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Eagles News: Carson Wentz to DeSean Jackson connection has potential to be lethal

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Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 3/16/19.

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NFL: Washington Redskins at Philadelphia Eagles James Lang-USA TODAY Sports

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Deep ball success could be key to DeSean Jackson fantasy resurgence in Philadelphia - PFF
Though we’ve seen a massive decline in fantasy production from Jackson since arriving in Tampa Bay, he’s still played exceedingly well. In each of the past two seasons he’s ranked top-25 (of over 100 qualifying wide receivers) in PFF receiving grade. This is mostly just speculation, but perhaps Jackson wanted out of Tampa Bay to be with a more accurate deep passer. On Wednesday, Jackson said he talked to Carson Wentz and told him he was really impressed with “his deep ball.” According to our data, Wentz has been the far more accurate deep passer in recent years. Over the past two seasons Wentz ranks seventh-best of 26 qualifying quarterbacks in deep accuracy percentage (45%), while Jameis Winston ranks fifth-worst (35%). I suspect a return to Philadelphia will mean a return to fantasy relevance for Jackson in 2019.

Levitan: NFL Free Agency Fallout, Fantasy Football Winners - DraftKings
Carson Wentz, QB, Eagles: The Eagles sorely lacked downfield playmakers on offense last season. Zach Ertz set a career-high in catches with an outrageous 116 but also set a career-low in yards per reception (YPR) at 10.0. In fact, as a team the Eagles ranked 24th in YPR. The addition of DeSean Jackson is massive for Carson Wentz not only because D-Jax annually makes his quarterbacks numbers better, but also because it places everyone in spots they win. Nelson Agholor has stark splits when operating out of the slot – which is where he’ll be now that D-Jax bookends Alshon Jeffery. Ertz and mega-talent Dallas Goedert will see their YAC numbers rise as safeties clear out of the box to track Jackson’s speed. Furthermore, the Eagles have done nothing (yet) to address their barren running back room currently topped by Wendell Smallwood and Corey Clement. Wentz, who may have rushed back too soon from his 2017 ACL tear, should be closer to 100 percent for Week 1 this season.

Former NFL player says Ronald Darby is re-signing with the Eagles? - BGN
Here’s an ... interesting ... free agency rumor for you to chew on. Former NFL player Antwan Odom seems to be claiming the Philadelphia Eagles have re-signed cornerback Ronald Darby to a one-year contract worth $8.75 million.

Grading the Offseason - BGN Radio
John Stolnis and Brandon Lee Gowton recap what’s been a frantic free agency to this point and hand out grades for the Eagles bringing in Malik Jackson, Desean Jackson, and LJ Fort! Also, what in tarnation is Dave Gettleman doing?!Presented by SB Nation and Bleeding Green Nation.

A position-by-position look at the Eagles’ biggest needs - PhillyVoice
Running back: This is obviously one of the Eagles’ biggest remaining needs, as they need to add multiple backs. So far, the Eagles have been quiet here in free agency, but they’re in a good position to upgrade the position cheaply. A decent number of backs who make sense are still available in free agency (T.J. Yeldon, Spencer Ware, Isaiah Crowell, and Bilal Powell, for example), as well as some trade options (Jordan Howard and Duke Johnson). There is also a dearth of teams who still need help at running back. While many will argue that the Eagles should have been more aggressive in landing a higher-quality back, the way it has shaken out, the Eagles should be able to let the market come to them, on a bargain. I personally think both sides to the debate have merit. The Eagles will add a back at some point via signing or trade. Maybe two. There’s really no way around it. They have to. I would also imagine that they’ll draft one as well.

Why Malik Jackson should excel in Eagles’, Jim Schwartz’s defensive scheme, especially as a pass rusher | Film review - Inquirer
Jackson has a superior get off. His quickness can surprise guards. And if they show their hands too early, he has swim, slap and overhand moves to penetrate past blockers. On this rush, Jackson (No. 97) easily wins his one-on-one and sacks Texans quarterback DeShaun Watson. Jackson not only stands 6-5, but he has 34-inch arm length. On this rush vs. Eagles guard Isaac Seumalo, he used a stutter-step to slow the guard and get around him, but he also forced quarterback Carson Wentz to step up when he extended his arm. Wentz forced his throw and was intercepted.

How DeSean Jackson learned to take care of his body, harness his speed - NBCSP
Thursday was not the first time Jackson’s longtime trainer, Gary Cablayan, heard about cheetahs. “When you get older, I told him, you just have to be smarter with training,” Cablayan said to NBC Sports Philadelphia over the phone Thursday afternoon. “It’s just a balance of knowing his body and that’s why he’s been good for so long, because he stayed with the same group. We know his body inside and out. We know how much he can handle, how much he can’t.” But back when he was in his early 20s, Jackson considered himself a cheetah. He was a naturally-gifted, world-class athlete with world-class speed. He didn’t need to take care of his body. These days, he’s still lightning-fast, but Jackson is 32 as he enters his second stint with the Eagles. You gotta stretch to stretch the field. He’s learned that. Cablayan and others have helped.

NFL Free Agency: CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie Signs With Redskins, Ending Brief Retirement - Hogs Haven
Free agent (and recently retired) cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie has agreed to sign with the Redskins this afternoon. Rodgers-Cromartie, age 32, is an eleven-year NFL vet, having played in 160 games for the Arizona Cardinals, Philadelphia Eagles, Denver Broncos, New York Giants, and Oakland Raiders. “DRC” retired announced his retirement on October 30, 2018 after week 8 of this past season, but has decided to return to the NFL and will reunite with Landon Collins in the Redskins’ defensive backfield, whom he played with in New York from 2015-2017.

