Red Hot Eagles

Posted: December 4th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 118 Comments »

We all know the Eagles are hot, having won 4 games in a row. But I didn’t realize just how good the numbers are.

That is pretty freakin’ impressive, huh.

For the year, Football Outsiders has the Eagles up to 9th in DVOA. They are 3rd in offense, 25th in defense and 19th in STs.

Every time I try to go and calm down expectations with this team, someone finds a stat that makes you start to wonder just how good this group can be. Can they sustain this? Can they improve on it?

I wrote about that angle for  I think this is a lot more than a hot streak. I see the Eagles as playing good football. As I studied the Cardinals 4-game win streak, that felt more like a solid team taking advantage of circumstances. I don’t believe in the Cards. I do believe in the Eagles. Time will prove if that is wise or not.

* * * * *

Will the Eagles re-sign Jeremy Maclin in the offseason?

My guess is that the team will try to do that. It would make sense for both sides to do a 1-year deal. Mac is coming off a torn ACL. He’s going to have a limited market. The best thing would be to stay with his current team, doctors and rehab people. Get back on the field and then show all 32 teams where he is. Mac is still young. If he has a good year in 2014, he could go get a big deal the next offseason.

I’m sure seeing what Riley Cooper is doing has to get Mac’s attention. He is a better WR than Coop, in terms of positional skills and athletic ability. Mac has to know he could make some big plays and post good numbers.

We know the Eagles love bargains. Getting Mac at a reduced rate, even if just for a season, has to be an attractive idea. If Mac thrives, you work on an extension. If he doesn’t, you let him walk.

The Eagles have other factors to consider. Cooper is a free agent. I’m sure they’d like him back, but at what cost? I have to think Jason Avant is gone. He is a skilled veteran, but seems very replaceable in this offense. Avant has great value as a person and leader, but as a WR he isn’t a compelling player. DeSean Jackson’s contract can be torn up, but the Eagles have to want him back. There may need to be some re-working of the numbers, but I’d expect that situation to work itself out.

* * * * *

Cardinals coach Bruce Arians went on a radio show and again complained about officiating. He’s highly frustrated by the inconsistency of calls and how different crews call games.

Compare that to how Chip Kelly and Bill Davis deal with officials. They don’t publicly complain. Kelly loves to say “That’s the call they made so it must be the right call.”

Davis admits that different crews calls games in different ways. He talked at his press conference about how he tells his players to adjust to the officials. “If they’re letting you play, do it. If they’re calling it tight, back off with the contact.” Davis isn’t complaining at all. You simply adjust.

And as he points out…calls tend to even out over the course of a season.

I love the fact the Eagles coaches are not looking for excuses or something to complain about. They’re focused on the opponent. That’s something they can control and do something about. Complaining about officiating is a waste of your time and energy. If the NFL told Arians he was right about all 15 complaints, would that change the game? Would it make him feel better? Would it help him prepare for the Rams this week?

Bruce is a long-time NFL assistant and someone that is highly respected, but the more he complains, the less I like him.

* * * * *

Jimmy Bama might be the hackiest hack in the whole hack world, but the man knows punters. And he loves Donnie Jones.

• In 2012, 40 of the Eagles’ 71 punts were returned. That’s 56.3%. Half of the returned punts (20) went for at least 10 yards. This season, only 22 of the Eagles’ 65 punts (33.8%) have been returned. A grand total of 1 punt return has gone for 10+ yards.

• In 2012, the Eagles were 31st in net punting average, at 36.9. This season, the Eagles’ net punting average is 41.3, which is good for 7th in the NFL.

• In 2012, the Eagles were dead last in punts inside the 20, with 15 of them. This season, Jones already has 29 punts inside the 20, which is 2nd in the NFL.

Go read the whole post. It is basically Jimmy’s love letter to Donnie. I’ve got Megan Fox. He gets Donnie Jones. That seems fair to me.


118 Comments on “Red Hot Eagles”

  1. 1 goeagles55 said at 3:33 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    Donnie Jones ≫ Dhani Jones

  2. 2 Insomniac said at 4:10 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    Donnie Football > Johnny Football

  3. 3 Phils Goodman said at 4:54 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    I don’t see how the Eagles are in any position to pressure Desean into restructuring his contract, in my opinion, considering the season he is having.

  4. 4 Anders said at 5:48 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    Jackson would still get the same money, but he would actually get more upfront. It is just away to manipulate the cap

  5. 5 Phils Goodman said at 5:55 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    His current contract is middle-loaded so that the most money is due in 2013 and 2014, plus he is on pace for one or two significant escalators to kick in. They would have to pony up a lot of up-front guaranteed money to make a restructure worth his while.

