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Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 2/17/18.

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Super Bowl LII - Philadelphia Eagles v New England Patriots Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images

Let's get to the Philadelphia Eagles links ...

Flash sale on Eagles Super Bowl shirts and gear - BGN
The Philadelphia Eagles are SUPER BOWL CHAMPIONS and writing that never gets old. I am considering never taking down the BGN breaking news banner, although I worry what happens when I actually need it for something else. We’ll see. Anyway, yeah, the Eagles are Super Bowl champs! And to celebrate that very fact, we still have a number of apparel options available for you.

Three free agents who make sense for the Eagles, version 1.0 - PhillyVoice
Gillmore was a third-round pick of the Baltimore Ravens in 2014 when Joe Douglas was a national scout there. In four injury-plagued seasons with the Ravens, Gillmore has missed 31 games, including the entirety of 2017 with an MCL injury. However, he did flash promise early in his career, when he had 33 catches for 412 yards (12.5 YPC) and 4 TDs in 2015 in just 10 games.

A Fun Thought - Iggles Blitz
The Eagles just went 13-3 and won the Super Bowl. As crazy as it may sound, it is possible the 2018 team could be even better. There are going to be changes to the staff, but Doug Pederson has put himself up near the top of the NFL. He showed he can run a team and also produce a brilliant offense. Dave Fipp and Jim Schwartz are back. There is a question of what to do at offensive coordinator and we’ll see how that goes. My guess is that they hire an outsider for that role, but we’ll see. They aren’t going to rush and make a move for the sake of making a move. Pederson is very picky.

Worth The Wait: Patience Without Panic Helps Chris Ballard Find Frank Reich to Lead Colts - Sports Illustrated
Eagles’ flight plan plays the numbers. The world champions may not have the largest analytics department in football, but there are few that have as rich a history in that area or apply the numbers as often as the Eagles do. And the markings of it are all over the roster that took out the Patriots 11 days ago. The first one to point out was a study the Eagles did correlating youth and health in younger free agents. It drew them to linebacker Nigel Bradham, safety Rodney McLeod and guards Brandon Brooks and Stefen Wisniewski. All four have played in at least 30 regular season games since being signed as free agents in 2016, and each was healthy and starting for the playoff run, which helped offset some of the bad injury luck (Carson Wentz, Darren Sproles, Jordan Hicks, Jason Peters) that hit the Eagles this year.

Eagles at the forefront of NFL’s newfound technology - Morning Call
Soon, according to an NFL.com report, an emerging player-tracking technology is expected to take the league by storm. Actually, some teams already have made use of it, and the Eagles almost certainly are among them, though nobody can be certain because they’ve treated details of their interest like launch codes to nuclear missiles ever since owner Jeffrey Lurie blurted out his enthusiasm for it nearly two years ago. The scene was Boca Raton, Fla. at the NFL Meetings in 2016 when Lurie’s stream of consciousness about his reorganization of the entire football operation soon brought him to a term that no sports writer understood at the time.

Lane Johnson Stands By Patriots Comments, Fires Back At Tedy Bruschi - NESN
“They kept interviewing ex-Patriots players,” said Johnson, who also fired back at Bruschi on Twitter earlier in the week. “What do you think they’re going to say? ‘I (expletive) hated it there’? No. ‘I won Super Bowls. We had a great time.’ They’re not going to bad-mouth their coach. They’re not going to say what they really want to say. Do you think that’s going to happen? Hell no, it’s not going to happen.” Johnson’s comments received widespread media coverage and significant backlash from Patriots fans on social media. “I just pissed in everybody’s Cheerios,” the lineman said. “And everybody in Boston — hey, I’ve got hate mail I still haven’t read. I’m looking forward to reading it.”

The Top 10 NFL Teams With Free-Agency Question Marks - The Ringer
The Giants face major turnover along the offensive line, with tackles D.J. Fluker (446 snaps in 2017) and Justin Pugh (436), center Weston Richburg (241), and guard John Greco (105) all set to hit the open market. The team’s running-back spot has the potential to get shallow fast with Shane Vereen and Orleans Darkwa both hitting free agency, and New York’s linebacker corps could be in for a total makeover too, as Jonathan Casillas (456 snaps in 2017), Keenan Robinson (292), Kelvin Sheppard (386), and Devon Kennard (544) all have contracts set to expire. Versatile defensive back Ross Cockrell is about to head to free agency, as well. The Giants’ new brain trust under general manager Dave Gettleman and head coach Pat Shurmur has plenty of decisions to make over the next month, and we could see plenty of change on this New York roster this offseason.

The most versatile offensive weapons in the 2018 draft - PFF
TE Dallas Goedert, South Dakota State - Goedert is a tremendous mismatch player in the pass game. Goedert is 6-foot-4 1/2 and a very lean 260 pounds — which makes him much bigger than safeties or cornerbacks who try to cover him — and he is too fast for linebackers to stay with him downfield. South Dakota State used his unique combination of size, strength, and athleticism in multiple ways as he played 454 snaps lined up at tight end, 190 snaps in the slot, 45 snaps out at wide receiver, 11 at fullback and three at halfback. Goedert can be used in the screen game or even be used on jet sweeps. As a receiver Goedert forced 12 missed tackles, generated 573 yards after the catch and his yards-per-route-run average of 2.94 ranks No. 1 among all draft-eligible tight ends. Goedert is a very effective run-blocker who can move people at the point of attack, but he can also be split out wide to be a deadly red-zone weapon.

Futures: Roquan Smith - Football Outsiders
As the NFL continues to transition into a pass-happy league, the value of the inside linebacker has dropped in favor of pass rushers and defensive backs. Even in the modern game, however, the truly elite inside linebackers can still change the dynamics of a defense. Elite linebackers today don’t look like the Cowboy Collar-wearing thumpers of the ‘80s and ‘90s. Today the elite linebackers are fleet of foot and adept in coverage, though they can still bring the pain when needed. Prolific linebackers need to possess sideline-to-sideline speed in order to match the growing horizontal nature of NFL offenses. The rise of option running games, screens, and run/pass options has forced NFL defenses to apply more speed in the middle of the field. Players like Bobby Wagner, Deion Jones, Luke Kuechly, Telvin Smith, and Lavonte David earn their praise by being able to choke off the sideline with their speed and instincts while making plays in coverage. Georgia linebacker Roquan Smith is the next player poised to join the ranks of those stars.

How AJ McCarron’s unrestricted free agency will affect the quarterback market - SB Nation
AJ McCarron won his grievance against the Cincinnati Bengals on Thursday, officially making him an unrestricted free agent starting March 14. While that’s a big win for McCarron, the implications of being named an unrestricted free agent mean more than just him being available and getting a raise. It’s going to affect the entire quarterback market in free agency.

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