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Eagles News: Jason Kelce is the NFL’s most underappreciated player

Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 5/27/19.

NFL: Washington Redskins at Philadelphia Eagles Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

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Most underappreciated players of 2018: Eagles’ Kelce leads top 5 -
1) Jason Kelce, C, Philadelphia Eagles. Drafted: Sixth round (No. 191 overall), 2011Pro Bowls: Two (2014, 2016). Kelce had the highest win-contribution metric for any center in the NFL last season. My favorite stat on him: No center kept opposing defenders at least five feet from his quarterback on passing downs more than Kelce last season (24.1%; next closest was 18.8%). Measuring O-line play this way helps quantify “stopping pressure” or “clean pockets” and it shows Kelce set the standard for elite at his position last season.

PFF says JJ Arcega-Whiteside is a perfect match for Carson Wentz - BGN
JJ Arcega-Whiteside, Philadelphia Eagles — Best Route: Go. This one wasn’t even close. Arcega-Whiteside was the draft class’ highest-graded receiver on go concepts, including seams, back-shoulder go, end-zone fades and flys that broke off another route. On those go route concepts, Arcega-Whiteside showcased what made us here at PFF come to love him. He has an innate ability to high point the football while also dominating over defensive backs at the catch point. He made 11 contested catches on go routes last year and turned 39 targets into 14 explosive plays of 15 or more yards. All 20 of his go route receptions either moved the chains (eight) or scored six points (12). This is arguably one of the more perfect matches made in draft heaven as Carson Wentz has been downright tremendous on go routes in his short career. Just last year alone, he threw six big-time throws and despite three dropped passes, completed 12 go routes for 271 yards and two scores. Arcega-Whiteside’s ability on go routes and contested-catch situations both in the red zone and in the open field should go a long way at continuing Wentz’ development into one of the league’s top-end signal-callers.

A look at the Eagles’ players over 30, and their succession plan for each - PhillyVoice
Malcolm Jenkins (31): Jenkins is skipping offseason workouts for the first time since he’s been an Eagle, almost certainly because he wants a new contract. Avonte Maddox showed that he is capable of playing something similar to the Jenkins role in the Eagles’ defense, but his best position is probably at slot corner. The Eagles still need to find a successor here.

Defense puts in its time, looking to put pieces together -
At cornerback, the Eagles return familiar faces and, again, are going to have good competition in camp. Who starts? Who plays key reserve roles? With Ronald Darby and Jalen Mills not on the field this spring as they rehab from injuries, players like Sidney Jones, LeBlanc, Avonte Maddox, and Rasul Douglas are gaining valuable practice reps. The Eagles return intact at cornerback, thanks to the signing of Darby in free agency, and they feel good about that situation.

The Determination of Bart Starr - FMIA
“We use data analytics as much as any professional sports team—and I’d be the first to tell you that crunching the numbers can tell us a lot about performance. But in the end, you have to make a judgment about human character that no algorithm can really capture. When we decided to hire Doug Pederson as our new coach, we got plenty of criticism for what seemed like a completely unconventional choice based on his career experience at that point. But what I saw in Doug was someone not just with expertise about football strategy and tactics, but a unique level of empathy for players as individuals, and real insight about how people work together as a team. That kind of leadership and the success it generates isn’t about sports. It’s about trust. When it comes to solving problems, study after study shows that the most effective organizations aren’t built on individual genius, but on diverse groups who trust and respect one another … So what’s it take to be one of those trusting problem-solvers who can truly hear one another? I’ve found that to embrace what makes us fully alive to ourselves and those around us calls on you to keep the child in you as you grow, with an enduring sense of wonder and curiosity. Buddhism calls it ‘beginner’s mind.’ There’s nothing childish about keeping that child-like perspective regardless of how old you are.”

The Jets Right Now, According to Adam Gase - MMQB
In a nutshell, Gase and Grier were aligned philosophically, which allowed Gase to focus on coaching the team. So the hunt is on for not only that kind of guy, but that kind of relationship. And while I think Joe Douglas remains the favorite, it’s worth noting that, per sources, requests haven’t yet gone in for San Francisco’s Adam Peters or Detroit’s Lance Newmark, both of whom are close to Gase. You may be surprised that Gase looks back and sees a lot of good in what he had in Miami. And if you are, you may be surprised with a few other things he said during our talk, too. Here are some highlights of our conversation…

Jets coach Adam Gase turns up the heat ... on himself - ESPN
Joe Douglas (Philadelphia Eagles), Champ Kelly (Chicago Bears), George Paton (Minnesota Vikings) and Adam Peters (San Francisco 49ers) -- all high-ranking personnel executives with their respective teams -- have been mentioned as possible candidates, although one source said Paton is unlikely to leave. I talked to one general manager who predicted the Jets’ uncertain ownership situation could be a factor for GM candidates. Owner Woody Johnson’s term as the U.S. ambassador to the United Kingdom likely hinges on the outcome of the 2020 presidential election. Christopher Johnson has said he’d like to remain in a significant role once his brother returns to the U.S., but when will that be? To whom will the new general manager report? The GM I spoke to suggested the top candidates should demand a five-year contract to provide security.

Howard on Sanders: ‘I feel like we complement each other’ - NBCSP
The Eagles made an effort to upgrade their backfield this offseason by trading for Jordan Howard and drafting Miles Sanders. Howard spoke to the media on Tuesday about how the two RBs fit in the Eagles backfield.

Donovan McNabb’s Hall of Fame case falls flat in Twitter poll - PFT
Former NFL quarterback Donovan McNabb believes he deserves a spot in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. So we put the question out to a vote, on Twitter. With nearly 40,000 votes cast during the 24-hour window, 75 percent of those responding disagreed with McNabb.

The point spreads that matter most in the 2019 NFL season, by week - SB Nation
Week 11 — Matchup to watch: Patriots @ Eagles (-1) — This is currently the only game on the Patriots schedule where they are listed as an underdog. The Eagles have welcomed back Carson Wentz, and are favored to win a mediocre NFC East. If Wentz remains healthy, this line probably will not change much.


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