Let’s get to the Philadelphia Eagles links ...
Carson Wentz to face biggest challenge yet; Eagles QB has come so far already - Inquirer
And Wentz’s heroics the last two weeks suggest that he is making inroads with those who still cling to Foles’ Super Bowl victory. But a win over the Cowboys that would vault the Eagles into the NFC East lead would take that premise one step further. In the locker room, at least according to some, Wentz has proven enough. “To go through so much, so young, to be the face of the franchise, to get the franchise QB money, but then on the other side, people saying, ‘Well, Foles really won the Super Bowl, maybe this guy gets hurt a lot,” Eagles guard Brandon Brooks said, “I’m happy to see him prove everybody [bleeping] wrong. Have a healthy season. Go out there and ball out. “People want to say X, Y, Z. What about this? What about that? Man, look at what he’s doing with what he has out there [at receiver], and he’s doing that [bleep] every [bleeping] Sunday.”
Eight things to watch when the Eagles host the Cowboys - BGN
One wrinkle the Eagles should look to incorporate in this game is having Wentz run the ball more often. Josh Allen (10 attempts, 43 yards, 1 rushing TD) and Mitchell Trubisky (10 attempts, 63 yards, 1 TD) were able to use their legs effectively against the Dallas defense. There should be rushing opportunities for Wentz as well. And it’s not like he should be extra conservative when it comes to taking hits; this is an elimination game. It’ll be interesting to see if Prescott is truly impacted by his shoulder injury at all. We know he’ll be starting but to what extent will his accuracy and/or throwing power be affected? We’ll just have to wait and see.
Eye On the Enemy #9: Eagles-Cowboys Preview w/Blogging the Boys - BGN Radio
John Stolnis is joined by RJ Ochoa of Blogging the Boys to preview the upcoming Eagles-Cowboys showdown! Powered by SB Nation and Bleeding Green Nation.
Eagles’ WR Nelson Agholor, listed as questionable for Sunday’s game due to a knee injury, will not play vs. Cowboys, per source.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) December 22, 2019
Five over/unders for Eagles’ Week 16 matchup vs. Cowboys - PhillyVoice
Sacks by Eagles defense: 2.5 . After being sacked a ridiculous 56 times last season, Dak Prescott has been sacked just 18 times in 2019 and is on pace to be sacked just 20.5 times this season, which would be a new career low for the fourth-year quarterback. Three of those sacks, however, came when he faced the Eagles on just 30 drop-backs. This time around, however, the Eagles could struggle to get to Prescott. In the seven games since that meeting, Prescott has been sacked just eight times, and four of them came in just one game (vs. BUF). Aside from the otherwise solid play from their offensive line, another thing working against the Eagles is ... you guess it, Prescott’s injury. If he indeed is going to struggle to throw the ball down the field, there aren’t going to be many deep drops to give the Eagles defense the they need to get to the quarterback. Between that and Prescott’s ability to escape pressure and extend the play, it’s hard to take the over here. Two sacks would actually be a decent showing from the Birds defense in this one, and I think that’s what they finish with.
Game Preview – DAL at PHI - Iggles Blitz
The Eagles will win this game if the offense can feed the RBs and TEs and get them to make plays. If the WRs make a few plays to help the cause. The offense must protect the ball and convert in the Red Zone. And Carson Wentz needs to play like a star QB. The defense must be tough and disciplined. They must tackle well and get pressure on Prescott. Coming up with a couple of takeaways would make a huge difference. Dallas wins if Zeke has a good game and the OL controls the LOS. Amari Cooper makes key catches and continues to torch the Eagles secondary. Dak Prescott is smart and accurate. The Dallas defense must tackle well in space. They need to read screens and fakes and not be caught off-guard. They need to pressure Wentz and see if he will turn the ball over. It sure feels like the second option is more likely.
Week 16 NFL best bets: A number we like on each game - ESPN+
Fortenbaugh: As a born-and-bred Eagles fan, it kills me to make this pick, but I can’t possibly get behind the consistently sloppy and substandard product the Birds have put on the field over the past five weeks. Philly is 4-3 straight up and 2-5 against the spread at Lincoln Financial Field this season, with victories over the Redskins, Jets and Bears -- not to mention an embarrassing performance that required overtime to get past the Giants -- and losses to the Lions, Patriots and Seahawks. The wide receiver unit is depleted, quarterback Carson Wentz has been running for his life and the franchise ranks 22nd in turnover differential. The Cowboys are certainly no prize pig, but Dallas ranks first in the NFL in yards per play and is a vastly more talented team than the Giants and Redskins, both of whom took the Eagles down to the wire over the past two games. At the very least, call this bet an emotional hedge. Pick: Cowboys -1.5
Eagles-Cowboys cheat sheet: Lineup decisions, matchup trends, Bird Lines and game predictions - The Athletic
Zach Berman: From the beginning of the season, I thought the NFC East would come down to Eagles-Cowboys in Week 16. However, I thought the Eagles would have more offensive firepower and defensive consistency for this game. This is a limited team, as evidenced by it barely squeaking by the Giants and Washington the past two weeks. The Eagles still have Wentz, the better head coach and home-field advantage. They’ve proved their resilience before. And Prescott’s injury should be taken into consideration. I don’t doubt they can win. But I’m not going to pick them. The Cowboys are the more talented team, and their best is better than the Eagles’ best at this point. Last week showed that. The Week 7 game wasn’t even close, and the Cowboys have had the edge in recent years. Cooper is such a tough matchup; he’s hurt the Eagles since his days with the Raiders and has been a difference-maker in Dallas. The Eagles should be able to move the ball against the Cowboys with sound play calling, and if they can force Dallas off the field on third down, they could pull the upset. It won’t be as lopsided as October. I just don’t think the Eagles will have enough. Cowboys 26, Eagles 20.
