Salty Jim

Posted: August 4th, 2016 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 37 Comments »

Jim Schwartz met with the media on Thursday and didn’t have a lot of good things to say. Is it time to panic about the Eagles defense? No, not at all. In fact, this was good. Schwartz could have stood up there and talked about progress and praised lots of individuals. Everyone would have come away feeling good.

Too good.

Schwartz knows it is early August and he’s taking over a defense that has struggled in recent years. He’s not going to fawn all over them for everything they do right. The best example came after a question about Jordan Hicks ability to get the defense lined up correctly.

Schwartz later talked about how that is simply part of Hicks job so there is no reason to over-praise him for it. I could see where some might think Schwartz is being a bit of a jerk, hesitant to compliment a player. I like it. Let’s remember that it is the coach’s job to set a high standard and then force the players to meet that standard. Mike Singletary didn’t become a Hall of Fame linebacker because Buddy Ryan gave him a bunch of “gold stars”. Ryan was demanding. It drove Singletary crazy at times, but when he finally figured out what was going on, he, Ryan and the Bears defense made NFL history.

If you gave Schwartz truth serum (whatever drug combination that is today), he’d probably tell you lots of good things about his defense. But Schwartz wants more. He’s going to keep pushing them to be better, to take the next step. Today’s theme was the need for consistency. And that has been an issue with the defense for the past few years. They would dominate a veteran QB like Eli Manning and then get lit up by a rookie like Jameis Winston. Remember Matt Cassel and Matt Asiata destroying the defense in 2013?

Schwartz sees the talent. He knows the potential is there. He also knows this group has underachieved and been wildly erratic in recent years. Schwartz is going to try to push the right buttons to get this group to play up to their potential and even beyond that point. “Good enough” won’t be good enough.

As much as I liked Bill Davis, I do think you need a defensive coordinator who can be a bit of a jerk. Emotions have a place on the defensive side of the ball. Buddy Ryan could be a pain in the ass. Some players hated him. Bud Carson was tough. Jim Johnson could be a jerk when he needed to be. Schwartz has the same type of personality and ability to be really hard on his players. He’s trying to drive them. Sometimes that calls for tough love. Other times it calls for being a flat out jerk. I think he’s allowed to be nice to the players every other Tuesday for 7 minutes.

Don’t get me wrong. It isn’t as if Schwartz can simply be demanding. He also has to be a good play-caller and teacher. And you can bet he’ll have plenty of good things to say when the Eagles shut out the Cowboys this fall.

Too early to dream?

Here is the PC on


Jimmy Bama liked what he saw from Joe Montana Sam Bradford today.

Sam Bradford was outstanding during the Eagles’ red zone session today. Here are the throws he made during that session:

  1. Pretty ball to Jordan Matthews on a corner route in the back of the end zone. TD.
  2. Accurate throw to Brent Celek for a 10+ yard gain.
  3. Audibled at the line, and hit Josh Huff on a curl route.
  4. Touch throw to Chris Givens in back corner of end zone. TD.
  5. Tried to find Trey Burton in back of end zone, but the pass fell incomplete. Still, it was in a spot where only Burton could get it.
  6. On the money throw to Burton on a slant, but dropped.
  7. Dump down to Darren Sproles near the flat that was slightly off. They completed it, but Sleeves did not allow Sproles to maximize his run after the catch.
  8. Fade to Burton on the money. TD.
  9. Drop by Celek on a hard-thrown ball at a short distance, that needed to have juice on it so it wouldn’t be picked.

That may have been Bradford’s best series of camp so far.

I think Bradford will be better than last year. He seems a lot more comfortable, with himself (medically), his surroundings and the offense. Bradford spoke to the media today and seems like a different guy. I’m not ready to say he’s going to have a great year or anything like that, but he might play the way he did down the stretch last year. He was more confident and more comfortable. And more effective.

Now for some DBs.

• There’s just something I don’t like about the way Rueben Randle plays. There doesn’t seem to be a lot of fight in him. On a short throw by Daniel, the ball was off the mark, but not so bad that Randle couldn’t have tried harder to make a play on it. Instead, Jalen Mills came up with the pick because he wanted it more. Credit Mills for making the play, but it was not Randle’s best moment.

