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Eagles News: Jalen Mills says Philadelphia is going to be “the No. 1 defense in the league”

Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 3/14/19.

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Eagles Free Agency Film Review: Malik Jackson - BGN
Jackson can offer the same ability to win on interior slants that Bennett often found success with for Philadelphia — winning on slants was a big part of his game in Jacksonville, and while Philadelphia doesn’t employ nearly the number of slants that the Jaguars did, they would be smart to incorporate more of those opportunities for Jackson to maximize his rush effectiveness.

BGN Memories #4: DeSean Jackson & The Eagles - BGN Radio
In the fourth installment of BGN Memories, John Stolnis revisits the Eagles’ history with the polarizing DeSean Jackson! Presented by SB Nation & Bleeding Green Nation.

A look at the Eagles’ competition for running backs in the free agent market - PhillyVoice
The only clear “yes” candidates, in my view, are the Texans (they are reportedly shopping or releasing Lamar Miller), the Chiefs (they need to replace some of the contributions of Kareem Hunt), and the Raiders (who need help everywhere and have money to spend). Conclusion: While some backs who might have made some sense for the Eagles are gone, they are still in a decent position to work this market for inexpensive help.

More on Malik, RB and A Wrong to be Righted - Iggles Blitz
Howie Roseman has a plan at RB. We don’t know what it is yet, but free agency isn’t even 24 hours old right now. There are plenty of players left to sign. There are guys to be traded for. And we still have the draft. I expect the Eagles to add one pro RB and one in the draft. Maybe they add a couple of lower level free agents and a draft pick. We have to wait and see what happens. It is way early in the process. Be patient. The Eagles know they need to add serious talent at RB. For whatever reason, they didn’t feel Tevin Coleman was the answer, reasonable price or not.

Re-ranking Eagles’ top needs after initial free agency flurry - NBCSP
1. Running back: After adding Jackson, I think the Eagles solved their speed wide receiver problem, but now the most glaring need on offense is at running back. Jay Ajayi and Darren Sproles are set to become free agents, which means the Eagles still have Wendell Smallwood, Corey Clement and Josh Adams. But none of those guys has established themselves as a featured back in the NFL. The Eagles have some options here. There are still a few top-notch running backs on the market. Or they could trade for one. If the Eagles don’t get a running back soon, they still have three picks in the first two rounds in April.

DeSean Jackson brings lid-lifting abilities to Eagles’ passing game -
Maybe the best way to describe the impact DeSean Jackson has for an offense is to hear from the defensive side of the football. We know that Jackson, who returns to the Eagles after the team announced a trade with Tampa Bay on Wednesday, has led the NFL in yards per reception four times in his career, including two of the last three seasons. We know Jackson’s big-play capabilities with the football in his hands. We know the man can flat-out fly. But how much does he change what a defense is doing? The answer: A ton.

Sources: Giants committed to keeping Eli in 2019 - ESPN
Even as they signal a commitment to a rebuilding plan, the New York Giants still do not expect to move on from 38-year-old quarterback Eli Manning this year, according to multiple sources familiar with their strategy. Manning has one year left on his contract. He is scheduled to earn an $11.5 million salary, a $500,000 workout bonus and a $5 million roster bonus if he is still on the roster at 4 p.m. ET this Saturday. If the Giants were to release Manning prior to that time, they would save all $17 million of that salary and bonus money in both cash and cap space this year, as well as carry a reasonable $6.2 million dead-money cap charge for what’s left of Manning’s signing bonus.

Grading the move: Cardinals roll the dice on LB Jordan Hicks despite durability issues - The Athletic
Signing grade: C. When healthy, Hicks is an above average starter, but he hasn’t looked like a difference-maker since 2016. There’s upside with this move but also plenty of risk, given his durability issues.

Beau Allen takes a pay cut to stick with Bucs - PFT
Defensive tackle Beau Allen adjusted his contract to improve his chances of sticking with the Buccaneers this season. Tom Pelissero of NFL Media reports that Allen agreed to a $1 million pay cut. Allen had been set to make $5 million in salary and bonus this year. Allen was guaranteed $1.5 million of that number, so it would seem the Bucs were prepared to take that dead money in order to shed the rest of Allen’s cap hit.

Report: Free agent cornerback Ronald Darby is scheduled to visit Chiefs Wednesday night - Arrowhead Pride
Over four years, Darby has compiled 214 tackles (190 solo), six interceptions and 54 passes defensed. He could be a good option for the Chiefs, who have vacancies at the cornerback position, but he does have somewhat of a history when it comes to injuries.

Report: Eagles free agent RB Jay Ajayi to visit Colts next week - Stampede Blue
While the Colts have a talented stable of young running backs including Marlon Mack, Nyheim Hines, and Jordan Wilkins, the team really lacks a ‘grinder’, tough between-the-tackles rusher who can gain those tough yards—especially in short yardage situations. Still only 25 years old, Ajayi doesn’t have the durability to be a franchise workhorse, but he does run with tremendous physicality and ‘punch’. He’d be a nice veteran addition to this Colts backfield, and head coach Frank Reich has familiarity with him from his time previously as offensive coordinator with the Philadelphia Eagles.

