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Eagles News: Jalen Hurts is the second-ranked quarterback by PFF’s grading

Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 9/22/21.

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San Francisco 49ers v Philadelphia Eagles Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images

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

NFL Week 3 quarterback rankings - PFF
Despite a relatively low EPA ranking, Tom Brady is so far out ahead of the field in grading that he secures the No. 1 spot in the rankings. Jalen Hurts has been elite from a grading and efficiency standpoint this year, though his offense’s overall performance in Week 2 was lackluster, mostly due to a heavy reliance on unsuccessful runs.

Weapon X Mailbag: Have your expectations for the Eagles changed after two weeks? - BGN
The team has exceeded my expectations so far though. I certainly didn’t foresee the Eagles dominating Atlanta on the road in Week 1 with a 26-point win. I wouldn’t have imagined that first-time defensive coordinator Jonathan Gannon would hold Kyle Shanahan’s San Francisco offense to just 17 points. I stand by my prediction that the team will win the division, but maybe not all of their wins are agonizingly close games. The offense displayed that they can execute at a high level in Week 1. Jalen Hurts illustrated that he can use both his arm and his legs to make plays, though that play was inconsistent against the 49ers. DeVonta Smith has the juice. Perhaps my expectations should change with the Brandon Graham and Brandon Brooks injuries, but the Eagles have built up rock solid depth along both the offensive and defensive lines. It needs to turn into a big 2021 for Josh Sweat, Derek Barnett and Landon Dickerson.

The QB Factory Reboot #28: Were the Eagles being too cute in Sunday’s loss to 49ers + Preview for Week 3 in Dallas - BGN Radio
On the latest episode Raichele Privette and Mark Schofield discuss the good and bad from the Eagles Week 2 loss to 49ers. Were the Eagles being too cute? They also preview the Week 3 game in Dallas and discuss why this game is so important.

NFC Hierarchy/Obituary: Week 3 - PhillyVoice
10) Eagles (1-1): Let’s recap the four-play series after the Eagles got 1st and Goal from the 1 against the Niners: 1st down: The Eagles rolled Jalen Hurts to the right, with one guy (Zach Ertz) in the pattern. He was covered, there was nowhere else to go with the football, and Hurts had to throw it away. Throw that garbage out of the playbook. 2nd down: Run. But not just a “blow them off the ball and punch it in from the 1” run. Nope. Isaac Seumalo is pulling to the right, but he gets blown up, Miles Sanders has to hurdle him, and it’s a loss of 2. 3rd down: Foofy run call wide in which Hurts has the ball in Sanders’ gut, and has the option to let Sanders run to the pylon, or keep it himself and and cut it back inside. Throw that garbage out of the playbook. 4th down: Some bastardized version of the Philly Special, again, in which there’s only one guy (Hurts) out in the route. I’m not one to micromanage play calling, but... yikes. That sequence probably cost the Eagles a 2-0 start.

Which Eagles need to step up in Brandon Graham’s absence? Start with Fletcher Cox - ESPN
Cox has long been considered the cornerstone of the defense and one of best linemen in the game. But his production has dipped since his career year in 2018, when he posted 10.5 sacks and 34 QB hits. He has totaled 10 sacks and 19 QB hits over the last two seasons combined. He has been shut out of both categories through two games in 2021. But Cox, 30, impacts the game in ways that aren’t always reflected in the stat sheet. Offensive lines shift his way and often double-team him. Cox has been double-teamed on 26 pass-rush plays in 2021, the most of any Eagles defender. That opens up opportunities for players like Javon Hargrave, who has been on fire (2 sacks, 4 TFL, 4 QB hits) so far this season. But elite linemen draw plenty of attention and still find a way to produce. Cox is making $17 million a year. He needs to get back to being a game-wrecker, while stepping into the middle of the circle as the team’s primary leader on defense.

Lots of Quez Watkins in this week’s Roob’s Eagles Stats - NBCSP
Sixth-round magic: Watkins’ 117 yards are the second-most in franchise history on two catches. Bobby Walston had a 2-for-127 game against the Cards at Franklin Field in 1961. Walston had catches of 59 and 68 yards in that game but no touchdowns, although he did kick two field goals. From 1984 through 2019, the Eagles never had a WR drafted in the sixth round or later with a 100-yard game. But their only two 100-yard games the last two years have been by sixth-round picks — Travis Fulgham vs. the Steelers last year and Watkins Sunday. Clamping down: The Eagles have allowed 23 points, the fewest they’ve allowed through two games since 2005 (17) and seventh-fewest in franchise history. It’s the second-fewest they’ve allowed in the last 40 years. Only the Panthers (21) have allowed fewer this year.

