Hidden Stat

Posted: October 4th, 2016 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 166 Comments »

There are a lot of stats to examine these days. Football has really become a numbers game. It still isn’t baseball, but this is very unlike the game I grew up watching in the 1970’s and 1980’s.

One of the hidden stats is sack differential. You want to have more sacks than you allow. Right now the Eagles are +6, which is good. Lets take a look at the Super Bowl teams from last year. Denver was +13. Carolina was +11. Those aren’t great numbers, but that’s because those teams don’t have top flight pass blockers. The Eagles were dead even last year, which makes sense for a 7-9 team. The Niners were awful last year, finishing -25.

Beyond differential, the Eagles do well in sack percentages.

There isn’t a lot of fancy meaning to all this. On offense, you have an O-line that can protect the QB. You also have a QB who knows how to run, get the ball out quickly or simply throw the ball away. On defense, you can get to the QB. It also says you cover pretty well, meaning the QB has to hold the ball which makes him more vulnerable to meeting Fletcher Cox and Brandon Graham.


I wrote my PE.com piece on Doug Pederson and the brilliant job he’s done this season.

It’s funny…back in 1999, I was lukewarm on Andy Reid. He turned out to be a great hire.

I was all-in on Chip Kelly in 2013 and he turned out to be a great weird hire.

I was lukewarm on Doug Pederson and he’s been great so far.

When Doug leaves in 14 years, don’t listen to me.

The Eagles did strongly consider Ben McAdoo. Thankfully the Giants denied that. And they didn’t stop there. Pederson wanted to hire Steve Spagnuolo to be the Eagles DC. Instead, McAdoo and the Giants hired him. The Eagles had to “settle” for some guy named Jim Schwartz.


Les Bowen updates the Lane Johnson situation, since there was a hearing today. No definitive news.

Lane Johnson’s appeal of his 10-game NFL suspension for ingesting a performance-enhancing substance lasted nearly 8 hours Tuesday at the NFL offices in New York. Attorney Steve Zashin said the Eagles’ right tackle will play this weekend at Detroit, as expected, before a decision is announced, typically in a week to 10 days.

 “There are a number of issues relative to Lane’s appeal,” Zashin said in a prepared statement. “Many of those issues strike at the heart of substantive player protection. We await the decision of the arbitrator. In the meantime, Lane will prepare and play as scheduled.”

Zashin, a Wharton grad who practices labor law in Cleveland, declined to discuss any of the issues raised. Johnson and agent Ken Sarnoff declined comment.

On the positive side, the hearing lasted a long time and Johnson did have a labor law specialist arguing for him.

On the negative side…the test results.

Best case scenario might be a reduced suspension, but I’m not holding my breath.


166 Comments on “Hidden Stat”

  1. 1 John Galt said at 9:38 PM on October 4th, 2016:

    Tommy – a post during an Orioles wild card game? Color me surprised

  2. 2 TommyLawlor said at 10:07 PM on October 4th, 2016:

    Yeah, I was reading quickly. My O’s have me a bit nervous.

  3. 3 John Galt said at 10:21 PM on October 4th, 2016:

    I bet. Phillies or Eagles elimination games I lock myself in a room from an hour before the game until it’s over.

  4. 4 Chiptomylou said at 9:48 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    Sorry about your O’s Tommy. Edwin left you guys in tears.

  5. 5 Anders said at 2:05 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    Normally suspensions can be reduced, so why cant Johnson’s?

  6. 6 A_T_G said at 6:21 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    The stuff I was reading (last thread? Twitter? I am tired.) claimed that reduction are negotiated as a means to avoid arbitration because the arbitrator is all or nothing. It doesn’t seem to match my memory, but I can’t cite a specific counterexample.

  7. 7 Anders said at 7:04 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    It makes sense. I just cant see the NFL agreeing to a reduction and I cant see Lane winning his arbitration.

  8. 8 wee2424 said at 2:28 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    Please explain because it seems every fan and reporter in Philly or even the nation for that matter have not mentioned this until now.

    I am not disputing your comment. I am just shocked by it, and even more shocked that it comes out this late in the process.

  9. 9 John Galt said at 11:35 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    I was shocked by it too – but I am just repeating what it says in Bowen’s article (which Tommy linked). First I had heard of it – and Bowen is an idiot so maybe he could be wrong, but he sounded like he was confident.