How the Eagles can beat the Cowboys in Roob’s Random Observations! - NBCSP
I feel like the only way the Eagles can beat the Cowboys Sunday is if they force more turnovers than they commit. The Cowboys have more talent, the Eagles have a better coach, and the way the Cowboys run the ball, protect the quarterback and convert third downs, I don’t know how the Eagles can win unless they’re at worst +1 in turnover ratio. They’ve only won the turnover margin three times this year, and won all those games — Packers, Jets, Bears. They’re 1-5 when they lose it — an overtime win over a 3-11 Giants team was the only exception — and 4-7 when they’re +0 or worse. Under Doug Pederson the Eagles are 18-0 at home when they’re +0 or better and 6-9 when they’re -1 or worse. The last time they lost at the Linc when they had a +1 or better? It was the Saints playoff game in 2013. Protect the ball and take the ball away, and you win the game.
Darren Sproles: Eagles fans, I gave you all I had - PE.com
It’s hard to put in words the emotion I will feel when I walk out of the tunnel one last time for a regular-season game at Lincoln Financial Field. One last time with my teammates and coaches, and one last time in front of the fans. Trust me, I believe in this group and I know that we still have a nice run left in us this year. We’ve done it before and we can do it again. But as I stand down there on Sunday, I will definitely be thinking about all of the special memories I have made over the last 15 years, and especially the last six here in Philadelphia. To Eagles fans everywhere, I want to thank you for the way you supported me every single day. I could feel it. You made my time here special. I remember when I was first traded to the Eagles. It was a shock because it came out of the blue, but it turned into a blessing. I get chills thinking about all of the amazing memories from my time here. Playing at our stadium is like playing in front of your family.
The Dallas Cowboys can do something no other NFC East team has for 15 years with a win on Sunday - Blogging The Boys
It’s simple. If the Dallas Cowboys beat the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday afternoon, they are division champions. Get the hats and t-shirts ready just in case. The NFC East is arguably the NFL’s most storied division. There are big markets, classic rivalries, and tons of bad memories among the rivals. Generally when two NFC East teams get down to business it gets intense. While the NFL strives for parity throughout the entire league it has really gotten it in this particular division over the last decade and a half. Should the Cowboys beat the Eagles, thus earning their second consecutive NFC East title, they would be the first team to repeat as division champions in the East in the last 15 years.
Terrell Owens omitted from all-time team - Pro Football Talk
With the league’s 100th season comes an effort to name the NFL’s all-time team, with (coincidentally) 100 players named to it. It’s not the best 100 players of all time, but a 100-member NFL team with a specific number of players at every position. At the receiver position, the all-time team has 10 roster spots. Somehow, Terrell Owens didn’t get one of them. Earning placement on the team were Lance Alworth, Raymond Berry, Larry Fitzgerald, Marvin Harrison, Elroy Hirsch, Don Hutson, Steve Largent, Randy Moss, Jerry Rice, and Paul Warfield. Judy Battista of NFL.com attempted to explain the most glaring omission from the NFL’s all-time team to date.
Valentine’s Views: It it were up to me, Pat Shurmur would be out, Dave Gettleman would stay - Big Blue View
Stability is always the goal, and we know the Giants had never fired a GM until removing Jerry Reese in 2017. Now, obviously stability for its own sake isn’t good, either. Still, if you don’t want to find yourself in a state of perpetual change you need to give the decision-makers you hire enough time to fully implement their plan and see if it will succeed. For Gettleman, I don’t believe two offseasons has been enough time. Some of you who disagree with certain decisions and look only at the won-loss record will disagree. Some of you will say the old man is a dinosaur who has already had too much time. I disagree. [BLG Note: Long live Dave Gettleman!]
Jaguars’ changes could be limited to Tom Coughlin firing - NFL.com
One issue the future person in charge of football would have to navigate going forward is what to do with the Jaguars’ quarterback situation. Nick Foles is unlikely to want to return as a highly paid backup for 2020. That will be one of many challenges, assuming rookie Gardner Minshew continues to start. Freed from that, will the Marrone-Caldwell regime find the success it did in 2017? That would be the hope.
Women football coaches are rare. NFL and college coaches are trying to change that - SB Nation
Callie Brownson didn’t set out to make headlines as the first woman to be a full-time assistant on a Division I college football team. But when interview requests started pouring in after she accepted a job at Dartmouth as an offensive quality control analyst in 2018, she and head coach Buddy Teevens realized they had unknowingly made history. “That seemed impossible since I had so many of my peers who have been hired in the NFL,” says Brownson, who’s since been hired as a full-time intern by the Buffalo Bills. “How has college been untouched?” At the professional level, we’ve seen a lot of women land jobs coaching football. There are currently four women with full-time NFL team staff positions, and there have been six temporary hires in the league. But only one woman is employed full-time as a coach at the DI collegiate level.
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