  6. 6 Anders said at 8:09 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    You misunderstand how a restructure works.

    but looking at Deseans deal, there really isnt a point in restructuring as his cap hit will be 12 mill the next 3 years, so unless Howie think the cap will rise a lot, just doing nothing is the best thing.

  7. 7 Phils Goodman said at 8:51 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    No I don’t. They work by distributing bonus prorations over the length of the deal. But thanks for butting in, misunderstanding my post, coming to the same conclusion that I did and then telling me I don’t know what I’m taking about. Appreciated.

  8. 8 Anders said at 9:01 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    you said this, I wrong took it as Jackson would have to get a lot up front money because he would lose out on money.
    “They would have to pony up a lot of up-front guaranteed money to make a restructure worth his while.”

    It does seem you know it works, but your comment about made it seems other wise.

    Regarding why the Jackson deal is not worth for us (not for him), is because is it worth for us to increase his already high cap hit in 15 and 16 for relief in 14?

  9. 9 Andy124 said at 9:30 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    Side note:
    You’re in a public forum. There is no such thing as “butting in”.

  10. 10 BlindChow said at 9:41 AM on December 4th, 2013:


  11. 11 Andy124 said at 9:59 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    Sorry, I’ll butt out now. 🙂

  12. 12 planetx1971 said at 11:17 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    For god sake! You never let anyone get a word in edgewise B Chow! lol

  13. 13 GaEagle1023 - Tom said at 5:29 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    For Tommy. Megan Fox > field position

  14. 14 A_T_G said at 8:05 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    I don’t know that it is a clear cut as you make it out to be:

  15. 15 A_T_G said at 8:06 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    Also, in my Google image search for Donnie Jones Eagles, I found this little gem:

  16. 16 A_T_G said at 8:11 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    Double image fail…

  17. 17 BlindChow said at 10:08 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    Sure, Foles has played well, but our run game would be way better if blue moon was out there at QB.

  18. 18 Andy124 said at 10:17 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    So apparently, the various marshmellows actually symbolize Lucky’s powers.

    I can see why Nick is the horesshoe. He has the power to speed things up (no huddle).

    When it’s time to slow things down we should probably sub-in hourglass (that thing in the upper right I guess) which has the power to control time.

    Thank you wikipedia.

  19. 19 BlindChow said at 10:33 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    Hourglass? I always thought it was broken egg!

  20. 20 RIP Worms said at 11:15 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    Actually, it’s supposed to be a shooting star.

  21. 21 Andy124 said at 11:19 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    So the yellow thing in the upper left is the hourglass?

  22. 22 CrackSammich said at 11:47 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    Pot of gold, dude. Where was your childhood?

  23. 23 Andy124 said at 12:15 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    That’s what I get for skimming wikipedia. The shapes I read about were a one-time deal and not related to the shapes in the image above.

  24. 24 theycallmerob said at 2:54 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    hearts, starts, and horseshoes. clovers and blue moons.
    pots of gold and rainbows….and me red balloon!

  25. 25 Andy124 said at 3:27 PM on December 4th, 2013:


  26. 26 A_T_G said at 8:11 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    Image fail…

  27. 27 GaEagle1023 - Tom said at 8:41 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    If she dropped that linen…would it be clearer?

  28. 28 BlindChow said at 9:40 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    I’d say that was Megan Fox in feeled position.

  29. 29 GaEagle1023 - Tom said at 11:50 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    Hmmm, in that case, bad field position would be good feeled position

  30. 30 Mark Sitko said at 8:39 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    I was really worried about this Lions game, but I just checked their past schedule – they lost to the Bucs and the Steelers in the last month…really? And we are supposed to be worried – I now believe we are going to destroy these fools…Bush and Megatron will get theirs, no doubt – but we shall prevail.

  31. 31 P_P_K said at 8:42 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    I can’t belive Arians is still crying. I thought at first he might have been trying to get some kind of edge with the officials, the way Phil Jackson worked the refs when he coached b-ball. Now, though, I think Arians is just a crybaby. If I was one of his players, I’d be embarrassed. The head coach is suppossed to be a leader, an inspiration, and, in a game like football, a man amongst men. He’s acting like the kid on the playground that no one wants on their team because he calls every foul. Boo-fu$#ing-hoo.