  10. 10 Hidden Stat - said at 9:40 PM on October 4th, 2016:

    […] Tommy Lawlor There are a lot of stats to examine these days. Football has really become a numbers game. It still […]

  11. 11 Dan in Philly said at 9:45 PM on October 4th, 2016:

    To be fair, this is the kind of personnel that Spags has shown he knows how to use very well. Maybe not like what we have now, but I always held that the chance to woork with what might be an elite group of DL is a big part of Shelby Schwartz came here in the first place

  12. 12 John Galt said at 10:00 PM on October 4th, 2016:

    Do we have to carry Lane on the 53 if he is suspended?

  13. 13 sonofdman said at 10:05 PM on October 4th, 2016:

    i don’t think so.

  14. 14 Sean Stott said at 12:26 AM on October 5th, 2016:


  15. 15 D3FB said at 7:59 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    Nope, If everyone stays healthy against the Lions I’ll guess CJ Smith gets the promotion.

  16. 16 sonofdman said at 10:07 PM on October 4th, 2016:

    Off topic – I have an Eagles related fantasy football question for those who are so inclined.

    Who do you think would be better to pick up and start for this week (my top two running backs are both on bye), Sproles or Smallwood? I could also pick up Chris Thompson on Washington. 14 team standard (non-PPR) league and not much out there.

  17. 17 John Galt said at 10:20 PM on October 4th, 2016:

    I would go Sproles unless we hear that Mathews will be limited again. It’s not worth having any eagle RB unfortunately.

  18. 18 sonofdman said at 10:21 PM on October 4th, 2016:

    Thanks. That is what I was thinking as well.

  19. 19 anon said at 12:53 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    smallwood. I think smallwoood is going to get a lot of carries. Sproles had some homerun plays but i think smallwood is going to eat some of KB’s and Ryan Mathews’ lunch. Sort of wonder if Ryan wouldn’t be better on a zone blocking team. Doesn’t seem as good as he was last year. Assume this will be his last year in philly.

  20. 20 eagleyankfan said at 7:43 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    In any non-ppr, Sproles doesn’t offer much…

  21. 21 Chiptomylou said at 9:45 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    Non-PPR? Probably Smallwood. I wish I didn’t think this but I believe the Eagles are going to get up big on Detroit early and run the ball in the 2nd half. That will all be Smallwood and Barner. I still think Mathews will be hurt.

  22. 22 meteorologist said at 10:19 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    Dwayne Washington if healthy or duke Johnson Jr or Cameron Artis-Payne might be worth a pickup. Be patient and comb thru the free agent list and pay attention to the buzz

  23. 23 ChoTime said at 10:08 PM on October 4th, 2016:

    Short on CB talent?
    A star, quite the equal of dumpster is born (poached from Piatz1019):

  24. 24 sonofdman said at 10:10 PM on October 4th, 2016:

    I like how physical kicking net is with receivers!

  25. 25 Baloophi said at 1:22 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    The real question is whether kicking net has been coached to turn and locate the ball…

  26. 26 ChoTime said at 1:27 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    Hardly matters, he’s got no hands.

  27. 27 Howie Littlefinger said at 1:48 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    I know that guy! He is Malcolm Jenkins cousin

  28. 28 A_T_G said at 6:14 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    Guy? That is Annette Forkikken out of PKU.

  29. 29 Anders said at 3:20 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    I think Jenkins and a few receivers would catch better if they had nets instead of hands

  30. 30 RogerPodacter said at 9:12 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    we’re slowly building up an ‘all-equipment’ team.
    Garbage Can = OL
    Fly Swatter things = DL (?)
    Kicking Net = CB

  31. 31 Stephen E. said at 11:44 PM on October 4th, 2016:

    The NFLPA is useless. Why offer an app that is absolutely unreliable? It’s worse than nothing.

  32. 32 pricebe said at 12:36 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    If Lane Johnson did use an app provided by the league that approved the drug he took he should have some kind of case

  33. 33 CrackSammich said at 2:30 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    How would you ever prove definitively that whatever supplement he’s claiming was on the app is the only one that he used?

  34. 34 Anders said at 4:19 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    Lane cant, but at least the NFLPA could have the backs of their players instead of throwing them under the bus for using an App promoted by them to the players.

  35. 35 ChoTime said at 11:44 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    Is that what’s happening here?

  36. 36 Anders said at 12:09 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Yep, the NFLPA basicly said via twitter “Screw you” to Lane

  37. 37 anon said at 12:29 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Yeah lane said he ran the product through the app and still got dinged. Nflpa will test products for you but he didn’t do that and frankly that seems like a lot to go through. Believing lane the issue is that there were unauthorized ingredients in the supplement which likely is a huge issue as there is no regulation of the supplement market.

