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Eagles News: Jalen Hurts is “gonna be a fantasy rock star this season”

Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 8/21/21.

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New England Patriots v Philadelphia Eagles Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images

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

Love, Hate and no regrets in life or in fantasy football - ESPN
Jalen Hurts, Philadelphia Eagles: Blind résumé time. Player A: 19.4 fantasy PPG, 165.3 pass YPG, 72.8 rush YPG — Player B: 23.0 fantasy PPG, 229.8 pass YPG, 68.0 rush YPG. Fairly similar, right? You’d rather have Player B, obviously, but it’s within the same ballpark. Well, Player B is Jalen Hurts in the four games he was a starter as a rookie last season. Player A represents Lamar Jackson’s final four games he started as a rookie in 2018; you know, before he won the MVP (and everyone’s fantasy league for them) in 2019. I’m not saying Hurts is going to be the MVP of the NFL or fantasy this year, but I am saying that barring some monster trade, Hurts is gonna be a fantasy rock star this season. People will point to his brutal completion rate (51.9%) in those four starts, but you know what Josh Allen’s completion percentage was in his rookie season? 52.8%. Nearly one-quarter of Hurts’ passes in those four starts traveled 15-plus yards downfield, so given that plus a new coaching staff, improved pass-catchers and a preseason in which Hurts knows he’s the guy and will get the majority of first team reps, I’m all-in on Hurts this season. He is currently coming off the board as QB12, but I have him locked inside my top 10 and see him as a legitimate breakout candidate in 2021.

My Guys: Sosa Kremenjas’ top targets in 2021 fantasy football drafts - PFF
Jalen Hurts, Philadelphia Eagles: QB10 (107.6 ADP). Hurts is obviously a risky play with only a handful of starts under his belt, but his upside is clear when it comes to fantasy football. Prioritizing dual-threat quarterbacks who like to push the ball vertically is oftentimes a recipe for success. Thankfully, Hurts does both of those things well. Going back to last season, Hurts experienced immense success during Weeks 14-17. It wasn’t an accident that he reached such a high total, with a lot of that stemming from his position-leading 47 rushing attempts. Those carries resulted in 267 rushing yards and three rushing touchdowns. The Eagles are going to dedicate this season to figuring out whether Hurts is their franchise quarterback. He’ll have free reign within an offense designed around his skill set before Philadelphia settles on a decision next offseason. Hurts should have ample opportunities to rack up fantasy points alongside the top options at the position.

Eagles Rookie Report Card: Encouraging start for DeVonta Smith - BGN
DeVonta Smith: B-. It was clear that the Eagles wanted to get DeVonta Smith involved in his preseason debut. He saw a handful of targets in the first half from Joe Flacco. It took a bit for the two to get on the same page, with Flacco misfiring on early throws and Smith not able to adjust to poorly thrown balls. Towards the end of the half, Flacco got DeVonta Smith the ball twice on short passes. Both times, Smith won early at the line of scrimmage, secured a catch and then picked up yards after the catch.

Above the Nest with Raichele #22: Eagles’ Week 2 preseason loss storylines - BGN Radio
Raichele Privette runs through the storylines from the Eagles ugly 35-0 preseason loss to the Patriots on Thursday.

Random Eagles notes: DeVonta Smith’s route running, and the upcoming schedule - PhillyVoice
What interested me about that video (the dramatic music aside) is that Smith mostly lined up as the “X” receiver, or the receiver up on the line of scrimmage. If you’re going to play the “X” position in the NFL, you have to be able to consistently beat press coverage, which is something that can often prove to be difficult for smaller wide receivers. At under 170 pounds, Smith obviously qualifies as that. However, there are a lot of different ways to beat press coverage in the NFL, and if Smith is able to do so, he will do so with quick feet and deception. Another skinny wide receiver who played the “X” position and was able to consistently beat press was Chad Johnson, and, well, he was impressed with Smith.

