The Hidden Difference

Posted: May 13th, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 281 Comments »

The Eagles are better at CB. At least I think so. They have more quality bodies this year at the very least. We won’t know if Safety is improved until we see if Earl Wolff can stay healthy, if Ed Reynolds has NFL talent or if Jaylen Watkins can make the transition to full-time S. Chris Prosinski and Jerome Couplin may also have a say in matters.

The one spot where I think the Eagles are definitively better is DB coach, where Cory Undlin takes over for John Lovett. Undlin has a good NFL track record. He understands what it takes to be a good NFL secondary. Lovett has a strong resume at the college level, but his unit struggled in the past 2 years. Lovett wasn’t given great talent, but he certainly didn’t seem to help the situation.

Malcolm Jenkins is excited about the change.

“The change in philosophy is the biggest change,” Jenkins said after one of the team’s workouts at the NovaCare Complex. “And Cory Undlin is the most important pick up in that room. Even Maxwell, who has great technique and knows how to win, but I think getting coach Undelin is the biggest difference.”

Undlin replaces John Lovett, who was re-assigned to the scouting department after the season.

“I didn’t know him at all,” Jenkins, the Piscataway native said of Undlin. “But seeing him and how he works, he puts a lot of emphasis on technique and eye placement. We’ve only been with him a month, or so, and our room has already gotten better in that month. Just from a standpoint of fundamental football and that’s what we really didn’t get the past two years. I heard that when I got here. And then you saw it last year.

“With Coach Undlin it’s going to be a lot different.”

This doesn’t mean the secondary is going to magically be better. Undlin has to teach his players better technique. It can take time to learn this and to play consistently good football.

Undlin also has to push his players. He isn’t walking onto a team that is loaded with physically gifted defensive backs. The Eagles have some talent, but most of the players have the kind of talent/athleticism that requires they do all the little things right. That wasn’t happening in the past 2 years. It is up to Undlin to get this unit playing better football.

* * * * *

The Eagles want to change 2-point conversion attempts. Instead of having the ball at the 2-yard line, they want to move it to the 1-yard line.

Chip Kelly wants to be aggressive. But he also likes playing with favorable odds.

Some think the addition of Tim Tebow is related to this. Maybe. The problem with that is that he’d have to be active on gameday. That means you’re going weak at some other position. Or you are willing to have Tebow take over at QB if something happens to Sam Bradford. I’m hopeful that his throwing motion is better, but I’m not ready to say I want Tebow as the backup QB on gamedays.

Darren Sproles proved to be a surprisingly effective goal line runner last year. And now the Eagles have DeMarco Murray and Ryan Mathews in the backfield. That could be good enough.

And who knows…Chip Kelly could have something else up his sleeve.

The Eagles also pushed for the defense to be able to score 2 points if they get the ball on a 2-point conversion and run it all the way back. Kelly wants his team to be able to score any and every possible way.


281 Comments on “The Hidden Difference”

  1. 1 Charlie Kelly said at 10:04 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    Im hoping the eagles secondary gets magically better.

    And i dont even think earl wolff will make the team.

  2. 2 Avery Greene said at 10:39 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    Funny you say that. Reuben Frank (whether anyone thinks he’s a good reporter) thinks Couplin is going to be the Day 1 starter. That’s kind of a bold prediction with Wolff and Watkins there. I don’t know if that’s going to happen, but he put himself out there a bit with that prediction.

  3. 3 Charlie Kelly said at 11:00 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    yeah i dont know about that either, did randall evans (rookie) take reps at S?

  4. 4 Avery Greene said at 11:18 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    Not sure. I have no idea how that all will play out, I just thought it was interesting that was the name he threw out there. I’m not sure if that’s coaches talking to him “off the record” or if he’s just trying to make a bold prediction.

  5. 5 Charlie Kelly said at 11:29 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    yeah idk, im not even sure he played a snap last year in the lil time he was here so i dont know even when roob could have even watched him play lol

  6. 6 GEAGLE said at 8:39 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    D-Gunns “Bold” prediction is even worse.. He has Cary Williams making the Probowl this year… Smh

  7. 7 GEAGLE said at 11:34 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    if I had to bet my money would still be on Rowe because I think Nolan vs Thurmond will provide a quality outside corner to play across from Maxwell..
    I know nothing about Couplin so I can deny or co sign your statement, but my money is on Rowe or Wolff being the opening day starter at safety.. But we have some nice young talent, who knows who will sieze this opportunity

  8. 8 D3FB said at 12:59 AM on May 14th, 2015:


    Unless he was being very tongue in cheek, that’s daft

  9. 9 Mitchell said at 1:08 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    You won’t be laughing when his anaconda arms reach up 15 feet in the air to snag all kindz of interceptions.

  10. 10 D3FB said at 1:17 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    I feel like if I made a highlight tape for Graf, Tobin, Manhart, Boyko and Coccia the fanbase would suddenly go from sky is falling about the OL to CUT PETERS! Trade Mathis for WaWa giftcard.

  11. 11 Mitchell said at 1:25 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    You and I both know that the highlights tell the whole story. On a more serious note, do you see any of the UDFA’s pushing for a backup/starting role. I know you like yourself some Tobin but can we really explain us not drafting ANY OL since line by simply a run on OL in the drafts or does Chip really think he can hit on some undrafted guys with good measurables?

  12. 12 D3FB said at 4:38 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    I think Graf makes the roster. I think Manhart or Boyko make the roster and the other goes PS. I think Cioccia should beat out Andrews for a PS spot. I think Harris and Davis will be competing with Tucker/TE4 for a spot on the 53. I think Bailey may make the PS over Pratt, and with Will Murphy gone. I think Raciti could make the PS (too much depth at DL to make 53 short of injuries).

    I’ve said all along once Fisher/Morse/Sambraillo went bam,bam,bam in the second I didn’t see another OL that was going to seriously compete for PT this year in the draft. Chip found some guys as UDFA’s to provide quality depth. The only major concern I have is we don’t really have a great backup option at LT (Barbre is ok for a few games) but if Peters goes down that will cause some major reshuffling.

  13. 13 sonofdman said at 3:38 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    How much is on this WaWa gift card?

  14. 14 sonofdman said at 3:36 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Hee hee – Anaconda arms!

  15. 15 Avery Greene said at 1:44 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Yeah, that’s pulling some ish out the you know what. I just thought it was interesting because I’m not sure how he’s coming to that conclusion.

  16. 16 Flyin said at 10:55 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    Wolff has the eyes to be a killer, however, his knee won’t allow him to lead the the pack.

  17. 17 Charlie Kelly said at 10:58 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    i dont even think he has the eyes to be a killer, tbh

  18. 18 Flyin said at 11:05 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    He has keen eyes…

  19. 19 sonofdman said at 3:39 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    I met Wolff at the candy store. He turned around and smiled at me, you get the picture?

  20. 20 wee2424 said at 1:16 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Why do you say magically? Do you not think the talent was upgraded?

    I think with the talent influx it almost has to be better. As far as Earl Woffe I don’t see how he won’t make the team. When he was healthy in his rookie year he showed promise. He became hurt and wasn’t as effective. His injury is now corrected and I would fully expect him to be the leading candidate for the job.

  21. 21 Charlie Kelly said at 6:58 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    yeah, but i want it to be the best of all time, so yeah magically lol

    wolfff never showed any promise to me, i dont like him.

  22. 22 wee2424 said at 8:53 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Gotcha. I understand what you mean now. I thought you meant like you thought there was no talent upgrade and you just were hoping there would be improvement with nothing changed.

    I think they are going to be ALOT better but because obvious upgrades.

    I guess people have different views on Wolff, but to me and some others he showed some promise. Especially considering how we got him.

    You can’t realistically expect any rookie to light it up. Particularly a DB.

  23. 23 Charlie Kelly said at 9:08 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    i def think they will be better.

    yeah i just dont like wolff he has the athletic traits i just dont think can handle the assignments in coverage and he cant tackle. frank gore made him look so bad lol

  24. 24 Flyin said at 10:22 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    Tommy, can you confirm/discuss the CB’s being trained previously to not look back for the ball in coverage? Thanks!

  25. 25 GEAGLE said at 11:29 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    Considering you can get called for pass interference face guarding and my turning your head around, I doubt even a bad DB coach would teach that technique. Typically not turning your head to try and make a play on the ball usually results from a lack of confidence. When a corner loses confidence he is so worried about getting beat that he doesn’t even trust himself to try and turn and make a play on the ball…
    There is no way any coach taught Bradley Fletcher to not turn around, our coach most likely put up with it which is horrible as it is, but I seriously doubt they were being taught not face guard… Heck chup wants a defense that creates turnovers, which is importable to do if you don’t even Face the right way to have a chance at making the play on the ball

  26. 26 Flyin said at 11:40 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    You’re an ass πŸ™‚ You will make me show you are the fool. Something I did not want to do. Hence the research is on…

  27. 27 EagleNebula said at 12:23 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    There is definitely a press conference from chip that you can quote.

  28. 28 Flyin said at 12:28 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Thank you for the backing. GEAGLE is not worth the time.

  29. 29 EagleNebula said at 12:33 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    No worries, I have yet to find the press conference but this article ( has this quote:

    “According to former Eagles and current WIP talk-jock Ike Reese, the Eagles defensive backs are being taught bad technique. They’re being taught to chase the receiver and to never look back for the ball. “

  30. 30 Flyin said at 12:46 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Thank you for being in the know. To me it is common knowledge, Much appreciation for posting the truth.!

  31. 31 EagleNebula said at 12:51 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    I thought it was common knowledge as well. Inremember it being a huge talking point for a week or so last year.

  32. 32 FairOaks said at 3:25 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    I think it was to not turn around until they were within arm’s length of the receiver. If you can’t touch the receiver, he’s by you, and looking back will only increase the separation. That was the theory anyways. Something was lacking. Granted, the secondary was holding things together until Demeco went down. I think trying to compensate for Matthews being on the field, probably with some safety or nickel help, left the CBs high and dry and they were definitely not good enough to do that. Williams/Fletcher weren’t great but they were much better than who they replaced… how soon we forget just how bad the 2012 secondary was (and that was with a *good* DB coach). It does sound like the DB coach was at least part of the problem — hopefully anyways.

  33. 33 sonofdman said at 3:41 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    If only Bradley Fletcher had anaconda arms like Couplin, he could have stayed within arms length of a receiver.

  34. 34 unhinged said at 8:46 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Not to quibble, but Couplin has orangutan arms. anacondas don’t have any arms.

  35. 35 WEUer said at 6:32 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    I remember Chip saying in a presser that “we teach our guys to play the man, not the ball”.

  36. 36 Dominik said at 8:14 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    + to look for the ball through the eyes of the receiver. I do think I remember that quote, I think it was from Billy D.

    Thing is, despite bad talent, the technique obviously wasn’t good.

  37. 37 GEAGLE said at 8:23 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    The technique certainly wasn’t good, but it’s absurd to think our coaches didn’t want them to turn around and play the ball when they see the WR start to make a play for the ball..
    Look at all the silly quotes you want, there isn’t a coach starting in Pee Wee football that doesn’t want his players to turn around,, “when” they are supposed to turn around is the question of the technique

    Ever see Earl Boykin, NOT turn around and make a play for the ball? This debate is absurd…

  38. 38 GEAGLE said at 10:18 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Well said..

  39. 39 GEAGLE said at 10:15 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    It is Common knowledge, but it’s being misunderstood and taken to extremes, if you give Lovett Richard Sherman highly doubt you will see him play corner like Bradley Fletcher… I don’t think you can find a fan that is happy with the job Lovett did and would go to bat for him, but I think this concept is being misunderstood. Different coaches teach,different techniques. every coach will want a Corner who can be in position to turn around and try to make a play on the ball, but if you aren’t in position to be able to do that without getting burnt, you will want a corner to do the face guard and get their hands up.. Basically different coach will want cornees to turn around at different points, when they read different keys… But it’s absurd to pretend John Lovett wants Cornerbacks who won’t ever try to intercept the balls, because he forbids his corners to turn Around and teaches them to face guard at all times no matter what… Like are we friggim kidding? That’s what we think? I shouldn’t have to defend Lovett, because im thrilled with the upgrade, but Come on..
    Heck go watch any 20 plays in December when QBs were throwing at bradley and then go look at any 20 plays where QB was throwing at Cary and then 20 plays when a QB was throwing at Boykin… And you won’t see Cary and Boykin playing CB the same was as Bradley… cary doesn’t have top speed, so yes you can find times where he was face guarding and Wasnt in position to turn around, but that just means he was itially beat by the WR and was in catch up mode… glad Lovett is gone, but its a Ridiculuosly poor understanding of football to think that Lovett wants corners who won’t ever even try to intercept a ball. Whoch is essentially what you are arguing when you take teaching corners to face guard to an extreme,.. You can find plenty of plays were Cary and Boykin were playing Corner and not face guarding… Heck, how the FOCK did Cary Williams break on that BIGTIME two point conversion he stoppedDez BRyant from catching to make the playoffs in 2013 if he isn’t supposed to turn around?
    Are we really having this elementary debate? Yes Lovett sucks, yes Bradley sucks, yes we have an upgrade now, yes we hopefully will teach better technique, but you are high if you think it’s to an extreme where Lovett was teaching corner to never turn around and try to make a play on the ball… That face guard technique is what you do when you are playing catchup and the WR has a step on you amd you atent in position to try and make a play on he ball…. Jesus Christ

  40. 40 GEAGLE said at 8:21 AM on May 14th, 2015:


  41. 41 Greg Richards said at 10:27 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    Jenkins basically said that Lovett was a bad coach.