    Remember in 2010, when the ump blew the call at first base when Armando Gallaraga had a perfect game? Clearly the ump screwed up, later even admitting his mistake and apologizing. But AG never complained in public and he had the decency and integrity to move forward. Yo’, Bruce, this is called sportsmanship. Look it up in the dictionary, it comes right after “sore loser.”

  32. 32 Anders said at 9:03 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    I think Arians is hurt by his long career as assistant coach. He hear his players complain and as an assistant coach you can agree with them all you want, but as HC you have to be 100% professional about it.

    I mean even Cary Williams understand that after the game, it is of no use to complain, but during the game? Maybe a complaint make the ref not throw the flag the next time (I honestly think make up penalties exist in any sport).

  33. 33 Stevo said at 9:37 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    I wonder if Arian’s ego was hurt just a little bit too much by this loss. Like you mention, he’s been around a long time and had to really pay his dues to get this shot at a HC job. Chip Kelly never worked a day in the NFL and gets a HC job. He runs a “college offense.” Arians must be hating himself for losing to this guy and trying to find any excuse to blame someone else for the loss.

  34. 34 Tom33 said at 9:39 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    Arians “retired” in Pittsburgh, and then took a job a couple of weeks later. Safe to say the retirement wasn’t his idea.

    He got a lot of good press based on last year in Indy, but the more I see/hear from him, the more I get why his act got old in Pittsburgh.

    On a related note – I am officially a member of the #26 fan club. His comments were awesome.

  35. 35 Jerry Pomroy said at 9:33 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    I’m enjoying the moment, but still just happy to see a team on the rise that has almost doubled last year’s debacle of a win total. It’s also nice to see players (young players at that) stepping up as opposed to being stepped on or over. The QB position and play is encouraging. The much improved play at the safety position (particularly w/ Allen & Wolff) is encouraging. The young defensive line play is encouraging. The recent pass rush production from the ROLB spot is encouraging. The fact that our corners have a pulse and don’t play like the tin man is encouraging. They (CBs) may not be an “elite” bunch, but I’ll take heart over hollow chest syndrome any day.

    Speaking of elite, it’s starting to realistically look like this team is much closer than originally thought to returning to being a consistent contender. Adding just a few young dynamic “playmaking” talents to key spots (ROLB & CB) as well as a few role players (A big/effective N/S RB & upgrade at slot WR for example) & some tweaks from coaching staff could very well put us over that hump sooner rather than later.

    As for Foles, right now I’m on board for riding him out next season & seeing what’s there with a full season under his belt & addressing other areas this off-season.

  36. 36 TheRogerPodacter said at 9:44 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    A grand total of 1 punt return has gone for 10+ yards.


    i’ve been on and off of the Coach Fipp train this year, but thats just…. wow.

  37. 37 Michael Jorden said at 9:51 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    I saw the DVOA and weighted DVOA ranking at FBO, and it is awesome. I see the improvement in so many areas, the good play on the field, some truly unbelievable stats.. I just have a hard time believing the Eagles are playing as great as that DVOA ranking says. But they are. It’s kind of mind boggling. We play some good teams coming up, but I don’t see any that look all that scary…

  38. 38 Jamie Parker said at 9:56 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    Whining about the refs is for the fans. I whine about them every game, all game long.

  39. 39 Will said at 9:56 AM on December 4th, 2013:


    Could we try Maclin in the slot? Speed and agility…but a bit soft. Thoughts?

  40. 40 Jason said at 10:14 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    I’m with Will. Ideal replacement for Avant. Plan to keep Cooper on the outside, and still keep eyes open for big fast outside WR in draft to eventually supplant Cooper and push him back to WR 4/ ST contributor.

  41. 41 aub32 said at 2:55 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    I don’t get why so many fans think Coop will just be ok with being a #4 guy after the year he is having. If Mac can come back then we have Coop as our #2 guy outside with both DJax and Mac playing either the #1 guy or the slot interchangibly.

  42. 42 Jason said at 9:16 AM on December 5th, 2013:

    Who cares if Riley Cooper will just be ok with WR4? If we get someone elite to play outside WR then he plays fewer snaps or he leaves. If the draft gives us better value at a different position than keep the idiot as starting WR. His “feelings” will play no factor in the decision.

  43. 43 anon said at 10:17 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    should have given up that second rounder for Gordon he’s putting up megatron numbers with 3rd string qbs and he just turned 22.

  44. 44 Anders said at 10:18 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    Who knows if it was just a 2nd?

    What if they demanded a 1st? Nobody would give a 1st for a guy who is 1 piss test (or missed one) from 1 year suspension.

