Mac is Back

Posted: September 30th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 47 Comments »

There were a couple of key questions about Jeremy Maclin heading into this year. First, was he all the way back from the torn ACL of last summer? And how would he do in Chip Kelly’s offense, which needs receivers to run after the catch and be good blockers? These were valid questions for a player that was going to be a key to the offense.

So far, so good.

Maclin hasn’t shown any signs of being affected by the ACL. He looks as fast as ever. He is making quick cuts and looks comfortable on the move. He isn’t shy about getting hit in the legs. He looks normal, which is exactly what you want for someone coming off a major injury.

Mac has good tape and good numbers. He is on pace to set career highs in just about every category. Here are his projected numbers for a full season:

80 catches – 1,412 yards – 12 TDs – 17.6 ypc – 20 receptions of 20 yards or more

As a point of comparison, last year DeSean Jackson was 82-1,332-9-16.2, with 25 catches of 20 or more yards. You can see that Mac is putting up some impressive numbers.

Mac had the one gift TD vs the Jags when the deep Safety decided to focus on the run or TE over the middle and left the deep area wide open, but Mac has had to earn most of his yards. He has made some terrific catches this year. His diving sideline grab on Sunday was as good as anything I can ever remember from him.

I’m also impressed by Mac’s willingness to work the middle of the field. He’ll never be Anquan Boldin, but he looks a heckuva lot better than the guy who earned the nickman Self-Tacklin’ Jeremy Maclin back in 2012. That guy avoided contact at all costs and ran for the sideline any time he had the chance.

The questions about Mac coming into the season have been answered. He is healthy and he is playing very well in Chip Kelly’s offense.

The scary thing is that he and Nick Foles still arent totally on the same page, especially down the field. They have left several TDs on the field. Mac and Foles should get better the more they play together.

* * * * *

Quick notes on some other players

* Brent Celek – What is going on? He has 3 catches for 15 yards. Last year he averaged 15.7 yards per catch. Age might have started to catch up with Celek a bit. It also looks like the timing is just off with he and Foles. Celek has been open a few times and the ball was just off target. Just as concerning, I think Celek’s blocking has taken a step back this year. That has hurt the run and pass game.

* Fletcher Cox – Remember all the Training Camp doubt on him. Cox had a quiet summer and everyone got worried. Cox has played very well and could be a Pro Bowl player by the end of the year.

* Brandon Graham – The OLB light has finally gone on for him. Graham still looks awkward at times, but he seems more comfortable and is making plays when given the chance.

* Riley Cooper – Is he off to a slow start or was 2013 a fluke? Fair question to ask based on what we’ve seen so far. I tend to think he’ll be okay, but Coop needs to get it going. He has dropped some crucial passes. They weren’t all easy, but he’s paid like a player you expect to make those kinds of plays.

* Earl Wolff – Disappointing start. Missed a game recently due to a sore ankle. Then missed a key open field tackle that gave the Niners a TD last week. I was hoping he would play well and steal the job from Nate Allen. No chance so far. Wolff is good enough to be a backup, but he’s got to play better if wants the team to have him as part of the future plays. Allen is a FA after this year. His job is there for the taking, but Wolff has to earn it.

* * * * *

The Eagles practice sqaud got shuffled around. Brandon over at BGN has the details.

Out – OL Tyler Hoover and LB Brandon Hepburn

In – OL Kevin Graf and ILB Jake Knott

Graf got cut from the roster when Lane Johnson returned from suspension. I’m glad Knott is back. You wonder about what led to his return. Did the Eagles want to look elsewhere initially? Did Knott hope for a roster spot with some other team? Did the Eagles decide Knott was better than other guys they had brought in or looked at?

Knott has some potential so it is good they can work with him.


47 Comments on “Mac is Back”

  1. 1 GEAGLE said at 9:03 PM on September 30th, 2014:

    More importantly, Maclin is showing up in big ways during crunch time??Extending key drives, catching go ahead late TDs,in just about every game..
    Deseans short comings were he got his stats, but was too easily taken out of the game in late key drives…game on the Line, Maclin has been our best player so far!a long with Sproles of course… He is finally really emerging as a number 1 WR..

    I never doubted Cox would dominate this year…Kendrick will follow suit as soon as he gets healthy..

