Let’s get to the Philadelphia Eagles links ...
Week 9: Saints Expose Bitter Truth About Buccaneers In Blowout - FMIA
What would you say if I told you an NFL coach believes he tuned up for his current job by watching the show? “Alex Trebek and Jeopardy! trained me to be a football coach,” Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz told me Sunday afternoon. “When I was a sophomore, junior and senior at Georgetown [in 1986-89], every night after dinner, me and a big group, maybe six guys, would watch the show. Very smart guys. We were speed-readers, very competitive. It was a challenge to see who could blurt the answer out the fastest. You might know the answer, but if you don’t do it very fast, you’d lose. With my friends, if you were a little slow, you’d get steamrolled. “In football, as a play-caller, you’ve got to be very quick, you’ve got to enunciate the play well when you call it, you can’t make errors. Those are all things Alex was so good at. His command of the show and the contestants was incredible. You need that kind of command when you’re in charge of a team too.” RIP, Alex Trebek.
Report: Eagles set to get Miles Sanders and Alshon Jeffery back at practice after the bye - BGN
The Philadelphia Eagles’ offense sure looked awful in Week 8 but there’s some level of hope that it’ll improve as the team gets healthier. On that note, NFL insider Ian Rapoport reports that Miles Sanders will return to practice and Alshon Jeffery “should” be a full participant coming out of the bye and heading into the Birds’ Week 10 game against the New York Giants. Sanders hasn’t played since breaking off a 74-yard run against the Baltimore Ravens in Week 6. He missed two games due to a knee injury but could be ready to play against the Giants. The Eagles will be glad to add his big play ability back into the mix. With Carson Wentz struggling, it’d be nice to see Philly be able to lean on their running game more often.
NFL playoff picture 2020: Week 9 standings, bracket, scenarios and outlook for the postseason - ESPN+
Philadelphia Eagles (3-4-1). FPI chances to make playoffs: 78.8%. FPI chances to win division: 78.8%. Here we go again! The Eagles have stumbled out of the 2020 gates, much as they did in 2019, but have benefited from worse performances by the rest of their division rivals. The Eagles were 5-7 last season before winning their final four games to clinch the NFC East at 9-7. This season, they might not even need a winning record. Despite three wins in eight games, the Eagles own a multi-game lead in the division thanks to Washington’s six losses, along with seven by the Cowboys and Giants.
Lamar Jackson Is Evolving and Improving, Even if His Numbers Aren’t as Eye-Popping as in 2019 - MMQB
I love the Josh McCown story. So here’s how it goes: McCown was signed, after cutdowns, to the Eagles’ practice squad, with the allowance that, as the quarantine quarterback, he’d live back home in Rusk, Texas. He has two sons playing high school football down there, one’s a quarterback and the other’s a safety, and he really wanted to be around them and the rest of his family during the season, something he hadn’t done since 2009. Philly OK’d the arrangement because McCown’s background in the offense made him perfect as a reserve QB to keep outside the facility, and because starter Carson Wentz loves him and values having him as a resource. That agreement, by all accounts, worked swimmingly the last two months. McCown helped Wentz and the Eagles, just the same as he watched film with his boys every week to get them ready for their Friday nights. But he did have the tug to get closer—he missed the locker room, and the guys and being on a team. He just didn’t want to move to get that back. So when the Texans came along with an offer, he simply couldn’t walk away from it. Houston’s less than two hours from his house, and could offer him the best of both, allowing him to keep spending time with his kids, while also getting back into the mix with other players. The Eagles wanted to keep him, but GM Howie Roseman and the rest of the organization were gracious and understood once the situation was explained to them. And this could well be a nice way for McCown to wrap up his career. The next question? It’ll be when McCown is going to jump into coaching.
Roob’s 5 Eagles second-half predictions - NBCSP
3. There won’t be a Pro Bowl this year, but Brandon Graham will be a Pro Bowler for the first time. Even though the game won’t be played – and should never be played – there will be a 2020 Pro Bowl team, and Graham will join guys like Evan Mathis, Ike Reese and Stan Walters as first-time Pro Bowlers in their 30s. B.G. already has 7.0 sacks – 3rd-most in the NFL – and needs just 2 ½ to match his career high, set in 2017. But the way he’s playing, with tremendous effort and consistency, I expect at least another five or six to get him into that 12 to 13 range. A career year at 32. You gotta love it.
Midseason Report - Iggles Blitz
QB Carson Wentz — Biggest disappointment of the season. Wentz has been playing “hero ball” too much this year and looks like a human turnover machine. From 2017 through 2019 Wentz started 30 games and threw 21 INTs. This year he has 12 picks in half a season. That is staggering. He’s also got 7 fumbles (some recovered). Beyond the turnovers, Wentz has been erratic with his accuracy and decision-making. He has taken a major step backward this season. Fixing him should be the priority for the final eight games and the offseason.