  45. 45 anon said at 10:23 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    I’d consider if we’re picking in the 20s, but this organization tends not to like bad apples.

  46. 46 Anders said at 10:32 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    We picked up Vick. Drafted Bryce Brown, took D Johnson and Cliff Harris in as UDFAs.

    The problem is simply that potential for Gordon to get suspended and you then have given up a 1st for nothing.

  47. 47 anon said at 10:42 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    he could just as easily tear an acl or have a hip injury that kills his season. But he’s got 2 yrs i think on his rookie deal and then you can re-sign. It’s much to do about nothing now, but can’t imagine what our team would be like with a guy averaging 150yds a game with rotating QBs. Jf he’d played al 16 games he’d break CJ’s sinle season record. *Disclaimer i just read the grantland article*

  48. 48 Anders said at 10:51 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    Teams/players do not control injuries, but drug tests? Why do he keep failing em? Is that a guy you want on your team?

    Im surprised Seahawks didnt pounce, they are collecting a nice collection of weed smokers and drug users 😛 (seriously if a team constantly have 1-2 guys getting busted every year, the team should be punished)

  49. 49 anon said at 1:37 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    Maybe weed is the key to that DB factory they have up there. Even their 3rd string guys are legit. All of their CBs are late rounders too.

  50. 50 BlindChow said at 2:21 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    Pete Carroll specializes in DB’s. I wonder how much of Bradley’s success there was attributable to Carroll.

  51. 51 Anders said at 2:27 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    I would say their starting 2nd and 3rd CB now is not as good as advitised. The Hawks have a very potent pass rush and Earl Thomas has finally (I still say he was overrated the first 3 years) developed into a scary deep center field safety who can help double cover the opposite side of Sherman.

  52. 52 aub32 said at 2:59 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    That’s not fair. That doesn’t happen in real life. If multiple Walmart employees get caught smoking weed, that Walmart doesn’t pay a fine. They penalize those employees and move on. These players are adults. The team can’t be held responsible for every dumb mistake they do.

  53. 53 BlindChow said at 3:09 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    Plus, the resulting suspensions hurt the team plenty.

  54. 54 Anders said at 3:20 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    If a guy is convicted for murder or man slaughter, he isnt getting another job period. Yet in the NFL you can still earn 1 mill per year as a veteran combing back.

    My reason is, when it is so many guys, over so many years who all get caught for PEDs or substance abuse, then it is a problem with the team.

  55. 55 Neil said at 3:21 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    Sure, but I mean, if any league was interested in stopping PEDs at all, they would punish teams for having one violation.

  56. 56 Anders said at 10:54 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    Also it is same reason why injury prone players often do not get the same type of deals or people trade high picks for them.

  57. 57 Weapon Y said at 10:21 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    If the Giants can pull two Super Bowl runs out of their ass, why can’t the Eagles? I think a big Achilles heel for this Eagles offense is its power run offense. When the Eagles are trying to kill the clock in the 4th quarter, they need to use classic power football. To do this, I would put at least two tight ends on the line of scrimmage. I’d also consider having two lead blockers in the backfield the way the 49ers do. Put Celek and Ertz on the line of scrimmage. Then have Casey and Polk/Igwenagu in the backfield to block for Shady. I’d even mix those power runs in with some zone read with Vick or Brad Smith subbing in at QB. We might need to wait for an effective downhill runner because Bryce Brown might not be that guy, and while I love Shady, I want a guy who can hit the hole and run over defenders. If Chip can blend his New Age spread offense with an old school power run game, defenses won’t have an answer. It will be a thing of beauty.

  58. 58 anon said at 10:24 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    a fullback might be a worthwhile roster spot, would be interesting to see casey or celek play that position.

  59. 59 Tumtum said at 5:25 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    Casey was a FB/TE hybrid for Houston.

  60. 60 OregonDucker said at 12:17 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    Under Chip, the Ducks used TE Lyerla as a running back on the goal line and short distance situations. I do not know why Chip has not done this in the NFL. Maybe he doesn’t want Coop or Celek hurt?

  61. 61 Anders said at 12:20 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    neither is as dynamic as Lyerla. Also remember Lyerla was a high school RB.

  62. 62 Ben Hert said at 1:25 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    I don’t think dynamic is what you’re looking for in a short yardage or goal-line back.

    It seems like Celek would be the ideal fit for running it out of the backfield in a situation like that. Watching him bowl over DB’s on his long gains is a thing of beauty. Its certainly better than whatever Shady is doing in those situations.