    Really giddy about how our DL. And front 7 handled it’s self against the Niners bully OL…seeing some big strides in the defense… a Bennie is playing like a playmaking NT, Cedrick continues to play at the high level we saw last year, and Cox is dominant,,even Beau Allen. And Vinny a had some nice plays against that Niners OL…. Once we eliminate the big plays and penalties we will see a very much improved defense..

  2. 2 Henly125 said at 9:44 PM on September 30th, 2014:

    Word. I always thought Mac was a much more complete receiver than DeSean.

  3. 3 deshawnbentley said at 4:40 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    Keenan Allen did to him? Must be some scandalous Cal frat story.

  4. 4 Dominik said at 8:12 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    “Lamicheal James signed with Dolphins practice squad..”


  5. 5 GEAGLE said at 8:53 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    Didn’t even know he still had PS eligibility

  6. 6 Maggie said at 4:19 PM on October 1st, 2014:

    Do you actually believe that Chip couldn’t have signed him if he wanted? He chose not to and Chip knows him better than anybody.

  7. 7 Dominik said at 6:46 PM on October 1st, 2014:

    I think it was a numbers game for Chip. LMJ obviously was no candidate for the 53 roster, but we already have Tucker on the PS and I think in Chips mind, that’s enough.

    As a casual fan, I see Will Murphy on the PS, a guy who simply cannot play football at this level, while we have 6 WR on the 53 and 2 more on the PS and I think: well, LMJ has at least potential, and I don’t think we need 9 WR running around at practice.

    I’m sure Chip has reasons for it, but from what I know now, at the moment, I don’t think I would agree with him.

  8. 8 Mitchell said at 9:25 PM on September 30th, 2014:

    I’ve lost more and more faith in Riley Pooper after each game. I think he is the Eagle that needs to step up more than any other. He dropped the game winning catch and it was literally right in his hands after a spectacular effort by Nick

  9. 9 Henly125 said at 9:42 PM on September 30th, 2014:

    Jeremy Maclin will be putting up some monster numbers this year.

  10. 10 anon said at 9:49 PM on September 30th, 2014:

    someone else needs to make plays

  11. 11 A Roy said at 9:53 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    Yes, Foles.

  12. 12 Alex Karklins said at 10:01 PM on September 30th, 2014:

    I even find myself getting angry when Cooper makes those short catches on the sideline and gets immediately tackled for zero YAC. You don’t need to pay $8 million guaranteed for those. I’m eagerly looking forward to the Maclin/Matthews/Huff era.

  13. 13 anon said at 10:27 PM on September 30th, 2014:

    given what was on the market and the incident over the summer i would have let cooper test Fa. That said, he seems “open” if he catches the ball we have like 4 more scores. Juggs machine!!

  14. 14 laeagle said at 10:31 PM on September 30th, 2014:

    I seem to recall a catch this week where he stiffarmed and fought for more yards. Not saying he’s playing well, but let’s not let legit criticism turn into silliness.

  15. 15 Alex Karklins said at 11:30 PM on September 30th, 2014:

    I know, I’m just venting. It’s just frustrating to see him take such a big step backward this season.

  16. 16 Age said at 12:29 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    Thanks as always, Tommy. Quick OT question about the site layout: is there any way you can add another the link to the comments at the bottom of the article? Call me lazy, but it would obviate the need to scroll back up after reading the article to find the link where it is now.

  17. 17 deshawnbentley said at 4:35 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    Wtf how lazy are we getting? Why don’t you just click the name of the article before reading it so the comments are already there when you finish reading…and if you’re reading multiple articles simply right click and press open in new tab…

  18. 18 Age said at 6:36 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    I was kidding about calling me lazy. My comment was a simple, logical request stemming from an interest in simple, logical website design. You do what you want, I was addressing Tommy.

  19. 19 EAGLES said at 12:59 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    Don’t forget the play Wolff made when Boykin went down, he made a crazy play in the middle of the field to break up a pass. That guy is good, he whiffed that tackle but it was Gore and he hadn’t played for a while. I think if he can stay healthy we got a great player.

  20. 20 iceberg584 said at 8:06 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    He was saying on the missed tackle that he thought he could push him out of bounds, realized at the last second he was too far from the sideline for that, then had to make a last-minute ugly tackle that Gore ran through. That is not a lack of talent or physicality play as much as it’s a lack of experience play.

  21. 21 5sides said at 1:02 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    Cooper is a difficult subject. I was curious so I went and pulled his high level stats and was honestly surprised.

