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The Linc - Danny Watkins was born to be a firefighter, not an NFL player

Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 12/18/2014.

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Eagles first-round pick Danny Watkins' heart was never in the NFL | The MMQB with Peter King
A late-bloomer who seemed too good to be true, a first-round bust who helped get a once-untouchable coach run out of town, and to some, a hero. The bizarre football life of a man who was built for football, but born for something else.

Good and Bad at OLB - Iggles Blitz
I don’t get why some fans and the media are so set on making pronounced judgments on Smith. His rookie season has been disappointing and I think even Smith would agree with that. That said, he hasn’t negatively affected the team at all. The Eagles have gotten great play from their 3 OLBs. Even if Smith had looked really good this summer, I’m not sure how much playing time he would have gotten at OLB. Barwin, Cole and Graham have been terrific.

On Graham And the Contract Talks - Birds 24/7
As Geoff Mosher reported, the Eagles reached out to Graham’s camp to express their interest in re-signing the 26-year-old. While no formal offer was made, we’re told that the opening salvo by the Eagles was to the tune of four years, $24 million. That’s an average of $6 million per season. Graham’s camp is looking for something in the $7-8 million per year range.

All-22: Defensive Failures Against Dallas - Birds 24/7
he Eagles' defense has overachieved this season - eighth overall in DVOA, per Football Outsiders. Try to find a member on that side of the ball who has underachieved, and you'll come up empty. Cox and Mychal Kendricks have taken the leap. Connor Barwin is playing the best football of his career. Bennie Logan and Cedric Thornton show up every week and perform. Brandon Graham and Vinny Curry have found defined roles. And you can go on down the list. Fletcher, Williams and Allen are not under-performing. Their warts just get exposed against top-level competition.

Maclin defends Eagles receiving corps - Inquirer
Responding to criticism of the Eagles' wide receivers, Jeremy Maclin took to social media on Monday morning, posting a graphic that showed where the team's top three receivers rank among other trios in the NFL. They are No. 4 in receptions, No. 7 in yards, and No. 5 in touchdowns. But 44 percent of the catches, 53 percent of the yards, and 55 percent of the touchdowns have come from Maclin. There is no dispute about his production, which has put him among the top receivers in the NFL. It's the other pieces that draw more scrutiny.

Place Your Bets: Eagles' Super Bowl odds plummet - CSN Philly
Still like the Eagles to win the Super Bowl despite their 38-27 setback against the Cowboys last week? Now's your chance to put your money down. With Sunday's loss, the Eagles' odds to win the big game plummeted from 12/1 — which were fifth-lowest in the league — to 33/1, according to Bovada.

Video: Looking back on the Chip Kelly experiment at New Hampshire - The 700 Level
Prior to his arrival in Philadelphia, Chip Kelly was best known as the architect of an innovative Oregon Ducks offense. Before that, though, Kelly was making his way as a little-known coordinator at Division I-AA University of New Hampshire. By now, most Eagles fans were probably at least aware of Kelly’s humble beginnings. However, on Sunday, ESPN showed a short piece detailing Kelly’s roots with the UNH, including interviews with head coach Sean McDonnell and former players, as well as some old footage of the wild stuff he used to draw up back in the day.

Revelation Of The Year: PK Parkey -
We know what Cody Parkey has done as a rookie placekicker here. It's remarkable stuff. It's straight out of The Natural (football version). It's Invincible. Except that it's happening before our very eyes that a rookie came from the waiver wire to the verge of franchise records for placekicking in a span of four months ...

Uffsides: NFL Week 16 preview, picks, and holiday sweaters - SB Nation
This week, Matt and the crew look at the Colts-Cowboys tilt, the Chiefs' attempt to stay alive in the playoff race, the upcoming defensive battle in Arizona, a Monday night matchup between division leaders, and more.

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