  42. 42 Flyin said at 10:31 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    Wondering if we had some good talent that was coached wrong. Cary shines in Seattle and Fletcher shines in NE will be the writing on the wall.

  43. 43 SteveH said at 10:33 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    We struggled so bad with locating the ball when it was in the air last year. We almost never got our heads around. Probably missed 4 or 5 interceptions that way.

  44. 44 Flyin said at 10:36 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    I have never seen anything like it. They never looked. Just trying to swat a fly as it passes by.

  45. 45 SteveH said at 10:42 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    It was infuriating right? It’s almost like they were coached not to look.

  46. 46 Flyin said at 10:46 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    I’m 95% sure the cb’s stated that. Hoping Tommy discusses this issue/change with the new coach.

    He has a little more street cred and I don’t feel like researching all press conferences.

  47. 47 jaws80 said at 12:53 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    I am 99% sure i heard very distinctly that they were coached to not look back for the ball. they were supposed to watch the face of the receiver, and swat at the receivers hands exactly when the ball was caught. The coaches choose this over turning around and making a play at the ball as the ball was still in the air. I would love to blame the old DB coach for this, but Kelly must have approved of this technique.

  48. 48 EAGLES said at 8:19 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Eric Rowe talked about playing the receiver the same way we had our CB’s do, stating their eyes get really big right before they catch the ball and that’s how he knows to attack. I believe he played a similar technique in college, if you watch his tape you’ll see it.

  49. 49 wee2424 said at 9:14 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Every DB from peewee on up is taught to look for that. That doesn’t mean don’t make a play on the ball. If you see the WRs eyes get like that and you can’t turn to make a play then you attack.

  50. 50 GEAGLE said at 8:24 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    You NEVER ONCE saw boykin play corner like that

  51. 51 GEAGLE said at 8:37 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Obviously the technique Wasnt ideal, but I doubt Bradley Foetcher was playing corner so well last year that he was flawlessly executing the technique Lovett coached him to do…
    Basically what I’m saying is, yes Lovett Probably was BAD, and this new coach sounds like an exciting technical upgrade… But I DOUBT even Lovett was as Bad as Bradley Fletcher showed late in the season when he lost all confidence,,
    I doubt Bradley Fletcher was executing Lovetts technique perfectly..
    ..Watching Cary and Boykin play corner is probably a better indication of what techniques Lovett was coaching them to use…

  52. 52 wee2424 said at 9:12 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    It’s possible that technique was employed due to the fact our CBs talent was so dismal. You coach to the players you have.

  53. 53 jaws80 said at 11:47 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    i sure hope this is the reason. turning the head and finding the ball might have been just too much to ask. This is just sad, but believing this will help me sleep tonight. And i will dream of DBs jumping up with receivers, eyes locked on the balls, hands extended inches above the receivers, snatching the ball away.

  54. 54 wee2424 said at 9:11 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    They were actually coached to purely make a play on the hands of the WR and to not look. So yeah.

  55. 55 Mitchell said at 10:50 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    In some cases you don’t have to look if you are good enough at knowing when the ball is coming to the receiver like when the WR’s hands shoot up. That’s when you get your hand in between their arms and break up the pass. Shepherd is good at this but he can also turn and locate the ball, so idk, what Lovett was doing.

  56. 56 Flyin said at 10:59 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    You can also get PI calls for this too. How many of them did we have?

  57. 57 Mitchell said at 11:01 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    Not if you have instincts to pull it off which Fletcher obviously didn’t. He was not put in a position to succeed.

  58. 58 Flyin said at 11:11 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    Regardless, it eliminates any chance to be a game changer/ play maker. Bust up the pass and we’ll beat you on the next one fool… right?

  59. 59 Mitchell said at 11:13 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    You don’t have to be a playmaker if you consistently break up passes and that is being a play maker in its own right but I get what your saying. There were so many opportunities there if he just would have turned around. The qbs knew he wouldn’t turn and they would put it where ever they wanted.

  60. 60 Flyin said at 11:18 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    Well said. Last years emotion was kicking in.

  61. 61 wee2424 said at 9:16 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Not if you play it right. That is basic DB stuff that is taught back in grade school.

  62. 62 GEAGLE said at 11:10 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    Cary is definitely going to shine in Seattle. he isn’t a bad as we thought and he will get constant safety support from two of the best safeties in the game since Sherman shuts down the right side on his own
    Even if Cary shows to be better then we thought, Maxwell is still a clear upgrade

  63. 63 Flyin said at 11:19 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    Obviously… proper training.

  64. 64 GEAGLE said at 11:24 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    Better talent too… Bradkey Fletcjer will get the best coaching imaginable this year, yet Maxwell coached by the Eagles will look head and shoulders better then Bradley.. I wouldn’t be surprised if Bradley looks better then he did for us under Lovett.. But I’m thrilled about upgrading the Talent, while possibly also improving the coaching they will revieve

  65. 65 MattE said at 8:52 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    ….f*ckin Patrick Chung

  66. 66 GEAGLE said at 9:54 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Yup… bellicheat will for sure have Bradley Fletcher looking much better then Lovett did Ij would assume.. But even bellicheat doesn’t have a magic wand that will turn Bradley into this quality starting corner…
    Probably won’t be anywhere as bad as last year under Lovett when he lost all confidence late in the season, but I doubt Bellicheat will even be able to make him look GOOD… I assume they will be hoping to find someone who can take his spot ASAP…. But yes, it’s probably going to be no where as bad as what we had to endure

  67. 67 mksp said at 12:42 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Heh. Thought he was guaranteed to come back?

  68. 68 Kelce's Beard said at 9:52 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    the “G” stands for Guarantee, after all

  69. 69 EAGLES said at 8:14 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    I actually think this is exactly what will happen. Carroll and Belichick will show us up and show us we could’ve gotten by with our guys with better coaching. I bet Cary Williams looks good in that Seattle defense, he could look even better than Maxwell did. He’ll have plenty help if needed. Williams has some talent, he’s not as bad as he played in 2014. It will be pretty sad if we overpaid for Maxwell only to have Williams replace him equally or better thanks to bad coaching on our part. Ugh…..

  70. 70 Kelce's Beard said at 9:50 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    meh….they were both vets. One thing if it is a rookie or young guy, but it’s not like either guy was new to football or the CB position. Cary, in particular, has been a bl0whard mediocre CB for years, shouldn’t change at all.

  71. 71 wee2424 said at 9:09 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Williams probably will do decent in Seattle considering his surroundings. He wasn’t really that bad with us. Very average. At least not as bad as Bradley.

    Bradley was so bad with us I doubt he will do any good in NE. He is going to make Chung look bad again and McCourty won’t shine like he did last year. Chung was probably horrified when he found out that he was going to be playing behind Bradley again.

    Let’s not forget that Bradley was also benched a few times on the Rams due to horrendous play. It’s not like his bad play started with us.

  72. 72 doublgee said at 10:35 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    I think Lovett is getting a chance this year in the scouting department. His position will no longer be needed next year, kind of like Tra’s old spot. He was given an opportunity, in a different capacity, to hopefully catch on with another team in the future.

  73. 73 Mitchell said at 10:52 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    Seriously, the eyes are so darn important. You have to keep them on the stomach of the receiver so you aren’t subject to head fakes and can recover faster from jukes, you have to look up at the ball and not back when it is in the air, etc. If he wasn’t drilling that every day, I’m glad he’s gone.

  74. 74 GEAGLE said at 11:07 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    And it must be bad for Jenkins who is such a class act to make those statements. What’s funny is a lot of fans got on the Eagles about the technique
    flaws our DBs consistently showed. if Fans were able to see lack of technical coaching in a hard to see position like corner, imagine how bad It must have seemed to Jenkins..
    If this coach indeed is a significant upgrade, thankfully we got him pretty soon. We have a bunch of young DBs, it’s great to hear their going to be exposed to better coaching.
    Young DBs continuing to mature and improve
    Improved DB coaching
    Infusion of talent, veteran and rookie
    Infusion of depth which should Breed a spirited high level conpetition that pushes the players to a higher level

    very excited about the DB improvement… Unless Rowe moves to Safety, Replacing Nate is my only concern. fortunately, Nate should be THAT hard to replace. I would hope at atleast 1 young player can grow to at least Late Allen level…. Even if Nate was still our staring safety, I would still think our secondary is much improved, so hopefully a young safety seizes the opportunity and runs away with the starting safety spot… Really pleased that not only should our secondary be improved in coverage, but our linebackers should be very strong in coverage

  75. 75 OregonDucker said at 11:40 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    GEagle: Shepard – CB; Rowe – Safety. We are going to see some preseason and TC competition. Many surprises ahead.

  76. 76 Fufina said at 6:24 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    I think both play CB their rookie year. Think you swing for the upside outcome (which is one of them being an above average corner). If after a year of corner they do not look like they have the athleticism/instincts to be a high level corner then try converting Rowe to safety.

    Rookie DB’s tend to be really bad. If they are forced to start they get lit up – there is a lot of technique and defensive scheme work that needs to be done to transition to the NFL. Ideally Rowe looks good in camp but Thurmond looks even better – starts the season at CB2 and then Rowe is primary backup.

    Personally i think FS will be a watkins/wolff affair this summer, although there could be some surprises.

  77. 77 wee2424 said at 9:45 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Sheppard is a pure CB, I doubt he would ever play safety.

    I agree with you that Thurmond will be the number two CB. Not really a knock on Rowe. Like you said rookie DB tend to struggle, especially CBs. The other reason Thurmond starts is actually because Thurmond is a damn good CB. He just needs to stay healthy, but when he is the kid can ball. I’ve been saying next to Bradford he could be the steal of the off season.

    I’m conflicted where Rowe may end up playing. He will probably be the next outside CB in, but I think its very possible he will take Carrols role over of the “dime lb” due to his physical nature. However I like Rowe at CB and S, but I like him even more at S. If Thurmond stays healthy and Shepard impresses I think there is a VERY strong chance Rowe could be moved to S as early as this year, and again I like him better there.

    He checks all the boxes that Chip requires at S. There are times when I think he looks a little stiff which could hurt him against the small quick guys at WR if he plays CB. He also has far more experience at S then CB. People don’t realize how little experience he has at CB which could hurt him this year if he were to start opposite Maxwell. Giving him time to learn the position rather then just throwing him in the fire could mean the world to him and his career.

  78. 78 GEAGLE said at 8:18 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    I don’t expect to see Shep on defense this year, Tho I do think the world of his future,,. Doubt we see him on defense, Probably just a ST contributor, which is fine, Anything we get from a rookie is a bonus

  79. 79 wee2424 said at 9:20 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    He has coached up some damn good DBs in the recent past.

  80. 80 Media Mike said at 5:39 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Can’t say he’s wrong.

  81. 81 SteveH said at 10:34 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    I think on paper we’re better in many places, so it basically rests on Bradford. Let’s just hope the paper is right and Bradford is the diamond in the rough that CK is hoping for.

  82. 82 GEAGLE said at 10:56 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    if Bradford can be our Drew Brees, Chip becomes our Sean Peyton..
    We all get so caught up in hoping so and so stays healthy, and only speak in terms of “assuming he stays healthy”, but the truth is that injuries play a huge role every singe year in how the season shapes up. Injuries are such a part of the game, more then in any other sport that we could put together a roster of 53 players who have never had surgery and we could still end up with a Injury mess like last year..
    I do think we are much more equipped to handle injuries then last year, but every team can only withstand so many key losses to injury. I think we can go on to make the playoffs if we lose a few key players to injury, as long the backuos get to come in, and grow a little with each week that passes. We won’t ever be able to withstand a mess like last year when offensive lineman where linning up next to someone different each week…
    We could sign the healthiest stud player and I would still hold my breathe all summer praying that he doesn’t get hurt. A bunch of teams have already suffered major injuries to starting players. Chip has signed and given chance to players coming off injury like sanchez, and so far our doctors have been rights when they cleared someone medically he hasn’t had any repeat problems that I can think of…this year our trainers and medical staff/sports science will put it all to the teat

  83. 83 EagleNebula said at 12:05 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    “If Bradford can be our Drew Brees, Chip becomes our Sean Peyton..”