• Mills is clearly ahead of Eric Rowe at this point, by the way. I’m not sure if aliens abducted Rowe and replaced him with some other version, but he has not looked at all like the promising player we saw in the back half of the season last year.

Be patient with Rowe. He is talented and should still have a bright future, but there is no denying that he’s behind where he should be right now. Thankfully, Mills has mostly played well. The preseason games will be a huge test for him.

Make sure to ready Jimmy’s whole post. Lots of good Red Zone nuggets in there.


Brandon Lee Gowton liked what he saw from Carson Wentz.

Carson Wentz had a good day. He made some real nice throws, especially in the red zone. Wentz showed great touch on a number of fade passes during red zone drills. He threw perfect passes to Byron Marshall and Rueben Randle for touchdowns. The rookie also connected with Matthews and Paul Turner on deep throws in one-on-one sessions. Wentz showed off his fast release on the last play of practice, connecting with Nelson Agholor on a slant over the middle. It’s still early, but the Eagles should be reasonably encouraged by the progress Wentz has made this offseason.

Wentz did have one bad throw. He tried to fit a ball to Agholor near the goal line butRodney McLeod jumped the route and picked it off.

Great word choice there…progress. Wentz is a rookie coming from a I-AA program. And he doesn’t have a ton of starts under his belt. We all knew there would be a learning curve. The two big things you want to see are 1) raw talent and 2) progress. You need the rookie to show he has the physical ability to play in the NFL. Wentz has done that. You also want to see the rookie getting better as the offseason/season moves along. That tells you he is learning and is headed in the right direction.

Lots of good short notes here.

Jason Kelce spent some extra time off to the side mentoring Gordon, who played tight end at LSU, on his blocking technique. Good to see the vets help the young guys.

Bennie Logan is a beast. He broke up a screen play intended for Kenjon Barner by firing into the backfield and knocking down the pass.

• Rookie Joe Walker had good coverage on Zach Ertz over the middle. He forced Ertz into attempting a one-handed catch, which wasn’t successful.

• Dark horse roster candidate Steven Means continues to flash. The 26-year-old lineman blew up an end around by Agholor. Then he beat Gardner off the edge and forced Wentz to scramble out of the pocket.

• Earlier this week, I noted Chris Pantale hasn’t had a great training camp. His struggles continued today with two drops.

Sounds like I’m going to have to pay attention to Steven Means in preseason games. I can’t wait to see Bennie Logan in action. This new scheme could bring out the best in him.


Jeff McLane shared his thoughts on the OL/DL battles.

— Curry had the highlight rush during one on ones. He gave tackle Dennis Kelly a little shake that tipped him off balance and then went in for the kill with a bull rush that knocked – Timbbbbeeeeerrrr! – Kelly on his rear. Kelly, to his credit, bounced back on Curry’s next rush and ran him outside. But that earlier moment won’t show up well on film. I’ll have more on Curry in my newspaper column. Rookie guard Isaac Seumalo had some strong moments. He has solid technique. He tied Logan up with his hands on one rush, and was able to hop-hop-hop and keep defensive tackle Taylor Hart in front. I’d imagine former Eagles offensive line coach Howard Mudd would have loved to work with Seumalo. Smith fared better against Gordon than he did on Wednesday. He looked motivated.

Seumalo has gotten off to a rough start based on all the reports, but he’s now got more than a week of practice under his belt. The light should start to come on for him. Taylor Hart hasn’t generated much buzz this summer, but Schwartz did offer some semi-praise to him today. Preseason games will be critical for Hart.

I like what I’m hearing about DT Mike Martin.

— Depth chart notes: Defensive tackle Mike Martin and defensive end Brandon Graham, for the second day in a row, spent most of practice with the first team defense in place of Bennie Logan and Vinny Curry, respectively. Again, the switch doesn’t mean much in the long run because there will be a rotation. Martin continued to impress. His get off is his best attribute. He stormed past Stefen Wisniewski on one team drill and all the guard could do to stop him was grab his jersey. Martin also did well during one on ones.

