Shepherd Down for the Year

Posted: August 10th, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 197 Comments »

JaCorey Shepherd impressed the Eagles coaching staff enough in the spring that they felt comfortable with trading Brandon Boykin. Unfortunately the Eagles will now be without both players.

The first issue is who will play the Nickel spot now. Shepherd didn’t have the job locked down, but he was the front-runner. Veteran E.J Biggers and second-year Eagle Jaylen Watkins are the most likely candidates. Watkins took over for Shepherd in Sunday’s practice session.

Watkins was a 4th round pick in 2014. The Eagles liked his versatility, overlooking his lack of college starts. He played in a crowded secondary at Florida and that limited his time as a starter. It also forced him to adapt to whatever role was open…CB or S or NB.

There was some thought that Watkins would compete for the starting FS spot and he did bulk up this offseason to get ready for that challenge. The coaches decided Walter Thurmond was a better fit there and Watkins bounced back and forth between CB and S. He now will focus on the Nickel spot.

Biggers has played the Nickel before so that gives him a bit of an advantage. Biggers is versatile, but has yet to find a spot where he can stand out.

Rookie Randall Evans spent most of his college career playing the slot so he is comfortable in that role. He’s adjusting to the NFL, but not nearly as quickly as Shepherd was.

The good news for Shepherd is that this happened early enough that he’s got a good shot to be back for the 2016 season.

A lot of people are now going to bring up the Boykin trade now. Many people were against it to start with and now that bandwagon will grow even bigger. Why trade him at all? Why trade him in early August?

There was logic to the Eagles thinking. That doesn’t mean you have to agree with it, but the plan did make sense. Boykin was heading into the final year of his contract. It was highly unlikely he was going to re-sign here so the Eagles had to balance the idea of keeping him for a final season with trading him for good value  The Eagles waited until the Steelers made an offer they felt was too good to pass up.

Boykin became expendable because the Eagles felt they had multiple players who could handle his role. They were especially high on Shepherd, who they felt could play right away. The Eagles could have held on to Boykin, but they wanted the practice reps to go to the players who would take over for him. If Boykin was on the team, he was going to be on the field and practicing with the 1’s.

The Eagles knew that trading Boykin would weaken the secondary this year. He is a proven commodity and good player. But trading him also brought value. It added a draft pick next April. And it cleared room for Boykin’s replacement to start plying right away. No one is saying the replacement would be the same level of player, but he could be good enough.

There were essentially three scenarios. Keep Boykin for 2015. Hold him until late in the preseason, just in case of injuries. Deal him right away. There were ups and downs to each scenario. The Eagles chose Option 3 and that has left them open for criticism. Should Watkins or Biggers prove to be an adequate replacement, that would silence most critics. If no player steps up and the Nickel spot is a year-long weak spot, the Boykin trade will be a regular source of criticism.


197 Comments on “Shepherd Down for the Year”

  1. 1 teltschikfakeout88 said at 1:12 PM on August 10th, 2015:


  2. 2 Paul said at 1:19 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    You’re really starting to lose me, Tommy.

    Eagles now have a huge depth issue at nickle back and it’s totally self-inflicted. Kelly didn’t like Boykin from day one despite being effective as a DB and STer. But instead of trading him at the 2015 draft — why not add a 4th/5th rounder this year? — he chose the worst possible time. Didn’t even check to see if Shepherd could play well in preseason games before making a trade. Just decided a conditional 4th round pick in 2016 was better than quality depth this year — Hello Sam Hinkie!

    Now the top candidate to replace Shepherd is a guy who couldn’t get on the field until last year’s final game even though the Eagles had one of the worst secondaries in the NFL.

    Stop carrying water for Kelly. You’re better than that. If all you’re gonna do is reflexively defend everything he does then there’s no point in visiting your site.

  3. 3 phillychuck said at 1:29 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Read the article–it’s not a comment, it’s an explanation. Anyone with half a brain can understand why Kelly/Eagles would do what they did. They had a decent nickel back (who underperformed in 2014) on a one-year deal who wanted to play outside corner. He didn’t fit the Eagles’ system, and the Eagles had an exciting, young option who needed reps. So they generated the reps and converted the veteran’s value into draft pick.

    Injuries happen in football–no one can see them coming, and teams can’t be 2 or 3 deep at every position with quality players.

    The net result of this is we probably see a lot more of Eric Rowe, and Maxwell or Carroll or Thurman line up in the slot on nickel.

    By the way, does anyone else here get upset with guys who comment here and essential take a dump in Tommy’s living room? Keep the criticism to yourselves–no one makes you read here.

  4. 4 Atvcar said at 1:31 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Needed reps??? But don’t we keep hearing with how the Eagles run practice there are plenty of reps regardless which unit a player is running with?
    So, which is it?

  5. 5 HarmsWay said at 2:44 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    I would venture to say that more importantly than practice reps, getting the young guys game reps is most important. You can’t replicate a game in practice no matter how hard you try. If Boykin was here and healthy, the young guys that would have taken over for Boykin next year would have more than likely got very little game action this year. You can’t foresee injuries like this, so I have no problem with them getting what they could for Boykin and letting the younger guys learning by playing in the games. The injury to Shepherd is unfortunate but you deal with it and move on.

  6. 6 Atvcar said at 1:32 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    So, the options now are… Playing a rookie outside at CB… Or Watkins, who was so bad last year he couldn’t get on the field for a historically bad secondary???

  7. 7 Atvcar said at 1:36 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Oh wait… There is also the option of moving Rowe to S… A position Billy Davis has said he isn’t comfortable moving Rowe to learn… And has not had any practice there yet.
    And the hits just keeeeep on coming

  8. 8 MattE said at 3:01 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Rowe played most of his snaps at safety before moving to corner his senior year….

  9. 9 MattE said at 3:02 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    very anecdotal evidence.

  10. 10 botto said at 5:12 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    I agree, tommy is a really good writer and fan.

  11. 11 Joe Minx said at 6:05 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    I’m as sick of the negativity I’m seeing as anyone else, but this is a public blog & as such everyone has the right to express their opinions. I wish they’d see things a little differently, but this would be a boring place if everyone agreed on everything all the time.

  12. 12 phillychuck said at 10:15 AM on August 11th, 2015:

    I’m not asking for agreement, I’m asking for people to be respectful. It’s not that hard to do, really. Just start by writing, “I understand your opinion, but I don’t agree with it and here is why…”. “you’re really starting to lose me” and “stop carrying the water for Kelly” are troll comments. And they’re insulting and possibly offensive to our host.

  13. 13 Michael Winter Cho said at 1:31 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    I have to agree that Tommy’s perspective seems to be veering to the Spadaro side of things. I get being a Chip fan and I get optimistic, but some of these narratives are approaching spin, in my humble opinion.

    Chip unloaded four NFL starters from last years’ squad. He replaced three of those starters with unproven prospects. While these were lower-tier starters, in real, non-Madden life, that actually still makes them better than almost all possible replacements.

    This year’s secondary was always going to be a crapshoot, a low-percentage gamble. No talent evaluator, not Ozzie, not Parcells, not Carroll, is better than _actual historical on-field NFL results_. You can’t replace a secondary with rooks and other teams’ leavings and expect competence. Only hope.

    And I do question this policy of shipping out proven talent for little return. Jaccpot, Mathis, Boykins, *Foles*–these guys proved they can play in this league.

    Ah well. Either Chip is a genius and it will all come together, or the pessimists are right and we’ll be looking at new coaches rather soon.

  14. 14 RobNE said at 1:33 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    you wanted someone to trade a pick for Mathis and take his contract? when he can’t even get the same contract now, without the pick included?

    Is Foles with an asterisk because you think he really isn’t that good?

  15. 15 Michael Winter Cho said at 2:16 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Who said anything about trading Mathis? How about actually playing him?

    I wrote the asterisks for emphasis, as in–yes, he really traded his starting QB for a busted 1st round pick with injury concerns who has never played as well as Foles in his life.

    Did you want to address the overall concern of unloading proven NFL talent for prospects?

  16. 16 LongDing said at 9:45 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    killed him

  17. 17 Atvcar said at 1:34 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    No, on the last point I agree with Tommy… Chip isn’t leaving anytime soon.

  18. 18 bluto said at 1:35 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    ‘Rather soon’

    Please define?

  19. 19 Michael Winter Cho said at 2:13 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Who knows?

  20. 20 Avery Greene said at 3:55 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Maxwell is an unknown/unproven prospect? Watkins was a starter in Miami and did decently there. I give you Thurmond, but lets not say the other two are unproven.

