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Eagles News: Fletcher Cox ranked as top four defender in the NFL

Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 12/8/18.

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NFL: Dallas Cowboys at Philadelphia Eagles Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

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Ranking the top-10 defenders in the NFL through Week 13 - PFF
4 - If it weren’t for Aaron Donald’s dominance, we’d be talking a lot more about Fletcher Cox’s dominance. While Cox is 18 pressures behind Donald for interior defensive linemen, he’s also 13 pressures ahead of third place. His 19 quarterback hits are the most in the entire NFL, as he’s been hands down the best bull-rushing threat in the league. Cox is the poster boy for disruption being more valuable than counting stats, as he continually impacts more plays than his tackles and sacks would indicate.

3 numbers that matter for the Eagles’ huge NFC East matchup game against the Cowboys - BGN
This is a game where the Eagles really need a signature performance from Carson Wentz. We all know No. 11 is capable of greatness. Now we need to see him deliver on that potential in a huge game. Wentz can’t be throwing those “WTF” interceptions right to defenders like he did on Monday against Washington and against Dallas earlier this season. He can’t be leaving easy plays on the field. Wentz is a much better quarterback than Prescott. It’s time for him to remind everyone as much on Sunday. The Eagles need him to bring his A-game.

The Kist & Solak Show #51: It’s YAC, Not Dak - BGN Radio
Michael Kist and Benjamin Solak explore the wonders of the Dallas Cowboys’ uptick in offensive success, despite some key flaws including red zone production and the key to masking Dak Prescott’s flaws. It’s all part of their in-depth preview that features the Eagles’ defense against the Cowboy’s offense!

Eagles mailbag: Release, restructure, or retain as is: Michael Bennett, Rodney McLeod, Timmy Jernigan - PhillyVoice
Michael Bennett is scheduled to count for $7 million against the cap next season. The Eagles would save the full $7 million (no cap hit) if they release him. In 2020, he is scheduled to count for $8 million, again, with no penalty if he were to be released. Bennett is already 33 years old, but he doesn’t seem to be showing any obvious signs of slowing down. He has 6.5 sacks this season with four games to play, and offers some inside-outside versatility. If the team re-signs Brandon Graham this offseason, then I can see a scenario in which the team moves on from Bennett because they need the cap space, but they almost have to keep him if Graham bolts for another team in free agency. Verdict: Retain as is.

How Much Will Eagles Feed RB Josh Adams On Sunday? -
Never in his three-year career at Notre Dame did Eagles running back Josh Adams have back-to-back 20-carry games. So, having 42 over the last two weeks – 22 in the win over New York and 20 on Monday night to help the effort against Washington – has required Adams to spend more time in the ice bath and on the massage table as he recovers and prepares for more work Sunday at Dallas. Could he have a third straight 20-carry game? Anything is possible as the Eagles look to establish the running game and keep balance against a Dallas defense that is among the best in the league. “I love when we run the ball and take it to a defense,” offensive tackle Lane Johnson said. “Circumstances don’t always allow you to do that, but offensive linemen, we love it. The more balanced you can be, the more you keep a defense guessing.”

Hungry dog: How Jason Kelce channelled his anger and earned his respect - The Athletic
“I think the speech gets misunderstood a lot,” he said. “People think that I’m criticizing the media or that I was saying everybody was wrong with all these narratives. But that’s kind of not what it really was. It was more that these are all things that people had to endure or persevere through to get to the ultimate team championship. The whole speech and the whole season, my story and everything, ultimately it really correlated with Philadelphia’s story. And I think that’s why it was such a special season and that speech resonated with so many people.”

Cooper vs. Tate: NFC East might come down to which trade was better - ESPN
That’s still very much up in the air. The Eagles gave up a third-round pick for Tate even though his contract is up at the end of the season. While they are likely to recoup a solid compensatory pick if Tate walks in free agency, this was a rental that needs to pay some significant dividends over the final quarter of the season for this to be considered a good deal. He was brought in to put a jolt into the offense and assist in a playoff push. Anything less will be considered a disappointment. Whether he stays with the Eagles beyond this season will depend in part on what the market for his services looks like. It’s hard to picture the 30-year-old Tate being signed to a lucrative contract in Philadelphia, but if the price tag is relatively modest, there should be interest. Agholor’s fate with the team seems to hang in the balance. The Eagles have picked up Agholor’s fifth-year option, so he’s under contract next season, but it seems unlikely they’d keep both players beyond this season.