  38. 38 Ark87 said at 7:31 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    The only way would be to supply an unopened container of the nlfpa approved substance for testing. If everything ended up consistent with Lane’s results, it might be enough to demonstrate he was acting in good faith. If that is worth anything (might not be).

    My guess is he would not be able to produce such a container, as it was just as likely human error that tainted his workout shake. Like the staff at the place he works out at during the offseason using the same spoon/equipment to prepare all the shakes for all the customers or something.

  39. 39 BlindChow said at 10:05 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    Or he actually used the banned substance, then just blamed the supplement because he wasn’t going to admit it.

  40. 40 Ark87 said at 10:18 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    Yes, absolutely. That possibility is in my blind spot because the level of sheer idiocy required…is totally plausible in an nfl player (sigh)

  41. 41 SteveH said at 3:31 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Typically that’s what I’d think, but I’d like to think that with that much money on the line he wouldn’t do that.

  42. 42 广告任务网 said at 5:34 AM on October 5th, 2016:


  43. 43 eagleyankfan said at 7:45 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    Sometimes(maybe always?), during a bye week, a team will reflect on what they have and possible switch a player(or 2) to a more prominent role. There are some rumors of Smallwood…I haven’t read much in the last week — are the Eagles moving in that direction? Any rumors of Smallwood running with the 1st team?

  44. 44 Anders said at 7:45 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    Based on what I have seen, Smallwood is clearly the 2nd best RB behind Mathews.

  45. 45 GermanEagle said at 8:57 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    You mean behind Mostert?!

  46. 46 RobNE said at 8:38 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    I’m going to be in Vegas Sunday, how do you guys feel about Eagles less the points (which I think is 3). Their WR’s scare me a little, but this again seems like a good match up for us. Their OL is just ok, and their DL isn’t great at getting pressure.

  47. 47 D3FB said at 9:09 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    Without Ansah or Levy they have no talent on D.

    Stafford has the talent to go off but also has a propensity for dumb INTs.

    I’d make a confident bet, but wouldn’t bet the farm.

  48. 48 RogerPodacter said at 9:15 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    i want to believe you, but i’m still worried.
    Ngata going up against Kelce could be trouble.
    and as Jimmy K noted, some other guy is leading the league in sacks.

    “55.7 percent of the Lions’ career sacks from their defensive front seven starters are coming from Haloti Ngata, who is now 32 and has never had more than 5.5 sacks in any one season, although previously unknown DE Kerry Hyder actually leads the league with 5 sacks.”

  49. 49 RobNE said at 10:49 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    I already live and die off the game, so throwing $50 or $100 on it really doesn’t change much. I don’t even have a farm.

  50. 50 D3FB said at 10:55 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    Ok, well don’t finance one and then gamble it on the game. Otherwise I think you’re good.

  51. 51 P_P_K said at 9:16 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    I have wagered on the Eagles for many years but stopped during the Chip era because I felt it was too hard to say what would happen when the team takes the field.
    This team is different. There is a solid plan in place which uses the roster to its full potential. The Lions are a poor team who just lost to the Bears. At -3, I’m in on this game.

  52. 52 Tumtum said at 12:23 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    I used to bet football quite a bit. I realized the odds makers are really good at what they do. I don’t bet much anymore!

  53. 53 anon said at 2:00 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    uncannily good.

  54. 54 peteike said at 2:13 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    I give my money away every year, this one no different. To be any good you have to be willing to bet teams like the Bears this past week or other teams that are against every thing you would believe would happen. They are hard to put money on but it actually works if you can do it consistently enough. I know this and still cant do it. Basically betting against the public a lot of times

  55. 55 Tumtum said at 5:09 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    The best year I had was when Peyton got hurt. There were always ridiculous spreads in favor of the other team, but they always covered.

  56. 56 P_P_K said at 3:04 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    They are the smartest guys in the room, for sure, but they can be beat. Donovan once won me a nice watch.

  57. 57 A_T_G said at 9:37 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    I think that this may not be the most objective forum in which to pose your question.

  58. 58 A_T_G said at 10:01 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    But I am also pretty sure we win by two touchdowns.

  59. 59 RobNE said at 11:52 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    at least. Maybe I can get better odds if I offer to give 14 points.

