Strange Days and Misc Stuff

Posted: August 22nd, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 43 Comments »

We’re in the no man’s land of the summer.  We’ve seen 2 preseason games.  We’re very confused about what we’ve seen.  It doesn’t feel like time to panic because the regular season is still 3 weeks away, but we also know that there is just one more rehearsal game for the starters until the real deal.   What do you make of the Eagles right now?

Making things seem even weirder is the situation at RT.  Winston Justice is getting better we’re told, but remains on the PUP list and his knee is admittedly sore.  Not good.  His initial replacement, King Dunlap, was so bad the Eagles went and signed a free agent, Ryan Harris, to handle RT.  Harris looked good, but as advertised, hasn’t been able to stay healthy.  Now Dunlap is back atop the depth chart and looks much better.

Behind Dunlap is Justice, Harris, LG Evan Mathis, or newly signed G Reggie Wells.  Actually, make that re-signed.  Reggie was a key member of the backup O-line last year.  He was punctual and worked well with others (especially those he was allegedly supposed to be blocking).

Strange days indeed.

* * * * *

Veteran C Jamaal Jackson is going to sit on Thursday night so that rookie Jason Kelce can play with the starters.  What should we make of this?  Sure seems like Howard Mudd is hell bent on getting an athletic guy at C.  Kelce will beat Jackson in that regard every single time.  Kelce has played pretty well this summer, but it does feel funny that the coaches are pushing him so strongly.  Jackson has looked okay to me.

* * * * *

Now we hear that backup RB Ronnie Brown will be tried out at KOR.  I actually like this move.  No WR/RS has jumped out in a way that makes me want that guy on the field for sure.  It would be great to save a roster spot and give the KOR job to Brown.  You could then us DeSean Jackson and Jeremy Maclin to handle punt return duties.

Dion Lewis was listed on the depth chart as a possible RS.  If we’re going to have 3 active RBs on gameday, we need 1 or 2 to contribute on STs.

Ronnie has the potential to be a solid KOR.  He has good hands.  He catches the ball well.  He runs hard.  He’s pretty fearless.  That’s it.  You don’t need great moves or anything like that to be a KOR.  PR is a different story.  That’s where you need to make guys miss.  The KOR is more likely to have success by breaking arm tackles at full speed than slowing down and using juke moves on defenders.

* * * * *

What is up with Trevor Laws’ hip?  He hasn’t practiced in a while.  You have to wonder if he’s going to play this week.  Laws will not make the Eagles based on speculation.  He’s got to show Jim Washburn something in practice or a game.

I am so disappointed in what’s happened with him.  I thought Trevor finally had a system that matched his skill set.  I really wanted to see what he could do.  Bad luck with getting hurt when he did.  That could cost him his job.

Juqua Parker has a tougher situation to understand.  He is still atop the depth chart at LDE.  He’s missed several practices and the Steelers game.  I don’t know if any player has stepped up enough in his absence to push for Juqua’s roster spot.  I think Jason Babin should and will be the starter.  Do you keep Parker as the backup?  Do you shift either Tapp or Teo over there?  Is Phillip Hunt a serious threat to make the roster?

Parker is a proven player, but he’s older and injured.  That’s not a good combination.  We’ll see how quickly he comes back.  I don’t expect him to get cut/traded, but I also don’t think he’s a 100 percent lock to be here on opening day.

* * * * *

Someone asked about Mike McGlynn having trade value.  I do think he has some, but not much.  I expect him to play a lot in the preseason finale.  A strong game by him could land us a late round pick.  A poor game means we’ll have to settle for a set of steak knives.

I do think Mike can play.  Put him at RG in a run heavy offense and he’s got a chance to be a solid starter.  I think the Broncos would be an ideal spot for him.  Mike isn’t a good fit for the new blocking system here and he’s struggled this summer.

* * * * *

Safety Nate Allen is dealing with tendonitis in his knee.  Jonathan Tamari reported that Allen may split time with Jarrad Page on Thursday night.  They did split time in practice today.  That’s fine with me.  I want Nate to start if he’s 100 percent or close to it.  Page has been very good in his 2 weeks as an Eagle.  He has earned playing time.

