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Eagles News: Personnel misfires contributing to Philadelphia’s struggles

Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 12/9/19.

New York Jets v Philadelphia Eagles Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images

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From Super Bowl to 5-7: Personnel decisions at root of Eagles’ swoon - ESPN
The more veterans you acquire, the older your team gets. The older your team gets, the more prone you are to injury. The Eagles entered as the third-oldest team in the NFL (average age of 27.1). Eight of the Eagles’ original starters were 30-plus, and four more were 29 years old. Also, unsurprisingly, the Eagles have been hit hard by the injury bug. Roseman’s hand in free agency has cooled considerably since his red-hot run in 2017. That has affected the direction the Eagles have gone in the two seasons since. But it’s blind spots in the draft that have created the greater issue, because it has made the Eagles more reliant on imported help and, therefore, more open to volatile swings based on Roseman’s hit rate. While the Eagles maintain a slim lifeline to the playoffs, the work that’s ahead for Roseman & Co. on the personnel side will need to be a masterstroke in 2020.

Personnel disasters and more in Roob’s random Eagles points - NBCSP
When the Eagles needed defensive end depth, they didn’t hesitate to sign Vinny Curry, who had 11½ sacks in his previous four seasons. When they needed a running back, they signed Jay Ajayi off a one-year layoff. When they needed a wide receiver, it was 32-year-old DeSean Jackson and then when they needed another one, it was Jordan Matthews, who had been released three times in the past year. Maybe this isn’t entirely true, but the impression these moves give is that the Eagles’ scouting department is bringing back guys it’s familiar with — guys the team has already cut ties with at least once — instead of really doing its due diligence to find the most talented and most promising players available at those positions. Need an Eagle? Find an old Eagle! Jackson got hurt. Curry’s done nothing. Ajayi’s been here only a couple weeks but looks slow. Matthews lasted two weeks. There’ve been several other lesser guys they’ve recycled. I can’t help but wonder if the Eagles’ scouting department is basing way too much on familiarity and not enough on ability.

NFL Picks Against the Spread: Week 14 Games - BGN
NEW YORK GIANTS at PHILADELPHIA EAGLES (-9): The Eagles are getting way too much respect for a team that’s lose three games in a row ... and most recently to Miami. And yet the Giants have lost eight in a row and are now starting a washed up, soon-to-be 39-year-old at quarterback. For as bad as the Eagles are, they always own the Giants. I’ll go back to that well for this one. PICK: Eagles -9

At the Podium: Initial OBJ Trade Thoughts & Doug’s Presser - BGN Radio
Michael Kist gives his initial thoughts on the Odell Beckham Jr. trade rumors spurred by Jay Glazer’s report that OBJ wants out of Cleveland and what that could mean for the Eagles PLUS Doug Pederson’s Saturday press conference leading up to Eagles-Giants! Powered by SB Nation and Bleeding Green Nation.

Eagles-Giants scouting report, key matchups and prediction - Inquirer
Keys to the game: Stop Saquon. Giants running back Saquon Barkley is averaging just 3.1 yards per carry since returning from an ankle injury. The Eagles need to keep him under control, particularly on first down, so they can tee off on Eli Manning on third-and-long. Third down success. The Eagles are sixth in third-down offense and the Giants are 22nd in third-down defense. They converted seven of their first 10 third-down opportunities v. Miami, by came up empty on their last four, which could’ve kept the ball away from red-hot Ryan Fitzpatrick. A Wentzian game. The Eagles have their backs to the wall and their quarterback needs to step up have a big game. That means multiple touchdown passes, minimal turnovers and maybe even a couple of rushing first downs when they need them.

A good week of practice means what for Monday? -
Doug Pederson had ‘em wearing pads in practice this week. The focus, everyone says, was good. The energy, excellent. Going by the practice report leading to this NFC East game against the New York Giants on Monday, the Eagles have full comprehension of what it means, at 5-7 and hanging in a half-game behind the Dallas Cowboys in the division. We’ll see. The Eagles haven’t earned the right for us to know, without a doubt, what to expect. There is apprehension in the fan base, frustration for sure. The fans who stuff Lincoln Financial Field on Monday night for the Back in Black (jersey color, that is) game are going to be on edge and it certainly behooves the Eagles to have early success against quarterback Eli Manning and create some positive momentum. And then, unlike what happened a week ago in Miami, sustain it.

Monday Night Football preview: What to expect fantasy-wise from Eagles vs Giants - Fake Teams
If you’ve got a prominent Eagle on your roster, fire him up. The Giants’ lone defensive strength has been covering opposing tight ends. Strong safety Jabrill Peppers is Out with a back injury though, so it’s hunting season for both Zach Ertz and Dallas Goedert. In turn, that makes life easier on veteran perimeter receiver Alshon Jeffery, who should face minimal target competition from the other receivers. Nelson Agholor’s knee is bad enough that he’s a true game-time call. Agholor should not be counted on, regardless of if he’s active. JJ Arcega-Whiteside’s role should somewhat expand but he can’t be counted on as more than a Hail Mary 2nd-flex. In sum, both tight ends are legitimate TE1 options, with the elder Ertz slightly ahead of the young Goedert. Jeffery is a high-end WR2 with back-end WR1 upside. Adding it all up, Carson Wentz finds himself as this week’s overall QB13. It’s been an up-and-down year for Wentz but he’s an excellent streaming option who can easily scoot into the Top 12 for a QB1 finish.