  60. 60 Ark87 said at 10:29 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    football is hella dumb, I try not to think too highly of any prognosticating enough to put money down on it.

  61. 61 Tumtum said at 12:22 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Coming off of bye I think we cover. Of course I thought Pitt was going to pound us so who knows!

  62. 62 SteveH said at 12:31 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Their was a line somewhere which was Eagles -2.5, I feel like that’s almost stealing money, I think the Eagles are going to thump the Lions. Haven’t felt this confident about any line so far this season.

  63. 63 peteike said at 2:14 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    bet on the lions and you win either way

  64. 64 RobNE said at 3:25 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    but I lose my soul. No thank you.

  65. 65 ChoTime said at 11:47 AM on October 5th, 2016:

    Eagles with the bye still atop DVOA (nasty Seattle moving in on their usual place at the top): http://www.footballoutsiders.com/dvoa-ratings/2016/week-4-dvoa-ratings

    Hey! Who would have thought we’d be at #1 for the first quarter of the season in ANY power ranking?

  66. 66 Tumtum said at 12:20 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    None of the brainiacs who create these stupid things in the first place. That is for sure.

  67. 67 ChoTime said at 12:23 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    But what do you really think?

  68. 68 laeagle said at 1:28 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    With the recent talk of Vaitai potentially getting the start at RT if Johnson is suspended, it might be time to take a fresh look at this year’s draft class. We all thought it was pretty boring, especially because of the loss of “exciting” picks. But if HV (please let his middle initial be P!) is indeed our new starter at RT, that means we’ve got the following starters as rookies:

    Carson MF Wentz

    Seumalo would probably be the starter if he wasn’t injured; at the very least, he’s definitely in the mix for the future.

    I’d say that’s a pretty decent draft class, especially compared to some of the absolute bombs from the past. What’s unexpected is that it’s a pretty decent group of starters even without accounting for Wentz.

  69. 69 A_T_G said at 1:34 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    It has been researched and put through some focus group studies. The consensus opinion is that a name like Halapoulivaati is worthy of contributing two letters to ones initials. Therefore, Halapoulivaati Vaitai can be shorted to HPV.

  70. 70 Bert's Bells said at 2:07 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    That would make his natural position G[u]ard(asil).

  71. 71 Mitchell said at 2:24 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    This is very very good. For people who dont know, Guardisil is the vaccine for teenagers against HPV.

  72. 72 peteike said at 2:32 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    oh I thought it was for the other ….sil. You know, price check in aisle 5, shes baking a loaf of bread and its a sourdough

  73. 73 RogerPodacter said at 4:54 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    lamisil? lol i just got here and i don’t know what we’re talking about
    EDIT: of course, 2 seconds after i hit post, it hits me. OHHHHHHHH i’m an idiot.

  74. 74 Blackfoot said at 2:53 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    why would he not be called just Vaitai? or Hala?
    no one wants to see HPV all over the place

  75. 75 bill said at 3:14 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    A certain company in the Philadelphia suburbs wouldn’t necessarily mind it.

  76. 76 A_T_G said at 3:16 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Well, if we didn’t want HPV, Lane should have been more careful in his extracurricular activities.

  77. 77 anon said at 1:35 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    4 games in? We thought Ags was going to be a beast this time last year.

  78. 78 A_T_G said at 1:36 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    I would say there are enough ifs and conditionals in the comment to make clear this is a formative evaluation and not a summative one.

  79. 79 Gian GEAGLE said at 3:09 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    For a team that had few picks because of the Wentz trade, to already be getting production out of rookies Wentz, Mills, Smallwood, Destiny Vaiao and possibly Vaitai in the first quarter of the season, means that Howie and the coaches have done a pretty damn good job with this draft class

  80. 80 Gian GEAGLE said at 3:17 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    If Suemqlo was healthy,he would Not be playing ahead of Brooks, Barbie or Kelce!
    Maybe he would replace Wisnewski I goal line package but even thats not certain.

  81. 81 GermanEagle said at 1:52 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Anybody having experiences with watching the Eagles at the FedEx Field in Washington before?

    I am seriously considering driving up there for a weekend.

  82. 82 RC5000 said at 2:21 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Top OT prospect Mike McGlinchey says he’s pretty confident he’s returning to Notre Dame which would make an allegedly thin OT class thinner. You never know but an old trusted poster (you may know him ndirish) on Eagles TATE said he knows Mike and Mike hasn’t spoken a word to him about declaring. He seems to think McGlinchey will stay in school.

