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Eagles News: DeVonta Smith wins an ESPY

Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 7/11/21.

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2021 ESPY Awards - Arrivals Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images

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DeVonta Smith wins Alabama’s first ESPY since 2006 -
In a canary yellow tux, DeVonta Smith added a new trophy to his case Saturday night. The former Alabama receiver took home an ESPY from the prime-time broadcast on ABC. The Heisman winner claimed the ESPY for best college athlete, men’s sports. It was the first time an Alabama athlete claimed that award after Mark Ingram (2010) and Derrick Henry (2016) were previously finalists. After accepting the honor, Smith said this was an experience he only could’ve dreamed of as a kid.

From Dak Prescott to Chase Young, the NFC East in 2021 is up for grabs - ESPN
Which newcomer to the NFC East will rise above the rest? Tim McManus: DeVonta Smith, the reigning Heisman Trophy winner out of Alabama, won’t face much of a learning curve as he transitions from the SEC to the pros in Philly. He is already a polished route runner who has sound technique and sneaky speed, and he uses top-level body control and sticky hands to snare just about everything thrown his way. His weight (166 pounds) is the main knock on him, but his slight frame didn’t stop him from beating press man and thriving against some of the best corners in college football.

Lane Johnson: Nick Sirianni has taken great command of the Eagles - PFT
“He’s taken great command of the team early on,” Johnson said, via Jeff Skversky of WPVI. “I think what I appreciate about him the most is he holds everybody accountable. When we go to practice, it doesn’t matter if you’re a veteran or a rookie on the first day. If you’re making mistakes, he’ll push you on the board. Not to call you out, but really to kinda get you better. What that shows, if he can do that with veterans, then the younger guys will come along as well. That’s been my impression early on. It’s been a lot of fun, really a lot of energy. Moving forward, we have a lot to prove.”

Ranking the tight end groups in the NFC East - Big Blue View
At this point, Zach Ertz is still one the Eagles’ roster though he is likely on the way out soon. Ertz, a three-time Pro Bowler, is of course a strong tight end in his own right despite having a down season in 2020 in part due to an ankle injury. He was one of only eight tight ends in the league to run at least 250 routes and average fewer than 1.0 receiving yards per route run at 0.94. But Ertz’s past still speaks volumes and there are many reasons to believe he will have a bounce-back year next season. But even if that rebound season happens outside of Philadelphia, Dallas Goedert is an explosive backup plan, receiving a No. 5 overall ranking from Pro Football Focus. Goedert is the only tight end in the NFL with receiving and run-blocking grades of 80.0 or higher since 2018, per PFF. He ranks seventh in receiving grade and first in run-blocking grade over that three-year span. Goedert may not catch the volume of passes that Ertz has in his career but his other strengths, particularly yards after the catch, make up for it.

Eagles’ Shaun Bradley accomplished something he wanted to do after being drafted: Host a football camp for his community -
The Shaun Bradley Community Football Camp was held at the Rancocas Valley Regional High School Saturday. The two-session camp was held for kids between the ages of 7 and 18 years old. The children took part in several drills and heard from Bradly and others, including former Eagles linebacker Barry Gardner and other local youth and high school coaches. “This is awesome,” Bradley said. “It could not have been a better day. It’s a community, and my family, who I grew up with, is out here. It’s an unbelievable day.” Bradley, who grew up in Mount Holly, added that when it looked as if he would be playing in the NFL, an event like the one that occurred on Saturday would be a very high priority.

Roob’s 10 Memories of Eagles West Chester training camp - NBCSP
JEROME’S ENTRANCE: We would always wait for the players on the first day of camp outside their dorm, Schmidt Hall (one of the few WCU dorms from that era still standing). One summer, Jerome Brown arrived with nothing other than a drum set and a TV. He greeted the writers at the door and then disappeared inside. Three or four minutes later we saw a window open on the fourth floor and there’s Jerome with a huge smile on his face. And then in that unique booming voice, everybody — like everybody within a mile — heard Jerome bellowing, “BLEEEEEEEEEEEEEEP WEST CHESTER!!!!!”

Why Cowboys receiver Ceedee Lamb will exceed expectations in 2021 - Blogging The Boys
The reality is we, as fans, were robbed of an opportunity for a truly special rookie year due to injuries and things out of his own control. Lamb himself would tell you he has things to work on and he would be the first to tell you he had a few too many drops as well. The fact remains, the kid has the ‘it’ factor and there is no question why Jerry Jones and the rest of the Jones family wanted him to wear the 88 and be the next member of that exclusive club. The sky is the limit and the young man has all the tools and make up you look for in the leagues next big star. From an increased workload in this offense and position flex as an inside and outside wide receiver, the Cowboys are poised to use him to his full ability in 2021. The bar has been set for Ceedee Lamb this year and there’s reason to believe that not only will he meet that expectation but explode right past it.

KS4GM’s Five Breakout Washington Football Teamers for 2021 - Hogs Haven
Having been in the league for over 15 years, I confess it’s a little odd for Fitzpatrick to be nominated as a “breakout” player. But, as I’ve written elsewhere, Fitz is playing the best football of his career in his golden years. In 2021, paired with one of the best defenses in the league, as well as being provided with an offensive approach, with offensive weapons, tailored to his strength as a quarterback, I believe that Fitzpatrick will have his best season as a pro, and finally make the playoffs. There is no player on this list, and likely no player on the team, whose breakout will be as integral to this team’s success this year as Fitzpatrick. If he does, the sky is the limit for this team, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see his name mentioned in the MVP conversation.


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