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Eagles News: Philadelphia draft pick named as one of the top under-the-radar rookies to watch

Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 5/11/18.

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NFL: Combine Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

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

The Eight Under-the-Radar Rookies to Watch - The Ringer
DE Josh Sweat, Eagles. As the 130th overall pick, Sweat will have to make the most of a limited number of snaps as a rookie, playing behind Michael Bennett, Brandon Graham, Chris Long, and Derek Barnett. But a rotational role could actually allow the Florida State product to do what he does best: draw on his elite explosiveness to bring heat off the edge. And he’s bound to get plenty of one-on-one blocks playing alongside such a deep and talented group of pass-rushers. Sweat dropped in the draft due to reported concerns over a previous knee injury and a lack of top-tier production in college. But he frequently lined up on the inside shoulder of opposing tackles in college, and that alignment sapped some of his ability to explode forward as a pass rusher — so he seems like a perfect fit for the Eagles’ wide-9 rush technique, which places him well outside the tackle’s shoulder before the snap and could tap into Sweat’s natural speed and quickness.

Figuring how the Eagles’ running back situation will play out - BGN
Which four running backs will the Eagles keep? Or will it only be three?

Eagles rookie NFL player comparisons: Jordan Mailata - PhillyVoice
And then I wondered if I could maybe compare him to an offensive lineman who also lines up at fullback on occasion. Obviously, as you can see above, Mailata can run with the ball, and I’m sure he could figure out how to flatten defenders from the fullback position if he is able to make a team as a tackle. The player I came up with in regard was former Vikings OG Randall McDaniel, who did that regularly back in the day.

3rd and Long Ain’t That Hard - Iggles Blitz
That stat, 48 percent on 3rd & 8 to 10 yards, is hard to believe is real. It should give you an appreciation for just how amazing the Eagles offense was last season. It certainly is fair to question whether this can be repeated. Stats like that tend to be anomalies. Then again, the Eagles did a lot of special things last year. How many teams put up 72 combined offensive points in the championship game and Super Bowl with a backup QB, backup LT and no elite skill players? The Eagles have a creative scheme, terrific coaches, gifted QBs, good protection, versatile players and multiple weapons. They ate up the best defenses in football. That’s no accident. That tells you they weren’t just getting lucky.

Wentz: 76ers future ‘should have fans excited’ - 94WIP
Wentz, 25, also talked about football and his upcoming season coming off of ACL surgery. Wentz was asked about a potential brace he may have to wear. ”I’m just getting used to it now,” Wentz said of the brace. “It’s still pretty new. Right now I’m still kind of in the feeling out process of what it’s like with a brace, what it could potentially look like. Again, I don’t know how I feel about it quite yet, but we’re working through that.”

Dallas Goedert Is A ‘Phenomenal Hard Worker And A Great Leader’ -
As South Dakota State head coach John Stiegelmeier gathered his six captains before the start of the 2017 season, he presented them with a list of goals. One of them was to finish as a top-eight team and earn a first-round bye in the playoffs. Senior captain Dallas Goedert interrupted his head coach. ”He said, ‘Coach, I think you’re wrong. With all of the respect in the world, I think we’ve got to put down on paper top-two seed,’” Stiegelmeier recalled. “It wasn’t with arrogance. It wasn’t with not being able to back it up. That’s the way he plays. He plays like a champion.”

A diamond-studded necklace allows you to keep the Eagles’ Super Bowl ‘Philly Special’ touchdown play close to your heart - Inquirer
From Jason Kelce bobbleheads to “Championship Bubbly” sparkling white wine, the Eagles’ Super Bowl LII win has spawned the creation of all sorts of memorabilia. One of the latest commemoratory novelties to ponder over is a diamond-studded version of the “Philly Special.” Just released, Safian & Rudolph Jewelers has unveiled a necklace featuring the actual playbook formation of the touchdown play, thrown by tight end Trey Burton to Super Bowl MVP quarterback Nick Foles on a trick play near the end of the game’s first half.

Kapadia Mailbag: Who’s playing nickel for the Eagles in Week 1? - The Athletic
There are four options, in my opinion: Jalen Mills, fourth-round pick Avonte Maddox, another player on the roster, another player who’s not currently on the roster. I think the favorite at this point is Mills. He’s tough, smart, can tackle and tested well in terms of change of direction when he came out of LSU in 2016. Mills is obviously a Jim Schwartz favorite, and I think Schwartz would trust him to play outside in base and slide inside when the Eagles go to their sub packages. However, what fun is it to just go with the favorite? So if you’re asking for my personal prediction, I’m going to roll the dice on Maddox. They clearly drafted him to compete for the slot job, and he seems to have the skill set/personality to perform well there. Of course, it’s May, and he hasn’t even had a full practice yet, so we’re dealing with a significant projection. But I’m willing to gamble and say that Maddox will surprise and win the job late in training camp.

Most improved NFL team in each division for 2018 - PFF
The Giants are almost the de facto winners in the NFC East where no one survived the offseason unscathed. While the Giants suffered some serious setbacks themselves defensively, it’s difficult to see their offense not improving by leaps and bounds in 2018. The biggest additions obviously come along the offensive line where the Giants were 29th in pass-blocking and 21st in run-blocking a season ago. Nate Solder is quite the upgrade over Ereck Flowers and his 51.5 overall grade at left tackle while Will Hernandez – who had a first-round grade from us at PFF – should step in and be better than D.J. Fluker and his 42.3 overall grade from a season ago. Then there is the obvious upgrade that is No. 2 overall pick Saquon Barkley. His 1.90 yards per route last year at Penn State led all college running backs while the Giants 1.07 yards per route from their runners a season ago was 26th in the NFL.

True NFL Draft Grades: 2014 Draft, Four Years Later - Sports Illustrated
Well, now we know that a bad draft won’t derail your Super Bowl chances four years down the road. This was Year 2 of 3 in what turned out to be, from a roster-building standpoint, the calamitous Chip Kelly Era. Marcus Smith never took. Worse yet, the next edge player taken was Demarcus Lawrence, eight picks later by the division rival Cowboys. Smith is now in Seattle, which has become a Mecca for first-round pass rushing busts (he will compete with Barkevious Mingo and Dion Jordan for snaps). Jordan Matthews’ lack of speed has become a bigger problem each year. He averaged 75 catches and 891 yards over his first three seasons, but last year was dealt to Buffalo, where he never caught on. Now he’s hoping to catch on in New England, which is the wrong fit. (Matthews belongs on a team that needs a sizeable slot receiver, not one whose offense is built for Julian Edelman.) Immaturity stymied the diminutive Josh Huff’s career. Mediocrity stymied Jaylen Watkins’. Taylor Hart and Beau Allen created interior D-line depth for a few years. Grade: D+.

Dak Prescott could get his franchise quarterback payday next offseason - Blogging The Boys
Carr turned in a statistical year quite similar to his 2015 season (albeit he trimmed down on interceptions), but what’s most important is that the Raiders were 12-3 in games he started. He proved he was capable of leading a team. Prescott has proven that once before, but the latest sample size casted doubt upon it. If he’s able to play well enough in 2018, it’s fair to assume he could become the game’s highest-paid player next offseason just as Derek Carr did last year.

ESPN is gambling on Jason Witten. The rest of his ‘Monday Night Football’ crew makes it a solid bet - SB Nation
The lineup for ESPN’s Monday Night Football broadcast booth for 2018 is set, and it’s a perfectly capable group of announcers. But if Jason Witten can transition from playing to commentary like his former quarterback, it could be great.


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