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Eagles news: pressure mounting on Zach Ertz

News and notes for 12/7

NFL: Green Bay Packers at Philadelphia Eagles James Lang-USA TODAY Sports

The Zach Ertz equation has many variables - Daily News

But I can’t help also thinking that maybe at least some of this is psychological. I am not being flip here. No one quite understands the effects of concussions, only that their manifestation varies from player to player, and that there is no set number or intensity which triggers them. We know that characteristics can be altered through them, personalities can change. Whatever you thought of Ertz’s pass-catching potential, he was perceived to be tough as nails that rookie season.

That reputation has eroded over the last two Sundays.

Maybe this has nothing to do with his head, only his heart. Maybe this, as many angry fans believe, is just part of the NFL money grab, a player rewarded handsomely for the potential his first three seasons suggested, losing the edge that got him to that point, playing it safe.

Eagles need Zach Ertz to start playing like a tight end, Part II - Philly Voice

About a month ago, we pointed out that Philadelphia Eagles tight end Zach Ertz had the second-lowest yards after catch average in the NFL among tight ends, mainly because he's often content to give himself up after he makes catches.

On the season, Ertz now has 47 catches, and does not yet have a single broken tackle. That seems nearly impossible considering Ertz is a 6'5, 250-pound tight end.

Since we published our initial post on Ertz, he has slid to avoid being tackled by a defensive back and has gotten out of the way of a linebacker chasing down Carson Wentz instead of blocking him.

Judgement Day - Iggles Blitz

You need time to evaluate a coach. A big part of being a good coach is being able to sustain success. Ray Rhodes motivated the heck out of his 1995 and 1996 teams, but that wasn’t sustainable. You can only go to that well so often. Good teams play smart and execute well. Trying to “get up” for every game is something that might work at the high school or college level. Not in the NFL.

A good coach installs offensive and defensive systems and then finds and develops players for them. If a coach is lucky enough to inherit the right players, he can win right away. Other coaches have to completely rebuild. Pederson was somewhere in the middle. With Sam Bradford, I thought the Eagles would go 9-7 or something like that. When they dealt him and went with Carson Wentz, I thought this would be more like a 6 or 7 win team. Rookie QBs are going to have some long days. Remember that Peyton Manning had a HOF runner (Marshall Faulk) and a HOF receiver (Marvin Harrison) and he still went 3-13 as a rookie. He lost 3 games by 23 or more points.

Washington Redskins almost defenseless on third downs - UPI

"It just (angers me) that we can't get off the field," inside linebacker Will Compton said. "When it's early it's more of a regrouping. 'Hey, we're fine.' We are smacking these dudes on first and second down. We just have to take care of business on the money down."

It's been an issue all season. The Redskins were comically bad early in the season with opponents converting on 57.5 percent of all third downs. That small sample size wasn't going to last and it didn't. Even Detroit -- ranked No. 31 in the league on third downs at the time -- was 10 percentage points better.

But that sample size isn't so small anymore with just four games remaining. Following a resurgence at midseason, Washington is back to worst in the league at 47.97 percent on third-down conversions allowed. The Cardinals converted 10 of 16 times on third down.

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