As the Eagles return from the bye week, some persistent problems really need quick resolutions - Inquirer
Then there is Wentz, whose 12 interceptions figure heavily into his 73.2 passer rating. He is two picks short of his rookie-year career high. There were two more of those against Dallas, along with two fumbles. Afterward, we heard what we always hear: That Wentz knows he has to stop turning the ball over, but that he is determined to remain aggressive. It’s easy to see what he means – you don’t want your quarterback to go into a shell and get checkdown-happy. But maybe think twice before lofting a bomb into swirling winds for a fifth-round rookie such as John Hightower, who hasn’t been great at tracking the ball or contesting catches? At some point, Wentz starts to sound like an arsonist saying, “I know I have to stop setting fires, but I’m never going to put down my matches.”
A six-pack of Eagles thoughts to start your week - PE.com
3. Carson Wentz spent some time hunting during the bye week, if you follow him on social media, and the rest and relaxation should be great for Wentz, who has had the most vexing eight-game stretch of his career. When Wentz has been good, he’s been very, very good. His upside is so high, you understand why he’s one of the best quarterbacks in the league from a talent standpoint. But the giveaways – 12 interceptions and 4 fumbles – have been troublesome. Which Wentz shows up when the Eagles play at New York on Sunday? He continues to say “I have to be better,” and everyone agrees with that. Wentz wants to remain aggressive, which is what he is all about. That’s fine. But Wentz has to show some patience and use his football IQ to reduce the mistakes – the turnovers and the times he holds on to the ball too long – so we will see if the week off helped his perspective. Wentz doesn’t have to do it all. He has to distribute the football to an offense that is going to have some big-play men who give the Eagles a chance to create favorable matchups.
12 “things I think” after Giants defeat Washington, 23-20 - Big Blue View
I think the Giants need to beat the Eagles. It’s all well and good that the Giants beat Washington — again. They have beaten the Football Team all four times Daniel Jones has started against them. Still, Jones has only one other victory — against Tampa Bay in his first game last season. If the Giants are ever going to get people on the outside to truly believe they are making progress, if they are ever going to get anyone to believe they truly have a chance in the woeful NFC East, they need a victory over the division-leading Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday.
Cowboys quarterback Garrett Gilbert showed enough to keep the starting position - Blogging The Boys
Gilbert wasn’t spectacular, he was 21-38 for 243 yards with one touchdown and one interception. He had a 6.4 average per pass and a 72.6 rating. All in all, not bad for his first start in the NFL against a defense that is among the best in the league. The Cowboys offensive line played much better than many thought they would, yielding only two sacks on the night. Gilbert helped that cause by escaping from the clutches of the Steelers pass rush on multiple occasions. He also added 28 yards on the ground with a few nifty runs. The thing that Gilbert did most, though, was was to look like he belonged. The situation didn’t look too big for him. Last week in Philadelphia, Ben DiNucci looked overwhelmed most of the game and appeared to be barely hanging on. Gilbert looked confident and composed, he looked like he was ready for the moment.
Washington falls short in 23-20 loss to the Giants - Hogs Haven
The Washington Football Team attempted to comeback from a 20-3 first half, and fell just short. The New York Giants swept Washington again this year, beating them 23-20 today. Daniel Jones improves to 4-0 against his favorite division rival. Washington turned the ball over 5 times today. Three of those turnovers were Alex Smith interceptions. Smith has apparently become a gunsliger in his rebirth in the NFL. He was 24/32 for 325 yards and a TD, numbers he never put up in his first season with Washington in 2018. But the interceptions were killer. He threw a redzone pick right before the half that killed their momentum going into half time. The two picks on the final two drives of the game were unforgivable. The first one came as Smith was scrambling and he threw across his body and high to J.D. McKissic. The final INT was gift wrapped to Logan Ryan, Smith threw it directly to him. Washington now drops to 2-6, and are currently tied with the Dallas Cowboys who host the Steelers this afternoon. The Giants improve to 2-7. The Philadelphia Eagles have their bye this week, and remain in 1st place with a 3-4-1 record. Does anyone want to win this division?
Clunky Bears offense stalls until garbage time in embarrassing 24 to 17 downward-spiral loss to Titans - Windy City Gridiron
Nick Foles is the quarterback who can’t handle pressure up the middle. Now that the blueprint is out to beat him, it’s going to be a rough time riding out this season.
There have now been 50 million confirmed cases of Covid-19 worldwide - Vox
Last New Year’s Eve, a hint of what the world might be in for in 2020 arrived in the form of an Associated Press story about 27 people in Wuhan, China, who had fallen ill with a mysterious strain of viral pneumonia. This was the first news of the new illness reported outside of China. Less than 11 months later, 50 million people worldwide are confirmed to have been infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes the Covid-19 disease. And more than 1,250,000 Covid-19 deaths have been reported. It’s a grim milestone, one that reflects the coronavirus’s contagiousness as well as a global failure to contain its spread.
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