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Eagles News: Doug Pederson is featured in The MMQB heading into Super Bowl LII

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Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 1/29/18.

NFL: NFC Championship-Minnesota Vikings at Philadelphia Eagles Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

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His Career Forged in Darkness, Eagles Coach Doug Pederson Ready for Spotlight of Super Bowl 52 - Sports Illustrated
In the pre-game mayhem this week, there is sure to be this story line: Belichick vs. Pederson: Mismatch of Super Bowl 52. Pederson gets it. He was a Louisiana high school coach 10 years ago when Belichick already had three Super Bowl rings. He respects Belichick tremendously, and Pederson acknowledges that everyone in the football business wants to get what the Patriots have—dynastic success in a sport that pushes every team toward mediocrity. But he won’t be kissing any rings this week, from the sound of our pre-dawn conversation Friday. “How many times have you mentioned the name ‘Belichick’ to your staff this week, in your hours of meetings with them?” I asked. “Zero,” Pederson said. “I have not. I know the success Bill has had, the success the team has had, is gonna be mentioned by the media. I don’t feel like I have to go out of my way to continue to talk about it. Is the mystique, is everything about it real? I believe that. I do believe it’s real. I do believe that teams have to play for 60 minutes against this team, because they are so well-coached. They are so well-prepared.” One of the Pederson’s pre-game stratagems is what he calls the “faceless opponent.” No matter who the Eagles are playing, he doesn’t harp on the names of the coaches or the names of the players. It’s not respect or the lack thereof—it’s just keeping track of what’s important in preparing for the game.

What do you want to see from BGN’s Eagles Super Bowl coverage? - BGN
Tells us what you want to know!

Brady: Eagles D is ‘as good as we’ve faced all year’ - PhillyVoice
Tom Brady has been around long enough that when he’s asked about the opposing team in the Super Bowl, he’s not going to say, “They are straight garbage.” And so, expect a lot of compliments to be thrown the Philadelphia Eagles’ way whenever Brady or Bill Belichick are in front of a microphone this week. Still, on Saturday, Brady was asked about the Eagles’ defense, and more specifically, their defensive line. He said that the Eagles are as good as anyone they’ve seen.

Super Bowl 2018: Tom Brady looking to end incredible 51-year quarterback curse - CBS Sports
Tom Brady is a surefire first-ballot Hall of Famer, both for his work during the regular season and especially in the playoffs. There isn’t much he hasn’t accomplished in his career. The quarterback holds so many records that the NFL record book should probably just be named after him whenever he decides to retire. However, there is one thing that Brady has never done, and if the Patriots beat the Eagles in Super Bowl LII, he’ll become the first quarterback in NFL history to pull it off: lead the NFL in passing yards AND win the Lombardi trophy in the same year. Believe it or not, that’s never been done before in the Super Bowl era. I mean, just think about that for a second: Not once have we ever seen a quarterback lead the NFL in passing yards AND win the Super Bowl.

Pro Bowlers explain what it’s like to face Eagles, Pats - NFL.com
As Carolina Panthers linebacker Thomas Davis told me this week, RPOs put defenders in a no-win situation when executed properly. ”It’s pretty much a play where you can’t be right as a linebacker,” Davis said after Pro Bowl practice. “Because if you guess and you play downhill to play the run they’re going to throw the ball right where you were. If you drop back and you play the pass, then they’re going to hand the ball off. So the quarterback is basically reading the linebackers and safeties in that situation and it’s a situation where a lot of the time you can’t be right.” The key for the Eagles RPOs has been the steady play of running backs Jay Ajayi and LeGarrette Blount. If the threat to run isn’t real, it takes the bite out of any RPO action. ”Those guys are tough runners,” Smith said of the Eagles backs. “Both of them run extremely hard but they both have their own different style, so between Jay and LeGarrette they can do some damage.”