    At the same time, it’d be amazing if Staley could convince BB to run N-S, as I think he’d be perfect for this role.

  63. 63 anon said at 1:36 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    Casey is huge he should do it. love his enthusiasm on the field.

  64. 64 Tumtum said at 5:23 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    I guess running out of the backfield is way different than lining up on the line or out wide. I can understand not wanting to start from scratch with someone for unique situations.

    Haloti Ngata was pretty amazing on the goal line when they used to put him back there. If only they had taken Bunkley instead!

    *edit* I must of been dreaming. They used him as a FB not a runner.

  65. 65 Tumtum said at 5:18 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    Is Iggy still here? Thought we shipped him out in a trade or released him to make room for someone.

  66. 66 Tumtum said at 10:37 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    As far as dealing with the success of this team goes, I am going to take the same approach I have finally adopted for the Os. Just sit back and enjoy the ride instead of waiting for the other foot to fall. Are they the best team in the NFC? No. NFCE? Maybe not. They are exceeding expectations right now… for the love of goodness Eagles fans try to enjoy it.

    Unlinke the Os and their limited pay roll your expectation for sustained success will be greater here. So they won’t get a free pass next season (Os missed the POs this year but it was still a good fun season… Being the 2nd or 3rd team in the ALE doesn’t always mean you are bad).

    **Orioles side bar***
    So I know you weren’t a JJ fan anymore Tommy. You turned out to be right he just wasn’t the same guy, at least for last year. How do you feel about getting rid of him for just a salary dump though? I don’t hate it. Even though Douquette basically Tommy Hunter is not the new closer and that he has no idea who that will be at this point… which makes me nervous.

  67. 67 Sean Stott said at 11:26 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    I don’t see Maclin as being better than Cooper. If you said that last year, I’d agree but that’s because Cooper had hardly any playing time. In hindsight, Maclin does not have the hands that Cooper does. He is not nearly as physical. Worst of all, he is always injured or nursing something. I see him as an ideal slot receiver replacement for Avant, if the numbers are right.

  68. 68 Mitchell said at 11:54 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    You can’t argue with his production in the first 4 years though. He is a very good receiver. I would think the new coaching staff and sports science could fix a lot of his issues. But of course if the price is right.

  69. 69 BlindChow said at 2:41 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    Maclin’s also excellent at drawing pass interference penalties.

  70. 70 Tumtum said at 12:54 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    What people seem to forget is that Cooper went from complete obscurity for his entire career to having a few good games. Yet he has still had some games where he struggled since breaking out. Last week you would of expected more out of him. We will have to see in DGR but I doubt that he was bracketed much in the game. Yet with Peterson chasing Desean, and single coverage he was only able to get a few catches.

    Not saying Riley won’t be a very good receiver. He just hasn’t proven it yet. Maclin is a proven commodity.

  71. 71 Tom33 said at 1:26 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    Agreed. Cooper had 4 very good games (TB, DAL, GB & OAK), but let’s not get carried away here.

    In those 4 games he had 18 catches for 449 yds and 6 TDs
    In the other 8 he had 16 catches for 191 yds and 1 TD

    Upgrading the #2 WR, whether that’s Maclin (if healthy) or somebody else, is still a priority, unless Cooper shows he’s a reliable option during these last 4 games and the subsequent playoff run.

  72. 72 bill said at 1:40 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    Just have to be careful – Kelly doesn’t just grade on receiving #s; blocking ability and willingness is also very important. That’s the only reason I’m not confident that Maclin can replace Cooper as #2. With Maclin and Jackson as 1, 2, that’s a pretty weak set of blocking WRs. Maclin as a replacement for Avant in the slot (even with Maclin’s persona as not tough enough) is much more likely. Even outside Maclin, I think the upgrade comes at #3 or slot as opposed to #2.

  73. 73 Anders said at 1:45 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    That was why Maclin was clearly the no. 2 before his injury?

    I think people are putting way to much into WR blocking, compared to you know actually catch the ball and get open.
    The last 4 games with Foles, we have passed 60%+ in the first half.
    In todays NFL you gain a lead by passing and preserve it by running

  74. 74 Tumtum said at 5:17 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    Sorry but I think the idea that Maclin can’t be a very good blocking WR, strictly based on his size, is bogus. The guy has adequate size and a stout frame. He is every bit as big and heavy as the average corner. If Shady can block a LB, Maclin can block a DB.

    His problems must then originate elsewhere. Anything that is not physical in football can be changed.