    Minus the whole paying players to injure opponents thing of course…

  84. 84 FairOaks said at 3:18 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Yeah I don’t think Davis is our Gregg Williams. (Supposedly Payton had no knowledge, but…)

  85. 85 GEAGLE said at 8:15 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    You mean what every locker room had been doing since the 80s? Ok…

  86. 86 GermanEagle said at 10:38 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    The Stanley Cup POs come right after the NFL playoffs in terms of excitement.

  87. 87 Avery Greene said at 10:40 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    It’s a hard night. Both games were good and I’ve been flipping back and forth to try and catch the ends of each game. Since the Bball game ended on a last second shot, now it’s just hockey.

    I hate both teams, but this is good hockey. Game 7, overtime. Great stuff.

  88. 88 GermanEagle said at 10:44 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    I must admit I caught myself rooting for the Rangers. Maybe it’s because I’ve been living in NY and most my friends are rangers fans.

  89. 89 Kelce's Beard said at 10:44 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    they’re the lesser evil; I’ve been living too close to D.C. for too long. Caps fans are awful

  90. 90 Avery Greene said at 10:45 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    This means you and I should hang out. I live close to DC too!

  91. 91 Kelce's Beard said at 10:46 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    lol by close I mean Baltimore πŸ™‚ which is even worse, they’ve adopted a crap team, no matter how many times I mention that the O’s and Flyers have the same colors!

  92. 92 Avery Greene said at 10:47 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    I’m in Bowie, used to live in Halethorpe/Elkridge. I go up there sometimes to hang.

  93. 93 Kelce's Beard said at 10:50 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    awesome. come up for an Eagles game sometime.
    geographically speaking, I can see where the Colts, led by Unitas, used to play out of my bedroom window. A good Eagles/Philly bar about 10 min away

  94. 94 Avery Greene said at 10:51 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    Magerk’s? Been there a few times and yeah, my buddy in DC would make the trek up too. Maybe for the preseason game we hook up.

  95. 95 Kelce's Beard said at 10:54 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    how about that game ending?!?! playoff hockey is so good

  96. 96 Avery Greene said at 10:55 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    I know. I hate both teams, but there’s something to watching a team win in OT. Here’s hoping we get Babcock and that’s us going to the Conference Finals.

  97. 97 Avery Greene said at 10:45 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    Me too, but I think that’s because I live in DC and I hate the teams down here.

  98. 98 SteveH said at 10:41 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    I didn’t see it but I checked the play by play, the Hawks-Wizards game, ended with Paul Pierce hitting a 3 to go ahead by 1 with 9 seconds left, then the Hawks won with a putback layup with no time left on the clock.

    Wish I could have seen it, must have been a hell of a finish.

  99. 99 Avery Greene said at 10:43 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    It was. The games tonight are both really good playoff games, the type of games you pay money to see.

  100. 100 anon said at 1:26 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    It was terrible if you were a wizards fan, reminded me of an Eagles game.

  101. 101 GermanEagle said at 10:56 PM on May 13th, 2015:

    Yessss! What a series!

  102. 102 Patrick said at 1:40 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    I think its because the series is usually super close once you get past the 1st round, end once you hit the SC Finals, you’re almost guaranteed 6 fun, close and great games where at least 2 goes to overtime, probably also seing a double overtime. Its just really exiting and it seems everyone can actually go the distance, as shown by the LA Kings.

    To me, it seems that in the NBA finals, which I also love watching, you usually have to go pretty deep to get a competitive series, this year being an exception. Also, when you get an early, competitive series, it seems like its between teams that are just waiting to get spanked by the Heat, Thunder, Spurs etc. The teams that were favorites to meet in the finals.

  103. 103 Michael Winter Cho said at 10:30 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    As a fan of the Spurs, I have never considered that a problem. But hey, one can always tank one’s way to that level.

  104. 104 Anders said at 10:47 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Funny is people forget that the spurs way started by getting one of the greatest players of all time first overall

  105. 105 Michael Winter Cho said at 10:58 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    You must be talking about David Robinson, the 1st overall pick the Spurs got who, after serving in the Navy, launched them to lots of winning records and playoff victories. Or are you talking about Tim Duncan, the 1st overall pick who sent them on their current trajectory? Both runs required the supremely-talented big men, no doubt. However, look at the list of 1st overall picks, and you will see that only one in the last 20 years has won a championship for the team that drafted him (Tim Duncan). In fact, only 2 in the last 30 years has won a championship for their team (David Robinson–notice a pattern?) The Spurs are truly anomalous, in that they were both fortunate (got to pick 1st) and good (they draft well and create a winning system). Bad teams, the kind of teams that tank, do neither.

  106. 106 Anders said at 2:32 AM on May 15th, 2015:

    I have zero idea how the Spurs ended up with the 3rd worst record and then managed to win the lottery, but can we agree that the Spurs been god awful that year apart of them becoming this great?

    While you do not need the 1st overall pick, you do need lottery picks to be great and over average, the best players are top picks.

  107. 107 Michael Winter Cho said at 1:25 PM on May 15th, 2015:

    Yes, the logic that top picks generally yield the best players isn’t open to debate. But the teams that win championships don’t chase top picks–so history has shown.

  108. 108 Anders said at 8:47 AM on May 16th, 2015:

    Nobody has ever done what the sixers are doing so there is no history to compare.

    Also if the best players come from the top of the draft, shouldn’t teams there are bad go after getting most top picks possible?

  109. 109 ac134spectre said at 1:29 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    I would like to see if Kendricks and Kiko end up taking over LB and helping more on the crossing routes and flat passes. That and a little bit better DL play with maturing line there would help. Ryan’s is really good in shoring up the run but I’m hopeful the other guys can free up the SS/FS in coverage a bit more.

    Always an awkward few years transitioning to a 3-4 though we seem to have been fortunate with the interior lineman. There are a few pluggers floating in FA that can shore up the interior run defense to pair with the speedier guys too.

  110. 110 Avery Greene said at 1:49 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    I’m kind of excited to see the Kendricks/Kiko tandem. I think they can do a lot of damage as a pair.

  111. 111 A_T_G said at 7:23 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    And unlike previous tandems, like Sims/Page, these guys will do damage to the OTHER team!

  112. 112 unhinged said at 8:29 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Would you mind explaining that reference, because I am clueless.

  113. 113 GEAGLE said at 8:40 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Old joke at how Ernie Sims used to hit more team mates then opposing players

  114. 114 Tdoteaglefan said at 11:35 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    “He’s a shark in the water!!”

  115. 115 A_T_G said at 8:45 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Ernie Sims and Jarred Page were short-lived Eagles who were best known for doing more harm than good while on the field.

  116. 116 Mitchell said at 9:21 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    The old Landshark.

  117. 117 Michael Winter Cho said at 10:32 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    When they joined forces, they became the Sharknado.

  118. 118 unhinged said at 9:46 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Thanks. I musta blinked.

  119. 119 MattE said at 8:49 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Kendricks and Kiko will be able to cause the mirror image scenario that Billy Davis wants in the secondary also with his safeties, the idea of sending either or into coverage on any given play is very exciting.

  120. 120 GEAGLE said at 9:12 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    We can put Barwin, Kiko, KEndricks and MS2 on the field who are literally as good as ANY group of LB’s in coverage.
    I think the ability for our LB’s to cover is a MONSTER advantage over all our NFC East Rivals… No one in our division has already proven to have an elite secondary. All the secondaries have some perceived holes they need to prove to have fixed, but I think our LBs in coverage are a tremendous advantage over the other NFC east defenses…. It’s bad enough that the other NFC east defenses don’t put coverage ability above all else when selecting safeties, so not only will we see rival defenses with crappy safeties in coverag like Landon Collins, but they don’t have LB’s who are exceptional In coverage to help out the safeties In center field.
    We went from a franchise starved with Linebakers, switched to a 3-4 and 3 seasons later we have a Nasty corp of Linebackers that Id put up with any LB corp in the NFL.. Our LBs ability to cover should be a huge advantage for our defense especially compared to division rivals..

  121. 121 D3FB said at 4:47 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Eagles were 5th in the league with a 3.7 YPC last year.

    The run game defense is strong. We don’t need any help up front.

  122. 122 ac134spectre said at 1:32 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    People are saying that Cary wasn’t looking for the ball last year… more that we didn’t have good safety play to allow them to look and Cary started to slow down a lot. Happens with physical corners and his expiration date had come up.

  123. 123 Avery Greene said at 1:47 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    I also think it’s because he’s not that good. He always seemed a step behind, but more aggravating was that I thought he tried to avoid contact – which I hate to see from any defensive player.

  124. 124 xmbk said at 5:21 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    I know 29 wanted us to believe that it was bad safety play making him look bad.

  125. 125 A_T_G said at 7:35 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Nate Allen?

  126. 126 Mitchell said at 9:19 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    He was always so down on himself. It really held him back.

  127. 127 xmbk said at 11:18 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Sorry, I used to live in Baltimore. Plus, he and Allen frequently teamed up on moments I’m still trying to block out of my memory.

  128. 128 Mitchell said at 9:20 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Well holy crap, you can’t expect safety help every time you screw up.

  129. 129 ac134spectre said at 1:37 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    You were also looking at Casey Mathews at LB. Hold over from the Reid days and Banner days… Bad LB play meant a lot of stress on the S position as they always were looking to clean up after the LB mess.

    I don’t hate Casey, but, the guy was just never very good. Meanwhile the team skimped at LB for years and the defense struggled in all of those times.

    We had a couple of bad years at corner(or in Asante case more of a type mismatch) that made S a mess as well. Plus just so many times the LBs didn’t get the tackles or make plays giving extra yard here or there making a lot of short down and distance third downs.

    After having Dawkins back there, making things cleaner for a long time, the transition away is difficult.

  130. 130 Anders said at 10:44 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    A lot of that was by design, Jim Johnson didn’t need great lbs when he had the secondary to back it up

  131. 131 jpate said at 12:23 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Still amazing that Reid put him as starting MLB in his rookie season. Just crazy to think that an successful football coach thought that 4th round rookie with almost no athletic ability should be given the starting MLB spot without any competition.

  132. 132 RichEagle said at 12:34 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Reid thought “With a name like Mathews, he Must be good”.

  133. 133 Jernst said at 4:29 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    The sad thing is that we really didn’t skimp on LBers like everyone thinks. We invested a lot of premium draft picks into the position and they all just busted.
    In 1999: we took Barry Gardner at the top of the 2nd round, 35th overall. Mike Peterson was taken at 36. Joey Porter, Dat Nguyen and Roosevelt Colvin were all taken after Gardner that year.
    2000: we signed Carlos Emmons as a FA
    In 2001: we took Quinten Caver in the 2nd round, 55th overall
    2002: we signed Shawn Barber (and Levon Kirkland…although, we skimped on Trotter, but to be fair we did franchise tag him first, before he went ballistic over being tagged and we just let him go in FA)
    2003: we signed Nate Wayne in FA
    2004: we signed Jeremiah Trotter and Dhani Jones in FA
    In 2005: we took Matt McCoy in the 2nd round at 63rd overall. Michael Boley and Kirk Morrison were taken shortly afterwards.
    In 2006: we took Gocong in the 3rd round, 71st overall. And, took Omar Gaither in the 5th.
    In 2007: we took Stewart Bradley in the 3rd, 87th overall. And, signed Takeo Spikes in FA
    In 2009: we traded for Will Witherspoon for a 5th and Brandon Gibson
    In 2010: we traded for Ernie Sims, only gave up a 5th rounder though
    In 2012: we traded for DeMeco Ryans and drafted Kendricks 46th overall.
    It’s really amazing how many resources Reid put into trying to field good LBers. And, yet we still had years where we were starting a bunch of 6th and 7th round or undrafted players. Just swung and missed a bunch.

  134. 134 ac134spectre said at 11:28 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Felt like we should have gone for LB in the first round and made more picks tho.