Should the Eagles be concerned after the Patriots embarrassment? - Inquirer
K’Von Wallace detailed in back-to-back plays why the Eagles have given him first-team reps at safety and also why they haven’t awarded him the job. He did well to shed a blocker in the box and make a run stop in the first quarter. But a play later, when he dropped into a zone, his eyes deceived him, and he was late to pick up a crossing Jakobi Meyers, who would score a touchdown. Wallace apparently reinjured his groin on the play and didn’t return. He recently returned to camp and made headlines earlier this week, not as much for his play, but when he dissed Newton by calling him “The Checkdown King” at practice. The Eagles don’t have an obvious counterpart to Anthony Harris at safety, or at least until Rodney McLeod returns. Marcus Epps might have the spot by default.

Post-Snap Read: 7 players of note from Thursday night - PE.com
Eric Wilson, Alex Singleton, and T.J. Edwards all made impressive stops against both the run and the pass game on Thursday night, but I thought it would be cool to look at how all three guys sniffed out screen passes, defeating blocks in space in three different ways on their way to the football. This is all coaching as well! Credit to Nick Rallis and the rest of the defensive staff, who have a lot of faith in this group to execute the defense at a high level. I wanted to throw in Edwards’ diving pass breakup as well, mainly because he’s such an instinctive pass defender. Edwards consistently makes impressive plays on the ball in practice, especially down in the red zone (where he had an interception of Cam Newton on Tuesday on a play just like this one). I’m really liking how this group is coming together. Lastly, I want to look at a couple of the safeties. With Rodney McLeod (knee) still sidelined due to injury, we’ve seen a steady rotation of a handful of players alongside Anthony Harris in the deep part of the field. Andrew Adams has had moments in camp (he nearly picked off a pair of passes on Monday against the Patriots), but here let’s look at K’Von Wallace and Marcus Epps.

Eagles risers, fallers … and more fallers after preseason loss to Patriots - The Athletic
Jack Stoll: The undrafted rookie tight end led the Eagles with four catches for 33 yards and had a few moments of Celekian fight for extra yards with the ball in his hands. With Tyree Jackson out for 8-10 weeks and Jason Croom suffering what looked like a serious injury Thursday night, Stoll is in position to potentially force his way onto the roster. The only guarantee at tight end is Dallas Goedert will make the team. Zach Ertz could still be traded. Richard Rodgers is a vested veteran whose contract would be guaranteed for the season if he’s on the Week 1 roster. Jackson’s injury presents an opportunity to let him develop behind the scenes without exposing him to waivers. Stoll received a higher guarantee than any other undrafted Eagle and has been an under-the-radar steady performer all summer. Brett Toth: On a mostly ugly night for the offensive line, Toth held up fine at left tackle. The Eagles have expanded his repertoire to include reps at guard in practice and with several other backup offensive linemen struggling of late, Toth has a chance to make the team. He turns 25 next month.

Patriots quarterback Cam Newton put the ‘Checkdown King’ narrative to bed in impressive fashion - Pats Pulpit
When asked about the dubious title of “Checkdown King” after the game, Newton first revealed the nickname he himself had for Wallace: “Glitter.” “He was cheerleading a lot on the sidelines,” Newton said about the second-year defender. “You know, cheerleaders usually have glitter on, so...” The veteran quarterback led the Patriots to two touchdowns on three series as well as a missed field goal opportunity. After his solid performance, he did try to offer some context to those checkdown throws that Wallace apparently took exception to. “He was out there. It was good. Tell his coach to play man-to-man then. I’m just doing what I’m told just like he’s doing what he’s told. If you feel like we’re checking down, just taking what the defense gives us...,” Newton said before engaging any further. “There’s no need to kind of feed into this because anytime you have a joint practice with a bunch of alpha males, certain things are going to be said. But we did have fun, we did get better as a team and then we just came out here and sealed the deal as far as another notch of moving in the right direction as the season progresses, so that’s what it’s all about.”