The Eagles need depth at DT so it is critical that Martin play well and show he can be part of a rotation. Schwartz talked about the need for a strong rotation. He would probably love to have 8 DL that he could rotate in and out. The backups won’t get on the field for the heck of it. They have to earn snaps. Martin is doing exactly that.


Josh “Mr. Wawa” Paunil has noticed some fringe players standing out.

9:12 — Chase Daniel throws a nice 25-yard touchdown pass to Paul Turner, who ran a corner route. The undrafted free agent out of Louisiana Tech showed up a few times today, including on a touchdown catch on a post route from Carson Wentz a little bit later, which was a nice drop in the bucket from Wentz.

Pederson gave Turner — or “PT” — some love yesterday, while Sam Bradford did the same today.

“Yeah, he does [catch everything]. He’s just got a great feel for the game. He’s one of those guys — he’s a good route-runner, but not just that, his ability to find zones, to recognize coverage, to know whether he’s working off the man in front of him or if he’s working on a man in the second level. I think he’s just got a really good, natural feel for how to find soft spots in the defense. And he’s made a lot of plays for us, too.”

Paul Turner is getting a lot of attention in recent days. This isn’t random, either. He’s playing well and earning the attention of those watching practice. This is exactly what you want rookies and young players to do. Stand out. Force people to take notice of you. Turner has gone from camp body to a player who might push for a practice squad spot. I need to see him in games before I can say if he has any shot at the roster. That seems a bit much right now.

9:17 — Aaron Grymes picks off Daniel by simply taking the ball from Rueben Randle, and then breaks up another pass in his next rep. We have a long way to go before final cuts, but Grymes seems like a great candidate for the practice squad.

Grymes is the defensive version of Turner. Lacks ideal size. Lacks ideal speed. Never a great college player. But somehow both guys are playing well this summer. Grymes was in the CFL so he’s got some experience. I’m sure the Eagles love his versatility. They’ve plugged him in at CB, slot and Safety. At the bottom of the roster, you better be able to do more than one thing.


Malcolm Jenkins missed some time today and that meant more reps for Ed Reynolds.

Schwartz said the backup Safeties need to take advantage of this opportunity. That is wide open right now. There is a spot, or spots, open for the taking. But someone has to step up and play well.


37 Comments on “Salty Jim”

  1. 1 Salty Jim - said at 11:59 PM on August 4th, 2016:

    […] Tommy Lawlor Jim Schwartz met with the media on Thursday and didn’t have a lot of good things to say. Is […]

  2. 2 Rambler said at 12:04 AM on August 5th, 2016:

    I think the defense is actually going to have something it has not had in years… accountability. And I think we are going to like the end product on the field.

  3. 3 Cafone said at 1:25 AM on August 5th, 2016:

    The only man who could stop Vinny Curry was Chip Kelly.

  4. 4 Bert's Bells said at 7:22 AM on August 5th, 2016:

    Which is a shame because curry chips are delicious.

  5. 5 Tiarajreed said at 7:43 AM on August 5th, 2016:

    <<a:y. ★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★:::::::!!bx253a:….,….

  6. 6 PacificPurl said at 4:28 AM on August 5th, 2016:

    Strange talk. Why, according to some here Chip Kelly was the only coach in history who was hated by the players. Every player. He was so mean.

  7. 7 Anders said at 4:33 AM on August 5th, 2016:

    There is difference between been tough on your players like Buddy and just been a douche like Kelly.

    Buddy’s players 100% loved him to death, while player in the pro seemed to see him as sort of a dictator (which is stark contrast to how his players in college saw him)

  8. 8 P_P_K said at 3:56 PM on August 5th, 2016:

    I think Chip’s problem was he didn’t understand the difference between coaching college student-athletes, and adult, professional men.

  9. 9 myartz04 said at 6:07 AM on August 5th, 2016:

    For what it’s worth, Sirius NFL Radio interviewed Garrett Celek (Brent’s brother who now plays for the 49ers) and he said that Brent told him that he loved playing for Chip.

  10. 10 Rellihcs said at 6:45 PM on August 5th, 2016:

    Yeah, that’s worth nothing…

  11. 11 Media Mike said at 6:33 AM on August 5th, 2016:

    “There’s just something I don’t like about the way Rueben Randle plays.”