  83. 83 RogerPodacter said at 4:53 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    man, i remember ndirish posting on the EMB from like 10 years ago. haven’t been there in AGES.

  84. 84 D3FB said at 9:00 AM on October 6th, 2016:

    If Brian Kelly gets fired and he realizes he could go top 10, I bet he rethinks it.

  85. 85 peteike said at 2:30 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    “Bradham said he was confident he would be cleared, but according to the report, he’s been charged with aggravated battery causing bodily harm, a second-degree felony. Bradham if convicted could face up to 15 years in prison. He has pled not guilty, and a trial has been set for January”

  86. 86 Dave said at 2:36 PM on October 5th, 2016:


  87. 87 laeagle said at 2:39 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    To be fair,

    1. Florida has shown to be dangerous to Eagles players walking around (see McDougle, Jerome)
    2. Barry Switzer did the exact same thing years ago, so it’s not without precedent.

  88. 88 Dave said at 3:19 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Barry Switzer and Nigel are both idiots.

    I said this a few days ago but it bears repeating, we live in a day and age where guns are an accessory afterthought for some people.

  89. 89 peteike said at 2:46 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    above was for the cabana boy incident. He needed protection from cabana boys. One wave of the gun and maybe his troubles would have subsided on the beach and the service would have been more complimentary

  90. 90 Dave said at 3:21 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    I know, it just so happened that I read your post immediately after reading Martin’s tweet, so I thought I’d share.

  91. 91 RobNE said at 3:22 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    he could try tipping instead

  92. 92 ChoTime said at 6:16 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Didn’t McDougal or something get shot in the stomach in Florida?

  93. 93 Dave said at 6:25 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Yes, Miami, the same city that Nigel was arrested in. They have serious gun violence problems down there in Miami-Dade County.

  94. 94 Cafone said at 12:30 PM on October 7th, 2016:

    There are serious gun violence problems almost everywhere now.

    Thanks Obama!

  95. 95 GermanEagle said at 2:46 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Don’t be surprised if he will never have to show up in court after settling it privately by paying that guy off…

  96. 96 peteike said at 2:47 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    good point

  97. 97 A_T_G said at 3:22 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    We need to get us one of those “fixers” like the Cowboys have.

  98. 98 D3FB said at 9:00 AM on October 6th, 2016:

    We have one. The fact you don’t know he exists proves he’s doing a good job.

  99. 99 D3FB said at 11:02 AM on October 7th, 2016:

    I’ve heard some stories that I’ll have to wait to share over a beer.

  100. 100 A_T_G said at 1:14 PM on October 7th, 2016:

    1. This is the most intriguing post since rumors that we were getting Kiko Alanzo. Hopefully this one turns out better.

    2. Why didn’t this guy confiscate all of Bradham’s guns when he got out on bond? Why isn’t Bradham owning guns a violation of sports science’s efforts to keep players healthy? Is this fixer now tethered to Bradham?

  101. 101 anon said at 3:02 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    fantasy help. Should I trade Julio + Brady for Bortles + Demarco? Sounds crazy but demarco is the best RB in the league right now.

  102. 102 Crus57 said at 3:08 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    I wouldn’t. Reliable RBs are great but they’re often easier to find than good WRs or QBs, especially since they seem to get hurt more often than other skill positions (at least in my limited fantasy experience).

  103. 103 peteike said at 3:17 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    no way, and seasons have ebbs and flows. They will hit big lulls which is very possible with Demarco. Whereas Julio is solid and Brady revenge tour is quite possible

  104. 104 Dave said at 3:20 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    If you do, please let me know as I have a bridge I would like to sell you.

  105. 105 Jesús M Hernández said at 3:22 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Maybe just Brady for Demarco which won’t happen. What is your Wr and Rb situation?

  106. 106 anon said at 3:25 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    No RBs (Smallwood, Gio, Doug Martin)
    Good WRs (Julio, Jordy, Maclin, Mike Wallace, Will Fuller)
    QBs (Brady and Matt Ryan)

  107. 107 MattE said at 4:21 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    yeah if i got DeMarco the only thing I am looking at on your squad is Julio, everything else is just noise.

  108. 108 RobNE said at 3:26 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    I don’t even play fantasy football and this looks like a horrible trade to me.

  109. 109 Julescat said at 5:05 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Julio is hot after last week

  110. 110 mksp said at 5:12 PM on October 5th, 2016:


  111. 111 iceberg584 said at 5:42 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Selling high on Julio and high on Brady’s potential (after you absorbed the suspension) isn’t necessarily a bad idea, but you need wayyy better compensation.