    Jaccpot had to go, he wasn’t giving CK what he needed. That’s easy to see. Mathis overplayed his hand, and now he’s going to pay for it with his bank account. Boykin? They got a 4th for a guy who was leaving anyway. Foles? Bradford is a *MUCH* better talent.

    The only things I’ve questioned so far (though not really in my control) is Herremans and Maclin. Herremans is old and Mac got priced out of our range. For everyone else there is a legitimate football decision.

  21. 21 Ankerstjernen said at 3:56 AM on August 11th, 2015:

    You need to disappear with those comments, dude. Write something clever in stead. I dare you.

  22. 22 teltschikfakeout88 said at 1:53 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    WOW…a fair and unbalanced post…smh….Tommy did not defend anything that Kelly did…he is just saying that there were a variety of decisions…all of which make sense and that all of the decisions had some downside to them…to be fair if Watkins can ball…your post becomes a moot point…if he can’t well Tommy addressed that as well in the final paragraph as being a source of criticism…using hindsight right now to make any sort of criticism is a bit premature…especially since we will never know if Shepherd was going to win the NB competition…lets wait till we see some pre-season action…at the end of the day we can find a veteran that gets cut if our guys don’t work out…I think we will find an adequate NB…I am more concerned about finding that gunner on the PR coverage team…that is a unique skill set that was a weapon for us in taking field position away from teams…

  23. 23 Mr. Magee said at 4:19 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    “… all of [Kelly’s decisions] make sense.” I think you’re proving Paul’s point.

  24. 24 teltschikfakeout88 said at 6:08 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    I think Paul’s point was that Tommy was carrying Kelly’s water and defending everything he does…at least that is how the final couple sentences come off in his post…In other words, this post was just a spin to divert any criticism of Kelly…that is not how I read Tommy’s post and I just disagree… Also I never stated that “all of [Kelly’s decisions] make sense”…I see that you have taken some artistic license to my comment…let me clear something up…how I read the article is that there were several scenarios or decisions to be made regarding the trading of Boykin…all of which have positive and negatives for the upcoming season…Kelly chose one that at this point does not look too good…I think the article, specifically the last paragraph, gives equal credence to anyone having criticism or those that want to believe that “drinking the Kool-Aid” is fine…I don’t think Tommy is covering for anyone except to provide some thoughts on how to look at the current situation from multiple angles…Lastly, a platoon of Watkins, Thurmond and Biggers could ball out or at least be adequate for the upcoming year…if that bears out, no one will care about the boykin trade…we will just salivate over an extra fifth rounder that we can use to trade up into the 4th round to get a stud OL that falls in the 2016 draft or whatever crazy dream that we Eagles fans have…as you know the best thing that Eagles fans do is wringing our hands and dreaming of next year…

  25. 25 Sconces said at 2:23 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    1. Clearly Davis favored continuity over talent last season, and he admitted himself not playing Carroll was a mistake

    2. You’re an idiot if you think Shepherd was the sole decision for trading Boykin. A 6th round rookie….really? We have a lot of options still and at the end of the day we’re talking about a position that sees the field 25% of a football game at best. If the last two seasons indicate anything it’s that our safeties will be covering slot receivers more than anything. So chill out.

  26. 26 teltschikfakeout88 said at 6:12 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Boykin actually played in about 50% of the defensive snaps per some article I read….but I get your point…we can platoon the position with Thurmand, Watkins and maybe Biggers…still a lot of competition to play out even with Shepherd out for the year…only Eagles fans can salivate over either losing Boykin or a 6th round NB as being the end of our season…

  27. 27 Sconces said at 6:18 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    I’m talking about 25% of the game, not just defense

  28. 28 teltschikfakeout88 said at 6:26 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    so are you saying that 25% of a game is equal to 50% on defense…If you throw in ST’s I think he plays more than 25% of a game…but nonetheless get your point..

  29. 29 MattE said at 3:00 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Chip is not looking for individual talent, he wants a collective effort.

  30. 30 FairOaks said at 3:42 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    They liked Boykin a lot — as a slot corner. They were probably going to lose him after this year for nothing. I’m guessing they were trying to trade him at draft time, but may not have gotten an offer they liked enough (if offered a 6th or 7th, it’s better to just keep Boykin really). Or maybe he was a possible chip in a Mariota trade. I believe Pittsburgh had a DB go down with a non-football injury so they were suddenly desperate, and maybe upped their offer to something that Kelly thought was good enough to risk not having Boykin this year. It definitely made us worse on the field this year, no question, but it might make us much better next year (the replacement(s) will get a lot of experience this year). At the moment, it looks like that decision has turned out horribly for this season, but it may also mean a deserving guy we didn’t expect (say Rice) can make the team and contribute. We will see how it goes. … the result of the wager is not yet known. If he knew Shepherd was going to go down he probably would have kept Boykin, but, that is true of any player you decide to let go. If Maxwell goes down maybe we should have just kept Cary Williams, etc.

  31. 31 LongDing said at 9:52 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Lose him after this year for nothing???/ How about use him to play? THis is ridisculous. It as a 5th round pick. In all cases except Trent COle a freaking bust

  32. 32 FairOaks said at 3:31 AM on August 11th, 2015:

    Probably a 4th. It was a bit of a gamble… be a bit worse this year, and be better next year (by keeping another young player on this year’s roster, plus getting someone experience, plus the draft pick, as opposed to having none of that next year but better this year provided Boykin wasn’t a malcontent and cause issues). Yes, I know many fans could care less about future years. I can understand not liking it, but we don’t know how it will turn out. I’m ambivalent about it — I like Boykin a lot. Seems like a lot of years there is a run of injuries at one position no matter how much depth you have (last year OL and ILB). Just hope it doesn’t get worse.

  33. 33 Buge Halls said at 4:03 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    If you’re not going to read the article, there really is no point you being here.

  34. 34 xmbk said at 8:58 AM on August 11th, 2015:

    Kind of silly that if someone doesn’t understand Kelly, they reflexively accuse those who do. The team didn’t rate Boykin as highly as fans and media (myself included). Let’s see the team on the field before tossing in the towel.

  35. 35 Atvcar said at 1:29 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Tommy… Come on. Isn’t winning now more important then what may or may not have happened next year? Is sacrificing a potential year for a 5th round pick an offer too good to pass up?
    The trade made the team immediately weaker in an area that was already the weakest on the team… This injury just compounded the mistake and deserves crisitsm.
    Not for nothin, but size, weight, speed don’t seem to matter as long as the guy doesn’t say the wrong thing… Chip’s hubris just got this team bit in the arse.

  36. 36 MattE said at 2:45 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    ….but I am pretty sure the whole team is “wait and see” mode… I am sure your coaching/GM prowess is off the charts, but not even the best football minds could predict what this team will do this season, for me I will want contention next year after the dust settles on the new acquisitions.

  37. 37 Avery Greene said at 3:58 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    I think so yes, especially if he was leaving at the end of the year. Why not get someone else there now and get some compensation?

  38. 38 bluto said at 1:35 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Don’t get this. The staff didn’t like Boykin. The deal was very good (for the ninnies who wanted more, I’m sure the Eagles wanted more too!) and they felt it wasn’t going to get better.

    There’s some commenter who said they should have taken a fourth or fifth in the recently concluded draft, OBVIOUSLY THEY DIDN’T GET THAT OFFER!

  39. 39 Atvcar said at 1:39 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Then don’t take a bad deal just to get “something”… He was insurance for a young new secondary… And the best gunner in the league!
    Two units depleted for a pick that could be worse then where he was first drafted and unproven. He’s proven to be a good NFL player.

  40. 40 TypicalDouche said at 1:44 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    He was not going to resign here next year so yes the deal was good regardless. Freak incident with Sheperd so in hindsight it looks like the Eags should of kept Boykin but at the time it was good deal.

  41. 41 Atvcar said at 1:46 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    I disagree… Worry about next year next year… I prefer to win this year. Not like we traded a guy from an area of wealth and depth…

  42. 42 TypicalDouche said at 1:48 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Boykin was not the final piece to a SB run sorry to tell you friend. I don’t see trading him as the difference between a 12 win season or a 10 win season. He played less then half the defensive stats yet you are making it out to be something else. Now if Cox or Maxwell or Kiko couldn’t suit up then you worry but you are overstating the importance of the slot CB that played so little. Don’t get me wrong I like Boykin a lot but you are overvaluing his presence in the lineup and with the team.

  43. 43 Atvcar said at 1:50 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Well friend, you seem to also be forgetting his importance to ST as the best gunner in the league, a unit which by my account did win us some games last year.
    Paint it anyway you want… But the day we made the trade the team was not as good. True or false. I already know the answer… Will you admit it is the question?