  75. 75 Anders said at 6:29 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    100% agree. Maclin will never be Boldin strong, but most CBs are less than 200 pounds and are terrible tacklers so at a minimum Maclin should be able to screen them for 2-3 secs

  76. 76 aub32 said at 3:16 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    We have seen numerous players step up in many different ways. DeSean learned every route tree. Vick made better decisions. Nate Allen isn’t god awful. Curry is playing the run better. What makes you think that Kelly couldn’t get Maclin to block? Mac sees what’s going on. I am sure he wants to be a part of it. He has to know that the only way is to completely buy in as the rest of the team has.

  77. 77 bill said at 4:21 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    I think Mac can be a better blocker than he has been. At the same time, saying he can be as good a blocker as a bigger receiver is kinda like saying Foles can be as good as Rodgers – the physical limitations do play some role. I know that DeSean has been a good blocker so far this year for his size, but I shudder at the thought of him trying to position block a bigger safety with a head of steam – he’ll get trucked and possibly injured. The lack of a bigger receiver at #2 will cut down on explosive run plays AND limit the types of mismatches that Chip can take advantage of. I’m not arguing that blocking is more important than receiving – it’s clearly not. I’m just saying that blocking, along with size in general, can’t be completely ignored in making the decision, at least according to what Chip has said already.

    It’s not impossible, but I truly believe that it’s more likely that Maclin plays slot, if he comes back. I think Chip wants size at the #2. He certainly could upgrade over Cooper and maintain that size, but I don’t think Maclin fits that bill. And with what appears to be his inclination to have 3 WR on the field most of the time, I think Maclin will get plenty of opportunities.

  78. 78 Sean Stott said at 5:44 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    It would be a different story if we didn’t have DeSean. We don’t have a true #1 WR. DeSean would be great with a true number one. You just can’t put Maclin in as the #2, it hurts DeSean’s production too much.

  79. 79 planetx1971 said at 11:37 AM on December 4th, 2013:

    There is obviously so much to love about this Team/Coaches but when I saw that video of Coop & Celek “mid-fiving” on their crossing rout, that really blew me away. Top to bottom it just sounds & feels like these guys love what there doing & are a band of brothers so to speak. After the excruciating slow motion car wreck that was the last couple seasons, with the prima donas , underachievers & solo lunch eaters this sure is a breath of fresh air! It’s palpable. To me anaway. What I’m really hoping is that this translates to quality players targeting us as a place they wanna come. I hope we continue building mostly through the draft personally but it’d sure be nice if a couple talents see this & wanna be a part of it. I’m curious, anybody have a couple of names of some interesting players that will be on the mkt. next year? I haven’t looked into that yet with all the fun goin on!

  80. 80 Iskar36 said at 12:21 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    “I love the fact the Eagles coaches are not looking for excuses or something to complain about.”

    I fully agree with you that complaining about the refs is silly, especially the way Arians is going about it, but the comment you made here seems slightly biased. Of course the Eagles coaches are not going to be complaining right now while they are on a winning streak late in the season. Complaining early in the season is also not going to happen as often because you figure later in the season it evens itself out. But, if you are the Cardinals and it is late in the season and in their view, bad officiating affected the outcome of the game and now they are on the outside looking in for the playoffs, it is definitely way more frustrating. I’m not trying to excuse Arians for whining. He is certainly going over the top. However, the Eagles coaches have not been put in a situation that is any where remotely the same, so there is no reason for them to be looking for excuses, thus obviously they are doing the right thing.

  81. 81 shah8 said at 2:47 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    I’ve been generously assuming that Arians’ smack talk is transmorgrified Denny Green “We Let Them Off The Hook!” sentiments. Just not a very appropriate transformation, though.

  82. 82 Iskar36 said at 12:26 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    In terms of Maclin, the one aspect of resigning him you didn’t address is the risk factor for the Eagles in terms of Maclin being fully recovered, and then moreover, being a good fit for Chip Kelly’s offense (there was plenty of discussion in the offseason that he may not be). If the Eagles feel they need to upgrade over Cooper, resigning Maclin may mean they need to also go after a second WR with starting potential as an insurance policy. On the other hand, they may feel Cooper is good enough to be that insurance policy. I just wonder how the Eagles would view the risk factor with Maclin.

  83. 83 Anders said at 12:30 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    How would a guy like Maclin not be a good fit for an offense who puts its players in position to succeed and greats plenty space?