How to watch and what to watch in Giants vs. Eagles, Week 14 MNF - DraftKings Nation
Fantasy football start/sit advice. Nobody is going to be starting Manning on Monday, but given the Eagles inconsistency, I don’t know that it would be the worst start. He’s a strong 2-QB league start, and he’s not the worst option in deeper leagues. Strong start: RB Saquon Barkley, QB Carson Wentz, RB Miles Sanders, TE Zach Ertz, WR Alshon Jeffery.

How much blame should fall at the feet of Giants’ GM Dave Gettleman? - Big Blue View
I don’t know what the Giants will do, but I keep coming back to the idea that ownership isn’t fond of major upheaval. I think Gettleman has made mistakes, including perhaps not acknowledging or even initially realizing how big the job of fixing this team was going to be. He finally said this summer that “Unfortunately, you can’t turn this thing on a dime. It’s impossible.” The core question is, are the Giants of today better off than where Gettleman found them two years ago? Record-wise, obviously not. I think, though, that they have the beginnings of a young core that didn’t exist when Gettleman took over. They have a young quarterback who might carry the franchise for the next decade or so. Maybe it’s because I’m also old-school, but I think Gettleman has the right team-building philosophy. Even if the execution hasn’t always been on the mark.

Redskins Injury Update: Preliminary report is an MCL sprain for Derrius Guice - Hogs Haven
Redskins interim Head Coach Bill Callahan offered no updates in his postgame presser except to say he was being checked out again. John Keim reported Guice would get an MRI on the knee tomorrow. NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero is reporting that the preliminary belief is Guice suffered an MCL sprain. The MRI will give the team a better idea of how serious the injury is, and whether the team needs to shut him down again. The Redskins were officially eliminated from the playoffs with today’s loss and there are only three games left in the season.

The Cowboys may be ‘individually talented’ but they are collectively a bad football team - Blogging The Boys
From the top, the Cowboys’ quarterback, Dak Prescott has put up great numbers all season but has regressed in the past few games. In Chicago, Prescott was missing his targets left and right, he didn’t come alive until it was way too late to salvage the game. Amari Cooper’s skill set apparently doesn’t translate on the road, where he has only 23 receptions and 296 receiving yards for the year. The rest of the Cowboys’ receiving options haven’t been much help lately as they can’t even consistently beat one-on-one coverage. To make matters worse, the offense has an affinity for self-infliction with drive-killing penalties, turnovers, and incompetence in the red zone.

Week 14: How George Kittle and the ‘Choice’ Route Helped Lift 49ers Over Saints in the Game of the Year - FMIA
I think this is the message I would give the NFL regarding the thousands of signatures demanding that Michael Vick be replaced as a Pro Bowl captain this year: Stand firm. Do not replace Vick. This is a man who has done nothing but atone for his wrongs as a king of dog-fighting, spending 21 months in federal prison and speaking publicly about how he wrecked his life and about the ills of dog-fighting. You can question his seriousness about it all, but since stepping out of Leavenworth in 2009, he’s lived an uneventful and repentant life off the field. He served his time, he coped with financial and career ruin, and he’s tried to rehab his life, which is what you do in a free society when you’ve done something egregiously wrong. Vick is a great example of reforming oneself from something stupid and hurtful. Being re-embraced by the NFL is a good thing. I’m a dog-lover of the first degree, and I’m 100 percent behind Vick.

Report: NFL not considering reseeding playoff teams despite embarrassing NFC East - Yahoo Sports
However, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the popularity of that idea hasn’t spread farther than fans or the media. Via ESPN: “A source with knowledge of the NFL’s thinking said the idea of reseeding teams has come up but “has gotten zero steam. It’s never been a consideration.” Schefter didn’t elaborate on why the NFL hasn’t considered it. It could be that the NFL simply doesn’t want to mess around with a playoff system that has worked fine just because one of its divisions has collectively forgotten how to play football.

The Winners and Losers of NFL Week 14 - The Ringer
The Saints and 49ers may have just played the game of the year, which definitely featured the play of the year. Plus, Ryan Tannehill is warping our reality and the Pats let the refs decide a game.

How the Patriots can *technically* still miss the 2019 NFL playoffs (but they won’t) - SB Nation
The 2019 season has taken a decidedly uncomfortable turn for the New England Patriots. After starting the year 8-0, New England has lost two in a row and three of its last five. More importantly, those three losses all came against AFC playoff contenders (the Ravens, Texans, and Chiefs). In Week 14, the Patriots were handled for most of the game by the Chiefs. Despite plenty of defensive struggles in 2019, Kansas City managed to hold New England to 278 yards of offense in a 23-16 win. For the eighth game in a row, Tom Brady finished with a passer rating below 100 — the longest streak of his career. The Patriots had a chance to clinch a spot in the postseason with a win, but with three weeks left, they’re still not quite in. While there are reasons for a bit of panic in New England, making the playoffs really isn’t something to fret about. It’d take a monumental collapse, along with a ton of help, to keep the Patriots out.

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