  44. 44 TypicalDouche said at 1:54 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    And you are forgetting who the catalyst for such a great special teams unit was and that’s David Fipp. With the importance Chip puts towards special teams this unit will be once again the best in the league.

    Once again like I said the Eagles were clearly confident in Sheperd to trade Boykin so it was a fine decision but using hindsight since Sheperd got hurt then the trade shouldn’t of happened but you cant use hindsight because freak injuries occur in the NFL everyday. No the team isn’t better now that both Sheperd and Boykin are gone but I do think they will be fine.

  45. 45 Atvcar said at 1:55 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Not what I asked… And Flipp can’t just plug in you or I and have the same results… It takes talent.
    We have less talent and that was BEFORE the injury.

  46. 46 TypicalDouche said at 1:57 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Most special teams players are UDFAs or scrubs from the streets at times so yes he can plug people to be a gunner. Hell he even had his starting corners do it at times.

  47. 47 Atvcar said at 1:59 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    He has no choice but to plug someone in…the point is, there is a very good chance that somebody will not be as good at it as Boykin was…

  48. 48 MattE said at 2:43 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    ever hear of Vince Papale? Come On Man!

  49. 49 Avery Greene said at 4:00 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    But the rest of the unit is good, and we don’t know that someone else won’t be as good at it without any game tape.

  50. 50 MattE said at 2:42 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Fipp (sp.)

  51. 51 Atvcar said at 1:43 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Another point not being addressed…. What does the dime unit look like now? Can they use that 4th round pick they got for Boykin this year???

  52. 52 TypicalDouche said at 1:46 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    The eagles want to primarily stay in there base 3-4 defensive alignment which is one of the main reasons they are stick with Thurmond at the other safety so the 3-4 will also be a hybrid nickel at times with the safety covering the slot. I doubt we see too much dime this year and if we do I am sure Rowe will be in there and possibly Rice if he continues to impress the coaches.

  53. 53 Atvcar said at 1:48 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    If they are playing Rice or Rowe it will be outside and Carroll moves back inside with Watkins.
    So, now the dime looks like:
    Maxwell and Rowe at CB
    Watkins and Carroll at slot
    Thurmond and Jenkins at safety.
    That is IMO worse then what we trotted out there last year… Again, one of the worst secondary’s in the history of the game.

  54. 54 TypicalDouche said at 1:51 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Well your opinion is pointless right now until we actually see them face some real competition. Maxwell is better then both Williams and Fletcher were. Nate Allen was a disaster in coverage and I see Thurmond superior in that role being that Eagles want there safeties to be able to cover. Rowe has so much upside that if he reaches half of it in his 1st year then that would be excellent. So your opinion this secondary is worst yet to others its the opposite and to the decision makers that actually have say in it ala Chip he thinks he improved it as well.

  55. 55 Atvcar said at 1:54 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Well, my opinion is no more or less pointless then your own… How can you say Thurmond who’s never played the position and can’t stay healthy is an upgrade? You can’t possibly know that and I sure don’t belive it. Could he? Sure. Is he? Not yet.

  56. 56 TypicalDouche said at 1:56 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    I get what you’re saying but you have to look at scheme as well. Thrumond a former corner can cover better then Allen which is what Chip wants out of his safeties. Allen has been terrible especially in coverage so yes I do think Thurmond is better in that regards, As to will he be better overall I can only hope so.

  57. 57 Atvcar said at 1:56 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Well, yeh I sure hope so too lol

  58. 58 MattE said at 2:37 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    what percentage of the time do you think we will be in dime?

  59. 59 anon said at 2:48 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Never if our ILBs are healthy.

  60. 60 MattE said at 3:03 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    if we are in dime that little then the defensive theory is working lol

  61. 61 MattE said at 2:35 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    they could, if they trade for someone else (hypothetical)

  62. 62 Bert's Bells said at 1:49 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    I like Boykin and understand the trade even though I don’t like it.

    On the flip side, if he tore his ACL last night (thankfully he didn’t and let’s hope he stays healthy), people would be saying how smart it was to trade him.

    Injuries happen.

  63. 63 Atvcar said at 1:52 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    No, it want smart regardless of how he plays… But let me ask you if he goes to the pro bowl with 10 INT’s will you say the same thing? Would a 4th rounder be enough?
    Hypotheticals don’t work. The trade did weaken this team in an area that couldn’t afford to get worse.

  64. 64 Will:↑↑↓↓←→←→BA said at 1:57 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Want he does in Pitt isn’t necessarily what he would have done here. He will likely start in Pitt while he would have played 40% of the snaps here.

  65. 65 TypicalDouche said at 1:58 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    They also play a zone defense as compared to the Eagles press man scheme so you are right.

  66. 66 Bert's Bells said at 1:57 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Yes, I’ll still be saying that I understand the reasoning behind the trade but didn’t like it.

    Also funny that you say “hypotheticals don’t work” and then throw in the 10 INT hypothetical.

  67. 67 Atvcar said at 2:00 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    I answered your hypothetical with my own… To show you why it doesn’t work… Capeesh?

  68. 68 Bert's Bells said at 2:07 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    But I WOULD still say the same thing under your hypothetical.

    Not to speak for Mr. Lawlor, but I think that’s similar to his position. “Hey, we all wanted to see Boykin here -but the coaches didn’t think he was a fit so they got the best value for him while they could!”

    All of the injuries and Pro Bowls in the world don’t make a difference.

  69. 69 MattE said at 2:33 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    if he goes top the pro-bowl with 10 INT’s then he is getting a contract like Maxwell…. so we would still be paying for talent either way…. this defense’s success will be predicated on the pass rush getting home so the press-man coverage is just to eliminate those quick throws that kill a defense like ours against Rodgers/Brady/Brees/Manning…. how do you beat those guys? You have to move them off the mark and disrupt timing. I don’t need 10 picks from our CB’s we need physical guys to throw timing off pick-routes…. that my friend is no hypothetical.

  70. 70 LongDing said at 9:54 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    the trade made ZERO sense

  71. 71 Atvcar said at 1:57 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Nice chatting with you guys… GO EAGLES!

  72. 72 A_T_G said at 5:10 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Reading through the comments, I am struck how you took a lot of the same positions, and debated with a lot of the same people, as a troll that was in the previous thread just a few hours ago.

    You, however, presented your points in a civil tone, and came from a position where you acknowledge the other side has valid points.

    The conversation got so much further and was much more productive. I hope the previous commenter returns and learns from your example.

  73. 73 GEAGLE said at 2:09 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    The question isn’t can Boykin play outside for us…. The real question was is Boykin so good that we should have switched our schemes to accommodate Boykin playing outside?…. And for me the answer to that is NO!!! I’d rather play our press scheme on the outside, then to switch to cover 2/zone schemes so that boykin can play outside for us..
    I much rather have our press scheme, with tall, long, outside corners that want to get physicak at the Line of scrimmage… No one that plays press is ever going to value boykin much.. His little ass would get tossed out of bounds if he tried to press a Reciever like Dez…

    Personally, I said That I would have rather kept boykin on the bench for depth and lose him to free agency at the end of the year, rather then take the 4th Ed luck for him now…..But now that he is gone, people are getting too carried away with the JaCorey injury..
    Sorry, but there is no way in the world that our coaches decided that JaCorey would start soley based on our OTAs, which is essentially what you are saying if you think it’s already beem decided that JaCorey would start… NEWSFLASH a NO ROOKIES win starting jobs offf of OTAs… Coaches needed to see training camp, and preseason performamces before they could decide if Shep, Jaylen or Biggers would start for us in September.
    I was excited about JaCorey like Everypne else, but people can’t act like he was the only reason we traded Boykin and that we just lost our starting Nickel… The offseason and Pressason play was going to decide who the nickel corner would be in September and its silly to assume that JaCorey was going to drastically out olay Jaylen in the preseason… For all we know, after the preseason jaylen and Boggers could both be ahead of JaCorey in which case his injury would be No big deal….. If we saw that JaCiorey was completely outclassing Jaylen and Biggers in the Preseason, then it Hurts to lose JaCorey.
    But to act like Shep getting injured is the end of the world after 3 training camp practices is just silly…If the Eagles never mentioned Sheps name after the boykin trade, no one would even care right now..
    If we can’t overcome the loss of a 6th round rookie, we don’t deserve to succeed..

  74. 74 Bert's Bells said at 2:14 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    There’s legitimate questions about the effectiveness of physical/press corners in the current NFL. If a receiver gets a free release, that physicality isn’t going to help.

