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Eagles News: Sidney Jones graded out as the NFL’s best slot cornerback in Week 2

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Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 9/20/18

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20 PFF stats to know after Week 2 in the NFL - PFF
Sidney Jones, CB, Philadelphia Eagles. Surprisingly, Week 2 did not have a single interception on defense from the slot cornerback position. In coverage from the slot, Jones’ 60.4 passer rating when targeted led the NFL’s qualified cornerbacks with at least 10 snaps from the position.

Is Michael Bennett unhappy with his role on the Eagles? - BGN
NBC color commentator Cris Collinsworth made a curious comment during the Philadelphia Eagles’ Week 1 game against the Atlanta Falcons. “Word is Michael Bennett is none too happy with being a backup,” Collinsworth said during the broadcast, via PhillyVoice. “Eight and a half sacks. He brings over three straight Pro Bowls. You can understand.”

The Kist & Solak Show #13: Eagles O v Colts D Preview & Injury Report - BGN Radio
Michael Kist and Benjamin Solak get you caught up with the injury report for the upcoming game between the Super Bowl Champion Philadelphia Eagles and the Indianapolis Colts plus their in-depth look at what to expect from the Eagles offense against the Colts defense!

Eagles vs. Colts: Five matchups to watch - PhillyVoice
Reich was a huge part of the Eagles’ game planning for third downs and red zone trips in his time with the Eagles, so it’s no surprise that the Colts have been effective there so far. The Eagles’ front four was outstanding Week 1 against the Falcons. In Week 2, Fletcher Cox was great as always, but the Eagles’ defensive line was unable to create a game-changing play, like they are usually able to do. It will be key to make the Colts play behind the sticks and create 3rd and long situations that will cut down on that third down conversion rate.

He’s Back - Iggles Blitz
Matthews was more productive than Jeffery? Yes, he was. But there is a major catch. Matthews played for Chip Kelly and the no-huddle offense for two years. That meant the Eagles ran more plays than any other team over that span. That helped pump up his numbers. Matthews was the best receiver for the team in 2015 and 2016, which meant he was the primary target. That helped pump up his numbers. Anyone who watched the tape could see Matthews was solid, but nothing special. He certainly wasn’t as good as his numbers would suggest. Matthews agent focused on the numbers and wanted a big payday for his client. The Eagles were going to spend big money on veteran receivers with size and speed. They signed Jeffery and Torrey Smith. They dealt Matthews, who was no longer critical after the addition of the outside guys and the emergence of Nelson Agholor in the slot.

Carson Wentz setting bar high for debut versus Colts - ESPN
“We expect to go out and start fast, play fast, be clicking, and so I truly believe that’s a realistic expectation,” Wentz said before Wednesday’s practice. “Now, [it’s] football, it’s not always like that, so those things come and you have to learn how to balance the ebbs and flows of the game and everything, but I think we all hold ourselves to high expectations around here.” Wentz will heed the doctors’ advice and continue to wear a brace on his surgically repaired left knee as he has this offseason, and he says he is now at a point where he’s gotten used to it. A large black sleeve covered that brace during practice Wednesday. Otherwise, there were no other signs that pointed to his injury. Now nine-plus months removed from surgery, he is moving fluidly and planting with confidence. While it may be a little while until he pulls off escapes at the level he did when at the top of his game last season, Wentz intends to play the position as he always has and use his legs to his advantage.

Who Carries The Running Game On Sunday? - PE.com
Lost just a bit in Wentzmania and the evolving personality of the wide receiver position is an Eagles running back situation that is murky as we get deeper into the week. Neither Jay Ajayi (back) nor Darren Sproles (hamstring) practiced on Wednesday and they are termed “day to day,” by head coach Doug Pederson. The way Pederson ‘splained it at his morning press conference, Ajayi’s status for Sunday against the Colts will be evaluated late in the week (Friday, he means) and that Sproles is “a little bit longer.” What does that mean? It means that Sproles is likely a long shot to play against the Colts and that Ajayi has a chance, but we’ll see how he feels on Friday. The ranks continue thinning. Depth is tested once again. Who is carrying the rock on Sunday?