  135. 135 Fufina said at 7:26 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    I have been thinking about rookie expectations the last few days, I love the draft process (its almost like a 2nd season of content for me watching video and reading opinions), but I very rarely had big expectations for rookies coming into a season. If they get on the field and perform well its a hugely pleasant surprise (like Matthews last year), but i do not get down if players have limited good performances in their rookie year.

    However perversely i have huge faith in year 2 and 3 guys. I always am mentally projecting people to have huge upside and break out seasons. I have big expectations for Huff, Watkins, Hart and Smith II as well as Wolff and Tolbin in their 3rd year.

    One of my frustrations with Reid is that players rarely broke out in their 2-4th seasons in the league, they either came in and succeed initially or did not make it. However that’s not how it is across the league – look at teams like the Ravens, Seahawks and Steelers – always getting break out campaigns from their year 2-3 guys. I have always put that down to player development and roster depth… and i am hoping some of our guys deliver this year.

  136. 136 Michael Winter Cho said at 10:37 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    A lot of this is just perception. We view and value our own players in a skewed way. If we went to their fora, their fans would probably be making many of the same complaints. Yet if the Eagles have been so bad at drafting, why have there been so many winning seasons in the last 15 years?

    I think a lot of our commenters are being irrationally optimistic about our rookies and free agent acquisitions. I hear the same talk from Cardinals fans (I’m in Arizona) every year.

  137. 137 Fufina said at 11:12 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Well my theory on Reid, is that he was not a great developer of non QB talent. When he found guys that could come in and be effective he was excellent at incorporating them into the roster and get instant results. We were not ‘bad’ at drafting under Reid – just not ‘good’.

    I think the Eagles in the early 2000’s had some great Legacy talent and a front office that was ahead of the curve from a cap perspective and was able to retain and gain talent other teams could not due to managing and exploiting opportunities.

    As those 2 things started to run out in the late 2000’s Reid was left as a good QB coach with an effective offensive scheme but unable to acquire consistent top tier talent and being to good to go out and draft it high. Think that is the situation he is falling into with KC at the moment – they will be solid but non Superbowl contending for the duration of the time he is there.

  138. 138 Michael Winter Cho said at 2:04 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    I think top tier talent has more to do with luck than skill, but I could be wrong. I feel Reid did miss a little too much on the draft toward the end (which, again, I consider fairly random), but even worse, his offense scheme got stale.

  139. 139 Jernst said at 3:13 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Excellent analysis. Reid’s overall draft success was good when you took the totals into account, but a lot of that is skewed by an amazing draft in 2002 (Lito, Michael Lewis, Sheldon and Westbrook), a great draft in 2005 (Patterson, Reggie Brown, Herremans and Cole), and a good first two picks in 2009 (Maclin and McCoy).

    A lot of his other drafts were terrible. There’s quite a few drafts where we didn’t get even a minor contributor through the entire draft.

    1999: McNabb, Barry Gardner, Brzenzki, Welbourn, Damon Moore, Na Brown, Cecil Martin, Troy Smith, Jed Weaver, Pernell Davis
    2000: Simon, Pinkston, Bobbie Williams, Gari Scott, Thomas Hamner, John Frank, John Romero
    2001: Freddie Mitchell, Quintin Caver, Derrick Burgess, Correll Buckhalter, Tony Stewart, AJ Feeley
    2003: Jerome McDougal, LJ Smith, Billy McMullen, Jamaal Green, Jeremy Bridges, Normanm Lejeune
    2004: Shawn Andrews, Matt Ware, JR Reed, Trey Derilek, Thomas Tapeh, Andy Hall, Dexter Wynn, Adrien Clark, Bruce Perry, Dominic Furio
    2006: Bunkley, Justice, Gocong, Max Jean-Gilles, Avant, Jeremy Bloom, Omar Gaither, Lejuan Ramsey
    2007: Kolb, Abiamiri, Stewart Bradley, Tony Hunt, CJ Gaddis, Brent Celek, Rashard Barksdale, Nate Illoa
    2008: Trevor Laws, DeSean Jackson, Bryan Smith, Mike McGlynn, Quenten Demps, Jack Ikegwuonu, Mike Gibson, Joe Mays, Andy Studebaker
    2010: Brandon Graham, Nate Allen, Daniel Teo-Nesheim, Trevard Lindley, Keenan Clayton, Mike Kafka, Clay Harbor, Ricky Sapp, Riley Cooper, Charles Scott, Jamar Chaney, Jeff Owens, Kurt Coleman
    2011: Danny Watkins, Jaiquan Jarrett, Curtis Marsh, Casey Matthews, Alex Henery, Dion Lewis, Julian Vandervelde, Jason Kelce, Brian Rolle, Greg Lloyd Jr

    That’s a lot of years where we’re not getting much from our draft picks. It’s easy to see how the teams talent started to erode by the end of his tenure.
    In contrast: Look at the talent that was collected via the draft in the 4 years prior to Reid’s arrival:

    1995: Mamula, Bobby Taylor, Barret Brooks, Greg Jefferson, Chris T Jones.
    1996: Jerome Mayberry, Brian Dawkins, Jason Dunn, Bobby Hoying, Ray Farmer, Hollis Thomas
    1997: Duce Staley, Chad Lewis, ND Kalu
    1998: Tra Thomas, Jeremiah Trotter, Allen Rossum, Brandon Whiting, Ike Reese, Traded 2nd round picks for Hugh Douglas
    That 1998 team Reid took over only won 3 games but it was filled with talent:
    – Duce Staley
    – Charlie Garner
    – Kevin Turner
    – Irving Fryar
    – Tra Thomas
    – Jermaine Mayberry
    – Hollis Thomas
    – Hugh Douglas
    – James Willis
    – William Thomas
    – Troy Vincent
    – Bobby Taylor
    – Brian Dawkins
    – Michael Zordich
    – Jeremiah Trotter
    – Al Harris
    – Allen Rossum
    – Mike Caldwell
    – Chad Lewis
    – Bubba Miller
    – Ike Reese
    – Brandon Whiting
    There’s a lot of key players that were already here for Reid’s early success. He nailed the McNabb pick and did just fine following that up with Corey Simon the next year, then killed the 2002 draft with the 3 DBs and Westbrook. And, that kept the team competitive. But, the drafting really fell apart after that and all the left over stars from the previous regime retired and we weren’t able to restock the teams’s talent.

  140. 140 Jernst said at 1:37 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Compared to the rest of the league, a lot of Reid’s drafts were putrid. The overall numbers end up being about average as he had 2 amazing drafts that provided a ton of talent, but there’s about 6 of his 10 drafts that didn’t even provide a single long term starter or stud on his teams. The last few years we’ve been much more consistent with our drafting and finding adequate starters and even stars.

    The second round was basically a black hole during most of Reid’s tenur. Look at these 2nd round picks:

    1999 – Barry Gardner (35th overall)
    2000 – Todd Pinkston (36th)
    Bobbie Williams (61st)
    2001 – Quinten Caver (55th)
    2002 – Micheal Lewis (58th)
    Sheldon Brown (59th)
    2003 – traded pick to move up for Jerome McDougal
    2004 – traded pick to move up for Shawn Andrews
    2005 – Reggie Brown (35th)
    Matt McCoy (63rd)
    2006 – Winston Justice (39th) (traded up)
    2007 – Kevin Kolb (36th)
    Victor Abiamiri (57th)
    2008 – Trevor Laws (47th)
    DeSean Jackson (49th)
    2009 – LeSean McCoy
    2010 – Nate Allen (37th). Traded away other pick to move up for Brandon Graham
    2011 – Jaiquan Jarret (54th)
    That’s 18 second round picks with 3 long term starters, plus Nate Allen, Reggie Brown, Michael Lewis and Todd Pinkston, with 11 straight up busts that did absolutely nothing.
    When you’re not hitting consistently on your first rounders with busts like:
    2011 – Danny Watkins
    2010 – Brandon Graham (not a bust now but was for Reid)
    2003 – Jerome McDougal
    2001 – Freddie Mitchell
    Trading out of 1st round picks like 2007 and 2008
    Or only getting marginal play out of your 1st rounder like
    2006 – Broderick Bunkley
    2005 – Mike Patterson
    That’s definitely gonna effect how you see draft pick potential.

  141. 141 Michael Winter Cho said at 2:02 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    I appreciate the research and your informed opinion, but I disagree with your conclusion. “Average” is not bad; it’s simply average. There are 32 teams and Reid usually won 10 or more games with players he mostly drafted. If you put a bunch of putrid drafts together with a couple great drafts, you get an average (or in our case, an above average team). You only need one Tom Brady or Peyton Manning to be a playoff team–rest of the draft be damned. If McNabb had turned out to be one of those guys, instead of just himself, we would have multiple Lombardis in our greedy hands. That is not Reid’s fault; he just pulled out a King and the others got Aces. Those amazing drafts where you get your stars are how you win games, not by picking up a mass of average players. Obviously, you would like to get both stars _and_ retain a good batting average everywhere else, but I’m not convinced _anyone_ does that consistently. Even draft darling Ozzie Newsome has way more misses than hits.

  142. 142 76mustang said at 3:29 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Which is why Chip’s team building strategies:

    culture > scheme
    preparation > talent

    should provide some consistency in their drafting results. When you virtually eliminate off-field distractions and me-first personalities from all that goes into the processes players go through in building a team, you increase the probability of success.

    Ultimately, I view Chip’s team building approach as an exercise akin to building special forces units in the military, where the psychological makeup of the individual is >= the talent and potential of that individual.

    This year’s training camp is going to have the best competitions to date in Chip’s tenure. Can’t wait…

  143. 143 Fufina said at 4:21 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    I totally agree, I think that the Eagles are going in the absolutely correct direction with grabbing team first 100% committed to football guys who have the physical tools to be top NFL players. The believe the correct culture and coaching can develop those raw building blocks into high end talent while building a long term core of strong character and locker room.

    Once you have baked in certain behaviour patterns and expectations into your team and building you can start experimenting with bringing in 1/2 guys who maybe would lack the self discipline to be a ‘Chip’ player under normal circumstances but when surrounded by 50 guys doing the right things all the time can be indoctrinated into the system.

  144. 144 Jernst said at 7:08 PM on May 16th, 2015:

    Exactly! Most, if not all, of the players drafted in the first two rounds and even in the 3rd round and further have the prerequisite physical skills to compete in the NFL and have been football stars throughout their entire life, at every level.

    Teams of people are paid millions to analyze every college snap of these guys’ careers, they are tested and measured in every conceivable way. So, why then is the draft such a crap shoot. My feeling is that the biggest reason is mental make up and desire to put forth the effort that the NFL requires. That and injuries. So, what better way to eliminate those chances of failure but to invest heavily in guys you know eat, sleep and breath football, as well as a sports science department that’s on the cutting edge of injury rehab and prevention.

    Nothings worse than actually hitting on a draft pick in this crap shoot and then having them flame out because their heads not on straight…**cough** Shawn Andrews.

  145. 145 unhinged said at 8:06 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    I know of no other NFL HC who makes it his business to search relentlessly to find the players he wants, as Kelly does. The guy is tireless. The worst “reach” we are likely to see from Kelly is him taking a guy he wants too early, which is really not that big a deal if the player makes the team and ends up contributing.

  146. 146 unhinged said at 7:59 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    With a lot of help from Jim Johnson, Reid took a broken team and made it a consistent contender. And when Johnson left us, Reid was primarily responsible for decimating, through atrocious drafting, the once proud defense. In his years as a HC, Reid has proven that he was probably over-promoted. He’s an OC with great organizational skills.

  147. 147 Jernst said at 8:19 PM on May 16th, 2015:

    The 1998 team that won all of 3 games was atrocious to watch. But, that team wasn’t as broken as it seemed. There was a ton of talent on that team, they were just extremely young. 5 starters on offense were rookies or 2nd year players and 6 were 3rd year or less on defense.

    Reid was lucky enough to inherit a team with the 2nd overall draft choice, that had it’s starting RB (Duce Staley) entering his second year as well as Charlie Garner, his starting FB (Kevin Turner), a stud LT (Tra Thomas – rookie) who would start for the next decade at one of the hardest spots to fill, his starting RG (2nd year player Jermane Mayberry), Starting C (Steve Everitt and also his eventual replacement Bubba Miller), TE (Chad Lewis), LDE (Brandon Whiting – rookie, Greg Jefferson 3rd year), DT (Hollis Thomas – 2nd year), RDE (Hugh Douglas – 3rd year), LBs (James Willis, James Darling, Jeremiah Trotter and William Thomas), CBs (Troy Vincent, Bobby Taylor and Al Harris) and FS (Brian Dawkins).

    As well as key players like Ike Reese (entering his 2nd year), and returnman Allen Rossum (entering his 2nd year). He started out with 13 current or future probowlers already on his roster (14 if you count Fryar, but he retired after the 1998 season.

