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Eagles News: The man behind the curtain

Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 6/19/19.

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Atlanta Falcons vs Buffalo Bills - September 25, 2005 Photo by Mark Konezny/NFLPhotoLibrary

Let’s get to the Philadelphia Eagles links ...

How critical is mystery man Tom Donahoe to the Eagles? - NBCSP
Donahoe is rarely seen. He’s been made available by the team for one interview — in the NovaCare Complex cafeteria in April of 2015, along with all the team’s scouts — and he was entertaining and insightful, regaling the media with stories of his career, including the role he played in converting Jason Peters from an undrafted tight end into a Hall of Fame offensive lineman while both were in Buffalo. That was four years ago. For the most part, you don’t hear about Donahoe. You don’t read about him. But make no mistake about it. He is a huge part of this franchise. Donahoe is a valued sounding board for Roseman, and a trusted adviser for owner Jeff Lurie. Donahoe grew up in the South Hills neighborhood of Pittsburgh and played football at South Hills Catholic, where one of his teammates was George Weidl. George Weidl’s sons? They would be Andy and Casey, who are both now key members of the Eagles’ scouting department. Andy last week was promoted to vice president of player personnel, with Joe Douglas becoming Jets GM, and Casey was just promoted to director of scouting operations. Donahoe evaluated film for Roseman and Douglas when they were building a Super Bowl roster. He was on Lurie’s search committee that recommended Pederson. He’s single-handedly responsible for two of the team’s highly regarded young scouting administrators. Donahoe’s fingerprints are all over this franchise.

Eagles rookie NFL player comparisons: Miles Sanders - PhillyVoice
As we’ve noted in the past, the Eagles have had mixed success with running backs lacking receiving numbers in college that they thought would become passing game weapons in the pros. Corey Clement proved them right. Wendell Smallwood proved them wrong. To note, Sony Michel only had 7 receptions as a rookie in 2018 in an offense that loves to utilize their running backs in the passing game. It’s also noteworthy that both players had fumbling issues in college. Michel had 12 career fumbles at Georgia. That was one fumble for every 54.5 touches, which is bad. Sanders had a fumble every 30.8 touches, which is awful. Michel cleaned it up as a rookie, fumbling just once on 216 touches. The one area where Sanders is definitively behind Michel entering the pros is in pass protection, where Michel was thought of as a polished back in that regard.

3 underrated areas the Eagles are very good at - BGN
Yes, just Doug Pederson. We all know and love him and recognize him as a great coach. But nationally he still doesn’t get his due. He won four playoff games in two seasons with a backup QB and several other key injuries, and one of those games was, you know, the Super Bowl. Yet Sean McVay, who is clearly an inferior coach, is thought better of. Find an article ranking coaches and you’ll probably find Mike Tomlin ahead of him. Tomlin hasn’t accomplished more than Pederson, unless you want to award points for alienating 2/3rds of his keystone players. Or you might find John Harbaugh, who has won one playoff game in the last six seasons, ahead of him. The only coach you can definitely put above Pederson is Bill Belichick, who Pederson outcoached in the Super Bowl. Of course, that’s just one man’s opinion. Pederson has objective, quantifiable advantages over his peers.

Stability Matters - Iggles Blitz
The Eagles sure aren’t perfect, but this is one of the best run organizations in professional sports. I think stability is a big part of that. Jeffrey Lurie is the owner, Roseaman the GM and Doug Pederson the coach. They have now worked together since 2016, and go back even farther when you factor in Pederson as an assistant from 2009-2012. Those men are comfortable with each other and they have defined roles. When the leaders of an organization are on the same page, it can make a big difference. Not only is it easier to pick/sign players, but it helps in developing them. There are some teams where the owner, GM and coach all have very different schedules in their mind. If a first rounder is coming along slowly, that can lead someone to be disappointed in the player and create a potentially toxic situation. The Eagles have been patient with players and that has mostly paid off very well.

