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Eagles News: Philadelphia’s 2019 rookie class ranked among NFL’s least productive

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Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 1/29/20.

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NFL: DEC 29 Eagles at Giants Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

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

Ranking the NFL’s most productive 2019 rookie classes from 1-32 - PFF
25. Philadelphia Eagles. Why they’re ranked here: The Eagles drafted two players in the first two rounds (offensive tackle Andre Dillard and wide receiver J.J. Arcega-Whiteside) who added negative wins above replacement values. That isn’t great. Arcega-Whiteside was especially disappointing, earning targets on a higher percentage of his routes than only Andre Patton of the Chargers. All the opportunity was there to take advantage of a larger role with the offense’s injuries, but it never materialized. How their top pick fared: Dillard (No. 22 overall) was limited to reserve work when Jason Peters or Lane Johnson went down because of injury, and that was a good thing for Carson Wentz based on how he graded. He allowed a pressure rate of 14.7%, higher than any other tackle in the NFL.

Notes from watching an advance copy of Amazon’s ‘All or Nothing: Philadelphia Eagles’ series - BGN
As previously noted here on Bleeding Green Nation, the 2019 Philadelphia Eagles are featured in the latest edition of the Amazon Original series All or Nothing premiering Friday, February 7 on Amazon Prime Video. The fine folks at Amazon were kind enough to send me a screener of the first seven out of eight episodes in advance of the official release date. After watching most of the series, I can confidently say that I think Eagles fans will find it worth their time. Amazon does a good job of taking you behind the scenes and onto the field. It’s a nice way to reexperience a 2019 campaign that had a number of ups and downs. Definitely make an effort to watch it for yourself when it comes out. In the meantime, here are some notes I took while watching the first seven episodes. If you’re super sensitive about any kind of “spoilers,” well, you’ve been warned.

2020 BGN Draft #3: Post-Senior Bowl Mock Thoughts w/Trevor Sikkema - BGN Radio
Michael Kist is joined by Trevor Sikkema of The Draft Network and Pewter Report to discuss his most recent mock that has the Eagles taking a defensive player PLUS thoughts on Senior Bowl studs, first round QBs and more! Powered by SB Nation and Bleeding Green Nation.

Re-grading the Eagles’ 2019 draft - PhillyVoice
Still, Arcega-Whiteside had a good camp (for a rookie), and he flashed in the preseason against the Baltimore Ravens, when he had eight catches for 104 yards, and a TD. Things were looking OK. And then... the regular season did not go well, as you all saw. Arcega-Whiteside failed to make what should have been a game-winning catch against the Lions, and by the end of the season, despite the Eagles’ top three receivers going down, he only had 10 catches for 169 yards and a TD. In the playoffs against the Seahawks, he got fewer snaps than a trio of guys pulled off of practice squads during the season, while DK Metcalf, a player drafted shortly after him by Seattle (and in my view, was clearly a better prospect), hauled in seven catches for 160 yards, and a TD. Grade we gave last April: B- Re-grade: D.

Building Plans - Iggles Blitz
One of the key things for the Eagles to figure out is what they want to do at WR. In the past, Howie Roseman has talked about rookie receivers struggling to contribute. We saw several rookie wideouts play well in 2019. Will that change the Eagles thinking? If not, then they may feel they need veterans at WR and addressing CB should be done in the draft. The Eagles study positional production and age. This isn’t just Howie throwing some BS off the wall. That said, there is constant change in the NFL. If the Eagles thought they could bring in a couple of rookie WRs and get them to contribute right away, that would be ideal. It would surround Wentz with young talent that could grow around him.

Aggressiveness Index 2019 - Football Outsiders
[BLG Note: Doug Pederson ranked fourth among all NFL head coaches in 2019.]

Kapadia: A 10-step offseason plan to fix the Eagles’ biggest problems - The Athletic
1. Prioritize speed and athleticism on offense. This is an obvious one. From Week 2 on (also known as the post-DeSean Jackson era), the Eagles were the only team in the NFL without a pass play of 50-plus yards. They had one touchdown of 40-plus yards during that stretch. Only the Bears and Patriots had zero. As a point of reference, the Chiefs had 11. This is about focusing a plan around what Carson Wentz does best. He wants to be an aggressive downfield passer, not a methodical, move-the-chains quarterback who relies on efficiency. He likes to throw to players who can separate rather than trust guys to make contested catches. The Eagles need to surround Wentz with speedy wide receivers and build on his natural instinct to be aggressive. There’s nothing wrong with an 11-play, 85-yard possession. But you know what’s more fun and a nice option to have? The quarterback dancing around in the pocket or looking off a safety and chucking it 50 yards to cap off a three-play, 85-yard touchdown drive.

Players who leveled up for all 32 NFL teams in the 2019 season - ESPN
Dallas Goedert, tight end. The 2018 second-round pick nearly doubled his production from his rookie season, finishing with 58 catches for 607 yards to go with five touchdowns, and he did so while sharing the field with Pro Bowl tight end Zach Ertz. Goedert played his best ball down the stretch, including in a wild-card playoff loss to the Seattle Seahawks in which he caught seven balls on eight targets for 73 yards. The Eagles head into 2020 with a nasty 1-2 punch at tight end thanks to the emergence of Goedert.