  84. 84 Iskar36 said at 1:37 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    The concern with Maclin going into the season was his effort in blocking. He clearly has talent as a receiver, but last year, and in my memory, every season other than his rookie year, he has not shown the effort as a blocker. Now, part of that may be solved by buying into Chip Kelly’s system, which most players seem to be doing, so no reason to expect Maclin not to buy into it. However, you take a risk with him without seeing how he would actually fit in.

  85. 85 Insomniac said at 2:45 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    We still have Damaris Johnson on the team. Does that tell you something about receiving skills and blocking effort?

  86. 86 D3FB said at 2:03 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    We still have Benn under contract. He could act as a hedge against the bet on Maclin if we retain him.

  87. 87 Baloophi said at 12:50 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    Cooper Contract Thoughts

    I mentioned this a while back when a discussion of Maclin turned into a “how much will it cost to retain Cooper” question, but how the team handled Cooper’s inexcusable racist outburst will likely pay dividends come free agency.

    While the media has seemed to move past the incident I would think it’s certainly not a dead issue in locker-rooms across the league. In other words, if you’re Cooper, are you willing to take the chance that a new team is going to accept you? Are you willing to go through “bridge-building” with a whole new group of teammates? Are you willing to re-live the episode again with a new set of media?

    I mention this because while technically Cooper will have leverage to test the market, there are serious off-the-field considerations that favor re-signing with the Eagles. The team did not simply cut him (which nobody would have faulted them for) and he has enjoyed new on-the-field success in large part because of this offense and this quarterback.

    How unique and important do the Eagles view Cooper is another question. I have to think that “time served” in learning the offense (not just in practice but on the field in games), learning the quarterback, and learning blocking schemes adds value to a receiver currently on the team entering free agency versus one from another team. You might be able to upgrade from a statistical standpoint but then you’re bringing in a new guy who may or may not quickly learn the offense, and at what cost?

    How Cooper specifically fits with Kelly’s “ideal” view of a receiver or the receiving corps in general I don’t know… maybe our Oregon experts can weigh in on that. But to help frame the discussion, what #2 (or #3) receiver coming into free agency represents a significant upgrade? That’s not a rhetorical question, either – I’m curious what specific receivers out there would you pursue as a replacement?

  88. 88 Andy124 said at 1:45 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    But to help frame the discussion, what #2 (or #3) receiver coming into free agency represents a significant upgrade?

    I believe the bulk of the discussions about WR upgrades are assuming upgrades via the draft vice FA.

  89. 89 Tom33 said at 1:47 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    Looks like Anquan Boldin, Jacoby Jones, James Jones, Emmanuel Sanders, Jerome Simpson, Hakeem Nicks, Kenny Britt, Branden Lafell, Golden Tate – lots of options.

    Not sure how good the fit would be with any/all of these guys.

  90. 90 Anders said at 2:26 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    Nicks is the best fit based on his size, but can he stay healthy?

  91. 91 Tom33 said at 2:29 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    I would love to get Boldin but that’s a lot of money

  92. 92 Anders said at 2:30 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    Boldin will be 34 years next year and he is really really slow now (he was already slow in his prime)

  93. 93 Chippah said at 2:55 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    Lane Johnson posted the same 40 time as Boldin at the combine. That’s how slow he was before he was even drafted!

  94. 94 Insomniac said at 2:55 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    I probably sound like a broken record at this point but if we want a younger and faster version of Boldin then we have to draft Jarvis Landry.

  95. 95 Anders said at 3:18 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    I do not think Landry is as physical as Boldin, but he would be a really nice slot WR for us.

    I really hope we get at least 1 WR in the top 4 rounds in this draft. There is so much talent.

  96. 96 Insomniac said at 3:26 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    I wanted to say he’s a mix of Harvin and Avant but neither of them will wrestle the ball away from DBs like Boldin/Landry does.

    I agree with drafting another receiver for depth and development especially if we let Cooper or Maclin leave.

  97. 97 BlindChow said at 2:39 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    He’s allegedly healthy this season, and doesn’t look at all like the Nicks of the past. He would be cheap, probably, but I’d definitely stick with what’s been working over a giant (ha!) question mark.

  98. 98 Richard O'Connor said at 2:00 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    How much would I be able to re-live being an asshat in the media? The difference of 2 or 3 million guaranteed would probably cover it.

    It almost always comes down to a business decision in free agency.

  99. 99 planetx1971 said at 1:56 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    Heres’s one random nugget I ran across in the sea of stuff they are printing about our birds that I really loved. “When facing the same defense as Foles just did only one week earlier, #1 pick Andrew Luck only managed to complete 54.3% of his passes for a paltry 163 yds”. Really obvious & simple comparison but that blew me away when I read it.