43 Comments on “Strange Days and Misc Stuff”

  1. 1 nicolajNN said at 5:28 PM on August 22nd, 2011:

    I thought Parker being listed #1 was to increase trade value, of course him being injured doesn’t help that case.

    Last week I read that in 10 of 16 games we will face an opponent with 3-4 defense. With that in mind it might be wiser to use Jamaal at center to handle the big NTs. Do you agree with that Tommy or would that be in your considerations if you were to make the decision?

  2. 2 Jalarsen1 said at 5:30 PM on August 22nd, 2011:

    Center confuses me. One of the issues it seems like we had with McGlynn last year was that he didn’t recognize complex blitz situations and couldn’t obviously communicate responsibilities at the line.

    Jamaal is pretty good at this. That fact alone should thrust him above a rookie who regardless of his athleticism won’t be able to recognize the blitz.

    Getting pressure on Vick is key to slowing him down. We did and will continue to see a tremendous amount of pressure and complex looks (especially with Rob Ryan)…I want a guy that will be able to recognize that.

  3. 3 Tommy Lawlor said at 6:16 PM on August 22nd, 2011:

    @ Jalarsen…

    Reportedly the QB will now have a stronger hand in blitz adjustments. That takes pressure off the C. That makes it easier for Kelce to play right away.

  4. 4 Austinfan said at 6:21 PM on August 22nd, 2011:

    I think people are reading too much into Kelce starting, unless he makes a significant jump, JJ will be the starting center. However, given that JJ has missed the last TWO seasons, it would be prudent to give Kelce as many snaps as possible in the preseason.

    Dunlap is going to end up as the RT, Harris didn’t show much before he hurt his back, and although he has a good track record, he’s been injury prone. Mathis can swing outside, and if he plays some more RT and looks as good as Harris, he might kick Harris off the island. I’m starting to suspect that Justice is damaged goods, now they’re saying he had two offseason surgeries? And he still can’t plant on that leg? There’s a lot more going on in that knee than a simple “clean out,” I suspect some degenerative condition that will only get worse. Dunlap made a big jump against the Steelers, and if he continues his improvement against the Browns, the job is his to lose, though I would like to see him against a physical LDE, not just OLBs.

    McGlynn is gone, Reynolds, Tupou, Shipley, gone.
    Mathis, Vandervelde, Kelce and a dog fight with Harris, Wells, Howard for the last spot.

  5. 5 Tommy Lawlor said at 6:42 PM on August 22nd, 2011:

    @ nicolajNN…

    The 3-4 angle is tricky. Those teams generally shift to a 4-2-5 when they go Nickel and 4-1-6 when they go Dime. That means that no matter what, you will face more 4-man fronts than 3-man looks and pure NTs.

    There is no question that Kelce vs big DTs/NTs makes me nervous. I remember watching Leon Lett shove Guy McIntyre around in the 1995 playoffs and being just depressed at how helpless that was. McIntyre was a LG for us. Lett wasn’t huge, but was very powerful. Rodney Peete had the crap beat out of him by Lett and the Boys. Images like that absolutely make you nervous about smaller OL protecting your skill players.

  6. 6 McG said at 6:56 PM on August 22nd, 2011:

    As much as I like Nate Allen, I’m glad we have some quality depth at safety. Knee injuries suck!

  7. 7 Cliff said at 7:34 PM on August 22nd, 2011:

    Leave it to the Raiders to spend a 3rd round pick on Pryor.

  8. 8 Thunderlips said at 8:33 PM on August 22nd, 2011:

    Joe Thomas now gets a huge contract. After Chris Johnson’s deal gets done, I’m guessing Desean will have some lofty goals. Can’t blame him though; with his skill set, this will probably be the only big pay day he sees.

  9. 9 owumd said at 8:48 PM on August 22nd, 2011:

    Is everyone still in the midst of pretending that Nate Allen’s injury from last year won’t affect him this year, due to offseason and early training camp reports that he was ahead of schedule?

    Better question: Is everyone gearing up to make this same mistake next season, when one of our current starters is also recoving from a severe knee injury?

    Existential question: Will we ever reach a point where football fans and media simply internalize the lesson that knee injuries require two seasons for a player to return to their pre-injury level?

    Final question: Am I the only one who thinks of these questions vis-a-vis Stewart Bradley whenever the LB situation is discussed?