‘Football chose him’: How Andre Dillard went from awkward 8th grader to Eagles first-round pick - The Athletic
Woodinville High School coach Mike Monan: I’m a former player so I’m about 6-3, right now about 320. They would do skits and coaches’ impressions. Andre’s group comes in. The only one left was Andre. I’m like, “What’s he gonna do?” I’m like, “If he comes down with a pillow under his shirt, I’m gonna run him right down.” They come in the side door, and he’s got a pillow stuffed under his shirt, I’m like, “Really?” And then he does a spot-on (impression) of my vocal tones, things I say, and the whole place erupted. It was like, “Hey, coach Monan, you’re late.” “I had to take a shit! When it comes on, you gotta do it!” Then he starts coaching the young offensive linemen. “You gotta punch! Punch!” I’m in the back, tearing up, laughing so hard, and the whole place is erupting.

Press Pass: Tim Hauck | June 14, 2019 - PE.com
Safeties coach Tim Hauck speaks to the media about cross-training players to play safety and more.

Ranking the NFC East, 2019: Head Coaches - Hogs Haven
Looking ahead to 2019, Pederson may have the most talented roster in the NFC East, and a sense of urgency surroundinig the team, which has been loaded up with talent while Wentz is on his rookie contract, leading to a ballooning salary cap bill that will come due in a couple of years when the Howie Roseman contracts start to run out of room for backloading. Can Pederson deliver a second super bowl to a front office that seems to have given him everything they think he needs to bring home another Lombardi trophy?

The Redskins view Ereck Flowers as potential starter at left guard - Washington Post
When the Washington Redskins signed former New York Giants offensive tackle Ereck Flowers in March, the idea was to move him to left guard. Although he had not fared well as a tackle in New York, they believed that, as the ninth pick in the 2015 draft, he had enough talent to be a starter on the interior of the offensive line. Then offseason workouts came, and Washington was so short on tackles that Flowers had to play tackle again. The results, at least in the practices open to the media, were not good. But the team remains committed to playing him at guard this season, and may even be expecting him to start. “Oh, yeah, I think so,” assistant head coach Bill Callahan, who directs the offensive line, said during minicamp when asked whether he planned to open training camp with Flowers as the starting left guard.

Reports: Phil Savage, Chad Alexander, and Rex Hogan to join Jets front office - Gang Green Nation
Joe Douglas’ front office with the Jets is starting to take shape according to Ian Rapoport and Adam Schefter. Former Browns general manager Phil Savage is expected to join the team. Savage spent time in the Baltimore organization with Douglas. He also had a stint in the Eagles front office prior to Douglas’ time there. Most recently he has served as executive director of the Senior Bowl and a general manager in the now defunct Alliance of American Football. He has a lot of experience in the scouting world. I also think he could help Douglas navigate the new job. Douglas has never been a general manager before. He undoubtedly will run into situations he has never experienced before or anticipated. Having somebody with experience in the job to lean on will likely help.

Ex-RB ‘He Hate Me’ Smart found safe, police say - ESPN
Former Philadelphia Eagles and Carolina Panthers running back Rod Smart has been found safe, the Lancaster County Sheriff’s Office said Tuesday evening, after he was reported missing in South Carolina. Earlier Tuesday, police had put out a missing person advisory for Smart, who had last been seen almost a week ago in Indian Land, South Carolina.

“Am I going to die?” - UO Alumni
It was shortly after midnight when Haloti Ngata thought he was going to die. The former UO defensive tackle was on Mount Kilimanjaro, 4,000 feet shy of the summit of Africa’s tallest mountain, when it first hit him that he might not make it back down. “I don’t think I was as ready as I thought I was [to climb Kilimanjaro], mentally,” he said. “I started to think, ‘Am I going to die?’ Your heart starts to beat deeper, harder, because the higher you get, the harder it has to work. ‘Am I going to get back home to see my family?’” But Ngata pressed on, each step harder than the last in the thin mountain air that turns feet to lead and makes each breath a struggle. Onward and upward he inched, until at last he reached the summit and unfurled the flag he’d been carrying in his backpack for days, the flag that officially announced the end of his 13-year NFL career. The flag that meant he could go home again.

6 NFL players who are on the verge of their best season yet- SB Nation
Free agency and shrewd draft moves have surrounded these six veterans with more talent than ever.

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