    That said, this is the scheme the Eagles are going with and they need the players they think can execute it.

  75. 75 GEAGLE said at 2:21 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Allegedly, the Dolphins was to sign Mathis for less then Half of the 5.5 he scoffed at that we were scheduled to pay him..LOL.. Now mathis and his agent shift their focus to trying to get that 5.5 he was scheduled to make from us,
    Idiot played chicken with Chip Kelly, scoffed and spit on his $5.5mil dollar Eagles contract, now he has already missed a week of camp, he still doesn’t have a team, and him and his agent have to pray to get the 5.5 that he was scheduled to make in Philly….. What an asshole. I can’t think of too many players were screwed so badly by their agent… This clown spit on playing a year at almost 6million dollars.. Now teams are trying to lowball him into playing for 2mil..LOL Idiot could have played next to Jason peters on a team trying to contend for 6milliom dollars and it wasn’t good enough for him.. .good luck with that Mathis, I feel bad for his wife and kid that have to take this financial loss cuz of his greed…. He was Nothing before be came to Philly, and life outside of philly ISNT so kind to him these days…

    Tomorrow airs the first episode of new Season of Hard Knocka.. Can’t wait, the first episode will include the Big team Brawl between Texans and Skins… Dirty Redskins can’t even have a joint practice knowing how to act… It’s very Embarressing for a Head coach to have a joint practice and he can’t keep his players behaving right…, chip Kelly would cut half our team if they acted like that after getting such a valuable opportunity to practice against another team… jay Gruden and Bill Obrien disgraced themselves…. Our division rival might as well not try and copy our Joint Practices if they don’t know how to act… What a waste of a valuable opportunity by the dumb skins organization

  76. 76 MattE said at 2:28 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    We get Mathis back for $3mill HA! Every amateur agent in the country could have called this happening to Mathis because the grass is not always greener…. funny cause you know Mathis is NOT Rosenhaus’ biggest client, a guy like that has so many big names I don’t think a guard would have his full attention (even if it was one of the highest profile guards in the league in terms of money). I am sure Mathis/Rosenhaus overestimated Drew’s bargaining power/clout just by sake of having the names Mathis/Rosenhaus attached. Best Agent + Best Guard = How Can We Lose? HAHAHAHHA.

  77. 77 botto said at 2:33 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    is ti really impossible for us to resign the guy?
    is it just bad business/sportsmanship? do the coaches just really not like him now because he didn’t show up at OTA’s? we can’t go back?

  78. 78 anon said at 2:34 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    lots of egos, I don’t see CK resigning him.

  79. 79 botto said at 2:35 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    me either, yes ego is the right word.

  80. 80 anon said at 2:33 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    I think they were just a casualty in the transition between Howie and Chip — Howie played a game, chip doesn’t, I don’t think there was really anything Mathis could do. Though he should have showed to voluntary workouts if he was worried.
    The other thing to consider is that Mathis is old, maybe playing isn’t worth it to him for anything less than $5m.

  81. 81 botto said at 2:34 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    imagine that at 34? nah its not worth it for less then 5 million…he’s got 2 years left don’t you think?

  82. 82 GEAGLE said at 3:06 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Yeah they clearly lost their damn minds and let their egos get the best of them…. Lol what’s really funny is they even turned down the raise we offered him, then they asked to put that offer back on the table, now they are trying to get the 5.5 they scoffed at back…lol just pathetic.. Stop backtracking like this, you look pathetic lol.. Idiots
    All THIS MESS is because he was so unhappy with playing for 5.5mil, now they are desperate to get that 6mil back..smh…. What an EPIC loss
    This dude could have been part of an elite OL, playong next to JPs, blocking for Bradford and Murray, on a team that should contend, while almost making 6mil this year at the age of 34, not to mention you get to play in a big city where Football matters more then everywhere else in the country,,,… I’m sorry, but you are a fucking idiot if you pissed all that away….
    Now you have 2nd tier franchises, in a city like miami whete fans don’t even care, offering you less then Haf of the deal we offered you that you pissed away… GREED can really bite you in the Ass!
    I bet if we called Mathis today. Amd offered him 4mil, he would walk all the way to Philly to sigm that comtract if we had to, and we get to save 1.5mil… Instead Mathis burned his bridge and now chip won’t even consider him..
    How long can he continue to scoff at contract offers and continue to play Chicken with NFL teams? We are at the preseason now, better hurry up and find a team..
    basically it’s going to end in 2 ways:
    1) Mathis completely Fucks himself, swallows his pride and Plays for 2mil this year, almost a 3rd of what he would have made here..
    2) Or he continues to scoff at the contract offers, and continues this game of chicken into the season…

    Evan Mathis is 34yrs old…. Can he really afford to let the season begin with him still a free agent? He doesn’t have much time left to earn money to begin with, now he is costing himself millipns and millions…. mathis and Rosenhause really screwed him over…..
    I wouldn’t mind the Eagles bringing him back for $2.75mil. Half of the contract he didn’t want to honor with us… I wouldn’t want to pay him a penny more then half of the 5.5 after putting us thru all this drama… But im not sure the Eagles would welcome him back even at 2mil salary. I don’t think there is anything Mathis can do, to make the Eagles give him a 2nd chance…
    “play with the Eagle, you get the Beak!!!!… I hate Mahis, and that scumbag agent after bringing all this drama for no damn reason. Everyone loses because of Mathis Greed and Ego, so fuck you Mathis.. I will root for FOles, Brandon Boykin, Maclin…. But I have NO iLOVE for this greedy delusional imbecile who wasn’t even valued as a starter before he came to philly

  83. 83 Avery Greene said at 4:10 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Problem with that is the other players in the locker room. They bring him back, what message does that send?

  84. 84 MattE said at 2:44 PM on August 11th, 2015:

    i am starting to lean on this being Rosenhaus’ fault because it is his job to know his clients market value and now all he can sell Mathis on is that he has “less football miles” on him at the age of 34….if mathis was on a team by training camp with maybe a little more security but smaller cap number then rosenhaus did his job, he did not and Mathis should be firing his ass.

  85. 85 Mr. Magee said at 4:25 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Couldn’t agree more about Mathis… let all idiots be served notice

  86. 86 ACViking said at 6:37 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    What an a**hole. I can’t think of too many players were screwed so badly by their agent.

    This assumption’s been making the rounds since OTAs.

    Maybe Rosenhaus told Mathis not to hold out.

    Maybe Mathis — in the NFL for 10 years — told his agent what to do, and his agent did it because that’s what agents do.

    If Rosenhaus so badly botched Mathis’s career, why has Mathis not fired him?

    Maybe because Rosenhaus did not screw up. Mathis did.

    Not to say Rosenhaus isn’t 100 percent responsible. Just that Mathis’s decision not to fire him — at this point — seems to point in the other direction.

  87. 87 GEAGLE said at 2:42 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Personally, I think there is no reason jaylen Watkins can’t be as good as Boykin… I was happy we got Shepard, but I think people are Severly mistaken if they think that Rookie JaCorey who never played slot before was going to outclass Jaylen Watkins in his second season… even if JaCorey ended up beating out Jaylen for the starting Nickel, I doubt it would be by a big Margin..
    i think the fans got this stupid idea in their head that after only seeing OTAs, the coaches already decided that JaCorey was good enough to get rid of Boykin, and JaCorey was better then Jaylen Watkins… I call BULLSHIT!… I call the Eagles having NO CLUE who was going to end up replacing Boykin until we could evaluate training camp and preseason performances.. For all we know Jaylen Watkkns was going to beat out Shep, and losing Shepard to injury means we lost a backüp Nickel. Not the starter…
    The Eagles traded Boykin for a Combo of reasons:
    1) sounds like Steelers been trying to get Boykin for a while, and we turned them down a few times, until they eventually offered what would probably become a 4th rd pick…. I don’t believe it was a case of us dumping Boykin for whatever we could get… A 4th Rd pick is nice value for him
    2) we Probably lose Boykin to free agency at the end of the year. Not paying boykin increases the odds of us extendingCox, KEndricks, Curry,Thornton
    3) there is no way I believe that Boykin was traded because one rookie 6th round pick looked so good in OTA’ GET REAL. JaCorey didn’t have a single training camp practice before Boykin was traded and you can only seehow so much in flag football aka OTAs….. For them to be comfortable losing Boykin, I don’t believe it was a case of being impressed with 1 young player in OTAs.. I thni the Eagles had to like a couple of the players behind Boykin to make the trade…
    I really THNK people aren’t giving Jaylen Watkins enough credit. I expect serious improvements in year two… jaylen is a very intelligent football player who can handle playing all over the secondary… But If I had to pick one position I think Watkins could excel in, I would easily rather see him in the slot instead of outside or at safety.. Think fans are underestimating this kid way too much. He was faster then the Predraft process says…

    I would have bet on Watkins starting in September over JaCorey. We should be perfectly fine as long as Jaylen stays healthy….I’m not sure what to expect out of Biggers, hopefully he surprises us…. I doubt Denzel Rice will climb ahead of watkins on the depth chart this next month..
    Hopefully we are done with camp injuries, jaylen Watkins starts at Nickel in September. And his performance should be a pleasant surprise to Eagle Nation….
    Stop sleeping on Jaylen Watkins, kid can handle the slot well, and Boykin took hm under his wing last year…

  88. 88 Rockedupeaglesfan said at 3:44 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    “Personally, I think there is no reason jaylen Watkins can’t be as good as Boykin…”

    What have you seen that makes you think this?