    That team needed a QB, 2 new WRs, a RG and RT, (and if you’re being picky another DT to pair with run stopper Hollis Thomas and a SS to pair with Dawkins) and they’d be an instant super bowl contender. Reid was lucky enough to have the 2nd overall pick in a draft filled with potential at the position.

    You have to give him credit he nailed the most important pick he’d ever make at the most important position and immediately the team was a contender with McNabb at the helm.

    It took him 5 years to get one WR that was above average when he traded for and got TO for one year.
    In the mean time, he signed Charles Johnson, Torrance Small, Damein Douglas, Deitrich Jells, James Thrash, Antonio Freeman, Sean Morey and Greg Lewis while drafting Todd Pinkston, Na Brown, and Freddie Mitchell. And, we endured two years of Johnson and Small as the starters and 3 of Pinkston and Thrash, until we finally had TO and Pinkston in 2004. 2005 we were back to starting trash like Reggie Brown and Greg Lewis (with Darnerien McCants and Billy McMullen as the top back ups).

    He did a great job filling out the offensive line by signing Runyan as his first FA. Guards were much more up and down with a combination of Jeff Dellenbach, Lonnie Palelei, Doug Brzezinski, Jon Welbourn, Bobbie Williams, Artis Hicks, Herremans, Andrews, Max Jean-Gilles, Nick Cole, Danny Watkins and Evan Mathis were all starters. Basically switched out our guards every two years during his tenure. But, for the most part the starters he found were adequate and Herremans and Andrews were pretty darn good for a stretch.

    So to me, Reid inherited a pretty stacked team that had only a couple glaring needs. He filled the two most important with a top draft pick and by throwing unheard of money at Runyan in FA. After that, the bulk of the teams stud contributors came from the previous regime, and the failures of the team were because he couldn’t find adequate WRs or replace the aging stars when they left (save for Lito and Sheldon who replaced Troy and Bobby).

  148. 148 Jernst said at 9:17 PM on May 16th, 2015:

    Reid went 9 years before he finally drafted a decent starting WR in his 10th draft. In addition to WR, he was also atrocious at drafting offensive lineman, defensive ends, LBers, safeties and other than Lito/Sheldon in 2002 no other passable CBs in 14 drafts.

    He was excellent at drafting RBs, QBs, defensive tackles and pretty decent with TEs.

  149. 149 unhinged said at 4:10 PM on May 17th, 2015:

    Can’t disagree with a word. My use of the term broken was not an indictment of the talent – particularly the defensive talent – but the franchise was regressing, and change was needed. I don’t hate Reid, I respect him, but he followed a DC come HC, and I loved some or RR’s defensive schemes, and became an OC/ HC. I was one of the herd calling for his head when he let that defense become pathetic.

  150. 150 Jernst said at 6:32 PM on May 16th, 2015:

    I agree. It’s always a weak way to prove your point when you start out by saying if you take away everything good someone did, they actually weren’t that good at all. It’s like saying, “If you took away all of DeMarco Murrays 20+ yard runs his yards per carry is actually pretty pedestrian.” Well, no shit…right? Of course his ypc would go down if you take out all his best runs. You can’t really do that and make a good argument.

    However, I think there are some problems with using straight up averages to form good conclusions as well. If you had two running backs that got 20 carries each and one gained 4 yards every single carry and the other gained 0 yards on 19 carries and had one 80 yard run, they would both have the same average yards per carry, but those are two vastly different games that they each had. In that way, you can see how using just the average washes out the overall picture and the conclusions you can draw from it.

    I think you make that mistake in your analysis. You say that Reid, on average won 10 games per year, which is a fact and indisputal, but the conclusion that you make that he did that with players that he mostly drafted I believe is false.

    By averaging his yearly wins you lose sight of the bimodal distribution of those wins. There were a lot more wins early in his tenure between 2000-2004 than there were from 2005-2012.

    From 2000-2004 (5 years) Reid won 59 games, or an average of just about 12 games per year. From 2005-2012 (8 seasons) Reid won just 67 games, or approximately 8 games per season.

    Those first 5 years involved teams that relied heavily on a defense that was stocked almost entirely with talent Reid had not drafted. Whereas the 8 wins per season teams that followed were teams that Reid mostly drafted.

    Continued misses after the very good 2005 draft, left the roster almost bare of drafted starters. By 2011 we had to go bonkers in free agency to fill out a roster because there weren’t enough good drafted players to fill all the wholes (note the dip in drafted starters begining in 2011.)

    The 2000 team had 2 Reid drafted players on offense and 3 on defense out of 22 possible starters.
    2001: 3 Offensive and 2 Defensive,
    2002: 3 offensive and 1 defensive,
    2003: 5 offensive, 3 defensive;
    2004: 3 offensive, 4 defensive;
    2005: 5 offensive, 3 defensive;
    2006: 7 offensive, 6 defensive;
    2007: 7 offensive, 8 defensive;
    2008: 6 offensive, 9 defensive;
    2009: 10 offensive, 7 defensive;
    2010: 10 offensive, 8 defensive;
    2011: 7 offensive, 6 defensive;
    2012: 9 offensive, 6 defensive.

    There’s a clear line that occurs around 2005 when the key players from the previous regime retired or moved on and Reid’s drafting took over. Right around the same time the teams wins started to drop off.
    Some of the starters from that time period are Reggie Brown, Greg Lewis, Artis Hicks, Hank Fraley, ND Kalu, Keith Adams, Matt McCoy, Sean Considine, Omar Gaither, Max Jean-Gilles, Nick Cole, Winston Justice, Akeem Jordan, Moise Fokou, Dimitri Patterson, Nate Allen, Danny Watkins, Jamar Chaney, Brian Rolle, Kurt Coleman, King Dunlap, Casey Matthews. And, these weren’t just draft picks that didn’t pan out. These were guys that were not only penciled in as starters for one or more of those years, but starter more than any other player at their position over the course of at least one year. Often times multiple years. The roster was bare enough to allow these players to not only stick around but to start and in most instances for multiple years. You just don’t see these types of players starting in the first few years because the team was so stocked with talent. When you inherit such a well stocked team and win the mass of your games with that squad and by the time your drafting has enough time to turn the roster over, you’re replacing it with this, it’s no wonder the team fell apart.

    In 14 drafts he selected 8 probowlers (McNabb: 6, Simon: 1, Lito: 2, Westbrook: 2, Trent Cole: 2, Shawn Andrews: 3, DeSean Jackson: 3, LeSean McCoy: 1 with Reid, 2 with Kelly) and only 14 good long term starters by my count (McNabb, Simon, Andrews, Westbrook, Lito, Sheldon, Patterson, Herremans, Cole, Celek, Jackson, Maclin, McCoy and Kelce), and 3 others (Pinkston, Bunkley, LJ Smith) who were at least adequate.

    Getting 1 solid starter per draft is below average and way below what elite teams routinely produce from their draft classes. By Ozzie Newsomes criteria for a successful draft (3 adequate starters that you’re not looking to replace by year 3 of their rookie deal), Reid had 2 successful drafts in 14 years (Lito, Sheldon, Brown in 2002 and Patterson, Herremans, Cole in 2005). He had 2 other drafts that produced more than one starter, 2000 (Simon and Pinkston), and 2009 (Maclin and McCoy). And, that was it. Definitely not a good drafting team for much of his tenure.

  151. 151 Michael Winter Cho said at 8:32 PM on May 16th, 2015:

    Good stuff, Jernst. I would like to point out that I never said Reid did a _good_ job of drafting, but just average. We do see a decline in overall talent as his tenure continued, a bimodal distribution in wins as you say. Is it because he did his best work with inherited talent, and once he had to rely on his own drafting, his incompetence hurt the team? Perhaps, but consider–a team getting 12 wins a year, going almost all the way in the playoffs ever year, is getting a significantly worse shot at good players in the draft. The difference between picking at 31 and 15 is massive, and Reid bore that burden for years. The second main point I would make is that McNabb’s performance took a dive after 2004. He lost his mobility (or forgot how to use it) and became a somewhat ordinary player, given his average accuracy and tendency for slumps. I feel these two points explain much of the team’s poor performance in the latter years.

    But again, I would not argue that Reid did a great job at drafting, merely average. But average, without a Brady or a Manning, is not going to get it done.

  152. 152 Jernst said at 10:56 PM on May 16th, 2015:

    Great points! McNabbs injuries and overall decline was just as much if not even more a cause of the teams overall lack of success. When you’re trotting Mike McMahon out there at starting QB for most a season, I don’t care how good you’ve been drafting things are gonna get ugly.

    But, don’t forget that those bad teams also ended up with worse records. We weren’t having end of the first round picks in most years in those last 7 years. We were only outside of the top 20 twice in that span and we were inside the top 15 three times with picks 14, 13 and 12.

    Also while there’s a big drop from the top 15 picks to the back of the 1st round, the curve really flattens out from about midway through the 2nd till the end of the 5th where there’s another huge drop off in the 6th and 7th rounds in average expected production of each pick. So while it’s harder to find a true difference maker out of the top 15 picks in the first round, the chance of finding good players has little to do with whether you’re picking in the top or bottom half of the 3rd round let’s say.

    Also if you look at the actual picks, because Andy loved to trade around so much we often had high second, third and 4th round picks in addition to our normal picks. On top of having more picks overall during his tenure than any other team in the league over the same time frame.

  153. 153 Michael Winter Cho said at 1:27 AM on May 17th, 2015:

    Was it really so bad? Take, for example, the first round picks in, say 2009-2012. Maclin, Graham, Watkins, Cox. 3 for 4. 2nd round, McCoy, Nate Allen, Jarret, Kendricks. 3 for 4 (Allen is a starter, despite being a our whipping boy!). 3rd round, Ingram, Teo, Marsh, Curry. 1 for 4. 3 Pro-Bowlers in four years.

    Overall, not really too bad. Put a good QB in front and these are serviceable players. Put a bad McNabb, a hot-cold Vick, a rookie Foles in there; along with a broken offensive system, and you have trouble. And… what the hell was up with Juan Castillo!?

  154. 154 Jernst said at 8:02 PM on May 18th, 2015:

    Haha…no not really so bad at all. I mean we could have been the Lions or Browns over that same period. Now those teams drafts were in fact so bad. The Eagles under Reid were just bad enough to systematically deplete the teams talent pool but occassionally providing us with a good player that provided a lot of hope.

    As far as the years you selected. There’s a bit of selection bias. I could easily pick four years where we ended up with basically no one worth while. Plus the 2012 draft is tricky since it’s the first draft that the owner confirmed where Roseman ran the whole show and made the picks. Definitely better to add that to the analysis of why the team is in up swing with recent good drafts as opposed to why the team started to fall apart under Reid. If you want to see why the te started to fall apart go look at the drafts pick by pick on Wikipedia from 2006-2011. Truly depressing stuff especially when you see the amount of talent that was routinely picked up immediately after our selections.

    And yes Juan Castillo was as absurd a thing as you will ever see in sport

  155. 155 Michael Winter Cho said at 11:52 PM on May 18th, 2015:

    I just picked those since those were his last four years and we were a poor team during that time. We can also say that Kelly has won with Reid’s (good players) players so far in a similar way that Reid won with Rhoades’ guys.

    I guess I’m a hard one to convince of anything since I feel drafting has so much luck involved, it is really hard to prove either expertise or incompetence.

  156. 156 Jernst said at 8:16 PM on May 20th, 2015:

    True…I completely agree with that. The draft is one of those things that teams spend millions of dollars on and it seems like they’d get similar results if they just threw the top 200 prospects’ names on a board and threw darts each round.

    I remember seeing a study once about whether GMs showed any year to year consistency in their ability to pick good players. Essentially, the study showed no correllation between any GMs past and future performances, except for Bill Pollian and Ron Wollf, who were the only GMs over something like a 20 year time span that performed consistently better than any other GM. (Both of whom were fired or forced to retire in the years following that study due to a string of bad drafts.

    Seems like there’s a lot more luck than skill involved in the whole process. In fact, I had always thought Reid was a pretty good drafter aside from a few blown picks, but when I recently went through his drafts (not just his picks, but each pick from every team in each round) I was actually shocked to see how many times we seemingly picked a player in a sea of future pro bowlers at the same position and ended up with the only bust. After really putting some time in it was clear, to me at least, whether it was just bad luck or bad decision making, that our poor drafting in 2002-4, 2006-2008 and 2010-2011 just left our team with few home grown studs.

    Well either way. I really enjoyed a well thought out, intelligent and absurdly detailed debate about Andy Reids drafting. Glad there’s other intelligent eagle nerds out there.

