, Momah and Allejandro as pass catchers in redzone offense package lol. Throw it up to Villanueva, who has a DB that can beat him for a jump ball?

          • jshort

            If they don’t catch it….just wait for the flag…sad sad, sad.

          • GEAGLE

            Truth

  • Pennguino

    Cox was coasting most of his time. He made a couple of tackles but lacked any burst off the ball or hustle on a lot of his plays. Just going through the motions.
    1st play late off the snap and singled pushed out of the way. RB ran right over where he was.
    2nd play chased to the left but was not involved in the play.
    3rd Play. Late off the snap but nice stiff arm to control the gap for a run play. It was a pass so no recognition.
    4th play. Lined up as RDE. Had no movement on the OT. Fell off the OT as soon as he touched him to try inside. Ran around trying to find a hole. No push at all.
    5th play. Stood up the LOT but could not disengage to make a play on the RB running past him
    6th Play. Pathetic. Came clean off the edge and then just jogged to the RB. No aggression or hustle.
    7th Play. Got pressure and started beating the guard but pass came out. First good play.
    8th Play. Lined up at NT. Got a double team off the snap so he tried to loop around to the left instead of pushing a pocket.
    9th Play. Lined up at NT. Tried pushing pocket then looped around past Curry on the left and started for QB. Pass was gone. This was Conner’s almost sack play.
    10th play. Fought a double team but flowed to the ball carrier. Cole forced it inside and Meco got to the RB first and Cox assisted on the tackle.
    11th play. LDE penetrated but ball was floated out to the RB on his side. He gave a good chase but couldn’t catch the RB.
    12th Play. No fire off the ball. Read run then pass and started to attack but ball came out. Was out of the play but jogged to where the ball was.
    13th Play. RDE. Stood up the tackle and made the play on the RB. Was pushed back 3 yards on 3rd and 1. First down.
    14th Play (after Momahs Fumble) RDE. Jumped out to seal the edge but play went inside. Tried to hustle to get in but was already down.

  • SteveH

    My kingdom for a stud rookie pass rusher like Clowney. What a physical specimen, that 2 play sequence tonight was remarkable. Amazing speed and power.

    • A_T_G

      Whoa!

      You have a kingdom?!

      • OregonDucker

        It’s more of a “domain” than a kingdom…..

    • Ark87

      Gotta upvote a Shakespeare reference that isn’t Romeo and Julliet.

      • GEAGLE

        Look at the culture on Ark!!!!

  • RMB1969

    The thing that bothers me is that you don’t see anything that the defense does well. If the opposing offense wants to run, they can, if they want to throw short they can, if they want to throw long they can, if they want to throw screens they can. We can’t stop anything.
    Even in the preseason you need to beat the player in front of you. I’m wondering when we are going to start seeing that happen.

    • GEAGLE

      Bet we field a top 10 run defense

    • FairOaks

      Yeah that is somewhat of my concern. I know the defense is playing vanilla in order to evaluate the talent of individual players, but so is the offense, and in a talent-versus-talent matchup it looks the same as a lot of last year on the field — often doing well against the run, but cannot get off the field on third down no matter how long the yardage is. We did well some games last year, but accurate QBs were generally able to pick us apart (even late in the year), as the pass rush did not give them much help.

      Granted, much of the offenses’ success the last two games has been going against Marsh and Carmichael — which was exactly the issue in a few games last year, when Fletcher was out and we had to play Carmichael. Our depth should be better this year, unless the new rules mean Fletcher is either a walking flag or easily beatable, in which case the rookie Watkins is the only depth improvement. OK, safety should be much better as well. I would really like to see what QBs can do against us when Williams, Fletcher, and/or Carroll are the outside CBs, which we haven’t seen a lot of yet. That might give us a better idea.

      I still can’t shake the notion though that the top-end QBs will still be able to pick us apart even with decent coverage, given that I’m not sure how much pass rush we’ll be able to generate, and if so that would end up much like the Saints playoff game.

      • GEAGLE

        Starters get like two series of play… How is that enough for people to be concerned?
        .
        I really don’t get it… Last summer I didn’t understand why EVERYONE talked about us like we would be historically bad defensively again…I thought fans would learn from their false evaluations last summer, and now fans are again down on the defense…. I just don’t get it.. Don’t understand how people expect it not to improve from last year, which was better then people give credit for

        Just think how for the past two summers EVERYONE talked about how Demeco sucked and he would be a liability! he went on to make everyone look like fools… Now people are making the same mistakes with cox and the defense..