  89. 89 Mr. Magee said at 4:27 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Have an upvote for reading all of that… Wow

  90. 90 Rockedupeaglesfan said at 4:28 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    How do you know I got past the first sentence?

  91. 91 Mr. Magee said at 4:30 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Have another upvote in hopes that you didn’t

  92. 92 GEAGLE said at 5:42 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    What have you seen to make you disagree?
    Some free advice: If you rule out every corner who doesn’t prove can play as a rookie, you probably won’t have enough corners to field a team..
    I wouldn’t bet against this high football IQ corner to show a big year 2 leap in play. you have to be pretty absurd to rule out a second year player at a position THATS so difficult for kids to play… Jaylen can play, hopefully Biggers has game too, but I have no idea what to expect from him…. Why would I be down on Jaylen when if it were up to me I would sit Eric ROWE and EVERY Rookie corner to ever play

  93. 93 Rockedupeaglesfan said at 9:29 AM on August 11th, 2015:

    Who said I counted out every rookie?

    The coaching staff showed no faith in Watkins. He was behind Boykin and likely the loser of Carroll or Rowe to play Nickel at the beginning of camp, not to mention he was losing reps to a 6th rd ROOKIE, plus a lot of people believe Thurmond will draw the primary slot coverage duties, which helped make Boykin expendable. So Watkins was around 5th in line to cover the slot a few days ago behind Thurmond, Boykin, Carroll/Rowe, and Shepard. Not much of an endorsement. The fact that they cross trained showed me they weren’t happy with what he was doing at CB since he’s gotten very few looks at S despite continued instability behind the first 2 there.

    And Biggers stinks. He’s a cast off from one of the worst secondaries. I hope he doesn’t make the team. And if he does it’s probably the death nail for Watkins making this team.

  94. 94 Rockedupeaglesfan said at 9:31 AM on August 11th, 2015:

    And why did you ninja edit/delete your other 2 replies to me? This manifesto was my favorite:


    What have you seen that makes you disagree?
    The fact that you didn’t see Jaylen Watkins light it up as a rookie is completely worthless. It means NOTHING.,, what Matters is that they take a big year two leap, amd he is not a kid I would feel comfortable betting against not being able to make that leap… He is a better athlete then people seem to give credit for and he is known for a very high football IQ! Proven because he could handle being moved all over the secondary at Florida out of neccessity.
    We have seen that rookie and first year players under chip spend their first year as an eagle focused on Learning 1 position. Then in years two and 3, the roles expand, they start moving players around the for,action and even cross train players at other positions… But coaches are adament about keeping rookies focused on learning 1 role…for example coaches have ROWE focused on outsidE corner and said that in the future we will worry about cross training him at other positions ..not counting Rare Occassions like Marcus smith having to move to ILB even tho he was raw and was struggling with OLB because injuries at ILB starter to pile up…. But in normal cases, players spend their rookie years learning 1 role. Chip and Billy have made that clear… Yet last year the coaches thought Jaylen had special enough Football IQ allowing him to practice at multiple positions as a rookie

    Going into the 2014 draft I thought Jaylen Watkins could be a young talent we could have interest in the range I called “The boykin zone” Aka 4th round, because of His skill, versatility and football IQ… If It felt that way about Jaylen going into last years draft, what has happened that should make me change my mind? Corner is one of the v ery hardest positipns to play As a rookie and he barely even Played.. if I was high on him going into the draft, what has happened that should make me think an Intelligent, hard working talent isn’t going to improve and make the big year 2 Leap?
    I feel like if Jaylen wasnt hurt at the combine and fans knew his true speed, they wouldn’t be so quick to write him off.
    truth is, in the future if we draft Corners in the first 4 rounds we can’t expect anything fron them as rookies, and if we rule out every corner that doesnt impress us as a rookie, we probably wouldn’t have enough players to field a secondary..,
    Boykin in year 3(2014) is SUPPOSED to be better then Jaylen in his rookie season(2014)….that means NOTHING.. Fans have way to quickily written jaylen Watkins off…. And if coaches didn’t start to mention JaCoreys name after the Boykin trade, the Majority of fans would have assumed Watkins would be next in line behind Boykin.
    A s versatile as Jaylen has been, I think he is best suited for slot corner in the NFL, so trading Boykin provides a great opportunity for watkins. I always liked Jaylen and im very excited to see what he can make out of this opportunity in the preseason… I assume that to trade Boykin, our coaches thought we had a few young players we thought worth grooming…
    jaylen Watkins instantly becomes one of the top 5 players to watch in the preseason..,I don’t doubt that JaCorey has been impressive at all.. But I do know that when Boykin was traded we had only seen Shep in shorts and a helmet with no contact.. There is no way a 6th round rookie earned a starting spot before ever putting on the pads. Especially when we have other Talent at his position… People are nuts.. We just spent a 4th round pick on Jaylen a year ago, he has a high football IQ but because fans didn’t see him play as a rookie, he is automatically not good enough right?
    There will be mistakes but I like the kid, very smart, hard working, sorrounded by quality veterans to learn from… I expect hm to make a quality year 2 leap and improve more and more as he gets experience under his belt.
    What’s kimd of interesting is If Jaylen wins the nickel role, he has experiwnce also playing Safety, and our Safety Thurmond. Has so much experience playing Nickel. We could even flip those two around on some 3rd downs to throw a different look at opponents..
    One of the greatest things about the defense we are building is the vision is to stockpile a secondary full of Tall, Long, athletic smart corners who are all versatile enough to be cross trained at multiple positions in the secondaries,. We have safeties that can move to corner if injuries pile up.. Outside corners Maxwell and Nolan can Both move into the slot… Thurmond and Jaylen can play every position in the secondary, ROWE can play outside corner and Safety.. Really Love the vision for THS secondary and the path its on.. I expect Jaylen Watkins to be a pleasant surprise and I expect to see a ton of secondary growth individual and as a unit, health permitting of course
    do NOT SLEEP on Jaylen Watkins! With that said, I have NO idea what to expect from EJ Biggers, or Denzel rice, but I doubt they will be able to beat out Watkins in year 2…
    one things certain, whether you were high on JaCorey or expected Watkins to step up and win the slot corner position our depth has taken a major hit and if we had slot corner depth, it’s gone NOW! jaylen Watkins NEEDS to stay healthy, if we lose him. That’s when I would worry..
    Although we do also have a few other options:
    1) Move Eric ROWE into the starting Lineup and move Nolan Carrol into the slot
    2) Move Earl Wolff or jerome Couplin into starting lineup and move Thurmond into the slot
    But Ideally I think Maxwell,Nolan, with Watkins in the slot is our best combo of corners to sta rt in Atlanta opening day..

  95. 95 MattE said at 2:46 PM on August 10th, 2015:


  96. 96 Cafone said at 3:12 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    I don’t see any depth at center either.

  97. 97 Avery Greene said at 4:05 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    I have to agree. But no team is stocked at every position, so I think not having C depth may hurt? But I think the G spot will be fine. Just need to see some game tape, but if Tobin starts, I’m fine with Moffitt/Bunche coming off the bench.

  98. 98 wee2424 said at 4:44 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    The large majority of the league does not have depth at C.

  99. 99 MattE said at 2:39 PM on August 11th, 2015:

    i’ll agree with you there and obviously the Walter Thurmond experiment.

  100. 100 CrackSammich said at 3:25 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Boykin got himself traded the second he made that “Just a Nickle” comment. The rest is just unfortunate timing.

  101. 101 CrackSammich said at 3:28 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    In fact, he probably improved his situation by making that comment. Smart man. His next contract has the chance to be significantly better than if he rotted on our bench this year.

