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The Linc - NFL Preseason Football Is Almost Meaningless

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Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 8/17/2014.

Jim Rogash

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Jordan Matthews' rebound from poor performance reminiscent of Zach Ertz's 2013 preseason - Philly.com
Ertz explained that he, like Matthews, was trying to do too much in the preseason games his rookie season. "It’s just pressing. You want to do so well every time you’re in there. When you’re in an unfamiliar situation like you are in your first preseason game, you kind of press and you want to be perfect. When you put the pressure on yourself there’s no way you can be successful."

Thoughts on the Defense - Iggles Blitz
Where the heck is the pass rush? This is a tricky subject. The 3-4 is predicated on fooling offenses and getting rushers into favorable matchups. You do this by being creative. But…in the preseason you don’t want to show too much of your creative ideas. So the Eagles are being vanilla (sorry, I know some of you hate that word). This is not just some convenient coach’s excuse. It is reality. That said, the Eagles just aren’t getting enough pressure. Even the 3-4 requires players to win some 1-on-1 matchups and get to the QB from base looks. That isn’t happening right now. Part of this may be veterans like Fletcher Cox, Trent Cole and Connor Barwin pacing themselves.

Notes: Henery Misses the Mark - Birds 24/7
Alex Henery got one opportunity on Friday night, and missed badly. His 47-yard attempt in the second quarter never had a chance, sailing wide right. "You’ve got to make 47-yarders in this league," said Chip Kelly afterwards. Henery made seven of 10 kicks between 40 and 49 yards last season. He had only one miss from that range over the previous two seasons. Is Kelly confident that Henery is the answer at the kicker position?

Kelly on getting Curry with the starters: It was a big thing - Inquirer
Vinny Curry has been arguably the Eagles’ most consistent pass rusher this preseason, and yet, he has spent most of his time with the second team defense. That changed on Friday night when the defensive end was awarded some snaps with the starters. The Eagles have been reluctant to play Curry more because he is still adjusting to playing two-gap football on run downs.

Marsh, Carmichael proving Nolan Carroll’s worth - T7L
Nolan Carroll hasn’t even set foot on the field in an actual game for the Eagles yet, but if the past three contests have demonstrated anything, the free-agent addition will be an invaluable addition to this secondary.

Benn boosts stock with blocked punt, TD catch - CSN Philly
Of all the bubble players on the Eagles’ 90-man roster, none may have boosted his chance of making the team more than Arrelious Benn.

Henry Josey Gets His Time To Shine - PE.com
We knew going into Friday night’s second preseason game that Henry Josey would probably get plenty of carries, thanks to three sidelined running backs. What we didn’t know, after a summer of non-tackling practice and a zero-carry first game for the rookie, was how impressive Josey would be when he got his chance. Eighty-three total yards on nine touches later, and one dive into the end zone, Josey is now firmly on the radar of his teammates, coaches and Eagles fans. Josey’s most impressive play of the night had to be the touchdown, when he took a screen pass from Matt Barkley, scampered along the sideline and then made a few defenders miss before jumping in for the score.

Preseason Football Isn’t Totally Meaningless (If Your Team Has A New QB) | FiveThirtyEight
Studies have shown that, at least in recent decades, the NFL preseason tells us basically nothing about the upcoming regular season. And so like most preseasons, the NFL warmup act gets little attention. But for teams that have changed quarterbacks from the previous year, there may be some slight meaning to preseason passing numbers.

Has the NFL gone too far with illegal contact? - SB Nation
The NFL apparently wants its refs to call illegal contact much tighter than they have in the past, but have they gone too far?