  10. 10 Cliff said at 8:56 PM on August 22nd, 2011:

    I’m pretty sure all of those questions were intended to be statements. LOL

    I know we’ve all heard it by now, but this 49ers-Raiders story is just disgusting:

    If the NFL was serious about eliminating this and other B.S. at games, it would come up with a way to – dare I say it – curb alcohol abuse at games. I go to the Eagles-Redskins game every year at FedEx Field and every year there’s a bunch of drunk idiots fighting and throwing up all over our section. And these aren’t the cheap seats either! Our seats go for something like $150 each. Who pays that much to go to a game and act like that?


  11. 11 Cliff said at 8:57 PM on August 22nd, 2011:

    Oh! And not to mention tens of thousands of drunk drivers trying to maneuver through traffic back to the interstate after the game.

  12. 12 Tommy Lawlor said at 8:59 PM on August 22nd, 2011:

    RE: knee stuff

    Remember that Nate had a torn patellar and not an ACL. This injury heals differently. Your point about not falling for “I’m healthy” is still valid. The drafting of Jarrett and signing of Page gives the Eagles good depth at S.

    RE: Stew

    Problem for him is that he’s getting older and can’t seem to stay healthy. Do you pay that guy big money and build around him? I think the Eagles may have talked to him about a 1-yr deal, but Stew got a really good offer from the Cards and had to jump. ARZ is looking for big LBs so Stew was worth the risk for them.

  13. 13 Arby said at 9:35 PM on August 22nd, 2011:

    I’d be very surprised if Trevor Laws was cut. Can’t he be put on IR? He started to come on last year and supposedly had a good off-season before getting injured. I have to think a couple of the DT’s he competing against are 1 year rentals, therefore there’s more motivation to keep him around for the future.

  14. 14 J.OName said at 9:40 PM on August 22nd, 2011:

    Man I am really upset about Ryan Harris. I thought we finally solved the RT spot. Dude sounds like Shawn Andrews II. King Dunlap had a great game but is he really a starting RT? He seems more like a good number 2 to me. The thought of him against Tuck and PP twice a year scares me. I know the Eagles tried for Doug Free, but why does every year it seem like they just try a band-aide at RT. You have a left handed QB. Get a real RT. Winston is done, Harris has a stubbed back and seems like he doesn’t want to be here and King has one good game and now he is the starter? I am more scared about this team than I was about Eagles teams in the past few years.

  15. 15 JakFTW said at 9:53 PM on August 22nd, 2011:


    Trevor Laws is a free agent after this year (, which kind of puts him in the same position as these one-year rentals. Of course, if we put him on IR (as opposed to cutting him), I guess it takes away his opportunity to catch on elsewhere this year and we have an easier shot of signing him next year – seems like a stretch though and kind of unfair to the guy.

    Are there any rules against cutting someone who is injured?

  16. 16 Tommy Lawlor said at 9:57 PM on August 22nd, 2011:

    @ J.O.

    Eagles had Runyan from 2000-08.

    They had Shawn Andrews penciled in for 2009. He got hurt and Winston Justice stepped in and played well. He was then given an extension. He got hurt in 2010 and was up and down.

    Eagles expected Dunlap to push Justice this year. Thought Austin Howard might also factor in.

    To say the Eagles have ignored RT isn’t true at all. Not all plans are going to work out. You can blame the Eagles for relying on guys coming off injury, but in each of those cases they thought the young players behind the injured guys could step up. Dunlap might just do a good job of that this year.

  17. 17 Kyle said at 10:15 PM on August 22nd, 2011:

    2 weeks ago- everyone screaming their heads off in joy

    today- taterdungeon

    everyone needs to relax.

    after what we saw on thursday, with the talent on this team, lol it cant get worse. at least i hope it cant.

    things will get better, its only a preseason game against a excellent team with chemistry that was just in the superbowl.

  18. 18 DB said at 10:17 PM on August 22nd, 2011:

    Giants kicking the crap out of the Bears. I bet they’d trade places with us in a heartbeat after the news of their CB out for the season. Pre-season is all about injuries.