  100. 100 BlindChow said at 2:36 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    Luck has offensive line issues, but man, if Foles’ stat line looked like this…

    146 of 262 (55.7%) for 1649 yards – 8 TD, 6 INT – 75.4 Passer Rating

    …we’d all be lamenting Mariota staying in school and wondering how much we’d have to give up to snag Carr in the draft.

    (Those are Luck’s numbers over the last 7 games.)

  101. 101 Anders said at 2:37 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    If that was Foles numbers we would be in a 3 game losing streak

  102. 102 Neil said at 3:03 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    I know other people have been prone to claim/think, including me, that Luck is trying to work in an offense that isn’t QB stat friendly.

    What I’m beginning to wonder is maybe a statfriendly offense is a pointscoringfriendly offense? Or maybe their offense just sucks.

  103. 103 planetx1971 said at 3:41 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    Shoddy O line notwithstanding (& you’re right it is),,isn’t it mind boggling just how skewed perspective is depending on a QB’s draft status? lol If Nick can stay anywhere CLOSE to this level, I’ll always be thrilled to bring up that he was the 88th pick ! Different subject, I was just tweeting back & forth with Jimmy Kempski for a while about us both hoping that the Birds making obtaining a dangerous slot WR a priority in the off season. He had me looking into Odell Beckham Jr. out of LSU. WOW. love to see him in this O! He’s projected as a mid 2nd rounder at the moment. Ridiculous to be thinking about that stuff now? Probably. Just can’t help myself. I love the draft. Got any X-mas in may wishes? I’m still trying to figure out who’ll be on the F.A. mkt that might make a nice target as well for either side of the ball. Thoughts? Anybody?

  104. 104 aub32 said at 3:49 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    It’s not just his O line, the guy has no help on offense. Trent Richardson is a huge bust at this point and was benched for Donald Brown. T.Y. Hilton is of but nothing without Wayne drawing double teams. I know this will be an unpopular statement here, but I would take Luck for Foles right now straight up. Luck would be just as monstrous passing in this sytem and could provide the athleticism to boot.

  105. 105 Anders said at 3:53 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    Agree. as much as I like Foles. Luck would be down right scary in this offense.

  106. 106 Michael Winter Cho said at 7:48 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    Maybe. Foles IS scary in this offense.

  107. 107 RobNE said at 5:50 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    unpopular? I would take Luck for Foles. Who wouldn’t?

  108. 108 Tom33 said at 3:10 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    To be fair, that game was in Arizona and the officials called that game absolutely 100% accurately!

  109. 109 Pitmanite said at 3:10 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    If you want help tempering expectations for regarding this win streak and our defense, look at the record of the last 4 teams we’ve played: 18-21. Also, the last 4 QBs have been Terrelle Pryor, Scott Tolzien, RGKnee and Carson Palmer.

    Now the positive here is that we’re beating the bad-to-average teams. We obviously didn’t do this last year. Also, I expected this defense to be far worse, so I’ve been very excited by the play of some guys that we now know we can count on next year. I have no expectations about the post-season, I just wanted to see Chipper turn this franchise around and it looks we’re on the right path. #InChipWeTrust

  110. 110 anon said at 4:04 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    Cards are 7-4 in a tough division

  111. 111 BlindChow said at 4:10 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    I think we all knew that if we beat the Cardinals, the narrative would switch from “The Eagles haven’t beaten a team with a winning record!” to “The Cardinals got exposed as frauds!”

  112. 112 Insomniac said at 4:51 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    The NFC West is the new NFC East. Great defenses…mediocre offense.

  113. 113 Anders said at 6:27 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    In my time as an Eagles fan, outside of us, every team was more known for offense than defense (and the Redskins was just bad)

  114. 114 RobNE said at 8:08 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    Anders were you born (as an Eagles fan) after Lawrence Taylor retired?

  115. 115 Anders said at 11:00 AM on December 5th, 2013:

    I live in Denmark and we didnt get NFL before 1999 (the first ever game on TV was the SB between Falcons and Broncos because of kicker Morten Andersen)

  116. 116 sutherneagle said at 6:45 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    the reason those teams are 18-21,and not 22- 17, is because the Eagles beat them all

  117. 117 Pitmanite said at 6:55 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    You and anon are both right. I apologize and stand corrected. Super Bowl here we come!!!

  118. 118 Michael Winter Cho said at 6:26 PM on December 4th, 2013:

    Brian Burke has us at #5, but oddly the Eagles have been highly ranked in his system all year!