    Considering the contract he’s on; 32 teams agree with you.

  12. 12 eagleyankfan said at 7:27 AM on August 5th, 2016:

    During Bradfords HOF practice – was there a defense on the field?
    DC doesn’t want this team to get complacent in August. Smart move IMHO. I’m confident he tells the players what they need to hear behind the scenes….
    Not good news on RR. Had hopes for him. If that perception of him is true, it’s understandable why the Giants let him go….

  13. 13 Tumtum said at 5:16 PM on August 5th, 2016:

    Mark Teixeira the Benedict Scumlord is going to retire after wasting money the last 3 years. What say you?

  14. 14 Dan in Philly said at 9:43 AM on August 5th, 2016:

    Remember the movie “Devil Wears Prada?” That was supposed to show the worst boss in the world, but in fact you you hope you someday get to work for someone like that. Someone awesome at her job and demands perfection from everyone. Thing is, you learn if you can please someone like that, you can please anyone.
    I had a boss like that and he made my career.

  15. 15 Gian GEAGLE said at 9:57 AM on August 5th, 2016:

    Yeah Schwart might be a dick, but he is a respected well liked dick by his players. Look at his former players signing on to join him in Philly. He is hard on the playërs, but they appreciate him. Not many DC’s get carried off the field instead of the head coach
    Think we can all agree that the defense needed an infusion of toughness, attitude and they could certainly use some tough love

  16. 16 P_P_K said at 3:54 PM on August 5th, 2016:

    Are you saying Meryl Streep would make a good Defensive Coordinator?

  17. 17 Gian GEAGLE said at 9:52 AM on August 5th, 2016:

    I heart “salty Jim”… Reminds me of my favorite coach in eagle history, my favorite mean old bastard Jim Johnson… I prefer my DC’s pissed off and just mad at the entire world
    “What do you want a fucking gold star for linning up right?”… LOL LOVE IT!

  18. 18 Gian GEAGLE said at 10:16 AM on August 5th, 2016:

    We won’t shut out the Cowboys, their OL is too good for all that.
    But as long as the Giants keep trotting The worst right side of an OL in the NFL (Newhouse and garbage jon Jerry) onto the field each week, im within my rights to dream about shutting out the Giants.. Our DL has been dominating Those Jokers for Years, and our DL should be even better this year, while the right side of their OL is just as pathetic as ever… And if they ever start calling intentional grounding on Eli, WATCH OUT!!!

  19. 19 Dan in Philly said at 11:11 AM on August 5th, 2016:

    The Boys OL is better as run blockers than pass protectors. They’re no better than average there. If they can play with a lead they can really dominate, but if Romo has to throw they’ll be in a heap of trouble, like last year.

  20. 20 Gian GEAGLE said at 12:16 PM on August 5th, 2016:

    Im aware of that. fortunately Cowboys defense is so pathetic that Romo will probably be forced into a shoot out each week which dangerously exposes his brittle body.
    Im not talking about beating the Cowboys, Im talking SHUT OUT, and typically you can’t shut teams out without really dominanting in the trenches. I think we can beat dallas, and we should at least split with them this year, but I don’t expect us to completely outclass them in the trenches at the level it takes to even have a shot at shutting out a team… If you combine OL and DL, I think the Eagles are clearly the strongest team in the trenches in our division, which makes us a really tough match up for the Giants, where as the Cowboys DL is trash which makes them an easier match up for the Giants. How many times has the Giants beaten the Eagles in the last 5 years when our starting QB played the entire game? 1 win? 2 wins?
    I think Dallas is grossly overrated, and I expect the skins and the Eagles to decide who wins this division, while the media darlings Giants and Cowboys once again battle it out for 3rd and 4th place just like last year…. Those two teams have a lot of Flash, but they have some major defficiencies in important areas of Substance.
    I’d rather the Strength of the Eagles be our trenches instead of our weapons…. The Giants think they can dream team free agent band aid tbeir way to an acceptable defense,,, we’ll see about that. On paper we can’t deny the Giants defense is very much improved especially if JPP is much better than he was last year, but they still have major holes at starting spots like LB and Safety…. And I can’t respect a team that spends a boatload in Free agency, yet still has the audacity to lineup week one with Jon Gerry and Newhouse on the right side of their line again… I don’t even know how you think about upgrading other positions while the right side of your OL is so pathetic? How Wasnt the OL the first thing they addressed this offseason?
    When you have a 36yr old QB who has been the most injured QB in the NFL, the best way to put yourself in a position to keep him healthy is by running The ball a ton, and having a strong defense. Well they drafted Zeke, but they still have the most pathetic defense in the division which I suspect will put the Cowboys in a position where they have to ask too much of Romo, and won’t be able to protect him because he will be asked to win shootouts
    The Cowboys have like two defenders who would start on our defense: Sean Lee, and Orlando Scandrick would probably start for us at Nickel… That’s about it. How do you not have a serious defense when your QB is Romo who is like an injury away from ending his career?
    I worry more about The Redskins…. I THNK Dallas is too flawed to hold up over the course of 16 games… Marinelli has to be a miracle worker to make this defense work with the weakest group of pass rushers in the league