  157. 157 Michael Winter Cho said at 12:03 PM on May 21st, 2015:

    I should check out those years like you did, but it would be too depressing. Just seeing some of the names of the misses and the mediocrities we ended up with gets me a little queasy. Thanks for the discussion–you are very good at it!

  158. 158 Jernst said at 9:31 PM on May 16th, 2015:

  159. 159 GEAGLE said at 8:47 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    For those who didn’t get their single game tickets the other day, I most likely won’t be able to attend any of the games in December. So when the season rolls around, if anyone wants to go to any DECEMBER games and is struggling to get tix, keep me in mind,,, face value $310 per Ticket, two tickets to each game…
    Might have to miss some november games too…. I’ll post exact dates when I know for sure…

  160. 160 MattE said at 8:53 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Noted. Thanks for the heads up man.

  161. 161 Avery Greene said at 9:48 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Cool, thnx.

  162. 162 Anders said at 10:43 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    If I hadn’t just used my savings on a house and new car, I would have been interested

  163. 163 Jernst said at 1:06 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    what section are your tickets in

  164. 164 GEAGLE said at 1:45 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Like row 22 in almost the middle of the endzone(a little left of the middle)
    No better seat in the building then watching from the ENDZONE. Unfortunately you gamble that the action will take place on your side of the field…. I have a buddy with comperable priced seats near center field, every once in a while we switch seats and I can see why one would like watching the game from the side, you are more involved in the entire game….
    but for me, there is NOTHING like seeing the QB of the Eagles facing straight at you, direct his offense down at the line of scrimage and see the play unfold in your face..,, it’s also pretty badass when the defense is backed up… No matter where else I ever sit, I can’t help missing the vantage point of being in the ENDZONE,…. There is nothing like it. I highly suggest at some point making sure you experience a game from that vantage point

  165. 165 Jernst said at 3:42 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    I love the endzone view. My family has had seats at the 45 yard line behind the eagles bench right below the press boxes for over 50 years. But, sometimes we still need extra tickets when other people come to town, so I figured I’d ask. You’re right though seeing the game from the endzone changes the entire perspective. You can really appreciate running plays a lot better from that angle.

  166. 166 GEAGLE said at 3:49 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Yeah about 5 years ago I saw my first game from the ENDZONE and just fell in love,,, few times I had great seats in other spots and I always ended up missing being in that ENDZONE come the 4th quarter of a close game.. I’ll def make sure to post the games im not attending. I shoild know ahead of time… But hell or high water, I’ll fly home for a playoff game at the Linc

  167. 167 GEAGLE said at 9:03 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    When do we a need Evan Mathis to report? At what point does it becom a big problem if he doesn’t report?
    people are starting to Severly underestimate our OL. They don’t have a gluttony of depth which I would prefer at that position, but last years OL is Probably not an accurate representation of the quality of OL we have.
    for me, Mathis now becomes EXTREMELY important. I don’t think its the end of the world if we lose him, but boy do I feel so much more comfortable if we can count on Mathis and Peters to hold down the left side for one more year.
    HErremans struggled in 2013 when he had to switch positions for the 37th time, and Lane was a Raw rookie, yet we ended up Boasting the top OL in the NFL. We may have had injuries last year but our OL is a year removed from all 5 starters playing 16 games..
    We are two years removed from having an ELITE OL made up of HErremans who DIDNT have a great season and Lane who was a rookie.. But because we didn’t draft the OL we expected everyone seems to be going overboard with under rating our OL…

    While we had the best OL in 2013, Lane Johnson this year should be DRASTICALLY better then Rookie Lane Johnson, and I don’t know about you, but is it really THAT hard for Tobin vs. BARBRE battle to provide a comperable player to HErremans in 2013? And even if the RG isn’t as good as Herremas in 2013, he will be playing next to a MONSTER RT who should have a monster dominant break out season,,, so I wouldn’t at all be surprised if the Right side of our OL ends up being better then 2013… And as long as Mathis is back, our Left side will be on point as always,..KELCE is still one of the best Centers in the NFL… mathis is the key…

    I would have LOVED to see us add two Offensive lineman in the draft, but truth is, we may have not even played our rookie Lineman this year… I wouldn’t assume any rookie will be a better option then the winner of the Tobin/Barbre battle…. So I really think we are starting to Severly under rate our Offensive Line…. As long as Mathis is back, the Left side will be as good as it always has been, and our Right Side, even without hErremans or a rookie draft pick may end up being better then the right side has been so far under chip..
    Mathis is the Key… If we have him this year, our OL could end up being the best we have seen so far under chip… Lane alone should be 3 times the player he was in 2013

  168. 168 Fufina said at 9:11 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Well Mathis has not really missed anything important at this point – he can (and has proven) he can condition himself. OTA’s start 26/05, so if he misses those he starts missing some coaching line drills that could help rebuild/renew line chemistry but that is probably not an issue.

    I expect him to turn up to 16/06 Mand Minicamp – because he starts losing $$ if he does not turn up – same with Training Camp. Hold outs are stupid in the new CBA, and wont give him much leverage with the eagles – he just saves them more money.

    As for the line it will be ‘fine’ this year. We have 4 probowl grade line men and even if the 2 older gentlemen take a step back in Mathis and Peters – they will still be above average starters. Long term is an issue and we will need to spend in FA next year OR force draft picks early. But we are fine for now.

  169. 169 GEAGLE said at 9:49 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Well said…
    So Maths needs to report in June to avoid fines? he has such little leverage, and he is a 33rd year old man. if I were him, yes I would want more money, who doesn’t? But I would tread very carefully and make sure to not jeopardize what few years you have left playing this game… He has to be a fool to 100% assume he will get to play this game more then two more seasons, I wouldn’t go jeopardize what time I have left, especially when I’m cashing a 5mil check in the process.
    Mathis has been on the block for sometime, yet the Saints were able to trade older veteran proBowl level OL, and the Patiots were able to trade away older OL to the BUcs last August, yet Mathis is still here, still available on the trading block. At this point, he has no leverage.
    Mathis also knows first hand how demanding playing OL in chips offense is, and he knows what type of shape you need to be in to perform in this offense. so he can play this game of chicken all he wants, but he better make sure he shows up in EAGLE SHAPE or he will further risk what little time he has left to play this game…hungry young players on the bench, working with Stoutland and veterans to improve. He better not risk his starting spot too much..
    As long as we have Mathis back, I love how much of a big deal everyone makes of the Dallas OL. I Love how much eVerupne raves about that dallas Oll… It’s a direct spit in the face to hall of fame jason Peters, a top LG in the NFL Mathis, an elite NFL center KELCE, and what will prove to be the best RT in football this year, BANE JOHNSON… It’s also a spit in the face to “Baby Monster” Cox, Logan, Beau, cedrick.
    Keep ranting and raving about the great Dallas OL, while spitting in the face of our proud Talemted,beasts in the trenches..I love it… Keep making our players hear about the great dallas OL every day for the rest of the season.
    Dallas OL may be a little better then ours.. But I’d Bet that our OL handles the Dallas DL much easier then the Dallas OL handles our elite DL,,.
    Tyrone Smith TODAYS is better then Jason Peters….Advantage Dallas
    mathis is better then Ronald Leary………. Advantage Eagles
    KELCE vs. travis Fredrick….. Draw.
    BARBRE/TOBIN vs. zack Martin…. Advantage Dallas
    Lane,vs. free/Lael Collins……. Advantage Eagles

    So I’m perfectly comfortable with our Offensive line going into the season, and I hope people keep disrespecting our Lineman and making them constantly hear about how Great and Scary the Bog Bad Cowboy line is.. I watched 23yr old Foetcher Cox Dominate that entire line on thanksgiving. Fletcher Cox was the best player on the field that game…
    Keep disrespecting us, keep allowing us to fly under the radar.. I think it’s awesome. I’d rather be in this position then to be the consensus dominant favorite

  170. 170 Fufina said at 10:02 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Well we had rave reviews in 2013 when we stayed healthy all year with the leagues best running back. They stayed healthy all 2014 with the leagues best running back. Lets see what happens when they regress to the mean and loose 2-3 guys for a couple of games and how good Dallas’s depth is.

    The people who are worried about the OL are ‘forgetting’ that we had some of the worst line continuity in the entire league last year and have long term concerns about our offensive line. I think we will be forced to address the Offensive line hard in 2016, but that is for next year now.

  171. 171 Jernst said at 1:04 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    The concerns about our line aren’t based on the current starters on the depth chart, it’s based on the very realistic potential for there to be significant issues. Let’s say Peters starts to regress and is just above average next year, Mathis continues to be a dick and causes enough problems with Chip that he’s no longer our LG, or even if he does, what if at 34 years old he just loses his physical ability, and what if our RG situation is a black hole of inadequacy. All of those scenarios I’d put at about even odds of happening versus Peters remaining elite, Mathis returning and remaining elite and us finding an adequate starter at RG.

    It’s more than conceivable that at least one of those “IFs” doesn’t go our way. Add in one injury and we could be screwed. That’s the issue. Of course, if all goes well and we luck out, the line is probably top 5 in the league.

  172. 172 GEAGLE said at 1:20 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Fair concerns.,
    Plausible for sure.. All I can offer is recent chip quote on the subject: “if you see how Jason Peters is working out right now, you are very confident saying that he has at least This year left at a high level”.. Passed that Chip acknowledged it’s a fair concern..I don’t believe we just blindly didn’t add any lineman. I assume we really weighed the pros and cons talked to the sports science training staff who by now, knows their bodies well and that we decided we are comfortable gambling on them for at least this next year… Considering Jason Peters came back from his Achilles to be his durable self, not miss genes and play thru bumps and bruises, I’m comfortable with chips gamble..
    But for me, Mathis is the key. If Mathis is our Left Guard, then im pumped up about our OL going into the yeat. But vhip has a low tolerance for BS so I worry… My hope is that chip is used to this song and dance by now with Mathis since he has been on the trade block for two years. And I’m hiping chip looks at it like, just let the brat throw his temper tantrum, see him when it’s time to get ready for the season..
    If chip plans on Mathis being here, then I’m perfectly happy with the Line for this 1 upcoming season

  173. 173 Jernst said at 8:42 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Exactly, the most pressing issue is definitely Mathis. If he goes AWOL, which is a very real possibility, even if everyone knows he has no leverage and would be a moron to press the issue, things could get ugly. Tobin/Barbre as our two starting guards is not reassuring. Especially with the lack of depth behind them. One injury at that point turns a top 5 line into: Andrew Gardner – Tobin – Kelce – Barbre – Johnson. Or Peters – Tobin – Molk – Barbre – Johnson, ect

    I think that’s the issue that people have. It’s not just one question mark, or one “if”, it’s multiple “ifs”, and when combined with the lack of depth I think a lot of people can see how easily things could go from really good to really bad. Things can still end up great if Mathis plays like his normal self and there’s no serious injuries. But, it would be no stretch at all to imagine a very plausible situation that wouldn’t take anything extraordinary to happen for things to get real bad real quick.

    Essentially, there’s little to nothing about the current set up that would mitigate or protect us from any bad things that could easily happen. And, that has some people scared.

  174. 174 HawaiianEagle said at 11:27 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    I’m still very interested to see JUST IF Murray played any part in making the boys OL look so good. Guess we’ll see if the 3some they have now performs just as well.

  175. 175 GEAGLE said at 1:10 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    It’s a good line, Especially run blocking. Can’t take that away from them, but they are high if they think you can switch Murray for McFadden and not skip a beat and I think it’s especially arrogant to do it when you know how many of your flaws you were able to mask running demarco into the ground…
    Now romo and his back are a year older, Dez is probably more high strung the ever playing on a 1yr deal after dallas wouldn’t pay him. On top of a high strung DEZ, they are going to put more pressure on Romo and Dez with Murray gone and Im curious to see what happens during the bumpy times…
    But it is true that the Dallas run blocking is elite. Can’t take that away from them. But that’s no big deal when you bring an elite run blocking DL and Ftont 7 to the table. I don’t care who they line up, Cox is gonna get his…
    but demarco doesn’t need the Dallas OL to shine. He would shine behind our line, he would shine for Seahawks, he would shine for the 49ers line.. I don’t think we can say the same thing about McFadden and that Klepto Randle.. I assume Romo will have to do much more then the quasi game manager Drmarco allowed him to be. if romo has to do more, there are more opportunities to hit romo, and Dallas Line can be solid in pass blocking, but it’s no where as good as their run blocking. With all our twists, stunts. Blitzes, we can get to Romo… Losing Demarco should provide more chances to hit Tony…. romo is also losing an excellent pass blocker in demarco who also is known for high football Iq

  176. 176 Greg Richards said at 4:58 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    The fines for missing the minicamps are minimal. The daily fines for missing training camp are significant. I suspect he skips the mini-camps, misses a day or two of training camp to make a statement, and then he and the deals come to some superficial agreement that has Mathis get basically the same amount of money but Mathis gets some of this year’s salary upfront as a signing bonus and Mathis’s fines are forgiven.

