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Eagles News: Dallas Cowboys as Super Bowl favorites?

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Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 1/4/2015.

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Nuts and Bolts - Iggles Blitz
Kelly is going to be the decision-maker. It is up to his new PPD to give him all the information so he can make decisions and figure out what he wants to do. But wait…couldn’t Howie Roseman have done this? Yes, and it is what happened to a certain extent. The difference is that Roseman also had a strong say in what happened. The new PPD will have his own opinions, but he won’t be a decision-maker. He will clearly be "Kelly’s guy". Heckert and Andy Reid worked well together with this set-up for several years. Eventually Heckert wanted more power and left the team so he could go be the GM in Cleveland and run his own show.

The Aftermath: Five Thoughts On the Eagles - Birds 24/7
Most of the feedback I've received from readers has been positive. Many seem to think this is a great move for the Eagles franchise. But I'm not sure I see it that way. After two years and one playoff appearance, Kelly is now one of the most powerful coaches in the NFL. He will oversee talent acquisition, trades, the draft, free agency, re-signings, etc. And to this point, I haven't seen a whole lot of evidence that he's skilled in those areas at the professional level.

Chip Kelly Update: Redemption and a Power Struggle - Fishduck
There was some ambiguity over who made those picks, but there won’t be any going forward. Chip Kelly signed a five year contract, and is free to run the team as he likes — for the three remaining seasons. But if the team doesn’t start winning playoff games, that’s all he will get.

After little playing time in 2014, Eagles' Barkley no closer to starting - Inquirer
The Eagles' quarterback situation is uncertain entering the offseason, but it does not appear Matt Barkley is any closer to earning the starting job than he was when he arrived as a rookie in 2013. Barkley, the once-heralded Southern California quarterback the Eagles selected in the fourth round two seasons ago, threw only one pass this season. He was the third-string quarterback behind Nick Foles and Mark Sanchez after spending his rookie year as the No. 3 behind Foles and Michael Vick.

After power-play win, pressure's on Chip Kelly - CSN Philly
Jeffrey Lurie’s about-face on Howie Roseman may have rescued his franchise from losing a once-in-a-lifetime head coach, but only time will tell if the Eagles' chairman’s sweeping front-office overhaul is the right move. As head-scratching as Lurie’s flippant remarks were Sunday, when he declared that Roseman would return as GM in 2015 and had been "doing a great job," his actions Wednesday were much more sensible.

Future Uncertain For OLBs Graham, Cole - PE.com
For what was such a deep and productive unit in 2014, perhaps no position group faces more question marks this offseason for the Eagles than outside linebacker. We know that Connor Barwin will return, fresh off his first Pro Bowl season. We know that Marcus Smith II will be a player of intense interest as he takes advantage of his first NFL offseason. Also returning will be special teams standout Bryan Braman and promising youngster Travis Long, coming off a season lost to an injury suffered in the final preseason game. But what about the two players who combined to start all 16 games for the Eagles at right outside linebacker, totaling 12 sacks between them? For Trent Cole and Brandon Graham, the future is uncertain.

Cowboys are Super Bowl favorites - ESPN In$ider
The Dallas Cowboys have been defying expectations all season. Almost no one picked them to make the playoffs, to win the NFC East with a 12-4 record or to have Tony Romo be considered among the top MVP candidates. That trend of relatively low respect levels from the public is continuing. According to the Westgate Las Vegas SportsBook, the Cowboys are currently listed with 10-1 odds to win Super Bowl XLIX. That ranks fifth out of the 12 playoff teams and marks Dallas outside of the clubs considered front-runners to win the Super Bowl. This perception level is mistaken, as there are many metric and game-tape reasons that point to Dallas as the favorite to run the table and win their sixth Lombardi trophy.

Salary disparity is helping coaches gain power - PFT
If the new dynamic of coaches and General Managers becomes a trend, look for more coaches to win — and for more General Managers to lose — power struggles. The leverage comes from the pay scale.  Coaches are not getting $5 million or more per year; General Managers are in the range of $2 million annually.  If a me-or-him vibe emerges between coach and G.M., the coach is more likely to win.

Post Season Review and Analysis of the Quarterbacks - EaglesPostGame
Defenses started to key on LeSean McCoy by bringing an extra guy in the box,  crashing the defensive end in the B gap or have the outside linebacker crash on McCoy at the snap of the ball before the offensive lineman who is pulling can block him (below image). What Chip Kelly needs is a quarterback who can put pressure on the defense with his legs or at least keep the defense honest instead of not even accounting for the quarterback. This will open up the lanes for McCoy again as well as give the defense something else to prepare for and think about.

The fatal flaws of every team in the NFL playoffs - SB Nation
The postseason begins Saturday, which it's now win-or-go-home for everyone. Danny Kelly has already looked at how each can win the Super Bowl, now he explains why each of the 12 teams in the playoffs could experience disaster.