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Defining Cody Kessler’s fit with the Eagles

The QB Scho Show #25!

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NFL: Jacksonville Jaguars at Miami Dolphins Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Anybody else throw a parade when the Philadelphia Eagles signed Cody Kessler? No? Okay well me neither. What does the former Cleveland Browns and Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback bring to the table? Is it enough to win a roster spot or is he just a camp arm?

On The QB Scho Show #25 we attempt to answer those questions. I will say that after recently digging into Kessler’s tape, it’s not all that bad. It’s not great either, but I do believe he’s a capable backup, which is valuable.

Here are more of my thoughts from The QB Scho Show #25 via a loose transcript:

One thing they really value, from my armchair quarterback view of things, is they value a quantifiable, winning trait, regardless of what it is. It could be deep ball accuracy with an arm like Nate Sudfeld, it could be the ability to work quick timing concepts in the short game like Clayton Thorson. It could be huge arm hero ball with dynamic ability in the intermediate areas like Carson Wentz. Nick Foles wins on the 0/1 step stuff and then factors in a fearlessness when it comes to taking shots when they’re available pre-snap.

They’re all different quarterbacks with different defining traits but the point is they have one, one that they know they can work with and mold their offense around. For Kessler, I think it’s more along the lines of the quick timing concepts with Thorson and the 0/1 step stuff with Foles.

Pro Football Focus does these different articles throughout the offseason really honing in on one factor and they did this with quarterbacks and their depth of target, so they gave their top 5 in accurate ball placement, not completion percentage but accurate ball placement.

From a depth of 0-9 yards, Cody Kessler came in 5th with 72.3%, fifth in the league, now you say oh well it’s 0-9 yards, yeah, that’s the type of offense they’re probably going to run with him in there and while that depth isn’t exciting, the best way to get more out of that is by having excellent ball placement which helps your receivers create more yards after the catch.

That ball placement accuracy for Kessler ranked higher than Tom Brady, Russell Wilson, Matt Ryan and others, it’s something to work, keep in mind also 18th overall ball placement too, so that’s what I’m talking about when I say do they have something tangible to hold on to and work with while understanding the limitations so you can surround that quarterback with the situations he needs to be successful.

Before we talk about some of those limitations, because trust me they are there, let’s talk about where he wins and how he fits.

Again, Kessler is not going to be the aggressive Wentz style of quarterback. He’s not going to be the see cover 1 chuck it up deep with accuracy like Nate Sudfeld, he’s going to more the Thorson style of timing and rhythm, hit and throw, and by hit and throw I’m talking about hitting that third step in your drop and delivering without a hitch or anything, see it, throw it.

That’s where the Eagles, if they should need to call on him, and let’s face it if he makes the roster, but that short area bing bang type passing attack and it helps him that he landed with a coach in Doug Pederson that understands how to construct that offense around him and it helps that he’s got talent around him but he’s a guy that really benefits from having a scent hound like Zach Ertz that’s able to sniff open those short-to-intermediate areas of space in coverage and give him a very clear, defined target he can rely on.”

You can hear all of that and much more, including our thoughts on Kessler’s chance to earn a spot on the roster by listening to The QB Scho Show #25! Listen on the media player below or click here if the player doesn’t load. New to podcasts? Check out our guide on how to listen to BGN! FLY EAGLES FLY!

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