  177. 177 Jernst said at 12:57 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    I agree, I don’t see the starting offensive line being a problem IF all goes well and Mathis reports and no one gets hurt. But, given that three of our projected starters are on the wrong side of 30, Mathis is essentially telling his coach to [suck] “Deeez” [nuts] on twitter, we have a complete unknown at RG and no quality depth, I understand people’s lack of trust. Things COULD be great for us on the Oline, but they just as easily could get ugly real quick. Lot’s of “ifs”.

  178. 178 mksp said at 1:28 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    He’s gone man. Just deal with it.

  179. 179 A_T_G said at 4:17 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    I don’t know, I don’t think he is. He wants more money, but at some point, he has to realize the most money coming his way is from us. Hopefully, the relationship isn’t broken at that point.

  180. 180 mksp said at 4:23 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Just feels like Chip is tired of him.

  181. 181 unhinged said at 7:31 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Do you think he’d ship him without securing LG with a competent replacement?

  182. 182 Avery Greene said at 7:33 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    I wouldn’t be surprised. Sometimes the immature act can wear thin if you aren’t falling in line.

  183. 183 MattE said at 10:19 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    I love this one.

  184. 184 EagleNebula said at 10:54 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    Say what you will about Sanchez the QB, but he seems to be a good person. Apparently he and Barwin visited the train victims at the hospital. (And I seriously would vote for Barwin if he ever follows in his fathers footsteps).

  185. 185 HawaiianEagle said at 11:31 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    The kinder/gentler side of me finds it hard to bang on Sanchez the player after seeing things like this. Appreciate this blog as you all usually have a way of bringing reality to the forefront.

  186. 186 xmbk said at 11:58 AM on May 14th, 2015:


  187. 187 HawaiianEagle said at 11:37 AM on May 14th, 2015:

    And somewhat off track…
    Is there any word/traction on the EAGLES going back to Kelly Green?

  188. 188 ICDogg said at 12:51 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    If they are, they’re keeping it well under wraps. I hear, however, that the Sixers are going to bring back the very old school “PHILA” on the front of their shirts.

  189. 189 Bert's Bells said at 12:57 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    The new Sixers logo is nice. “r” bleeds too closely to the “s” for my taste, but overall good typography. Not overly contemporary nor outlandishly retro. Plus it’s a circle, you can’t beat a circle.

  190. 190 ICDogg said at 1:00 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Eh. It’s basically the same logo they’ve used for years but they stuck an outer ring around it. Other than that they rotated the basketball a little bit, for whatever reason.

  191. 191 Bert's Bells said at 1:33 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Shows how much I follow basketball.

    Good logo.

  192. 192 ACViking said at 12:59 PM on May 14th, 2015:

  193. 193 ICDogg said at 1:21 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Yep… I always think of Wilt in that jersey. The new logo looks like it uses the lettering from the Moses-Doc era but the word “PHILA”

  194. 194 ACViking said at 1:31 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Same reaction. From the Sixers’ last dominant period of ’77 – ’83 . . .

    Starting in ’77 with:
    Fs: Doc / McGinnis
    C: C. Jones
    Gs: H. Bibby / D. Collins

    And the loaded bench:

    Dawkins, Jelly Bean Bryant, Lloyd Free, Steve Mix, Harvey Catchings, Dunleavy.

    Up 2-0 over Portland. Heart breaker.

  195. 195 Avery Greene said at 1:36 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    I think Malone was the key to the championship.

  196. 196 ACViking said at 3:16 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    100% agree.

    The Sixers, during the six year period from ’77-’82, played in 3 finals and a conference final (blowing a 3-1 lead to Boston in ’81, when Houston came out of the west after upsetting LA).

    The team was more or less the same from ’78-’82 — other than swapping McGinnis for Bobby Jones before ’78 started.

    Pieces like the Boston Strangler and Clint Richardson were added.

    But they still weren’t good enough to beat Washington for a couple years to get out of the East. And then not good enough to beat the Lakers.

    By ’83, Erving, while still great, wasn’t close to elite. Not close to the player he was in 1977 — and even that year he showed signs of slippage from his best ABA days.

    If they didn’t win in ’83, I don’t know if they’d have ever won.

  197. 197 Jernst said at 12:53 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    They had kind of leaked info that they were thinking about making a change or at least add it as a permanent alternative so we’d see it twice per year. But, it can’t be done this year. Have to inform the league 2 or 3 years in advance so Nike can get rid of all their old jerseys if you want to change the colors. Right now their only approved for Midnight Green, Black and White. I think there was also an issue with the helmets. Something like they could do a special kelly green uniform once a year, but couldn’t change all the helmets over to kelly green for just one game. I don’t know all the details, but it sounded like it would be a two year process at least to make the Kelly Green either the default colors or a permanent regular alternative.

  198. 198 ICDogg said at 12:58 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Right. As part of the rules which seek to reduce concussions they do not want to have the players using multiple helmets during the season. So they would have to continue wearing the Midnight Green helmets with the Kelly Green unis, which takes away from the look.

  199. 199 GEAGLE said at 12:55 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Haven’t heard anything.. What I do know is that you have to start the process and apply to change your jerseys like two years ahead of time…. What I’m not clear about is at what point during the process would the team announce to the fans that they are in the process of changing Jerseys?
    I remember a year or two rumors about this started to circle but then nothing came of it. Is it possible that they actually started the process of changing jerseys without telling us yet?
    Personally If I’m running the sales department and sale numbers define my job performance, I would not want to go into this year with the public knowing that next year we will be changing jerseys..I would assume that would have a big negative impact on sales for the year..
    Is it possible the greedy well oiled billion dollar business machine known as the Eagles already put in an apocation to start the process when we heard rumors about it a year or two and are keeping it from the public to not effect current jersey sales figuring they can spring it on us as a surprise when the time comes????

  200. 200 A_T_G said at 4:09 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    The only stuff I heard was people connecting dots of mrs. Laurie was the one that hated Kelly and now she is gone.

    At another stop on your off-track, though, a quick google image search did unearth this monstrosity. Hopefully this only gets worn during blacked out games.

  201. 201 MattE said at 4:24 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Charles Barkley Voice: “Turrible, just turrible”

  202. 202 Insomniac said at 5:23 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    I don’t know what’s worse.. these Christmas ornament jerseys or Tebow as a potential starter.

  203. 203 Baloophi said at 7:30 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Tebow wearing one of these while starting.

  204. 204 Insomniac said at 9:08 PM on May 14th, 2015:


  205. 205 HawaiianEagle said at 6:00 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    I could wear that on to work on “Aloha Fridays”…

  206. 206 Baloophi said at 7:29 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    That’s my theory on these jerseys: Designed and ordered for Mariota, hastily repurposed into “permanent clearance” offerings.

  207. 207 MagLikesDraft said at 7:27 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Nooo. the rest of us, outside the Philly market would still have to look at them. Also that bridge closely resembles the Golden Gate or Lions Gate. Finally, don’t those 4-leaf pointy things look kind of like dogwood petals?

  208. 208 jpate said at 12:31 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    This is just brilliant….pats are saying the reason patriots assistant called him self the deflator is because he is fat and trying to loose weight.

    HAHA. Belichick really approve this before going out?

  209. 209 GEAGLE said at 12:39 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Yeah I just got done laughing so hard.. Then they start talking about timing how long it takes a man to go to the bathroom.. They sound like clowns with this report. I think this made them look worse. I can’t possibly believe bellichek or Kraft approved and read this 20,000 word mockery and poor attempt at deflection

  210. 210 Fufina said at 12:52 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Yeah it is really really bad. As in i cannot believe it was not just a fan post from a pats forum rather than the PR work of dozens of lawyers being paid 7 figure sums.

    It comes out as the most pedantic illogical and contrarian piece of propaganda i have read in a long long time. I have read 9/11 conspiracies better put together.

    I would dock the pats an extra 1st round pick just for the idiocy of it.

  211. 211 GEAGLE said at 1:38 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Perfectly said… Pretty insulting to ANYONEs intelligence.

  212. 212 Jernst said at 12:49 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    That makes total sense. And, I’m sure the “needle” the deflator was asking for was to help him lose that weight by being juiced like Violet Beauregarde in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.

  213. 213 FairOaks said at 12:50 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    A much better lie would be that he needs to “deflate” balls to their lowest legal level all the time… that one is hysterical though.

  214. 214 botto said at 12:51 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    call me the inflator then, and chocolate chip cookies are the needle

  215. 215 Joe Minx said at 1:51 PM on May 14th, 2015:

  216. 216 Mitchell said at 2:29 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    This is gonna give me a seizure, holy cow.

  217. 217 Joe Minx said at 6:01 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Yeah, I see it was a bit much now.

  218. 218 Mitchell said at 7:16 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    It’s still pretty neat. It just also happens to be seizure worthy. No problems.

  219. 219 GEAGLE said at 1:51 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    I’ll have a Patent on the “deflator diet” by morning.. With McNally as the face of my product… Do a before and after comercial with fat slob McNally as the “before” and Naked Gronk playing with a kitten as the “After”

  220. 220 A_T_G said at 4:01 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    We have some pretty outside-the-box thinkers around here. Yet, I am pretty confident if we had a contest to create the most absurd response the Pats could make, we would have fallen short of this mark.

    Plus, there is the subtext of telling the guy who quietly cheated for them for an unknown length of time, “Yes, we forever tainted your name, and you are now unemployed, but don’t forget: you are also fat.”

  221. 221 jpate said at 4:18 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    I’m thinking he got a big check or he would be sitting at ESPN right now dishing out the details. Not like he was a big brady fan anyways..

  222. 222 Insomniac said at 5:21 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Maybe he’s deflating his breast implants? that too outside?

  223. 223 botto said at 5:41 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    aww man atg that was funny… “you are also fat”. classic

  224. 224 ICDogg said at 4:16 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    So the appeal has just been filed

  225. 225 GermanEagle said at 4:18 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    …which will mean the Cowboys will face a feisty Brady.

  226. 226 Fufina said at 4:25 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    I don’t really see what basis Brady has for a reduction in punishment since there is very little precedent in this case. Think 4 games was a clever ban length since they can compare it to performance enhancing drugs. You tried to gain an illegal advantage over competition however big or small and this is consistent. Also you only need to show it was ‘more probable than not’ which is not a particularly high burden of proof, and considering everything i have read/seen the NFL should reach.

  227. 227 HawaiianEagle said at 4:38 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    So I’m a little confused… Kraft initially said the Pats would accept whatever ruling/discipline the NFL came up with. later recanted and said ‘well, this is real harsh’ so they now are not willing to accept. And certainly now that the report/discipline is centered around Brady they CERTAINLY do not agree with either. That about right?
    So, if that is correct – in their minds it was a minor thing that Brady had no involvement with?
    At least we’re not talking about Mariota any more…

  228. 228 Fufina said at 4:49 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Well my understanding is there is no real easy pathway for a the team to appeal. They either have to take it or work through a legal process than can take years. Thats why they have done this ‘rebuttal’ but have not made an appeal.

    Obviously the individual player can appeal the suspension but i fail to see what obvious basis Brady has. The recent cases have centred on consistency (or lack of) with the punishments being handed out – but there is no similar case Brady can compare it to so the assumption that it will be halved in appeal does not make much sense. It will either stand fully or get cancelled out… i mean what would a 2 game suspension reduction mean? he is semi guilty? there is a lack of evidence… would be nonsense.

  229. 229 ACViking said at 6:49 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    “Well my understanding is there is no real easy pathway for a the team to appeal.”


    A team’s “appeal” would be heard by the commissioner — in accordance with the membership agreement signed by all owners.

    But — as Al Davis proved — an owner may go to court to challenge the NFL’s action on anti-trust grounds, if in fact the dispute concerns collective action by the other 31 owners.

    Potentially, a breach-of-contract challenge could be brought. But I don’t see Kraft opening that Pandora’s Box.

  230. 230 ACViking said at 6:44 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    “I don’t really see what basis Brady has for a reduction in punishment since there is very little precedent in this case.”

    There’s two principal issues:

    1. Does the evidence show the footballs used in the AFC title game were in fact purposefully under-inflated through illicit means?

