The Linc - Zach Ertz's fabled sophomore leap

Al Bello

Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 7/16/2014.

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More on Davis and the Defense - Iggles Blitz
The Eagles were dead last in the NFL in time of possession last year. They played the most snaps on defense. You simply can’t post great numbers in that type of a situation. Can you be a great defense if you don’t post great stats? That’s an interesting question. I lean toward "no" because you would need to have some crazy good unusual stats in order to make that argument.

Player Spotlight: Nick Foles - Football Guys
To summarize, the best quarterbacks in the modern era have never matched Foles' TD rate, or come close to repeating it more than once. Manning, arguably the best QB of all time, throws a touchdown on 5.8% of his passes. Rodgers is even better at 6.4% but he's an outlier against the likes of Brady (5.5%), Brees (5.3%) and even Joe Montana (5.1%).  If you're counting on Nick Foles to be as efficient this year as he was in 2013, you're betting against volumes of NFL history.

Nick Foles YPA Projection; An Eagles Almanac Preview - EaglesRewind
Last season, Nick Foles recorded 9.1 Yards per attempt, placing him first in the league.  For his career, Foles’ yards per attempt now stands at 7.9.  Of course, the scheme he is playing in now bears very little resemblance to the one he played in his rookie year, so the quality of that information is suspect.  Of the 37 QBs who qualify under Pro-Football-Reference.com’s leaderboard, the median value was 7.0 yards per attempt.  Clearly, Foles’ performance was a relative outlier.  Aaron Rodgers, second overall, registered a YPA of 8.7 and Peyton Manning, third overall, had just 8.3 YPA.  Historically, Foles 9.1 YPA ranks 19th overall.  However, many of the greatest YPA attempt seasons occurred in a different era (mostly completed by Otto Graham).  Post-merger, Foles’ 2013 season ranks 8th overall.  Is that good?

Could Andre Johnson Land With the Eagles? - Grantland
This union makes sense. The Eagles would get a tall wide receiver who is an excellent route runner — the perfect complement to Jeremy Maclin, who is a prototypical burner. That’s not to say that Johnson isn’t fast, too — he is. He’s good at everything, really. And with the Eagles, he would get a chance to join a team that is already a contender in a weak division.

The Fabled Sophomore TE Leap - Rotoworld
Of all second-year tight ends, Ertz is one of the favorites to breakout. He was highly effective with his limited touches last season, scoring 1.27 fantasy points per target, and is in line for an expanded role following the departure of DeSean Jackson. He is also in an offense that figures to score a lot of points this season. 90 targets are well within reach and could easily see Ertz into the lower reaches of the TE1 tier. He represents great value in the tenth round.

2014 Pass/Run Rate Projections - Rotoworld
For the most part, Chip Kelly’s rookie-season play-calling was about as expected. He called pass 56 percent of the time, which was the league’s six-lowest mark. The Eagles went 10-6 and led on 44 percent of their snaps, so part of the run-heavy number was philosophy and some was game flow. The Eagles’ roster still has a few holes, but the Kelly offense will keep them ahead on the scoreboard or, at least, competitive in most games. Expect a run-first approach with a few extra rushing opportunities as a result of late-game leads.

Maclin On Track As Camp Nears - PE.com
It is Tuesday, and the start of Training Camp nears. Most NFL players are getting in their last gasps of vacation before starting the journey that is the 2014 season. Not so for Jeremy Maclin ...

The most shareable NFL moments of the 1980s - SB Nation
If Al Gore had invented the Internet just a little earlier, these are the moments we would have shared the most.

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