  102. 102 GEAGLE said at 3:36 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    I like that our preseason games are against quality franchises that should contend this year. Most important is we get thru it healthy, but I do hope our players take it serious enough to get something out of the preseason instead of just going thru the motions….the first game won’t matter much, Colts won’t play Luck more then a series against us…. It’s nice that we are doing joint practices with contending franchises. Raven have some nice players for our boys To go against…. Must suck for a Texans DB to have to do joint practices against the skins.. How much can the Texans Dbs get out of practicing against RG3, McCoy and Cousins?…. Really cool that the 3rd game dress Rehersal comes against the Packers,. Be awesome to get our defense at least a half of action against Aaron Rodgers.. That’s a nice test for our secondary, get Jaylen Watkins some good playing time against the slot WRs of the packers

    I acknowledge that Bradford is the most talented and gifted QB from the pocket, this franchise has had in the past 30years of my Eagle,fandom….more talented then Cunningham,McNabb,VICK,Kolb,FOles, Sanchez..
    But Jason peters and our players are getting a little carried away comparing his passing talent to Aaron Rogers…on one hand, it’s probably nOT that far fetched if you just compare talent and ability. Bradford can Literally make every throw a QB needs to be able to make….but so far all that elite talemt hasn’t translated onto the field yet. And Bradford is going to have to show it when the live bullets start to fly before he should even be mentioned with Aaron Rogers…. The amazing thing is this Framchise actually got a QBA with that type of ELITE CEILING! Hopefully we have the sports science department that will be able to keep him on the field, and hopefully we have the coaches that can finally take his elite talent and get it to translate on the field… If our coaches and trainers can keep this kid on the field, we end up with one of the few, legit, Franchise QBs in the game..
    It’s exciting to have a legit franchise talent in our locker room. It could catapult us into a true Golden age of Eagle football, that may be able to compete with the Andy era… On the other hand, it’s also nerve racking to have such an elite talent at the most Important position and have to be walking on eggshells worried every day that injuries could keep us from having a franchise QB

  103. 103 botto said at 3:39 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    unbelievable, first action this coming sunday!

  104. 104 botto said at 3:41 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    whats really crazy when you think about it is that these teams with the best qbs, Rodgers, brady, had them sitting there on the bench waiting to get in. that’s nuts when everybody else is trying to find the guy each year.

  105. 105 OregonDucker said at 4:37 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Bradford must find some NFL mojo. He needs to gain confidence that his OL and RB will protect him. He has got to believe they have his back. Only then will we see elite play from Sam. It’s going to take time; hopefully, only the preseason until he finds his mojo.

  106. 106 peteike said at 3:58 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    dspin, Kelly article, here it is (most anyway), not much to it really.

    “Bleacher Report’s Mike Freeman got a few black Eagles players to speak to him about Kelly anonymously, and they claim that Kelly is not racist, but an asshole:

    “Chip is not a racist. The notion he is isn’t fair. The thing with Chip is he just doesn’t see you as a person. He sees you as a commodity. The more players get that, the better off they’ll be.”

    The player added: “Chip’s attitude towards players doesn’t bother me. I actually like it. I know where I stand with him. You understand that he doesn’t want to be challenged so don’t f—king challenge him. It’s pretty simple. I get it. Some guys don’t.”

    A second African-American Eagles player said: “He sets the agenda. You don’t follow it, you’re dead to him. That’s not racial. Some guys handle it well, some guys don’t.”

    This feels like a good read on the situation, given the fact that Kelly comes from a college coaching background. College coaches can get away with a lot more when it comes to treating players like shit, because college players aren’t really in a position to do anything about it. The power dynamic is a little different in the pros, though, and a coach who sees his players as totally replaceable while making no effort to relate to them is sure to rub some guys the wrong way.”

  107. 107 Avery Greene said at 4:06 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    I read this article and thought it was a bit lazy. He seems set to make a point, but ignore any other facts/data that may conflict with that.

  108. 108 Joe Minx said at 5:58 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Mike Freeman is the last person on earth I’m going to look to for unbiased writing.

  109. 109 botto said at 4:31 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    that’s weird because every time we see him on the sidelines with someone or in practice he seems to joke around and players are smiling and laughing.
    he even had those moments with djax and shady….

  110. 110 anon said at 4:39 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Even Ike and Tina looked happy sometimes.

  111. 111 MagSigmaSoundRIP said at 8:35 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Spoiled children players. EVERY coach says “my way or bye, bye”.
    “His former players scoff at the notion that Lombardi would be out of touch with today’s game, that he would have to soften his iron-fisted approach, curb his temper, coddle his players.
    “His philosophies were based on the ancient Greeks,” said Jerry Kramer, Lombardi’s five-time all-pro right guard. “Aristotle said something like, ‘We are what we repeatedly do.’ Coach said, ‘You don’t do things right once in a while. You do them right all the time.’ Plato said, ‘There is no winning without pain.’ Coach said, ‘There’s a price to pay for success.’
    “All those things are virtually inarguable. I think they worked 5,000 years ago and I honestly believe they will work 5,000 years from now.”
    There is no denying Lombardi was a task-master, a stern man who relentlessly demanded more from his players than they thought they could give. At times, they hated him for it.
    But with few exceptions, they put up with it because the payoff — victories and titles and glory — far outweighed the pain of grass drills and the humiliation of Lombardi’s stinging rebukes.”
    Coaching is coaching, no matter where.

    Practice how you play.

  112. 112 Buge Halls said at 4:02 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Still think it was an undervalued trade. 4th with conditional 3rd? Yes. But what they got? No! They should have let the Steelers wait, have them play last night and maybe another game so they could see how bad their secondary is, then maybe they would have come back with a better offer.

  113. 113 CrackSammich said at 4:32 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Should held out for two conditional 1sts and a 3rd. I think that would have been best value.

  114. 114 anon said at 4:31 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Ealges picked up a Falcons WR castoff, i’m sure that recog. more than anything jon harris gone. Eagles dropped a couple other D players.

  115. 115 botto said at 4:40 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    harris was really hyped by everyone I thought, but so was davante davis…

  116. 116 sonofdman said at 6:55 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    They were too talented, so Chip got rid of them. We all know Chip cannot stand to coach talented players.

  117. 117 Avery Greene said at 7:04 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Especially all the black ones. /s

  118. 118 Mr. Magee said at 4:35 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Make no mistake, when Chip traded Boykin he rolled the dice on the secondary in general and Shepherd in particular – and lost. I didn’t like the trade in the first place, and I like it even less now.

    What’s the deal with the ACLs in training camp? Is it just me, or do we seem to suffer more than our fair share? Would love to see some league-wide comparisons…

  119. 119 Jernst said at 4:43 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    I was going to post something and then you read my mind and posted word for word what I was going to say.

  120. 120 A_T_G said at 5:14 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Oh, that is awesome. Do me next!

  121. 121 botto said at 5:33 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    you’re wondering what happened to longding..

  122. 122 MagSigmaSoundRIP said at 8:28 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Got tripped by his longding, tore his ACL.

  123. 123 Mr. Magee said at 5:27 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    You’re a smart guy Jernst!

  124. 124 Greg Richards said at 4:46 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    ACLs is something that sports science can’t really help. When a ligament chooses to snap, it chooses to snap. I suppose one could possibly identify players that are more susceptible to ACL tears but it’s not like a hamstring or calf where a player tends to strain them if they’re not hydrated properly

  125. 125 MagSigmaSoundRIP said at 8:27 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    This is just for 2014, but interesting.

  126. 126 JoeBlow said at 4:44 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    silly me i thought this was a quarterback league….turns out it’s a nickle back league

  127. 127 botto said at 4:58 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    I thought it was a guard league

  128. 128 TypicalDouche said at 5:03 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    You’re both wrong, its a 3rd sting QB league!!

  129. 129 A_T_G said at 5:12 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Just so it isn’t a Texas league.

  130. 130 TypicalDouche said at 5:16 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Beer league work for you?

  131. 131 Greg Richards said at 5:14 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Nope, it’s a long snapper league.

  132. 132 Greg Richards said at 5:14 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Nope, it’s a long snapper league.

  133. 133 TypicalDouche said at 5:17 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Oh damn your right there is no backup long snapper. The Eagles are doomed!!

  134. 134 Greg Richards said at 5:17 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Celek! Why do you think they’re paying him $4.7M a year? Only about $1M of that is for his TE skills.

  135. 135 TypicalDouche said at 5:18 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Whoaaaa now man they are paying him the remaining money for the same reason the legend Riley Cooper is getting paid, that superior blocking prowess they both have.

  136. 136 Greg Richards said at 5:20 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Okay, you’re partially right. $1M for receiving skills, $1.5M for blocking skills, $2.2M for emergency long-snapping skills.