    2. Did Brady, by not disclosing the contents of his cell phone, violate a league rule that governs player conduct — and, if so, what’s a reasonable punishment?

    #1 seems the most susceptible to a successful challenge.

    Note: See post about Nobel Prize winning chemist who says the Wells Report’s conclusions are unreliable.


    The initial question is whether Brady acted “reasonably” within the meaning of the league rules and whatever CBA provisions apply.

    Even if he didn’t, the next question is whether the punishment is rational and in line with prior NFL sanctions for rules violations.

    Note: Two teams earlier this season were caught warming kicking balls during a game but incurred no penalty. And there may be other instances — not publicly known — of teams or players playing “ball games” without any consequence.

    If so, that would be something an *indpendent* arbitrator — or judge, if the matters reaches federal court — would want to know.

  231. 231 unhinged said at 5:21 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Every owner of an NFL franchise including Kraft knows that the adoption of lawyerly jargon in defense of a punishment meted out by the league is as misplaced as it is laughable. The rules of the NFL are not embedded in the U.S. Constitution, and the very act of defying an effort to investigate a rule violation is about as tasteless and myopic as it gets. It is akin to hitting a referee and refusing to leave the field, or moving the ball a yard forward after the linesman establishes the new line of scrimmage, and then arguing about it. I have read and heard sports analysts bring up the “slippery slope” of injustice, and the “complete absence of concrete evidence ” and the fact that there is “no smoking gun” How do they not get this? Brady and Kraft told Wells to fuck off, and they expect the league to back down? Really? What will be next? The KFL (Kraft Football League), where NE writes the rules as they go?

  232. 232 Fufina said at 5:30 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Crazy thing is – the league would have loved this to go away, a finding of well they were a little low pressure but we have no evidence of any wrong doing specifically in this case would have been the ideal outcome. The idea that the investigator went in trying to stir up trouble is insane.

    I honestly would turn around as the league and sanction the Patriots again – the rules are very clear – teams cannot and are not allowed to stand up to the league on these issues – they have to accept the findings and take the punishment. The fact that they have released this ‘rebuttal’ publicly without giving it to the league first shows it is simply a PR smokescreen and i would throw it back at them.

  233. 233 Bert's Bells said at 6:01 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Is the team appealing the sanctions or is it only Brady?

    Brady has the right to appeal under the CBA, I have no idea what the rules are about team appeals. I don’t remember the Saints, Redskins or Falcons appealing their recent penalties (but maybe they did).

  234. 234 HawaiianEagle said at 6:02 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    The entire situation is not very appealing…

  235. 235 Bert's Bells said at 6:07 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Unless you’d like to have Brady suspended.

  236. 236 HawaiianEagle said at 6:13 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    I don’t really care either way. If anyone should shoulder the responsibility for a team infraction it should be the coach (ala Sean Payton).

  237. 237 ACViking said at 6:33 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    “I honestly would turn around as the league and sanction the Patriots again”

    Al Davis took the NFL to court and kicked their collective asses.

    Other owners may feel differently.

  238. 238 Greg Richards said at 5:41 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Joe Banner made a good point on twitter. Basically that if NE actually was going to sue the NFL there would be no way that they’d put out their legal strategy and rationale in a public forum before it was adjudicated. Thus, the Patriots arguing the Wells’ report on their website is simply a public relations move and indicates they don’t plan on challenging the NFL’s rulings in court.

  239. 239 ACViking said at 6:18 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    If Banner says the Patriots won’t go to court, then — given his experience — there’s probably little doubt he’s right.

    Brady, on the other hand, does not have the same agenda as Kraft. No downside for him challenging the process, the substance, and the outcome.

  240. 240 ACViking said at 6:28 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    “the adoption of lawyerly jargon in defense of a punishment meted out by the league is as misplaced as it is laughable”

    The NFL’s decision was based on a lawyer’s document constituted by a lawyer’s analysis based on a legal standard.

    Seems, if you’re going to keep it “apples to apples,” someone attacking the perceived deficiencies in a lawyer’s report would use a lawyer’s methodology.

    The problem (from whatever side one may see the report) is that non-lawyers have taken the contents of a lawyer’s document and treated the conclusions as though they’re immutable facts.

    That includes the scientific conclusions, which — regardless of what the report says (since you’d except the author to be writing as an advocate for a point of view) — depended on a assumptions based on a lawyer’s findings of fact.

    In any event, Brady’s decision — without the NFLPA’s advice — not to go “open kimono” remains the problem for me.

  241. 241 unhinged said at 8:28 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Yeah, I agree with your point, and I wasn’t casting aspersions on any lawyer, Wells or the Patriots’ attorney. My problem is the expectation that has been argued by the likes of Jesse Palmer and Dan Wetzel, to name a couple, that there is a legal burden of proof that casts the NFL as a stand-in for the state. Kraft is in the NFL “family”and all he has to do is tell Tom that he doesn’t have a choice, and instead he enables Tom’s defiance, which really looks incriminating. And the NFL really needs no more than that appearance of impropriety. It strikes at the lifeblood of the league, and I don’t believe that the NFLPA would disagree. Thanks for clarifying my rant.

  242. 242 Sean Stott said at 6:06 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Anyone else sick to their stomach when thinking about the 3 first-rounders the Cowboys drafted?

    Why did we pass on Randy Gregory again?

  243. 243 HawaiianEagle said at 6:10 PM on May 14th, 2015:


  244. 244 Bert's Bells said at 7:04 PM on May 14th, 2015:


  245. 245 76mustang said at 6:21 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Said this below, but bears repeating:

    Chip’s team building strategies:

    culture > scheme
    preparation > talent

    should provide some consistency in their drafting results. When you virtually eliminate off-field distractions and me-first personalities from all that goes into the processes players go through in building a team, you increase the probability of success.

    Ultimately, I view Chip’s team building approach as an exercise akin to building special forces units in the military, where the psychological makeup of the individual is >= the talent and potential of that individual.

    This year’s training camp is going to have the best competitions to date in Chip’s tenure. Can’t wait…

  246. 246 Sean Stott said at 6:24 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    How does the culture > scheme fit with a player like Riley Cooper, who has no talent, and has terrible cultural fit, what with using the N-word publicly on a team with a majority of black people?

  247. 247 peteike said at 6:51 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    He was given a large contract after a decent season, scored a bunch of TDs, then he stunk the following year. They cant just dump him now or its a complete loss, thats why hes still here. They thought other players were better than Gregory as did a lot of other teams and maybe they are right. No guarantee hes any good just per projections. Some knocks are hes a bit light and needs to add muscle. Also that he failed a drug test knowing it was coming.

  248. 248 Sean Stott said at 7:02 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    They gave cooper the contract long after he threatened to fight every single black person within the radius of a concert venue.

  249. 249 botto said at 7:04 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    good thing it was a Kenny Chesney concert.

  250. 250 Sean Stott said at 7:06 PM on May 14th, 2015:


  251. 251 MagLikesDraft said at 7:13 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Old news.

  252. 252 Mitchell said at 7:13 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    I don’t get it either but they were kinda desperate for a receiver and didn’t know how well Mac would come off his ACL. They saw how well Cooper did the year before and thought they had to have him I guess. Idk who the he’ll have him that contract though. He’s gone next year for sure.

  253. 253 GEAGLE said at 8:03 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Coop also cashed in on having great chemistry with our developing young QB… Lol trade His ass to the Rams…

  254. 254 76mustang said at 8:19 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    I’ve never heard any coaches or players question Cooper’s work ethic or his willingness to do what is asked of him, nor have I heard complaints about his behavior in the locker room or with/around other teammates.

    Make no mistake, Cooper’s will/resolve/abilities will be tested in training camp and he will either be found worthy or sent his way.

    You’re mistaking the use of culture as it relates to a group of football players vs a race group.

  255. 255 OregonDucker said at 6:32 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    You got it 76mustang, just don’t post “it” on a competitor’s web site. This is the “Chip Way”. (And the special forces comment is great insight.)

    But there will always be contracts, union considerations and league rules that may complicate things. Coop right now is a complication but his time will come. (Hopefully, somewhere else.)

  256. 256 GEAGLE said at 6:26 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Not really… I like Byron Jones, no more or less then Rowe,!f Byron is a first rounder so is Rowe as far as I’m concerned.
    I want nothing to do with Gregory, I could have seen a case for taking a flier on Shane Rays talent. gregory is worthless until he is strong enough to play the run and I don’t trust him in a meeting room with Greg Hardy and Demarcus Lawrence… But yes, I’m jealous of getting Lael Collins, that I can’t deny…
    Rather have Rowe/Agholor Instead of Jones/Gregory

  257. 257 Sean Stott said at 6:30 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Why did Gregory fall though?

  258. 258 OregonDucker said at 6:36 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    There are questions about Gregory’s strength and whether he can overcome a good OT. There is also the maturity consideration; specifically concerning his grass issues. He could be another Gordon.

  259. 259 Javi Echie said at 6:48 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Also showed up late to his Raiders interview and skipped out on multiple pre draft interviews.

  260. 260 Greg Richards said at 7:31 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Undersized and can’t maintain weight, positive marijuana test, mental issues including possibly being bi-polar. Now mind you I’m not criticizing anyone for being bi-polar, but from a team point-of-view there’s risk involved in bringing in someone with that issue or any other mental disorder.

  261. 261 Bert's Bells said at 7:03 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Is this like when Eagles got “three first rounders” in Bunkley, Justice and Jean-Gilles?

  262. 262 Avery Greene said at 7:10 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    No, we have a better coach and we still have a better team.

  263. 263 MagLikesDraft said at 7:11 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Because last year everybody and his brother was whining about the defensive secondary. Well, now you’ve got a whole bunch of new DBs.

  264. 264 Avery Greene said at 7:15 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    I think @ACViking:disqus could speak more to this, but the drafting of all the DBs reminds me of the year we drafted Sheppard/Brown. The previous year, Vincent got hurt in the playoffs and we didn’t have any depth behind him. So instead of putting in the backup, Reid left Vincent on the field. IMO the Rams got a lot of first downs to his side because he wasn’t 100%. That draft we used the 1st 3 or 4 picks on DBs (I forget the exact amount).

    We got a good secondary from that draft, and I’m hoping we get the same result from going after a few DBs in this draft.

  265. 265 Avi said at 11:29 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    i believe it was sheldon brown, micheal lewis, and lito sheppard in that draft if I’m correct

  266. 266 Jernst said at 12:26 AM on May 15th, 2015:

    2002 draft was amazing. Lito in the first, Michael Lewis and Sheldon Brown drafted back to back in round 2, and Westbrook in round 3.

  267. 267 Greg Richards said at 7:30 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Exactly what 3 1st rounders are we talking about. You can make an excuse for Collins but Gregory was drafted where he was for legitimate reasons. He’s not a 1st rounder.

  268. 268 EagleNebula said at 7:08 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    And now I have another reason to get pissed about the SB loss over 10 years ago:

  269. 269 OregonDucker said at 7:18 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Wow, good catch.

  270. 270 Baloophi said at 7:24 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Easier to do with a deflated ball.

  271. 271 Avery Greene said at 7:19 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    So there was a double-cheat? Video taping signals AND deflated balls?

  272. 272 OregonDucker said at 7:30 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    You wonder how many games since 2004 Brady insisted on deflated balls? Really, how big is this iceberg?

  273. 273 EagleNebula said at 8:30 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Apparently big enough for penguins (sorry, I couldn’t resist)

  274. 274 A_T_G said at 9:02 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    If only someone got confused and videotaped the balls being deflated.

    Maybe that is what was on the tapes that Goodell destroyed!

  275. 275 botto said at 7:52 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    poor giselle

  276. 276 GEAGLE said at 8:01 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Hoping Goodell gets fired and crusty Joe Banner is named the new commissioner.. owners think GOODELL made them money? Wait TIL they get a load of the cheapest, most Diabolical hater in the game, Joe banner….

  277. 277 RobNE said at 8:57 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Funny how below people say pats rebuttal is silly yet all pats fans are forwarding the reply around on FB with comments like “boom this tears apart the wells report”. I guess it is as expected.

  278. 278 HawaiianEagle said at 9:09 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Perspective is the great equalizer.

  279. 279 Greg Richards said at 9:14 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Pats fans are morons.

  280. 280 scratcherk said at 9:22 PM on May 14th, 2015:

    Here’s to hoping Tom gets one game back on his appeal and is back in time to destroy the Cowboys.

  281. 281 eagleyankfan said at 8:08 AM on May 15th, 2015:

    T-Law — welcome to ‘Blind Faith’ section of the Eagle fans. I, too, can’t wait to see the improvements….