Fix two things and Eagles are a Super Bowl contender - NBCSP
But if Howie Roseman and his staff can figure out wide receiver and cornerback through free agency and the draft, there’s no reason this team can’t be as good as anybody in 2020. It’s a lot to ask. There’s a reason those two areas are lacking. Years of poor drafting, poor free agency signings and poor player evaluations have left the roster sorely lacking at corner and receiver. The Eagles overcame it to win a Super Bowl largely because guys like Jalen Mills, Ronald Darby and Nelson Agholor had the best seasons of their lives, and free agents like Alshon Jeffery, Torrey Smith and Patrick Robinson played over their heads. If the Eagles are going to fix these two areas it’s going to have to be through a combination of free agency and the draft.

If Chiefs’ Mike Kafka is no longer a possibility, Eagles could have interest in 49ers’ Mike McDaniel and Mike LaFleur - Inquirer
The 49ers don’t have an offensive coordinator, per se – Shanahan calls the plays – but they do have a pass game coordinator (Mike LaFleur) and a run game coordinator (Mike McDaniel). Both coaches offered up non-denial denials when asked if the Eagles either requested interviews or expressed interest. “Kansas City defense – that’s really all I know,” McDaniel said. “I wouldn’t know,” LaFleur said. “I’m under contract here.” LaFleur would, in theory, make more sense than McDaniel. The Eagles have an existing run game coordinator in offensive line coach Jeff Stoutland. But 49ers coordinator roles aren’t clearly defined, and both assistants worked in various posts are they climbed the coaching ladder. Like Reid with the Chiefs, Shanahan would also be likely to block McDaniel and LaFleur.

Rick Lovato: From the waiver wire to the Pro Bowl - PE.com
Four years ago, I spent 25 to 30 hours a week working at my family’s sandwich shop, Joyce’s Subs & Pizza, in Middletown, New Jersey. While I was proud to support the family business, it wasn’t necessarily what I envisioned doing for the rest of my life after playing football at Old Dominion. When I wasn’t making delicious breakfast sandwiches and hoagies at the restaurant, I was doing what I could to stay in shape with the hopes of landing a spot with an NFL team. Working in a small business in a small town meant everyone knew me. Everyone in Middletown knew of my NFL dreams and aspirations. I always had my friends, family, anyone I knew come in and ask me, “Hey, when are you getting that call from the NFL?” I was just sitting thinking, “Gosh, as much as I love being part of this family business, I have bigger dreams.”

Andy Reid Goes to the Super Bowl With Philadelphia’s Blessing - MMQB
Ever since the Chiefs beat the Tennessee Titans to clinch the AFC championship—and, truthfully, well before that—Philly fans have been asked the question: Are you rooting for Andy Reid? An ABC News poll found that 87% said yes. A Twitter poll from NBC Sports Philadelphia’s Jon Clark came in at 85.8% yes. A poll of over 3,330 readers of SB Nation’s Bleeding Green Nation blog found 94% yes. And when was the last time 90% of the internet agreed on anything? So I put together a panel of representative Eagles fans—a mixture of actual famous people and those with viral internet fame—to ask them a few questions about Andy Reid.

Andy Reid Tuesday roundup: five takeaways from Miami - Arrowhead Pride
Reid commented on the city of Philadelphia — where he used to coach — pulling for him in this Super Bowl. At least a portion of Philadelphia Eagles fans were critical of Reid on his way out of the organization back in 2012. “I love my time at Philadelphia, as my family did,” said Reid. “We have great memories of Philadelphia and it’s almost a badge of honor that you — you get booed there — so I understand how that works. If you could withstand the pressure of Philadelphia, then you become a Philadelphian and so I take a lot of pride in that. “My guys — the football players and coaches — my heart went out to them just for the great job in which they did, and their support, which they gave me throughout my 14 years there. (Eagles owner) Jeff Lurie and his family were tremendous to me, so I appreciate everything. (Eagles GM) Howie Roseman — still there — likewise.”

Gridiron Digest: Kicking off Super Bowl Week with George Kittle vs. Travis Kelce - B/R
Q: You were briefly on the Eagles roster. Were you in Philly long enough to visit the Liberty Bell or Independence Hall? ... Raheem Mostert: “Oh yeah, definitely. Philly is one of the greatest cities ever. I enjoyed my time there. I got to sight-see, do the Rocky stairs. Great food. All those teams that I have been a part of, there’s some little piece that connects me. I can’t wait until my son gets a little older so I can show him, ‘Hey look, this is where I proposed to your mother, [where] me and your mother walked these steps’ and stuff.”

The Chiefs Have No Balance on Offense—and They Don’t Need It - The Ringer
The need to “establish the run” has become a common philosophy among NFL teams during the passing boom, but Andy Reid, Patrick Mahomes, and Co. are showing why that’s not always necessary

2020 NFL mock draft: There are some new names emerging in the 1st round - SB Nation
21. Philadelphia Eagles: Tee Higgins, WR, Clemson. This pick has to be a wide receiver or cornerback, right? Higgins is an incredible jump-ball wide receiver and will give Carson Wentz the type of weapon at the position he just doesn’t have.

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