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Eagles News: Philadelphia’s fatal flaw heading into 2019

Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 5/17/19.

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Divisional Round - Philadelphia Eagles v New Orleans Saints Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images

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NFL Fatal Flaws 2019: Tom Brady and Drew Brees’ age, Carson Wentz’s health and every team’s possible pitfall - CBS Sports
Fatal Flaw: Carson Wentz’s body. The Eagles are even more talented than they were heading into their title defense season last year. But this time around, there’s no Nick Foles as a parachute option to replace Carson Wentz if something happens to the fourth-year starter. Wentz is in the middle of contract negotiations; except only playing 24 games the last two years leaves a lot of questions about his health, especially with last year’s back injury lingering in the wake of an ACL injury that cut his would-be MVP season of 2017 short. If Wentz plays 16 games, this is a Super Bowl contender. If not, we’ll find out what Doug Pederson can do with Nate Sudfeld.

Eagles 53-man roster prediction: Post-NFL Draft edition (2019) - BGN
Jeffery, Jackson, and Agholor are your clear and obvious starters. Jeffery and Wentz are on track to have a full offseason together for the first time since Jeffery signed with Philly back in 2017. Hopefully that helps them get on the same page. Having a legitimate deep threat like DeSean should do wonders for Wentz and the Eagles offense as a whole. There’s a lot of pressure on Agholor to perform as he makes $9.4 million on the final year of his rookie contract. Hollins is back after essentially disappearing from the face of the planet in 2018. His special teams ability should make him a roster lock. We’ll soon see if he can take a step forward as an offensive contributor. JJAW can play on special teams and he should get some playing time in red zone packages since he’s such a good jump ball target. Shelton Gibson, Braxton Miller, Charles Johnson, Greg Ward, DeAndre Thompkins, Marken Michel, and Carlton Agudosi are competing for a sixth spot here. I was close to keeping Gibson but I ultimately took him off since the coaching staff showed no interest in playing him on offense even when the Eagles suffered a billion wide receiver injuries early last year. Miller is a guy to watch as a potential gadget player and Agholor backup in the slot.

The QB Scho Show #25: Defining Cody Kessler - BGN Radio
Michael Kist has Mark Schofield ask the question, what coaches have shown the ability to mold their systems around a variety of quarterbacks? They think Doug Pederson is one of them, and that bodes well for Cody Kessler. Powered by SB Nation and Bleeding Green Nation.

NFC Hierarchy/Obituary: Offseason doldrums edition - PhillyVoice
3) Eagles: Offensively, the Eagles have a lot going for them: Assuming Brandon Brooks returns to form at some point during the season, their offensive line is stacked. The wide receivers are very good, with a diversified mix of skill sets. The running backs should be far better than they were in 2018, when they were arguably the worst in the NFL. They have the best 1-2 tight end combination in the NFL. It’s all set up for Carson Wentz to succeed, and if he can stay healthy, the Eagles should be able to do great things. Obviously, that “if” should be read in 72 pt. font.

Can the Eagles keep Joe Douglas from taking the Jets’ general manager job? - Inquirer
Can the Eagles make Douglas’ decision that much harder? Do they even want to? Owner Jeffrey Lurie and chief executive Howie Roseman have praised their head scout in recent interviews, but they’ve also downplayed his importance. He’s just one of many contributors has been a consistent theme in their responses over the last year. A year before, Lurie called the May 2016 hiring of Douglas “the pivotal moment of the last year.” He knew that much of the fan base was skeptical about Roseman’s return to personnel and that bringing in the former longtime Ravens scout – a “football guy” – would help ease those concerns. But since winning the Super Bowl, Lurie and Roseman have publicly downplayed Douglas’ influence. Some of the moves made since the 2017 offseason have suggested that his voice is no longer as prominent. And with Roseman’s penchant for trades, Douglas has had only 10 draft picks over the last two years.

Welcome to OTA season, and what it means for the Eagles -
Will QB Carson Wentz practice? It’s the overriding question for every fan, and we just don’t have an answer at this point. Head coach Doug Pederson has said he’s pleased with the progress Wentz is making as he recovers from his 2018 back injury, but the Eagles are staying away from establishing any timetable. We’ll know when you know.

2018 Adjusted Games Lost: Part II - Football Outsiders
The Philadelphia Eagles (40.9) had the fifth-most defensive back AGL we have ever measured. Here’s a look at their season-ending injuries: S Rodney McLeod: torn MCL, Week 3, CB Jalen Mills: foot sprain, Week 9, CB Ronald Darby: torn ACL, Week 10. On top of all that, cornerback Sidney Jones and safety Corey Graham missed 10 combined games with hamstring injuries.