  112. 112 The original AG said at 3:24 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Might be helpful coming out of the bye week:


  113. 113 Ark87 said at 4:24 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Would be huge. That’s one of the potential places for the team to grow during the season. This team has been very impressive, but I think a timely breakout would be tremendous for cementing our “contender” status.

  114. 114 RogerPodacter said at 4:51 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    i’m just happy that he has looked good enough to deserve more of a role in the offense.

  115. 115 Dave said at 4:57 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Hopefully, I stashed him on my ff bench in the 2nd to last round of my draft thinking that he could really turn it on later in the year.

  116. 116 GermanEagle said at 5:07 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Here here.

  117. 117 DJH said at 8:01 PM on October 5th, 2016:


  118. 118 The original AG said at 3:30 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    I wonder if Lane and his lawyers feel confident that this will be thrown out. He didn’t take a plea deal (a la Bell) and had his agent who is a labor law lawyer from UPenn seems to think they have a strong case. I don’t disagree, but I don’t know who the arbitrator is. Judges can be kind of funny with the law whereas some are more prone to side with labor and the other with management. Where’s ACViking when you need him? We could use some additional insight on this appeal.


  119. 119 Ark87 said at 3:47 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Surely ACV is paying close attention to the appeal, but I don’t think many details of the appeal have been made available to the public to speculate on.

    I’m wondering if Lane has a legal case to leverage the appeal like Brady had, seems like they are working within the NFL appeal system for now, right?

  120. 120 The original AG said at 3:52 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Yes. But the interesting thing is how they are going about it. I’m wondering if there’s some law that they think the NFL isn’t following and if the appeal doesn’t go their way, they take it to court. Since I don’t know labor law, I can’t speak to what that is. But being a lawyer in this case as an agent has its advantages, especially labor law. Another thing I’d be interested in, is if this does go past appeal to court, who the friend of court briefs would be from.

  121. 121 John Galt said at 4:20 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Just to clarify – and its not a big deal – but the labor lawyer they brought in for the appeal is not his agent. Perhaps since they brought in an outside person that means that the case is strong, but with the NFL I will believe it when I see it.

    From Les Bowen Article:

    “There are a number of issues relative to Lane’s appeal,” Zashin said in a prepared statement. “Many of those issues strike at the heart of substantive player protection. We await the decision of the arbitrator. In the meantime, Lane will prepare and play as scheduled.”

    Zashin, a Wharton grad who practices labor law in Cleveland, declined to discuss any of the issues raised. Johnson and agent Ken Sarnoff declined comment.”

  122. 122 Dave said at 4:56 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Was he actually offered a reduced suspension like Bell or are you just guessing? I did not read that anywhere else.

  123. 123 The original AG said at 5:00 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Going by what Les Bowen suggested/said. He’s usually good about reporting on what he’s told, it’s his game analysis that isn’t very good.

  124. 124 Dave said at 5:23 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    OK, I read Les’s posts as they would only offer him a reduced sentence after the hearing but before the arbitrator’s ruling. Either way, we should know by Thanksgiving;-P

  125. 125 Gian GEAGLE said at 3:31 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Looks like Ziggy Ansah, Levy and Ebron won’t play Sunday…while we will be at full strength. Hopefully the good health continues especially thought the trenches
    Carson Palmer has been ruled out of the San Fran game which is the last thing that the Cardinals can afford right now
    Kevin white is back on I.R

  126. 126 HawaiianEagle said at 4:30 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Do I need to reconsider? I know it really doesn’t matter what the talking heads say when it comes to game predictions but, in what universe will the Lions beat us Sunday? I just don’t see it…

  127. 127 Sean Stott said at 4:34 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    It’s really not the NBA where you can be very confident in who will win. Turnovers and fumbles can be very random and have high influence on the game. You have to look at it as… if they played each other 100 times, how many times do you think the Eagles win? I’d guess the Eagles win at least 80% of those scenarios, if not more. But there are certainly scenarios where Wentz fumbles it and DET recovers it at the PHI 20, and gets a TD, followed by a key player on PHI getting injured.

  128. 128 HawaiianEagle said at 5:26 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Well then why pick any game? Barring any of those factors you mention, what makes some think DET will have a better team/out play us at the line of scrimage/throw better than us/run better than us/have a better D than us…on Sunday?