All-22: Diagnosing the Eagles’ defensive miscues and what’s fixable - The Athletic
Schwartz praised his players for how hard they played but admitted that the Eagles made too many mistakes. Sometimes, it was a case of them just losing their one-on-one matchups, like when Jackson beat Darby for a 28-yard completion or when Howard beat Jenkins for a 20-yard gain. Schwartz can live with those. But other times, the Eagles failed to execute or tackled poorly (like on Darby’s failed attempt that led to Howard’s 75-yard TD). “I think that across the board, and I’ll just speak for defensively, we were a sloppy team,” Schwartz said. “And when I say sloppy team, we were a sloppy defense in that game. Our tackling wasn’t as good as it normally is, our technique wasn’t as good as it normally is. Our pursuit and things like that got a little bit sloppy at times. You can’t blame the weather on that. We need to do a better job.” Tackling and execution are areas that the Eagles can control, and that’s where their focus will be heading into Sunday’s game against the Colts.

How Carson Wentz will help the Eagles offense | Film breakdown - Inquirer
Carson Wentz won’t be a panacea for the Eagles and their offense. Injuries have mounted and affected chemistry and it won’t likely matter who’s under center with key figures missing. But Wentz’s return will inject the struggling unit with some energy. Nick Foles and Wentz have more differences than similarities. There are areas in which the former has the edge, but for the most part, the latter has a better skill set. The following isn’t meant as a knock on Foles, but rather to detail the ways in which Wentz can help improve the offense. There will be rust and Wentz must curb his aggressive instincts as he returns from knee surgery. But it may not take much time before he’s back to his pre-surgery self.

Nick Foles, Carson Wentz will forever be linked as best friends and champions - NBCSP
Just like that, the Super Bowl MVP goes to the bench, and for this team it’s no big deal. Such is life with the Philadelphia Eagles, where egos are suppressed or even non-existent and the good of the team is all that matters. Carson Wentz took over the reins as Eagles quarterback this week after a 9 ½ month rehab, and Nick Foles returned to the bench after leading the franchise to its first Super Bowl championship. And the transition occurred as seamlessly and easily and smoothly as you would imagine. “Obviously, for really everybody outside looking in, it’s an interesting dynamic anytime something like that happens,” Wentz said Wednesday. “And obviously Nick, the success he had, Super Bowl MVP, we as an organization, myself included, we owe him a lot. He did some amazing things. So handling the transition, from the outside looking in, you might think it would be hard, might think it might it tough, but with Nick and my relationship, we’re so close.

Dose: Eagles’ Walking Wounded - Rotoworld
If Ajayi does happen to miss the game, Corey Clement will be a locked-in RB2 with upside. He and Giovani Bernard are the top two backs to add off waiver wires where available this week. Clement and Wendell Smallwood handled backfield duties with both Ajayi and Darren Sproles (hamstring) sidelined against Tampa Bay. Sproles doesn’t seem particularly close to a return after pulling his hammy last week. Philly is also extremely banged up at wide receiver. Nelson Agholor has been the only constant at the position through two games. Alshon Jeffery is still working his way back from shoulder surgery; he got in a round of limited practices last week and may be closing in on a return but has yet to play football since the Super Bowl win. Mike Wallace broke his fibula in Week 2 and is likely headed for injured reserve. It forced newcomer Kamar Aiken into heavy Week 2 snaps, and the Eagles even have flirted with ex-Eagles Jordan Matthews and Jeremy Maclin as free agents.