  19. 19 Name said at 10:39 PM on August 22nd, 2011:

    @ JakFTW

    Didn’t realize he was in his last year, that makes him more vulnerable. But I just don’t think the Eagles are ready to give up on him yet. They have a lot invested in him – I think he starts the season with the team one way or another.

  20. 20 Stephen said at 10:47 PM on August 22nd, 2011:

    Tatergeddon, thats a word I haven’t read in a while. The more I think about us getting debacled last thursday, the more I’m happy it happened. I’d rather we got smacked in the mouth as early as possible so anyone who was actually buying that dream team nonsense wakes up and realizes that in the NFL, the distance between the top teams and the bottom teams is never as far as people want to think.

  21. 21 netherman said at 11:32 PM on August 22nd, 2011:

    I feel better after the hangover of last week’s game subsided. It does make you wonder what would happen if preseason was shortened to only two games though. I mean, I remember people on the radio mentioning that teams would just have additional “scrimmages”, but how do you get away with that if you only get so many minutes of live hitting in training camp. It seems to take the Eagles all 4 preseason games plus a game or so to get settled in, and something would need to drastically change for us to not fall behind early. I am probably in the minority, but I hope they never change to the 2 + 18 schedule.

  22. 22 Tommy Lawlor said at 12:01 AM on August 23rd, 2011:

    I hate the idea of an 18 game schedule.

    If they change anything, go 17 and 3. That way we’d have no more .500 teams. You have winning season or losing season.

    And I do want at least 3 PS games. First one is to shake off rust. Next is game to play starters a lot. Final game is to let young guys compete for spots.

  23. 23 Fyzx Guy said at 12:40 AM on August 23rd, 2011:

    17+3 sounds great. make the extra game a neutral site. This would give LA its 8 games and spread the game to London and other places in Europe, Mexico and around the globe.

  24. 24 JakFTW said at 12:41 AM on August 23rd, 2011:

    I agree – If they do want to ‘enhance’ the season, they should go to 17 games.

    Besides the points Tommy mentioned, each team could play their 17th game in a non-home location – making room for more games like London – eg Mexico, Canada, and newer markets like Asia. This would maintain the balance of home and away games while also giving an opportunity to expand the reach of the NFL.

  25. 25 JakFTW said at 12:42 AM on August 23rd, 2011:

    Nevermind… Fyzx Guy beat me to it.

  26. 26 Stephen said at 1:26 AM on August 23rd, 2011:

    The 18 game schedule is just another cash grab by the owners. They’re a bunch of greedy shmucks thats for sure. I can’t believe the 49’ers owner took the recent shootings at the 49’ers-Oakland game as an opportunity to schill for the 18 game schedule. People like him are disgusting.

  27. 27 Cliff said at 5:13 AM on August 23rd, 2011:

    At first, I liked the idea of a 17 game schedule for what Tommy said – no more .500 teams. But I sure as hell don’t want my team playing on a neutral site or out of the country for one game. While I think the idea of the NFL spreading its game in Europe and the rest of North America is great, preparation for those games would become more about the destination than the opponent.

    The only neutral site I want to play on is the Super Bowl.

  28. 28 ppk said at 7:14 AM on August 23rd, 2011:

    A friend of mine suggested an 18 game schedule with two bye weeks.

  29. 29 Linky – August 23, 2011 – The end of Ramses Barden as a Giant? – Blogging the bEast said at 7:23 AM on August 23rd, 2011:

    […] Strange days and misc stuff – Tommy Lawlor – Tommy Lawlor, Iggles Blitz […]

  30. 30 ATG said at 7:33 AM on August 23rd, 2011:

    I think we should move to a 6 game schedule. Each game would consist of 4 60-minute quarters, one each played on Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.

    Players and coaches would not be able to leave the field area during this time. At each meal time, there could be a challenge activity, the winning team receiving a extra something with their meal. Each dinnertime, live game animals would be released into the stadium, to be hunted and eaten.

    Fans, home and away, could purchase medical supplies and comfort items, like cots, blankets, MRI-time, or IV bag, for their players.

    Think of the marketing opportunities. Think of the TV packages. Picture Trent Cole and Kevin Kolb, each armed with a long-cleated shoe, competing to bring down the warthog grazing behind the replay booth. Picture Albert Haynesworth after 4 days in the Arizona sun, unbathed.