Futures: Brian Burns - Football Outsiders
Burns then went on to tear up the athletic testing. His 4.53-second 40-yard dash and 129-inch broad jump both placed in the 97th percentile all-time among edge players. Additionally, Burns shined with a 36-inch vertical jump (82nd percentile) and a 7.01-second 3-cone drill (81st percentile). Though Burns did have the advantage of doing these drills at a lighter weight than most other edge players, he clearly showed off above-average overall athleticism with elite upfield burst. The straight-line speed and outward burst Burns displayed in the 40-yard dash and broad jump were no surprise based on his film. Most pass-rushers have a calling card of some sort, and Burns’ is certainly his initial explosion off the snap. The amount of ground Burns can cover within his first two steps is overwhelming.

Source claims Teddy Bridgewater’s people fear Sean Payton might be the Cowboys coach in 2020, not the Saints - Blogging The Boys
Garrett’s job is on the line this season, he needs to win big to receive another contract. He doesn’t have a first-round pick, and the Cowboys most likely won’t be spending big in free agency, instead saving their money for re-signing/extending their own players that will help the team long-term. That leaves Garrett in a precarious position. Of course, the Sean Payton rumors are just that, rumors. Until the 2019 season plays out, we won’t know anything for sure.

What are the Giants’ receiving options with Odell Beckham gone? - Big Blue View
Sterling Shepard is your No. 1 wide receiver. That’s not exactly a role Shepard is fit to play. He’s a great asset as a No. 2, especially with his ability to play both inside and outside. But when the offense has to run through Shepard, things aren’t as efficient.

The Directionless Despair of Giants and Knicks Fandom - The Ringer
Nothing could have prepared Giants loyalists for the Odell Beckham Jr. trade … except for the recent Kristaps Porzingis deal. It’s difficult to stomach losing the face of the franchise when neither team appears to have a discernible master plan.

Seahawks agree to re-sign Mychal Kendricks for 2019, contingent on LB’s sentencing hearing - The News Tribune
Kendricks’ sentencing in federal court in Pennsylvania for insider trading was postponed from Jan. 25 to April 4. His new contract is unlikely to have much money guaranteed, a risk-free fall-back for the Seahawks in case he can’t play in 2019.

Dolphins sign former Patriots defensive back Eric Rowe - The Phinsider
The Dolphins have been rather quiet early on in Free Agency, but have continued to bring in players familiar with the new coaching staff. According to Ian Rapaport of the NFL Network, the Miami Dolphins have agreed to a 1-year deal with former Patriots defensive back, Eric Rowe.

Jaguars release Blake Bortles - Big Cat Country
[BLG Note: Bring him in to compete with Nate Sudfeld?]

Report: Chargers sign QB Tyrod Taylor - Bolts From The Blue
It may not be splashy, but Chargers GM Tom Telesco adds depth at another key position.

Impressive Deal for Nick Foles, Landon Collins Aids in Tyrann Mathieu’s Fortunes, More NFL News - MMQB
Foles’s deal really ties the team to him for two years. As a practical matter, the $46.625 million over the first two years are guaranteed. There’s $5 million in injury guarantees for 2021, and that money becomes fully guaranteed if he’s on the roster in 2020. So that $5 million would be the cost for walking away from him in two years.

Nick Foles Doesn’t Eat Cheesesteaks. But He’ll Still Miss Philly. - Esquire
“You know what, because of what I do…man, I’m getting older, and I watch my diet like crazy. My wife cooks so much. I will tell you this, we love food scene in Philly. Every Friday we would go out to eat in Philly. Try different places, enjoy the city, enjoy all these talented chefs. One of our favorite spots at the end of our time in Philadelphia was Friday Saturday Sunday. Wonderful restaurant, the chef/owner and his wife run it and that’s a really special spot. But that was sort of a more genuine way for me to answer your question. Because the last time I probably had a cheesesteak in the city was probably 2013.”

PFF’s 2019 NFL Free Agency Deal Grader - PFF
Nick Foles has the best-two single-game grades that we’ve seen for the Eagles over the past few seasons, and they came in the two most important games they have played – the NFC Championship and then the Super Bowl – but he also has the worst games and remains a tremendously volatile quarterback whose baseline performance is questionable. The Jaguars are betting on the upside, but it is a significant gamble.

Why do NFL teams keep wasting their money on bridge quarterbacks? - SB Nation
At least it’s preferable to the Jaguars’ worst-case scenario. Instead of hunting for a bridge quarterback, Jacksonville dove face-first into the market with a four-year, $88 million deal for Nick Foles. It’s likely destined for failure, but the Jaguars probably aren’t positioning themselves to draft a quarterback of the future in April. Their investment is more in line with the Vikings’ addition of Kirk Cousins in 2018. Both teams went on an ill-advised hunt for a missing piece to take them over the top. It hasn’t worked out for Minnesota and probably won’t for Jacksonville either.


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