  137. 137 TypicalDouche said at 5:20 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Sounds about right to me.

  138. 138 Greg Richards said at 4:53 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    As far as the Boykin trade, I’m not second-guessing it. Everyone who talks about getting a 3rd for Boykin is living in fantasy land. Look at past trades around the NFL. You don’t get a 3rd for players of Boykin’s caliber. Past trades say his value is around a 5th. Having that potentially be a 4th under very reasonable terms is a steal. Yes, we took a risk in trading him but if you wait until the end of camp and teams are going to know you really want to move him and you have to take less or you end up keeping him for the year and getting nothing when he’s a FA. Bottom line, we took a risk and we got hurt. You don’t take risks, you don’t get rewards.

    As far as what we do now, let Watkins show what he can do. Give him a preseason game or two. If you’re not comfortable with him, then you have several options:

    1. Play Carroll and Rowe outside and Maxwell in the slot
    2. Stay in your base D more often when other teams have 3 WRs on the field and drop down Jenkins or Thurmond to cover the slot WR. We stayed in base quite frequently last year, the main reason Boykin’s snap % dropped and with better coverage ILBs this year have the ability to do so even more.
    3. In nickel, let Thurmond cover the slot WR, and bring in another S. This option works best if Wolff bounces back and emerges. Not sure I’d be comfortable with any of the other safeties.
    4. Explore outside options.

  139. 139 anon said at 4:54 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    I think with Thuromnd at S and WAY better coverage backers Boykin was going to play a lot less than he did last year, they really liked to stay in base until injuries meant they couldn’t anymore.

  140. 140 Mitchell said at 7:22 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Yes, we have linebackers who can cover for a reason.

  141. 141 Avery Greene said at 6:39 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    No reason to put Maxwell in the slot, he is the #1 corner. So IMO 1 is out. 2 might be doable, but you then only have 1 safety for the whole field. It’ll work sometimes, but if you do it all the time you leave yourself vulnerable for teams to figure out the scheme and beat you (see Fletcher last year). I like 3, if and only if these two things play out: 1) The backup Safeties show that they can not make mistakes and be around the ball and 2) if none of the other CBs look like they can play nickel (which is probably assumed in your analysis). 4 worries me because that means we go in the season with a huge hole. I’m hoping one of the 6-8 other players is able to step up as a S or NB.

    So in my order of how I’d like to see things go is
    5 – (assumed) one of the other players can step up as nickel
    2 – I like the idea of the 3 ILBs on the field and Kendricks/Kiko can cover a lot of ground
    3 – I’m pulling for Wolff or Couplin to really take a step forward this year, hoping being the operative word
    1 – If Max is following the top receiver this is okay, if not, I don’t think the defense is doing well. If they do like Rowe enough, maybe Carroll goes inside in nickel since he’s got experience on the interior of the field.
    4 – If we hit this option, I’m in panic-mode and might lock myself in the garage until the end of the season. Okay, maybe not that extreme but I’ll be worried.

  142. 142 BobSmith77 said at 9:57 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    A steal? It is only conditionally a 4th round pick and if the Steelers make the playoffs (above average shot as long as the defense isn’t as bad as some people think it might) it is possibly a late 5th rounder.

  143. 143 Greg Richards said at 4:54 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Don’t know much about Martino. We do have an open roster spot since we cut 2 players. One interesting guy: Javier Arenas. Marynowitz knows him from Bama. Has slot CB experience, STs ability.

  144. 144 Tom33 said at 4:57 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    The thing I haven’t heard anyone talk about regarding Boykin – Chip and the Eagles just did him the biggest favor they could have. Instead of playing out his contract as a nickel with maybe some potential to start on the outside, he gets to showcase his talent in a contract year and earn the huge $$$. He can start, maybe even “star”, for the Steelers and watch the teams line up to give him Maxwell money. Instead of whining about Chip not saying hi to him in the hallway or inviting him over to watch TV together, he should be thanking him, and the organization, publicly for the chance to add lots of 0’s to his bank account.

    You hear these guys say the NFL is “just a business” all the time – you’d think Boykin would realize somebody just gave his the biggest opportunity of his professional life. For all the articles about Chip being a tyrant or worse, hopefully some players are smart enough to realize that this trade was the best thing for BB’s future, short of giving him a starting job in Philly. I’m not suggesting that is the only reason they made the trade, but when you see the Eagles get a 4th/5th, and the Steelers get perhaps just a season, Boykin has the chance to be the biggest “winner” in this deal.

  145. 145 JoeBlow said at 5:20 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    couldn’t agree more….That’s how I looked at it and that’s the beef i have with Chip….He is too nice of a guy, not a tyrant. He has talked about wanting to see players succeed, even if it is not in philly. It’s how i looked at the Mathis situation….”you think your worth more money, who am I to keep you from getting paid, here is your release and good luck in the future”

    He believes he can coach anyone, that is his confidence/arrogance trait people debate over. I for one love his confidence but i understand why people fuss over his decisions

  146. 146 botto said at 5:25 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    good point

  147. 147 Mr. Magee said at 5:25 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Absolutely correct. Applies to others as well, like LeSean McCoy, for example. You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to play in the NFL (Evan Mathis, anyone?), but you’d think some of the people around these guys would talk some sense into them at some point…

  148. 148 Greg Richards said at 5:26 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Probably just until Gresham gets his feet under him(just signed a week or so ago), but Ifeanyi Momah listed as a starter at TE in Cardinals’ first depth chart:

  149. 149 botto said at 5:31 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    eff the cards

  150. 150 Mitchell said at 7:20 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    The Momahtron.

  151. 151 A_T_G said at 8:03 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Good for him. You got to root for a guy who worked through rejection and kept chasing his dream like Momah did.

    Hopefully he is just good enough to earn a job and get paid. But bad enough to cost the Cards a few games.

  152. 152 wee2424 said at 8:59 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Good idea by the cards. Wish him the best. I could see him being a matchup problem for LBs. Wonder how his blocking is.

  153. 153 ACViking said at 6:42 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Re: Evan Mathis

    Evan Mathis is so dumb, he let his agent ruin his career.

    Just to show he’s dumber than a rock, Mathis decided not to fire the agent who cost him $5.5 million this year.

    What’s wrong with that picture?

  154. 154 Avery Greene said at 6:48 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Pride? I’m not sure, but he’s not looking too smart now. I’m not sure what Rosenhaus told him, but I personally think that with all the blustering behind the scenes that CK would have kept Mathis if he showed up to mini-camp or came to Novacare during the off-season.

  155. 155 Insomniac said at 7:25 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Chip has cut most of Rosenhaus’s clients
    Chip hates Roseman
    Chip hates Roses

  156. 156 CrackSammich said at 7:41 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Chip hates Rose. We should all hate Rose. I can’t be the only one that could see if Jack got on the other side of that wood panel, they could both fit. Selfish move right there. She’s clearly not a culture fit.

  157. 157 A_T_G said at 7:59 PM on August 10th, 2015:

  158. 158 RobNE said at 8:27 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    That is awesome.

  159. 159 A_T_G said at 7:57 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Chip is a roseist.

  160. 160 ian_no_2 said at 8:02 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    “I can play nickel” – Denzel Rice. I believe him.

  161. 161 ian_no_2 said at 8:03 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    I don’t believe Biggers if he says he can play nickel.

  162. 162 botto said at 8:08 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    biggers can’t be choosers

  163. 163 ian_no_2 said at 9:09 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    It bothers me a little that Biggers is on the 90 man roster. In case of emergency, break glass sort of veteran, the problem is he gets beat wherever he goes. “..some men achieve mediocrity, and some men have mediocrity thrust upon them..” Undlin may be a great guy but if he was magic they wouldn’t need to sign Maxwell. Last year showed that Billy Davis is one of those guys afraid to give the unproven guy a chance.

  164. 164 A_T_G said at 8:11 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    I am not so sure.

    1. Rice went to a small school.
    2. Rice is a small school.
    3. Biggers people beat up smallers people.

  165. 165 botto said at 8:33 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    I heard the giants signed smallers

  166. 166 wee2424 said at 8:29 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Someday, just like I believe Shepherd could play nickel effectively but not by week one. If Chip didn’t like Boykins size I doubt he will like Rice’s. I do think Rice will be a very effective gunner.

  167. 167 ian_no_2 said at 9:04 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Boykin played slot for him for two years. Kelly plays Matthews in the slot because he thinks slot receivers should be taller, but the rest of the league hasn’t joined him on that just yet so Boykin could cover his assignments.