    2014 games to date = 15 catches – 26 attempts – 57.7% –
    125yds – 0td
    2014 extrapolated = 60 – 104 – 57.7% – 656 – 0
    2013 = 47 – 84 – 56% – 835 – 8
    2012 = 23 – 48 – 47.9% -248 – 3
    2011 = 16 – 35 – 45.7% – 315 – 1

    He’s actually catching at a higher rate than last year, but his Y/C has returned to 2012 levels. The largest frustration fans have is that he’s failed to make at least 4 catches this year 2 of which would be (important) touchdowns. Had he made those the stat line and projections would be respectable.

    2014 games to date what if = 19 catches – 26 attempts – 73.1%
    – 202yds – 2td
    2014 extrapolated = 76 – 104 – 73.1% – 808 – 8

    It’s too early to pass judgment but he’s one pair of really sticky gloves away from a just fine no2 receiver without Djax. That said he needs to figure out how to do his job that’s paying him 100k per catch or he should be on the bench and allowed to investigate other career opportunities.

  22. 22 bill said at 8:49 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    Nice work, and I agree with your conclusions, but I always like to point out that Kelly most definitely values ‘plus’ blocking from his receivers. I have no objective way to measure that, but my memory from last year was that Riley provided that fairly consistently and helped spring some of Shady’s big runs. My impression so far this year is that he’s not nearly as consistent with his blocking; he’s had a few good ones, but also a couple of really bad misses. I think Kelly will be quite happy if he gets your “what if” receiver combined with last year’s blocking.
    Bottom line, though – he’s not making the grade so far this year.

  23. 23 Jernst said at 9:15 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    Riley just needs to catch the ball that’s it. He’s physically capable of making these catches. In fact, I’ve seen him make amazing grabs in the recent past. Catching the ball is 90% mental and concentration. A series of bad drops ca get in your head and really affect you. Riley has the shanks right now with catching the ball and has developed the poor habit of jumping for balls he doesn’t need to jump for right before the ball gets to him. If he can catches those 2TDs and were 4-0, everyone’s pleased with his production, here’s to hoping he breaks out of his slump.

  24. 24 Insomniac said at 10:00 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    They finally had tape on him that’s why.

  25. 25 Nicodemus_09 said at 3:53 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    Off topic & totally random thought, but I’ve got to give some props to Roseman for bringing in Sproles & Jenkins. In the midst of all this bad luck & head ache inducing madness, I don’t know if we’re even .500 without signing those cats.

  26. 26 Media Mike said at 5:09 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    Welcome back Jake Knott. I look forward to your return to the 53 man roster during the bye week at the expense of Casey Matthews.

  27. 27 Matt Hoover said at 8:43 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    Really surprised he was gone in the first place since his suspension wouldn’t have counted against the roster…that said that’s a suspension that also hurt us…right now he be starting and as much as I like acho an believe the more he plays the better he will become that really hurt…I hate the diss on matthews, Castillo and Reid did him no favors

  28. 28 Media Mike said at 5:15 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    The question on Maclin is will the Eagles go any higher than their 5 year offer he rejected. If we’re using $7 mil / year as his salary level in the Eagles’ eyes (appropriate given they’re paying him $7 mil this year), can we assume they’ll go higher on that deal or not? A major part of moving on from Jackson was that his salary (in the $10 to $12 mil /year range) wasn’t something they saw as valuable enough in their system.

    What’s their ceiling on a deal for Maclin before they allow him to walk? Would they franchise tag him for 2015 if he won’t agree to their # and structure for a 5 year deal?

    I’m a well known Maclin hater / doubter in reaction to the manure spread around about DeSean and the level of dirt kicked on his grave on the way out of town; but I give all credit to Maclin for how great he’s played this year. I’m pleasantly surprised.

    But how do the Eagles view him and the WR position moving forward?

  29. 29 GEAGLE said at 8:30 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    Wouldn’t worry about it…Maclin is a high Character cat that seems to really want to be here long term… They will work it out…. And if Maclin keeps playing at this level he will deserve #1 WR money…

    I dont think money matters….if we like you and want here, we will work it out…

    Can’t recall too many cases where we want to keep a player we drafted, but didn’t have the money to retain him.
    When you ignore free agency to build thru the draft, you have to re sign the draft picks you hit on… We won’t sit out of free agency, and let players like a Maclin walk…
    If we are happy with his play, they will work the dollars out,,,

  30. 30 anon said at 8:57 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    I’m assuming they offered him something around $7mm a year given they offered Riley $5mm. If you’re a WR that puts up 1400 yds as the no. 1 you gotta be looking at $8 or $9m with some good guarantees b/c that’s what those guys go for (with a hometown discount).