  129. 129 Sean Stott said at 5:50 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    If I think they win that game 80% of the time with at least a margin of victory of 3 points, then I bet on it. I might lose my bet 20% of the time, but that’s why it’s gambling.

  130. 130 ChoTime said at 6:14 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Well, you did say “in what universe,” as if it would be some kind of huge improbability. And really, it wouldn’t, even if the Eagles are as good as they have appeared. The better teams lose all the time.

  131. 131 RobNE said at 3:39 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    I didn’t read the article but on si.com Peter King says right now Bradford is the NFL MVP. That’s funny b/c I thought he was game managing. Just when I think I can’t think less of Peter King he lowers the bar. He would never survive if we were starting out today. It’s just more access (but less smarts) than anyone else.

  132. 132 The original AG said at 3:41 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Well they did lose their starting QB and starting RB, and are now 4-0. There’s a case to be made there. Not saying it’s right, but I can see how it could happen.

    Peyton Manning won MVP in his first Superbowl win, even though there were like 4-5 other players on that team that were more deserving. That doesn’t include the #1 person from the other team in that game, Rex Grossman.

  133. 133 BlindChow said at 7:17 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    They’re 31st in offense. Their defense is the reason they’re 4-0, not Bradford.

    It would be odd if all you have to do to win MVP was not throw interceptions…

  134. 134 anon said at 4:02 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    He joined that team 4 weeks ago. He’s doing a pretty great job considering. Remember what happened when they got Josh Freeman and tried to put him in after a week?

  135. 135 Tumtum said at 6:19 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    If I recall it wasn’t even a week before Freeman started, and then he never had another shot. That was almost as crazy as not using your best pitcher in a 1 game playoff…almost.

  136. 136 anon said at 7:01 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Must have been a tough night. Sucks liking a team that’s good but can’t seem to get over the hump.

  137. 137 Sean Stott said at 4:31 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    He’s a shill. Really really really can’t stand the guy.

    I especially hate his navel gazing series of “Things I think I think”. Is there anything more cringy?

  138. 138 Ark87 said at 4:33 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    I wouldn’t come out and pronounce it as fact, maybe float it out there for thoughtful consideration. Like oh this Vikings team was 1 piece away from being a legit contender, that piece was Sam Bradford, even in losing AP. People would mull it over and say, nice thought but no.

    The other consideration is that his competition in the QB field seems sort of unlikely. Basically Wentz, Dak, Matt Ryan, Wilson after a Gutsy and awesome performance in Seattle. Big Ben had a big up, but he is probably not be the MVP of his offense. Which brings us to the idea that the MVP might not be a QB, which makes things interesting.

  139. 139 Sean Stott said at 4:35 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    All reasons why discussing an MVP before week 5 starts is silly. Almost as silly as pre-season power rankings.

  140. 140 Ark87 said at 4:38 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    True, grand pronouncements are dumb at this point. But it is interesting to think about. Does Brady have the highest odds right now without having taken a snap? Or would they actually give it to a rookie? If Wentz wins 11+ games by playing like he has been, why not? No one else has lit the world on fire.

  141. 141 Bert's Bells said at 4:44 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Pats at 3-1 without Brady brings him down in the MVP rankings.

  142. 142 Ark87 said at 4:46 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    I thought so too, but if Brady come back and plays like Brady, Makes Gronk a facotr again, the vulnerabilities they showed vs the Bills instantly become insignificant and they become instant superbowl favorites right?

  143. 143 Bert's Bells said at 4:57 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Superbowl favorites, sure. But now the world is convinced that Belichick can win with anybody under center, Brady’s less MVP. Plus, he stumped for Trump and you know people hate that.

  144. 144 Ark87 said at 5:25 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Great points, can’t undersell the popularity contest portion of MVP.

  145. 145 Sean Stott said at 5:49 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    I love that, made me like Brady more.

    I think BB is a genius, but people definitely remember that he just got shutout by the Bills of all teams

  146. 146 Bert's Bells said at 6:03 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Fuck Brady and Fuck Trump.

  147. 147 A_T_G said at 6:14 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    I stopped reading at Wentz. The MVP voters should too.

  148. 148 Ark87 said at 6:17 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    You and MVP voters should stop reading half-way through my comments because my posts are long, boring, and non-sense, first and foremost.

  149. 149 ChoTime said at 6:13 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    King comes up with some amazingly stupid crap. Kind of encapsulates all the bad things that can happen in a low-information environment. Not that he killed anything or anyone.