  168. 168 wee2424 said at 10:35 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    For some reason (not sure why) I thought Rice was 5’8, that’s why I made that comment. I just looked it up and saw he was 6 foot. So I stand corrected.

  169. 169 MagSigmaSoundRIP said at 8:21 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Slightly off topic. This morning on NFLN, Brent Grimes was talking about how the Dolphins are monitoring everything about their players, even off-season. Like sleep and fluids and food intake, with experts from overseas. Sound familiar?

    Of course, another team doing the advanced sports science thing can’t be possible, can it? Remember, Heath Evans firmly stated that the NFL has certain ways of doing things and nobody can just come in and make changes.

  170. 170 wee2424 said at 8:25 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Heath Evans is a moron. By saying that he completely disregarded the fact that the NFL since it began has continuously been evolving sometimes in little bounds and sometimes in big bounds. He also completely disregarded people that have came in and changed/influenced the league.

    He should not be in the media and be given a chance to impersonate an analysis.

  171. 171 MagSigmaSoundRIP said at 8:37 PM on August 10th, 2015:


  172. 172 Avery Greene said at 8:37 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    This might be the influence of Bill Lazor, since he did come from here.

  173. 173 A_T_G said at 8:42 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Yep, and the unfortunate outcome of something working.

  174. 174 SteveH said at 8:44 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    I always liked Boykin so I didn’t want to see him traded, but if the staff didn’t see him in their plans the best move was to get rid of him. Sure, he obviously would have been a good insurance policy for this year, helping to give time for all our new young secondary guys, but I don’t see us challenging for a super bowl anyhow so I guess whats the point.

    I think the coaches signaled that they don’t think we’re super bowl ready yet either, because clearly the best move if we were going for it all this year would be to have kept Boykin.

    Kind of puts a damper on things but that’s the reality.

    The only thing I don’t like are Chip’s comments about our secondary being “deep” which makes no sense at all considering how much inexperience we have there. Hell even Sheppard wasn’t a sure thing just because the coaches liked him so far. We’re already counting on an unknown at slot and are one hammy away from starting another unknown on the boundary. Not to mention safety is a mess beyond the top 2 guys, one of which may or may not work out.

    We may be deep with potential in the secondary but we are by no means deep with any kind of proven NFL talent. After trading Boykin, I count 4 experienced proven players manning 5 secondary spots. After that its all unknowns. God forbid we get any injuries to the proven guys, a hammy here and an ACL there and we could be fielding a pretty trashy secondary for the 2nd year strait.

  175. 175 Avery Greene said at 8:57 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Yup, so here’s hoping at least one person out of a group steps up and can be that guy.

  176. 176 SteveH said at 8:58 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Here’s hoping we only need 1 person to step up and be that guy.

  177. 177 anon said at 9:30 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    most teams are shaky with one or two injuries in a position group. I think there are a lot of people they are happy with to play slot corner. I think chip did the right thing by trading Boykin, either way. They thought Shephard was a good enough replacement (there’s also Watkins and biggers) — we’re talking about a slot corner, this guy doesn’t even play a majority of downs and will play EVEN FEWER considering that our LBs can cover the slot and we have a safety that can cover the slot. Boykin didn’t do much last year and would do even less this year and be gone next year, it’d be super short sighted to keep him around just because he’s marginally better than a rookie at slot corner.

  178. 178 BobSmith77 said at 10:03 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Don’t understand why so much attention is paid to Kelly’s secondary comment and their ‘deep’ depth. It was a BS throwaway comment. He gives a lot of them.

  179. 179 xmbk said at 7:57 AM on August 11th, 2015:

    I’ve seen the Boykin trade used as a reason for the team not trying to win it all this year. Think that’s an overreaction. Much more likely that they just didn’t value him as much as fans and media.

  180. 180 Dragon_Eagle said at 9:19 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Most important lesson here: Keep Darren Sproles away from Sam Bradford at all costs.

  181. 181 Avery Greene said at 9:28 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Is that why he’s practicing in the slot?

  182. 182 Media Mike said at 9:44 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    This is some snakebit luck. I’m WAY more pissed over a guy I wanted to see play now being out for the year when it clearly should have been Riley Cooper’s knee getting blown out.

    Trading a player, who was not going to be retained going into 2016, for a tangible asset over a possible comp pick is always the right move.

    The better conversation is still if Billy Davis is a smacked ass of a DC who doesn’t know how to maximize the talents of existing personnel, not if trading a player who wasn’t going to get retained was a good move or not.

  183. 183 Insomniac said at 11:59 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Better put your hopes on Watkins.

  184. 184 Media Mike said at 7:09 AM on August 11th, 2015:

    I’m good with Watkins or Biggers coming around there.

  185. 185 xmbk said at 7:54 AM on August 11th, 2015:

    If Biggers becomes a decent starter, Undlin has lived up to the hype.

  186. 186 BobSmith77 said at 10:13 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    For all the commotion about this injury and the Boykin trade, I’d still bet the Mathis move effects this team a lot more. Ditto having the thoroughly mediocre Davis as the DC yet too.

    Strikes me as a very interesting team but also a flawed team in several areas. If Murray and Bradford can improve their performance in the red zone and this team can cut down the turnovers on offense, they’ll be playing in Jan. If not, they’ll on vacation for the 4th time in 5 years.

  187. 187 Avery Greene said at 10:19 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    David has to get it done this year. He’s got the talent, so there’s no excuses.

  188. 188 GEAGLE said at 7:56 AM on August 11th, 2015:


  189. 189 BobSmith77 said at 10:25 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    For what it is worth (Madden 2016 team ratings)

    1. Pats 91
    t-1st. Seahawks 91
    3. Packers 90
    4. Broncos 89
    5. Colts 87
    6. Boys 86
    7. Ravens 85
    8. Eagles 84
    t-8th. Steelers 84
    t-8th. Bengals 84
    11. Lions 83
    12. Cardinals 82
    t-12. Chiefs 82
    t-12. Chargers 82
    15. Dolphins 81
    16. Panthers 80

    Just about every prediction I have seen has the Eagles making the playoffs too this year. Mixed bag on them winning the NFC East though with as many predictions giving it to the Boys. Haven’t seen a single Giants or Skins prediction to win the East.

    Furthest I have seen the Eagles predicted to advance in the playoffs is the Sporting News which has them beating Boys on the road in the Wild Card round (that would be so sweet given how previous playoff performances there) and losing to Seahawks in the Divisional Round.

    I’d say this is a Top 10 team in the NFL right now though and should be going into the season as long as they remain relatively unscathed by significant injuries.

  190. 190 anon said at 10:31 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    does the steelers ranking account for the Boykin bump?

  191. 191 Joe Minx said at 10:29 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Can someone please ban your joke of an ass?

  192. 192 BobSmith77 said at 10:31 PM on August 10th, 2015:

    Eagles need to win at least 10 games this year again too to have a good shot at the playoffs.

    Last NFC wildcard team to make the playoffs with less than 10 wins was the ’08 Eagles (9-6-1).

    Still on the fence with this team about making the playoffs since I see them more of a 8-to-10 win team just like last year. Just thought that 9-7 would be good enough to win them the NFC East.

  193. 193 anon said at 12:48 AM on August 11th, 2015:

    the personnel this year vs last year aren’t even comparable. Just going by position groups the only one that might be worse is OL

    (1) Better Bradford —-> Foles & we played w/ sanchez for the better part of the year last year
    (2) RB way better both depth and scheme appropriateness
    (3) Same, or deeper, no MAC, but improved JMatt, Aghuilar, Austin, Huff, Coop
    (4) TE better — improved Ertz + Burton, Celek slight decline
    (5) Safeties BETTER, addition by subtraction
    (6) LB corps way better
    (7) CBs i mean obviously

  194. 194 xmbk said at 7:51 AM on August 11th, 2015:

    If the Eagles are going to make a playoff run, they will win at least 10.

  195. 195 Tumtum said at 8:06 AM on August 11th, 2015:

    Boykin was special, in my mind anyway. Sheppard could probably turn out to be a very good slot. The hype on him seemed to be pretty big from the coaches. I highly doubt he would have been as special as Boykin.

    So Sheppard, Biggers, Watkins, at this point in the season, who cares? I’m most excited about seeing Watkins the 4th round pick get a shot there. I was kind of hoping he could find a way to beat out Sheppard anyway.

  196. 196 LongDing said at 8:15 AM on August 11th, 2015:

    Andy Reid would never get away with this crap that Chip KKKelly is doing.

  197. 197 eagleyankfan said at 8:26 AM on August 11th, 2015:

    you mean like AR did in his final season here? Please….