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The Linc - Jairus Byrd Thinks the Eagles are Headed in the Right Direction

Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 3/5/2014.

Rick Stewart

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NFL franchise tag roundup, and the impact on the Eagles - JimmyK,
T.J. Ward, S, Browns: It was somewhat of a surprise that Ward was not franchise tagged. Both Ward and Byrd played at Oregon. Byrd was there when Chip Kelly was the offensive coordinator. Ward played under Kelly when he was the head coach for one year in 2009. Unlike Byrd, Ward is more of physical in-the-box safety than he is a patrolling centerfielder type. Of Byrd and Ward, Byrd seems like the more natural fit, but that doesn't rule out the Eagles as potential suitors.

Byrd Hunting - Tommy Lawlor, Iggles Blitz
Byrd is a good Safety. He has outstanding cover skills and really impacts the passing game, but he is only an average hitter, tackler and run defender. The Bills mostly had Byrd line up as the deep Safety. That’s where he is most effective. He doesn’t have ideal speed so staying deep and being able to read plays helps him to get to the ball. Byrd sees the field well and has good instincts. He has excellent feet and a very quick burst. Byrd has great ball skills. He is able to go over or around receivers and make a play on the ball without drawing a flag.

Byrd: Eagles Headed In Right Direction - Sheil Kapadia, Birds 24/7
"Oh, I’m familiar with Coach [Chip] Kelly and I know they're headed in the right direction," he said. "They made the playoffs last year. So like I said, there’s a lot that still has to go on, but obviously those are two great coaches [Kelly and Mike Pettine] and they look forward to doing big things this year."

Avant saw release coming, no ill will toward Birds - Reuben Frank, CSN Philly
Jason Avant saw the writing on the wall. Or, more accurately, saw the writing on the stat sheet. As his role diminished last year, the Eagles’ popular veteran wide receiver gradually began to realize that 2013 would be his last season in Philly. "You start seeing things when your role gets a little bit taken back and you don’t get as many opportunities as you had, as many plays that are called for you."

Two unlikely free agents could alter Eagles' plans - Les Bowen, Daily News
The Eagles have been thought to be more interested in the next tier of safeties, such as New Orleans' Malcolm Jenkins or Miami's Chris Clemons. Now they must consider whether getting burned at the top of the free-agent market previously - with Nnamdi Asomugha in 2011 and Stacy Andrews in 2009, to name a couple of debacles - should ward them off Byrd or Ward.

Saying Goodbye To A Class Act - Dave Spadaro,
The enduring image of Jason Avant is of his body horizontal, hand extended, and a football somehow attached to his fingers ...

Philadelphia Eagles Uniform as Designed by Jesse Alkire
A lighter, more nimble look for the Eagles leaves behind the often clunky and heavy mix of dark green and black. Silver shoulders feature stitching representative of wings. An aerodynamic custom letter and number type, with strong edges and points reminiscent of an eagle's tapered feathers.

NFL considering rule changes for upcoming season - SBN NFL
In March, the NFL will hold an owner's meeting to talk about a bevy of wide-ranging topics. It will cover everything from stadium upgrades to on-field issues, most notably rule changes, as laid out by Green Bay Packers president Mark Murphy. While most of the meetings go on without much fanfare, the discussion of potential changes to rules always draws interest. This year, eight such rules are going to be discussed, according to Murphy's post on the Packers' website. Let's go over each, ranking them best to worst.

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