        Defense will do it’s part this year!

        Hopefully next summer people will finally realize that we are on the right track defensively

        • FairOaks

          They were certainly vastly better than the year before. I think people’s expectations have been seriously changed though… I think we expect to make the playoffs this year, and then the concern becomes if we can do any damage there. The good QBs tended to pick us apart last year; when we faced mediocre ones we were indeed much better. I think Dallas was the only really good offense we shut down somewhat though. (And Foles had his game to forget, unfortunately.)

        • OregonDucker

          Geagle, Davis shared his desire to see how 2s and 3s fared against 1s on the other team. Couple this with vanilla schemes with no disguise and you have a frustrating performance for fans; but a performance the coaches must have to get the very best 53

        • RMB1969

          I mean yea, I’m hoping the D improves too. But I watched the first half of the last 2 games and I saw the opposing offense doing whatever they wanted to do.
          The other teams offenses are just as vanilla in the preseason as we are on D. But where are the 3rd down stops? Where are the sacks?
          It seems like our D should be better than last year just based on time in the system…..but why can’t we turn on the TV and see it?
          They go against one of the best offenses in football in practice every day, so to say “well that was Chicago” or “o that was Tom Brady” doesn’t wash.
          I’m rooting for them always, and I’m sure however good they are now, they’ll get better as the year goes on. But you gotta be realistic with it. I really hoped they would be showing more at this point.

      • OregonDucker

        While I share your concern about our pass rush, there seems to be a disconnect between fan perceptions of our pass rush and opposing coaches. Malcom Jenkins has said that the Saints’ OC and coach were concerned about the Eagles pass rush so much that they decided to run, and run a lot. As we all know this run strategy, caught the Eagles D in pass defense schemes much of the time, with Logan getting the blame for much of its success.

        So I am with you and GEagle that our pass rush must get a whole lot better, I still wonder why the Saints, in a playoff game no less, would be very concerned about it.

        • FairOaks

          Fair point. Logan did not deserve the blame for that game, for sure.

      • Pennguino

        Game planning and schemes will clean it up mostly. But at the end of the day and what we are seeing from the preseason games are; My man can’t beat your man.

        That will plague us the rest of the season

  • GEAGLE

    In think for the most part PFF grades are a joke… I think anyone who claims that they can grade all the defensive backs and wide receivers without the coaches tape, just based of the TV film is simply a jerk off..especially without knowing players assignments…but, if that site can grade positions somewhat accurately it would be the O and D lines since you can actually see them on every play in the TV broadcast..

    With that said, I liked seeing the PFF grades for the patriots game because the highest grades were given to your offensive linemen,
    ..
    Molk was the highest graded Eagles with a 3.8…. Molk basically got a free pass on our roster when Vandervelde got hurt, so it’s nice to see him have such a highly grade game.
    ..
    Next highest grades went to Andrew Gardner followed by Matt Tobin..

    Everyone has been crying all offseason about our lack of OL depth, when in reality, UNPROVEN depth doesn’t automatically mean lack of depth… Nice to see our 3 backup OL get the 3 highest grades on the team.

    4th and 5th best grades went to Lane Johnson and Evan Mathis…
    ..,
    So our top 5 highest graded players were all offensive lineman.

    After those 5 the top grades went to some skill players:
    Jordan Mathews
    Ertz
    Rejus
    FOles..
    …..
    Unfortunately Momah got the lowest grade on the team, but his fans should take it with a grain of salt, since I’m not sure how anyone can even attempt to grade a WR without the coaches tape where they can see the entire route

    Herremans was also was given one of the poorest grades..

    But take that with a grain of salt considering Shady was one of the lowest graded players

  • GEAGLE

    Crossed paths with eagles fan who needs to be respected!!.., 32 year old man, blind his entire life, but a Rabid Eagles fan… Said “I never saw the Eagles play, but I never missed a game”…. Thought that was really cool.

  • OregonDucker

    I was unable to see much of the game because of technical difficulties. Did anyone note the performance of “War Pig”, i.e. Beau Allen? I thought I saw him push two OLs into the QB but my reception was crap and I could not be sure.

    • GEAGLE

      Solid, nothing crazy tho..