  21. 21 Stephen E. said at 11:36 AM on August 5th, 2016:

    Umm… Gabby Douglas? The “color barrier” in gymnastics was broken even before her.

  22. 22 Gian GEAGLE said at 11:53 AM on August 5th, 2016:

    Simone is close to GOAT status

  23. 23 CVN65 said at 12:55 PM on August 5th, 2016:

    There are no color barriers in sports; the best athletes win and make the money. There have been a number of non-white elite gymnasts for years now. How about we just let individuals be individuals and stop labelling and pigeonholing them?

  24. 24 Gian GEAGLE said at 12:57 PM on August 5th, 2016:

    Lol thanks for that amazingly valuable post, bunch of words on like 7 different topics, and you care about the Race? I can’t talk to ridiculous people like you. I have to block you before you make me want to vote for that psycho trump lol

  25. 25 Media Mike said at 3:53 PM on August 5th, 2016:

    The Giants entire O-line sucks except for the center. Flowers is 100% over-matched at LT and Justine Puke cannot block anybody at LG.

  26. 26 Rellihcs said at 6:38 PM on August 5th, 2016:

    I actually think Pugh is their best ol (not saying a whole lot) but i like him.

  27. 27 Media Mike said at 7:51 PM on August 5th, 2016:

    Their center, Richberg, is really good. Justine Puke will always no better than this:

  28. 28 D3FB said at 9:26 PM on August 5th, 2016:

    Pugh’s a solid G but Richburg is a top 3 Center.

  29. 29 Gian GEAGLE said at 12:19 PM on August 5th, 2016:

    MS2 got a concussion… ERTZ and Jordan left with injuries but it doesn’t appear to be serious. Although ERtz seemed pissed off telling the media that young defenders need to learn to be pro’s. I think he is mad that a rookie took a shot at his legs

  30. 30 The original AG said at 8:11 PM on August 5th, 2016:

    Pedersen is probably looking for the mold of a RB in the form of Westbrook, which he has in Smallwood. Whether Smallwood can give Pedersen the catches out of the backfield remain to be seen.

  31. 31 Gary Barnes said at 2:35 PM on August 5th, 2016:

    Ertz cleared but Smith diagnosed as having concussion according to Zach Berman report.

  32. 32 Media Mike said at 3:52 PM on August 5th, 2016:

    That is just about the last guy who needs to be missing reps. I hope he gets back soon.

  33. 33 SteveH said at 3:26 PM on August 5th, 2016:

    Reuben Randle sounds like he’s ready to fill Steve smiths shoes as a profoundly disappointing former NYG receiver.

  34. 34 Media Mike said at 3:51 PM on August 5th, 2016:

    The list of fantasy writers who hate Randle’s guts is longer than Alex McCalister’s arm.

  35. 35 P_P_K said at 3:52 PM on August 5th, 2016:

    Small shoes to fill.

  36. 36 daveH said at 5:08 PM on August 5th, 2016:

    Maybe he can fit in marcus smiths shoes

  37. 37 A_T_G said at 4:35 PM on August 5th, 2016:

    You know that feeling when you realize you can see where the last few pieces of a puzzle fit in?