Four Must-See Matchups in NFL Week 14 - The Ringer
As for this game: Such is the state of the NFC East after Washington QB Alex Smith’s injury that two teams that looked out of it a month ago are playing in a game with massive stakes for the division. The Eagles have a 28 percent chance of making the playoffs, according to FiveThirtyEight but finish the season against three division leaders: the Cowboys, Rams, and Texans. Meanwhile, the Cowboys, who have a one-game lead over the Eagles, finish with the Colts, Bucs, and Giants. This game also provides another chance to see the impact Amari Cooper has had on the Cowboys in what’s become a weekly routine where Cooper skeptics like myself get dunked on.

With time running out, Brandon Graham wants to make last 4 games special - NBCSP
“I thought about it. And I’m just like, man, what better way if this is going to be the last year, than go out winning a back-to-back. I feel like, us right now, all we gotta do is get into it and the sky is the limit on where we can go. We’re getting healthy at the right time. And, yes, I have thought about it, trying to make it special.”

Preview: Eagles visit Dallas Cowboys - KYW
The Eagles play a critical game on Sunday when they visit the Dallas Cowboys. KYW Newsradio’s Matt Leon with Brandon Lee Gowton of about what to look for in this one.

Cowboys vs. Eagles: Five things to watch including stopping Zach Ertz and Cowboys passing game - Blogging The Boys
Fumbles by Prescott are becoming a regular thing. Nobody has lost control of the ball more than Dak this season as he leads the league with 11 fumbles. There are several contributing factors for these. Sometimes the offensive line breaks down and Dak gets blindsided. Sometimes Prescott holds the ball too long. And then there’s also times where Dak will try to take off scrambling and the ball will just magically slip out of his hands. It certainly doesn’t help that Prescott has been sacked more than any quarterback in the league this year. After going down seven times last week, Prescott has now been sacked 45 times this season. Constantly getting sacked and frequently losing the ball is not a good formula for winning.

Will Eli Manning Be the Giants’ Starter in 2019? Signs Point to Yes - Sports Illustrated
What to expect for the rest of the season: I think we’re already seeing the Giants slowly laying the groundwork for the possibility that Manning begins the 2019 season as their quarterback. This late-season surge is not helping change their minds, nor is what looks to be an underwhelming QB draft class. Unless the Giants get a phenomenal deal for someone like Derek Carr (unlikely because of Carr’s own prohibitive contract situation), or find promise in an injured castaway like Ryan Tannehill or Teddy Bridgewater, there isn’t anyone out there who will convince them to remove the face of the franchise. While talk radio callers have been flooding my local airwaves with requests to see rookie Kyle Lauletta (you can read more about him here), coach Pat Shurmur seems to believe that journeyman backup Alex Tanney is next in line to get an opportunity. And if the Giants are going to follow that destructive logic, just as they did a year ago (giving Geno Smith a shot ahead of rookie Davis Webb) in a gaffe that ended up costing Ben McAdoo his job, is there really a point in bumming out your season ticket holders and benching Manning?

Poll: Two-thirds of Giants fans want a QB in 2019 NFL Draft - Big Blue View
Manning hasn’t been perfect, but he has played better as running game has taken hold and the offensive line has given him better protection. If this trend continues, the “keep Eli” argument is easier to make. As we sit here today with four games remaining I do not believe the Giants have made a decision regarding Manning. I think they want to see over the next few games whether what the Giants have done the past month is sustainable. When it’s all said and done the Giants will make a hard choice. And right now I’m not sure which way it will go.

Football’s unease: Trey Burton didn’t throw “Oompah Loompa” touchdown due to anxiety - Windy City Gridiron
Last February, now Bears tight end Trey Burton threw one of the most famous touchdowns in NFL history in Super Bowl LII: the “Philly Special” to the Eagles’ Nick Foles. One of the gutsiest calls you’ll ever see on such a grand, national stage polished off by a backup quarterback in Foles and backup tight end in Burton. The signature moment of Philadelphia’s first-ever Super Bowl victory over the Patriots, and a play Burton will never forget. Roughly 10 months later, it’s still so ingrained in Burton’s mind that he earnestly admitted he couldn’t execute the same kind of play against the Giants last Sunday. That’s why Tarik Cohen was the man to eventually throw a touchdown to Anthony Miller on what the Bears called their “Oompah Loompa”. Burton’s mental state precluded him from doing so, so the Bears had to turn to other options.

Former Pro Bowler Tim Rossovich dies - PFT
Former Pro Bowler Tim Rossovich died Thursday in Sacramento, California, after a long illness, the University of Southern California announced Friday. He was 72. The Eagles made Rossovich the 14th pick of the 1968 draft after he earned All-America honors at USC. He played defensive end and linebacker for Philadelphia for four seasons, earning Pro Bowl accolades in 1969. He spent two seasons with the Chargers (1972-73), two with the Philadelphia Bell of the World Football League (1974-75) and one with the Oilers (1976).

Which first- or second-year running back would you build an NFL team around? - SB Nation
[BLG Note: Donnel Pumphrey did not make this list.]


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