Nelson Agholor, Jordan Matthews, and the Return of Carson Wentz - FantasyGuru
It’s also true that Agholor has simply been better and more effective in the Eagles’ slot WR role since Philly traded Matthews to Buffalo last year. Agholor is a much better football player than JMatt – he’s more explosive, he’s more reliable, and he’s more versatile. His numbers aren’t as good collectively as Matthews’, but Matthews’ numbers have been artificially inflated by two things, in my opinion – he played for Chip Kelly, who made running more plays at the expense of time of possession his offensive philosophy, and he played for an Eagles team in 2016 that was similarly thin at WR as it is now. Availability is often the best ability in fantasy football (see: the Josh Gordon discussion), and JMatt has been very fortunate in that area, at least until his disastrous 2017 season with Buffalo.

Eagles notes: Johnson says Wentz will hit the ground running - Delco Times
Wentz hasn’t played since tearing knee ligaments in Los Angeles early last December. Though he’ll roll with a brace on his left knee, it hasn’t exactly slowed him during non-contact practices. But don’t trust the limited scouting of the media. “The way I think it’s going to go is he’s going to hit the ground running,” Johnson said. “He looks stronger than maybe he did last year. Just all that work in the weight room, the rehab and stuff. His arm may be stronger than what it was last year just from what I’ve seen. Mobility wise he’s running around looking good. We’ve just got to protect him and good things will happen.”

2018 opponent scouting report: Week 3 Eagles defense, somehow the best D-line the Colts have seen - Stampede Blue
The Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz uses a 4-3 base defense, Schwartz employs what’s known as the wide-nine technique. It’s named due to the defensive ends playing a “9” technique. You’ve probably heard (or read) someone talk about a 1-tech, 3-tech or 5-tech, for an explanation of those this is a good read. A 9-tech lines up outside of the tight end, or rather where a tight end would line up. Remember where Dwight Freeny would line up on 3rd and 15 in the fourth quarter in any primetime game? That’s the 9-technique! Schwartz is famous for the wide-nine and the Eagles have the horses to make it run. Schwartz would prefer not to blitz and they probably won’t need to, to get pressure on Andrew Luck. You can expect to see stunts up front and they will look to confuse rookie Quenton Nelson. On the back end Schwartz will call more man than zone coverage but neither is likely to be shown a massive preference.

Chip Kelly continues to struggle at UCLA, with QB’s dad now taking shots - PFT
Chip Kelly’s foray into NFL coaching ended badly, but his return to college coaching is off to an even worse start. Kelly, now the coach at UCLA after being fired by the 49ers and Eagles, is off to an 0-3 start after a 38-14 loss at home to Fresno State. And Kelly is taking criticism from all corners, including from the father of his starting quarterback. Michael Robinson, the father of Bruins quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson, blasted Kelly on Twitter for “lousy coaching and play calling,” and said any success Kelly previously had at Oregon was “a fluke.” Kelly said today that he wouldn’t respond.

Ownership is to blame for current state of Giants as they head toward another top 10 pick in NFL Draft - CBS Sports
All those questions I reference are far from being answered … except the ones related to Eli, because this organization may well be right back in the same spot having another top 10 pick and needing to make a decision about the QB, again, mere months from now. The fact that Sam Darnold is playing his home games at the same stadium as the Giants may only serve to make matters worse, as I, for one, don’t see the state of the Giants getting immediately better.

Fantasy Playbook: Which Surprise Out-of-Nowhere Stars Are Here to Stay? - The Ringer
Guys like Philip Lindsay, Matt Breida, and Kenny Golladay have broken out this season. Will their production last?

NFL ties are contagious and 5 more fun facts on the worst outcome in football - SB Nation
After two weeks of football, we’ve seen two ties in the NFL. The first came when the Steelers tied the Browns in Week 1. The second was also in a divisional matchup, this one between the Vikings and Packers in Week 2. Those ties could have playoff implications, especially since they happened among division rivals. But two weeks and two ties? The truth is in all likelihood we won’t see another tie game this year. Since the NFL instituted sudden-death overtime in 1974, there’s never been a season that featured more than two tie games.

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