  31. 31 penn7980 said at 8:16 AM on August 23rd, 2011:

    Re the RT spot, the FO is not doing drastic moves to boost the roster. This suggests that they are either OK with who are on the roster or waiting someone to heal/emerge; or there is simply no better option out there.

    If Justice is indeed in more serious knee problem than they have revealed, he is not the guy they are counting on. Dunlap is the front runner for the job now. Harris played well before he hurts his back again. Another injury case that can’t be counted on. Wells is not the favorite of the panel here. That only leaves Howard and Mathis. I’d expect both to stick as back-up. Adding a new FA this late is not a wise move, unless the guy knows Mudd’s system very well.

  32. 32 Stan said at 9:54 AM on August 23rd, 2011:

    So how many quarters will the starters play on Thursday?

  33. 33 rage114 said at 9:54 AM on August 23rd, 2011:

    “Reggie was a key member of the backup O-line last year. He was punctual and worked well with others (especially those he was allegedly supposed to be blocking).”

    Umm. What’s up with this? This sounds like there is a story behind it….

  34. 34 Steve D. said at 10:22 AM on August 23rd, 2011:

    @ATG, the ratings for this would be incredible. But in order to increase viewers even more, there needs to be a way for players to get voted out after each quarter (of course, there will be some sort of immunity related to the challenge activity).

    @rage114, I think Tommy was joking about why Reggie was brought back when he didn’t play very well last season.

  35. 35 Thunderlips said at 10:43 AM on August 23rd, 2011:

    I’m for an 18 week season (16 games, 2 Bye weeks). Players would benefit from extra rest/recovery time. Owners would get an extra week of games to sell to the networks. Fans get to watch more football. Win-win-win.

  36. 36 Netherman said at 11:26 AM on August 23rd, 2011:


    Mike V = Mockingjay?

  37. 37 Tommy Lawlor said at 12:05 PM on August 23rd, 2011:

    @ rage114…

    That was just my bizarre sense of humor. Sometimes I forget that not everyone lives in my world.

    @ ATG…

    Brilliant. My game reviews would finally be able to break 100 pages. I’d also have a chance for an obituary section. That would pretty much be awesome.

  38. 38 Tommy Lawlor said at 12:09 PM on August 23rd, 2011:

    @ Stan…

    Starters will play the whole first half. They will come out and play in the 3rd Qtr. If they play well, they’ll only see a drive or two in the 3rd. If the guys are struggling, they’ll stay out for all of the 3rd Qtr.

    The 4th then belongs to the backups.

  39. 39 Steve said at 1:30 PM on August 23rd, 2011:

    Why couldn’t we play a good team in week 3 like the Jets? I don’t want to get hyped up over beating the Browns.

  40. 40 CVD said at 1:43 PM on August 23rd, 2011:

    I agree w austinfan about Justice. Something isn’t right. I don’t feel like he will be ready anytime soon. Also Justice talked last year about how injuries can affect you later in life and all that, so he doesn’t sound like a guy willing to play hurt.

    One thing I worry with Dunlap is how he will do against 34 teams with good outside backers. He played well against Atlanta and I’m not sure but he didn’t seem too bad against Tennessee but I think he got hurt, but when we brought him in against San Fran he got demolished.

    Also Dunlap hasn’t played a full season in 5 years (he was benched his senior year). If Dunlap starts I hope he can make it through the season. RT is the only spot that worries me. Im fine with the defense as long as we are scoring points. Our run defense does worry me but if we score a lot then we should be fine.

  41. 41 ppk said at 3:54 PM on August 23rd, 2011:

    In some ways I’m more concerned about the establishment of a set O line than the specific players. The guys need a chance to play together and get in sync. Hopefully decisions will be made after the game Thurs.

  42. 42 Cafone said at 4:26 PM on August 23rd, 2011:

    Juqua Parker tops my list of the most under appreciated Eagles of the last decade.

  43. 43 Tommy Lawlor said at 4:34 PM on August 23rd, 2011:

    @ Cafone…

    I’ve been trying to cut Parker for 4 or 5 years, but the guy is like Rasputin. And I mean that in a good way. I respect the hell out of players who show up and do their job every year. All kinds of competition comes, but they don’t flinch. Just do your job and let the chips fall where they may.