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The Linc - Nick Foles outduels Tom Brady

Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 8/13/2014.

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Eagles training camp practice notes, August 12: Eagles upgraded from kid's table -
This time around, unlike last year, the Eagles and Patriots looked like they belonged on the same field together. Both Foles and Mark Sanchez were very sharp today, and the Eagles defense held their own against Brady & Co. There are plenty of reasons why. Foles is better than he was a year ago, the offensive line has more cohesion, there's more quantity (TBD on quality) at the skill positions, and the defense now knows what it's doing. That led me to a very simple conclusion -- The Eagles are a better team than they were this time last year. It felt a little bit like they were promoted to the adult table at Thanksgiving.

Patriot Games - Iggles Blitz
Bill Belichick is a great coach and his team knows how to practice. Going against them will be a challenge for the Eagles. That’s exactly what you want from this format. If you go against a lesser team, all you will find out is that your players are better than lesser competition. The Eagles goal is to build a great team. In order to do that, you need to compete against top flight competition.

Running Diary: Eagles-Patriots Practice Observations - Birds 24/7
The one thing that stands out here: Eagles defensive backs are way more competitive than they were a year ago when Tom Brady simply picked them apart. Don't get me wrong. Brady is still completing his share of balls, but the Eagles made things a lot more difficult on him.

Eagles-Patriots practice observations: Brady held in check; Matthews returns; Jenkins shines - Inquirer
I’m writing about the Eagles defense -- in particular, the secondary performing much better in this year’s scrimmage as opposed to last year -- for tomorrow’s paper. But it should be noted first and foremost that Bill Davis’ unit kept Brady in check. He hit some throws – he’s Tom Brady, after all – but it was almost never easy and he also missed his share. Jenkins looked excellent. Boykin was strong, too, once getting a little chippy with receiver Danny Amendola.

Belichick impressed by 'outstanding' Foles - CSN Philly
Patriots coach Bill Belichick remembers getting an up-close look at Nick Foles last August during joint practices at the NovaCare Complex. He liked what he saw, but he couldn’t have predicted that Foles would take the league by storm overnight and propel the Eagles into the playoffs in Chip Kelly’s first season.

Cary Williams Thrives In The Heat -
FOXBORO, Mass. -- He knew it was coming. Cary Williams stepped on the practice field outside Gillette Stadium on Tuesday and heard it from the Patriots' fans: "Boooooooo ..." ...

Nick Foles vs. Tom Brady: Who played better in first Eagles-Patriots practice? -
Foles had a number of impressive throws against the Patriots, with the highlight of the day being a 40-plus yard touchdown pass to receiver Jeremy Maclin over cornerback Darrelle Revis. Foles first pump-faked to his left, before coming back and hitting Maclin in stride in the corner of the end zone. Outplaying Brady was no small accomplishment, as the Patriots' passer was nearly perfect. Brady had two touchdowns in a red zone drill early during practice, and had a nice pass down the left sideline to receiver Kenbrell Thompkins. The fact that the pass was over cornerback Cary Williams, who made some disparaging comments about the Patriots last week, was probably no coincidence.

Wildcat for Michael Vick a mistake, Donovan McNabb says - News Day
Former Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb, who in 2009 would yield to Vick on certain plays, said the Jets would be making a mistake to use Vick in a similar situation. Jets head coach Rex Ryan has hinted strongly in recent days that they're considering the idea of Vick as a Wildcat quarterback, and Vick himself said the idea could work if implemented properly. No way, said McNabb, who didn't like it when Eagles offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg used it then. And now that Mornhinweg has the same role with the Jets, McNabb still thinks it's a bad idea.

2013 Pressure Plays: Quarterbacks - Football Outsiders
In 2013, Rivers was one of six quarterbacks to rank in the top 10 for DVOA with and without pressure (the others being Nick Foles, Peyton Manning, Russell Wilson, Josh McCown and Colin Kaepernick).

Which Rookies Are Turning Heads at NFL Training Camps? - Grantland
Guess which Eagle is in here?

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