      Chip Kelly let Marcus smith have it.. “Needs to produce more if he is going to see that many snaps”… PFF graded him as the worst 3-4 OLB which I found odd because I was really pleases with his performance against the Bears… I expect Marcus to take this to hart and make some plays on Thursday night..

      Jordan Mathews produced. Start to see his RAC ability on screens, slants and drag routes. After the game he says the next step in his progression is making some plays down field, down the seem, saying he needs to be that big weapon down the seem for this team.
      .,
      Huff got hurt early

      Jalen didn’t play

      hart was ok, nothing special, but seemex solid enough
      ..
      Saw Reynolds make a play or two, but late with the 3rd team

      • Ark87

        Any update on Huff? When I saw that arm hanging like it was it looked like he either broke something or dislocated something. Obviously it wasn’t a break, but I wonder if he will be missing time.

        • GEAGLE

          Negative xray…shoulder in a sling, but only expected to miss a week..

          No big deal, sucks that he got hurt so early, with all the injuries at WR, he could have gotten a lot of reps and some nice work in at WR the other day

  • GEAGLE

    Bair vs. Kruger

    Some absurd opinions floating around on this topic. I don’t want to lose Bair either, but deciding to cut Kruger and keep Bair would be friggin absurd. Bair is 29 years old, out of 90 eagles in camp, Kruger is the second youngest.

    Kruger was a pick we made that wasn’t supposed to pay off for us yet, it was made to pay Longterm dividends, investing a late pick on a kid to can grow into a significantly better player than where he was drafted suggests… If you are going to piss away that pick and this kids potential for a 29 year old, this 29year old has to be someone we can count on to really beast the league this year! as opposed to cutting Kruger for a leading contestant to this summers “Na Brown award”

    Now if you were to tell me we will keep 8 DL so we can prolong this decision til next year, and Sacrafice a fringe player at another position I can live with that…but he isn’t good enough at the age of 29 to make us piss away a talented young draft pick before he is even supposed to pay off for us..

    Ok, Bair has played a little better than Kruger., but being blown away that a 29 year old is playing a little better than a baby who hasn’t even had a year of NFL coaching left is absurd and cutting Kruger to keep Bair would make us a FOOLS!
    ..
    If we want to keep Bair and IR Kruger, practice squad him or whatever, FINE…but we better know what we are doing and not lose Kruger. To lose him now to another franchise is absurd. We drafted him, we kept him on IR for a year, to lose him now that he is close to being ready to start paying off for a team would infuriate me

    If Bair was 23 years old, then may the best man win… But a 29 year old better look like JJ Watt compared to a baby if we are going to be so short sited to give up on Kruger now

  • Anders

    After having watched the Giants offense through 3 games, Im not sure how much of a treat they are for the NFCE crown. I would take the under of 8 right now because that offense is not going to win them many games. ELI IS DONE

    • GEAGLE

      I got them winning 4-6 games..

      I don’t even care what they do in preseason.. I think they made the same mistake we did keeping Andy too long, tried to sign a bunch of free agents for one last ride, and like Andy n the Eagles, I expect COUGHLIN and the giants turn to crash and burn!! 4 to 6 wins…Gianfs will never compete for an NFC title again, until the next coach they hires builds them back up…IF they hire the right NEXT coach, he still needs to find the RIGHT QB

      We are already better than them and we will get ATleast one more seasons worth of head start…anxious to see who they hire as a coach next,.. Hopefully it’s a jay Gruden type as opposed to a Chip kelly

      Figure they will draft somewhere between #4 and #12… They could go after Jameis Winston

      • Anders

        If the Giants only win 4 games, they are actually in good position to get a good QB if Winston comes out with Mariota, Winston, Hundley and a couple more (of course some will crash, but doubt those 3 does it)

        • GEAGLE

          Figure they just miss out on Marriotta…and will have to chose between Jameis and whoever is the 3rd rated QB is next year. Curious what happens with Winston. Will teams drool over the talent and overlook being a piece of crap off the field? I know if the Giants Mara didn’t die, fat chance he would draft a QB with Winston’s off the field behavior… Wonder if Wineston goes top 7, or falls and a team with the #12 seed like Titas or Rams get a top talent outside the top 10 because of the behavior concerns

          • Anders

            Best for the Eagles is most likely Giants end up with 7 wins again, bad enough to not make play offs, but not good enough to get a great pick

  • anon

    jason avant making plays downtown