Eagles’ D-line plans to crash Tom Brady’s Super Bowl party - ESPN
But the Eagles are also grounded in reality, and recognize the easiest way to make him play like a mortal is to put him on his back. Veteran defensive end Chris Long, a member of the 2016 championship Patriots team, knows it as well as anybody. So it’s no surprise that he decided to address the defensive line during meetings at the start of the work week. His message? ”Let’s go out there and make him uncomfortable,” he said, according to standout defensive tackle Fletcher Cox. The Eagles have certainly been effective in putting the squeeze on opponents this season. They rank fourth in opponent points (18.4) and yards (306.5) per game, have the fifth-lowest opponent QBR in the league (45) and had 106 disrupted dropbacks during the regular season, which ranked ninth, according to ESPN Stats & Information. The Eagles’ ability to harass quarterback Case Keenum in the NFC Championship Game against the Minnesota Vikings -- they registered eight quarterback hits and forced three turnovers -- was the biggest key to victory.

Eagles In Minneapolis With Business To Handle - PE.com
It’s 19 degrees in Minneapolis as the Eagles settle into their hotel and prepare for the week ahead, but it feels like a warm, wonderful day. This is Super Bowl week, when reality hits and the enormity of what’s in front of the team is clear. The countdown to Super Bowl LII is on, and it’s beyond exciting. As the Eagles continue on with their practices and meetings and the substantial media obligations coming, this much is very obvious: This is a business trip. It is time to win the Super Bowl for the first time in franchise history.

Brandon Graham, Derek Barnett, Dannell Ellerbe walk into a GameStop - NBC Sports Philadelphia
Brandon Graham, Derek Barnett and Dannell Ellerbe walk into a GameStop. It’s not a joke. There’s no punchline. That’s just what happened Sunday night at the sprawling Mall of America just outside of Minneapolis. The Eagles arrived at their hotel, the Radisson Blu Mall, earlier in the afternoon and were looking for some time to kill. What better way to kill some time than walk around the biggest mall ever. Or buy an Xbox like Corey Clement. Rookie linebacker Nate Gerry was with the group too. He’s actually from South Dakota and grew up about three hours away from the giant mall, so he had been there before. While his more famous teammates were getting stopped for photos, Gerry said he could probably walk through the entire place undetected.

In a Busy Year, Malcolm Jenkins Raised a Fist and Checked All the Boxes - NY Times
He led protests, was called a traitor, persuaded theN.F.L. to spend nearly $100 million on social causes, made the Super Bowl and had another child.

Key for Patriots offense will be taming Eagles’ defensive line - Boston Herald
It would behoove the Patriots to pick up the pace as much as possible to prevent the Eagles from substituting, especially if they’ve got a favorable line formation on the field. But beyond that, maybe it will lead to fourth-quarter fatigue to key players. Cox’ playing time significantly increased during the final month of the season, so it’s worth gauging his conditioning, especially to see if the Pats can wear down the league’s top-ranked run defense.

Rob Gronkowski not expected at first media appearance - PFT
The NFL is going to kick off its first made-for-TV event without one of its biggest stars. According to Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network, Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski is not expected to participate in tonight’s “Opening Night” (the artist formerly known as media day).

Patriots practice update: Malcom Brown returns; New England has perfect attendance - Pats Pulpit
Tomorrow, following their send-off rally at Gillette Stadium, the New England Patriots will travel to Minneapolis. Today, for the final time this season, the team held a practice session at its facilities. And unlike the previous sessions this week, the Patriots did have perfect attendance today as all 53 members of the team’s active roster were present.

Sorry, Eagles. The Patriots have never lost a Super Bowl to any team with a bird mascot - SB Nation
The Patriots have been to 10 Super Bowls, more than any other team in NFL history by far. They’ve won five, which is quite a feather in their cap. But the Patriots are especially good at one thing: Beating teams with bird mascots in the Super Bowl. This doesn’t bird — I mean, bode — well for the Eagles. The Patriots have wins over some mammal mascots: The Rams in Super Bowl XXXVI and the Panthers in Super Bowl XXXVIII. They’ve got a loss to the Bears, and they haven’t fared all that well against other theoretically human mascots, losing to the Packers and Giants.

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