Using analytics to predict every game on the Cowboys schedule: Weeks 3-5 - Blogging The Boys
It seems a little strange that the Cowboys’ home opener is against the Eagles, but here we are. And for Philadelphia, it’s been quite the offseason. Just three years ago, Eagles fans were celebrating their first ever Super Bowl and saw a bright future ahead with Carson Wentz and Doug Pederson. Now, both of them are gone and the Eagles are maybe tanking this year, with Jalen Hurts and Nick Sirianni taking over as quarterback and coach, respectively. With so much changing, it’s hard to glean too much from the analytics with this team. We can make a few assumptions, but not much else. For starters, Hurts represented a very slight upgrade over Wentz last year: the Eagles offense ranked 21st in EPA/play with Hurts under center, and 31st with Wentz under center. Hurts also placed dead last in the NFL among qualifying quarterbacks in completion percentage, so he wasn’t blowing anyone away.

Jaret Patterson is making the most of his preseason opportunities - Hogs Haven
For the second week in a row, Jaret Patterson, who hails from Glen Dale, Maryland, and who went to high school with Chase Young, grabbed attention in a preseason game. In the first week, against the Patriots, Patterson rushed for 40 yards and added 30 receiving yards. This week, against the Bengals, he upped the ante, going for 71 yards and a touchdown on the ground, and 3 receptions for 25 yards in the passing game. His 4.4 yards per carry rushing average and 8.3 yards per reception receiving average are likely to catch the attention of the coaching staff. Ron Rivera had said this week that they wanted to give Patterson an opportunity to show what he could do in the return game. Patterson didn’t disappoint.

2021 NFL preseason, Week 2: What we learned from Friday’s doubleheader - NFL.com
1) Antonio Gibson is going to be a star. The second-year running back is clearly the lead man in Washington and showed flashes of his explosive, hard-running style that will gain him plenty of yards in 2021. Of Gibson’s seven rushing attempts Friday night, five finished as successful runs (5 yards on first-and-10, 3 yards on second down, etc.). He exited averaging four yards per carry and added a pair of receptions to bring his all-purpose total close to 50 yards on just nine touches. It’s impossible to not like what you see out of Gibson. Washington has one of the more intriguing backfields with Gibson as the lead man, Peyton Barber behind him and UDFA (and former Mid-American Conference hero) Jaret Patterson, who ripped off an explosive run in the second quarter and had a night filled with explosive plays. Keep an eye on them.

Big Blue View mailbag: Offensive line, Dave Gettleman, rinse, repeat - Big Blue View
Yes, it’s easy to pick on Dave Gettleman because of the offensive line. Yes, it needs to play better than it did a year ago. Yes, the Giants did not go out and spend money on a big free agent or use a high draft pick — or any draft pick — on the offensive line. I need to continue to remind people that this was an organizational decision. Joe Judge is part of that. The Giants went all-in on offensive linemen a year ago, drafting three of them. They believe in them and want to give them a chance. They have been burned by free-agent offensive line signings. The organizational decision was to ride with the young linemen and use their draft and financial resources to add play-makers. Will they be right? We’ll find out.

Saints sign kicker Aldrick Rosas, per sources - Canal Street Chronicles
The counter move was releasing tight end, Josh Pederson, son of former Eagles head coach Doug Pederson.

NFL Reacts #3: Pats & Eagles, Impactful rookies, & Season long bets with Justis - The SB Nation NFL Show
Welcome to another edition of NFL Reacts! Stephen Serda and Justis Mosqueda discuss the quarterback battle New England might have on their hands, as well as DeVonta Smith’s limited but impressive debut. There’s been a ton of talk around the rookie quarterbacks this season, but the guys spend some time discussing other impactful rookies you should be locked in on this weekend. This week’s across the board is all about Justis Mosqueda’s favorite season-long bets across the NFL! We finish things up with draft strategies to keep in your pocket ahead of your fantasy football drafts.

What we actually know about the vaccines and the delta variant - Vox
Covid-19 vaccines still are effective in preventing hospitalization. But vaccinated people are more likely to get sick than before.

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