    Bradford’s ranked #7 in the league by DVOA, whereas last year he finished up at #24. Wentz is at #5 currently, Dak at #4. But Bradford as MVP candidate? He should get injured now, because his reputation’s at its height.

  150. 150 Tumtum said at 6:17 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Yep. That defense isn’t at all why they are winnning.

  151. 151 scratcherk said at 5:31 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Big v in for lane at RT a possibility per Doug. Would be great not to break up the left side of the line. But he didn’t play particularly well in the preseason.

  152. 152 ACViking said at 6:29 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Re: Lane Johnson Appeal to the PEDs Suspension

    In answer to The Original AG . . . I’m putting something together on this.

    One serious disability — as Ark87 pointed out — is we’re not privy to the facts before the arbitrator.

    Anyway, there’s at least one argument — based on the limited public information we have, assuming it’s true — that may give LJ a legal out, despite the NFLPA’s response to LJ’s finger-pointing back in August.

    In short form . . . There’s no disputing that the NFL management council (the owners) and the NFLPA agree that violating the PEDs policy is a strict liability offense — subject to an extraordinary-circumstances defense (like “the beef-at-the-restaurant” argument).

    The PEDs Policy expressly warns (Sec. 3.5), just because you ask your team doctor or trainer if a supplement is safe, you’re still responsible:

    Players are responsible for what is in their bodies and a positive test will not be excused because a Player was unaware that he was taking a Prohibited Substance.

    But the PEDs policy also says the following (Sec. 3.5):

    Questions concerning dietary supplements should be directed to the Independent Administrator and/or the NFL Players Association’s Director of Drug Policies at [redacted].

    The PEDs policy is silent about the NFLPA app on which LJ says he relied.

    But the quoted language about putting your questions to the NFLPA Director of Drug Policies may be the soft spot.

    To date, as far as we know, no arbitrator’s ruled that . . .

    (i) using the NFLPA app does *not* constitute a “question” — for purposes of Sec. 3.5, and

    (ii) Sec. 3.5’s “question” language is not a *safe harbor* for violators.

    Until an arbitrator rules on the precise legal meaning of this language, it may — if this arbitrator agrees — open the door to a *good faith* defense for Johnson.

    While this may seem like common sense, that’s not a legal standard.

    Also, there may exist side-letter agreements that have never been made public between the NFL and the NFLPA concerning the meaning of Sec. 3.5.

    In any case . . . there’s more to this argument, but that’s the short version.

  153. 153 Dave said at 6:32 PM on October 5th, 2016:


  154. 154 anon said at 6:39 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    If only they’d used a “Notwithstanding the foregoing” in the latter part of 3.5. To me even if you had a question and got advice from the NFLPA then you still fall under the general strict liability rule.

  155. 155 ACViking said at 9:34 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    I think you’re right.

  156. 156 Nailed It! said at 6:41 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Whats your opinion on bird law?

  157. 157 The original AG said at 7:23 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Awesome, thanks.

  158. 158 A_T_G said at 8:06 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Wow, the ACViking spot light gets aimed at the clouds and there you are.

  159. 159 mksp said at 12:16 AM on October 6th, 2016:

    This may be my favorite post in igglesblitz history.

    Legal Theory! Explained vis-a-vis Football!


  160. 160 RogerPodacter said at 9:43 AM on October 6th, 2016:

    great post! i’d like to hear more about this ” “the beef-at-the-restaurant” argument”, if you have the time. Yea, i could probably just google it, but i suddenly have great trust in your ability to explain law stuff to me as if i were a child (thats a good thing, thanks).

  161. 161 Dave said at 7:28 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    I was just thinking that it’s 4 weeks into the season and both Rueben Randle and Chris Givens are still unemployed. Many in the media had one or both of them penciled in as starters at the beginning of training camp. Then again, they also had Bradford as a starter. Funny how fast things can change.

  162. 162 anon said at 7:32 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    given our WR corps if you can’t play in philly where can you play

  163. 163 Dave said at 7:35 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Detroit, their WRs actually have more drops than the Birds.

  164. 164 Bert's Bells said at 9:10 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    I wonder if they may have stuck around on another team if they signed originally in free agency. Not every GM is going to cut bait like Howie.

  165. 165 anon said at 8:58 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Is Smallwood startable in fantasy this week? Sproles?

  166. 166 John Galt said at 9:58 PM on October 5th, 2016:

    Unfortunately, no