Expectations of playing time and impact for Eagles’ 2019 draft class - NBCSP
Just the nature of the Eagles’ running back-by-committee system alone makes it very likely that Sanders will play a good deal immediately as a rookie. And the fact that they used a second-round pick on him means they’ll be in even more of a hurry to give him the rock. The last time the Eagles used a second-round pick on a running back was in 2009, when they drafted LeSean McCoy. In Shady’s rookie season, Brian Westbrook was limited to eight games because of injuries. Shady rushed for a team-high 637 yards, an Eagles rookie record. It’s hard to know how much the Eagles will use Howard while he’s here, but I’d expect over 500 yards for Sanders with a chance to approach or break Shady’s record. Heck, Josh Adams had 511 yards rushing last year as a rookie and Sanders is a much better prospect, although Adams was forced into a prominent role.

NFL Draft Fallout: Fantasy Football Veterans with Shaky Outlooks for 2019 - DraftKings
2. Jordan Howard, RB, Eagles: The Eagles only gave up a conditional sixth-round pick in the trade for Howard. They used a second-round pick on Miles Sanders in the draft. It spells bad news for Howard, whose early-down only skill set already puts a cap on his projection. Now we add Sanders, who met all six minimum thresholds of an elite fantasy running back and was the apple of the organization’s eye. This is an Eagles team which hadn’t drafted a running back in the first three rounds since 2009, but made an exception for Sanders. “Miles was a staff favorite. A personnel staff favorite. A front-office favorite,” said GM Howie Roseman. Expect Sanders to cut into Howard’s early-down work right from Week 1 and move into a featured role later in the season.

Two top candidates to replace Mike Maccagnan as Jets general manager - Gang Green Nation
Joe Douglas- Vice President of Player Personnel for the Philadelphia Eagles He is in his third season in his current post and was a valued voice to Howie Roseman in building the Eagles’ Super Bowl roster. He came from the Chicago Bears where he spent a season as the Director of College Scouting. Before that he worked in the Ravens’ personnel department from 2000-2015. He is 45 years old. “I have known Joe for several years and have admired his work with both the Ravens and the Bears,” said Howie Roseman, Eagles executive vice president of football operations. “He is a guy that we had targeted from the outset. I feel that we are very fortunate to have him lead our player personnel department. [Ravens general manager] Ozzie Newsome and [Bears general manager] Ryan Pace spoke very highly of him and his work. He is passionate about football, passionate about scouting and he played a vital role in the success of the Ravens over the last decade.”

Who Wants to Take on the Chaos and Be the Next GM of the New York Jets? - MMQB
The lead candidate to replace Maccagnan is Douglas, the Eagles VP of player personnel, and one of the NFL’s most respected evaluators. He’d be Gase’s pick. And if the Jets can land him, I’d bet on the chance that having traipsed through this smoldering fire would prove worth it for New York. But with all the associated rubble, Douglas would have a lot to consider before taking the job. The ex-Ravens exec served 16 years in Baltimore, mostly on the road as a college scout, before a one-year stop in Chicago (where he crossed over with then-Bears OC Adam Gase) that led to becoming the Eagles’ No. 2 behind Howie Roseman in 2016. In Philly, Douglas helped build a Super Bowl champion team with staying power, and has positioned himself in a similar spot to the one Chris Ballard was in three years ago.

By Firing Mike Maccagnan, the Jets Made the Right Move at the Wrong Time - Ringer
New York’s decision to fire its general manager just weeks after the draft raises many questions. Namely: Why was the man who once picked Christian Hackenberg allowed to keep running the show until now?

Inside the NFL analytics dark web - The Athletic
The league collects — but does not release to the public — player tracking data, which has the potential to be the next big thing in football analytics. The Big Data Bowl gave a peek at what could be done if the information was open to all, and on that front, there is some hope. Eagles owner Jeff Lurie was recently asked about the prospect of a public release of tracking data by The Athletic‘s Sheil Kapadia. “I would like to see almost all data in the public, to the public, to the fans,” he answered. “And I think that’s where we’re headed.” Even if tracking data are not made available, public research using existing data still has value. Namita Nandakumar, a Quantitative Analyst for the Eagles, recently tweeted, “Every day I grow more convinced of the value of rigorous public research in sports analytics and increasingly skeptical of the motives of people who say innovation can only happen privately.” When I asked Nandakumar about her tweet, she noted that it was a general comment about sports, not specific to football, adding, “I feel very strongly that the idea that more data out there somewhere shouldn’t prevent anyone from analyzing the data that is available to them as much as they can, and that there’s no specific background required in order for people to have interesting ideas and perspectives about sports.”

Frank Gore is immortal, but the Bills are his biggest test yet - SB Nation
Frank Gore has always been here. And he will always be here. Long after we’re gone, the former 49ers, Eagles (lololol), Colts, and Dolphins running back will still be grinding out first downs with the same burst and strength as the day he entered the league. He does not age and he does not wither. We’re all in various stages of physical decay, but not Gore. In a war against the very concept of hubris, Gore has elected to shoulder a great burden: being a running back for the Buffalo Bills in a frigid, old-bones-wrecking dystopia. Alright, let’s dial it back a bit. Buffalo isn’t a dystopia, but it is cold (which does, in fact, impact older players a lot more than rookies), and it does have a reputation for chewing up and spitting out veteran players previously thought to have something left in the tank.


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