  31. 31 Insomniac said at 10:06 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    Projections don’t mean anything. Maclin has been feast or famine for his entire career as well as our entire WR corp for the past 3 years. He had as many crucial drops as well as clutch plays. All of which you can count on your fingers.

  32. 32 Insomniac said at 10:04 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    Maclin is definitely going to test FA if Dez Bryant and Demaryius Thomas will. The question is will you be stingy and spend a great chunk of money for a lesser receiver or go all the way and get the better receiver?

  33. 33 RobNE said at 8:24 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    I thought McNabb was back for a second.

  34. 34 GEAGLE said at 8:35 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    Did you hear what McMoron said yesterday? Idiot was talking about the “writing on the wall” is that this will be Brady’s last season because they will cut Tom Brady at the end of the year.l he basically thinks Brady will be treated the same exact way he was treated.. jay glazier went off! And basically thought it was absurd…

    He is SOOO dumb

  35. 35 RobNE said at 9:01 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    McNabb is just really bad at his second career and is trying to get noticed. I kinda feel bad for him, lots of others slide from the NFL into NFL commentary and are pretty bad, but get by. And it just seems like he struggles to even do that. And then we remember his playing days less fondly b/c of his current actions.

  36. 36 P_P_K said at 10:22 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    It’s a pity McNabb isn’t handling himself better. He is a bright and articulate guy. For most of his career in Philly he was a class act. I’m guessing bitterness built up over time and is influencing him now.

  37. 37 Jernst said at 9:07 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    McNabb strikes me as the type of petty guy that would not so secretly and privately hope that Brady gets cut or traded so that he feels better about how his ended and feels some sort of validation. Obviously I haveabsolutely no definitive proof of that, that’s just my impression, but I think it’s a shame that he comes off that way because if he were less insecure he’d be a lot more loveable

  38. 38 Jernst said at 9:26 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    Mac looks like a fired up beast out there and nothing like the timid, passive wuss I saw out there in 2012. I love the way he’s playing! If Foles ever figures out how to step up in the pocket and regain his accuracy on deep throws, watch out. Maclins already had 3-4 long TDs lost when he was wide open down the field and Foles simply over threw him. His numbers would be on pace to crush Jacksons if Foles could connect on a throw over 20 yards down field like he did last year.

  39. 39 Insomniac said at 10:18 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    Work in progress. stupid phone.

    Since all of this “top 5” talk about Maclin is going on, I’ve decided to do a bit of research. Granted QB play is a huge factor here, but take it as what you want it to be.

    Top 5 WRs statistically as of week 5

    RkPlayerTeamPosRecYdsAvgYds/GLngTD20+40+1st1st%FUM1Jordy NelsonGBWR3345913.9114.880T3412472.702Julio JonesATLWR2944715.4111.840T31112172.413Steve SmithBALWR2542917.2107.280T3821664.004Antonio BrownPITWR2942714.7106.8415712069.005Jeremy MaclinPHIWR2035317.688.268T3521680.0

  40. 40 P_P_K said at 10:20 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    For some reason the great Desean Jackson isn’t on the list.

  41. 41 Insomniac said at 10:35 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    And? Everyone knew that Desean wasn’t a dominant receiver.

  42. 42 P_P_K said at 10:46 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    Desean didn’t know that.

  43. 43 Insomniac said at 11:00 AM on October 1st, 2014:

    The Redskins-Eagles game isn’t over yet so how would he know?

  44. 44 anon said at 12:36 PM on October 1st, 2014:

    wow you think this list has more to do with QBs or WRs?

  45. 45 Insomniac said at 3:53 PM on October 1st, 2014:

    Probably QB. Maclin has been put in spots to succeed even if it’s too difficult for him. The only other person to have that big of a disparity between catches and targets is Vincent Jackon (13 catches and 35 targets).

  46. 46 Mark F said at 12:06 PM on October 1st, 2014:

    Perhaps the Eagles told Knott they’d bring him back after the suspension?

  47. 47 kaninfaan said at 2:35 PM on October 1st, 2014:

    One thing, that I think I might have observed, is that Desean Jackson was a hell of a lot better than Maclin in “playing defender” on underthrown balls that are about to be intercepted.