Rebuild? Win now? Some weird mix of both? What is the Giants’ plan? - Big Blue View
When you talk to people about the Giants and the quarterback succession plan, you hear a lot of different things. Which leads me to the conclusion that inside the walls of 1925 Giants Drive in East Rutherford there likely is not a unanimous opinion right now among the team’s decision-makers. I remain steadfast in the belief that it doesn’t really matter if they get their quarterback of the future this offseason. What matters is that whenever they make that move, they get it right.

Barnwell’s 2019 NFL free-agency and trade grades: Tracking every big signing and move - ESPN
Grade: D+ [...] Furthermore, Golden Tate turns 31 in August. He’s smart enough to get by without every ounce of athleticism, but the Giants guaranteed him enough money to make this a very expensive two-year deal or a reasonably expensive three-year pact. The Giants are blindly backing Eli Manning, who will receive a $5 million bonus Saturday, for 2019; even if we assume that they’ll have a new quarterback in 2020, Tate is not going to be a long-term solution for a team that needs to be looking for long-term solutions right now. General manager Dave Gettleman is papering over the holes in this offense with trades and free-agent signings, just as Jerry Reese did with the defense years ago. In addition, by signing Tate, the Giants are going to lose the fifth-round compensatory pick they got when the Falcons signed Jamon Brown. They need to be targeting young talent and draft picks to build around Barkley. While Tate is a talented player, this isn’t the right move for Big Blue.

NFL Free Agency 2019: Grading the Biggest Moves - MMQB
Breakdown: Wowza. Perhaps this is a move the Giants should have considered when the team already had Odell Beckham Jr. and Sterling Sheperd stretching the field together. Outside of the fact that this brings a 30-year-old into the fold at a time of apparent rebuilding, and as Rotoworld’s Evan Silva noted, awarded a division rival in the comp pick formula while simultaneously costing the Giants, it was a bidding war they seemingly didn’t need to get into. Would he be taking the place of a potential developmental pick? The one thing I do like: The Giants are going to need to rely more on bunch formations and legal traffic to create openings now that Beckham is gone. This is an area where Tate can shine. He’s physical, has a solid catch rate and is smart enough to understand how he can create space for himself (and others) on the field. Still, if that were the plan, I would have gone after some other complementary wideouts (Danny Amendola, perhaps) with experience in generating those kinds of mid-range throws. Grade: D

NFL Draft RB Rankings - Rotoworld
Montgomery gets nitpicked for what he isn’t. But how about what he is? He’s Kareem Hunt with a heart of gold. In college, Montgomery would send $100 every few weeks to his brother, incarcerated in a federal penitentiary on murder charges. Does that anecdote surprise you in the slightest? You sort of get the vibe from Montgomery that he’s the kind of cat who never once considered the possibility of leaving his brother behind. Not just that he didn’t entertain the possibility -- but that it literally never occurred to him. He’s working from a different set of equations. David Montgomery is going to give you everything he has, and you’re going to be proud to have him in your organization. I’d bet a kidney that he’s going to be a top-15 NFL running back for multiple years. I can’t say that about any other back in this class. Josh Jacobs may have a slightly higher ceiling due to superior athleticism, but Montgomery’s floor is tops in this class by margin. Surefire Day 1 starter who was ready to be an NFL bellcow yesterday.

49ers sign Raheem Mostert to a three-year deal - Niners Nation
Mostert is a speedy guy that is an excellent special-teamer. One of the best in the game. That is the fourth commitment to a running back this year. They all have one thing in common: They are fast.

Browns RB Kareem Hunt suspended for the first 8 games of the 2019 season - Dawgs Bay Nature
Running back Kareem Hunt has been suspended for the first 8 games this year per a report on ESPN.com. The suspension comes from a violation of the NFL’s personal conduct policy. Although Hunt can appeal the decision, he has informed the league that he will not and accept the suspension. [BLG Note: Is it less likely the Browns trade Duke Johnson now?]

Report: Chiefs wide receiver Tyreek Hill ‘under investigation’ for alleged battery - Arrowhead Pride
According to a report in the Kansas City Star, Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Tyreek Hill is currently under investigation for an alleged incident that reportedly involves his son. According to the Star’s reporting, they are in possession of an Overland Park Police Department report dated Thursday concerning an alleged battery incident involving a juvenile as the victim. Hill’s fiancee Crystal Espinal is also listed on the report as being involved in the incident.

When a Guarantee Isn’t Guaranteed - The Ringer
NFL free agency is in full swing, which means big multiyear deals are flying around. Most savvy fans know that those contracts aren’t set in stone. But just how fluid are they? We analyzed five years’ worth of free-agent agreements to see how long they really last—and how much they really pay.

Nick Foles ‘FolRida’ shirt is here - Big Cat Country
There’s a new Florida man in Jacksonville. The Jacksonville Jaguars added free agent quarterback and Super Bowl MVP Nick Foles to their team in free agency. He’s the new FloRida.

6 times NFL teams’ Twitter accounts tried really hard to get you excited this week - SB Nation
There’s not a lot to brag about with Foles if you’re trying to get people excited for having him on your team. His career record as a starter is 26-18, he’s completed just below 62 percent of his passes, has 68 touchdowns, and 33 interceptions. That’s not exactly much to brag about for a quarterback you just signed for four years and $88 million (even if that is the going rate for quarterbacks like him nowadays). But he did win a Super Bowl, and that’s not for nothing. However, the Jaguars decided to tweet out this beauty: The very first stat? Foles has the highest win percentage by a quarterback with TWO OR MORE STARTS since 2017.

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