Welcome to Beat Dallas Week! News and notes ahead of the Monday night showdown -
1. How do the Eagles replace Brandon Graham on the field? I explained yesterday the implications of losing Graham for the season. It is more than an on-field loss, but for the purposes of this space, let’s focus on that. Who replaces Graham’s energy and his production? Who steps in with that veteran presence and institutional knowledge? The promising news is that the Eagles have heavily addressed the defensive line, so there are options here. Josh Sweat, in his fourth season and certainly no stranger to big-game reps, will play a lot. Sweat has played 47 percent of the snaps thus far, rotating with starter Derek Barnett. Veteran Ryan Kerrigan has his game legs after missing most of Training Camp with a broken thumb, and he plays with tremendous intensity and energy. Milton Williams, the third-round draft pick, worked throughout Training Camp and the preseason on the edge, so he has a good grasp of the scheme. He’s a bigger body who can set the edge against the run and can offer power and quickness off the ball in the pass-rush game. Rookie Tarron Jackson is also going to have to step up with his speed as a pass rusher. Look, injuries stink. And losing Graham is a blow, no doubt about it. The Eagles have stocked the defensive line for a reason, so now we see just what kind of depth the team has here.

Tight end PPR rankings for Week 3 fantasy football - DraftKings Nation
Streaming options: Dallas Goedert, PHI vs. DAL. As noted above, Goedert’s fellow tight end, Zach Ertz, has been diagnosed with COVID-19 and it is unknown if he’ll be available to play in Week 3. QB Jalen Hurts has targeted the tight end position on 20% of throws, and if Ertz is out for this contest, the lions share of those targets should be headed to Goedert. The matchup vs. the Dallas Cowboys is just the cherry on top, as this should be the perfect game script for high passing volume.

10 Fantasy Football Facts from Week 2 - Fake Teams
10.) Philadelphia is committing 11 penalties per game, the most in the NFL—Indianapolis is committing the fewest (2.5).

DVOA Week 2: Panthers No. 1 for First Time Ever - Football Outsiders
[BLG Note: The Eagles are 8th in DVOA while the Cowboys are 14th.]

Cowboys 2021 rookie report: Micah Parsons saves the day after position switch - Blogging The Boys
A moment of appreciation is needed for Micah Parsons. That still may not be enough. Parsons just played in his second full football game since December of 2019, and then was asked to play almost exclusively on the edge as a pass rusher. The last time he did that, Parsons was still in high school. But he took the challenge head on and utterly dominated, logging two tackles, a sack, four quarterback hits, eight pressures, and a 40% pass rush win rate. For context, that 40% rate would have been tied for the fifth-highest among all edge defenders last week, and the last rookie to have eight pressures in a game was a guy by the name of Nick Bosa. Now, before we start calling Parsons an elite edge rusher, we have to keep in mind that he was mostly going up against a backup offensive tackle in Storm Norton. Quinn tried Parsons on the other side, squaring off against fellow rookie Rashawn Slater, and quickly abandoned that experiment. Counting on Parsons to do this again is ill-advised, but the Cowboys are fortunate enough to get Randy Gregory back at least. Still, Parsons had himself one heck of a game, and looked every bit the type of player the Cowboys believed they were getting when they took him 12th overall this summer.

Giants roster moves: Nick Gates to IR, practice squad protections announced - Big Blue View
Nick Gates’ season is officially over. The New York Giants placed Gates, a team captain and starting offensive lineman, on IR Tuesday after Gates suffered a left leg fracture last Thursday vs. the Washington Football Team. After 17 straight starts at center, Gates was making his first career start at left guard on Thursday in place of the injured Shane Lemieux.

The First Read, Week 3: Raiders are for real; Cowboys’ defense good enough? -
This is one thing you can say about the Washington Football Team’s current starting quarterback — he knows how to shine when the lights are brightest. Taylor Heinicke won a chance to compete for the starting job with his play at the end of last season, particularly in a Super Wild Card Weekend loss to eventual Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay. Now he’s balling out for the WFT with Ryan Fitzpatrick sidelined by a hip injury. It feels like Heinicke is the kind of player whose bubble might burst at some point, but you can’t argue with the numbers. He’s completed nearly 74 percent of his passes — including a 34-for-46 effort in a Thursday night win over the New York Giants — and he’s developing a reputation as a gamer.

Titans release S Bradley McDougald and DT Anthony Rush - Music City Miracles
Turning our attention to Rush, the 350-pound defensive lineman was active against Seattle, but played just one snap. His release leaves the Titans a bit thin on the D-line, with just four players now on the active 53 (Jeffery Simmons, Denico Autry, Teair Tart and Larrell Murchison). I would expect a like-for-like replacement here. The Titans currently have three capable defensive lineman on the practice squad in the form of Amani Bledsoe, Woodrow Hamilton IV and Naquan Jones. Bledsoe has spent time on the Titans’ roster in the past, and both Hamilton and Jones played with the team throughout the preseason. [BLG Note: Former Eagles DT Anthony Rush.]

The best and worst NFL team at each record - SB Nation
The worst 2-0 team in the NFL is the ... Carolina Panthers. Absolutely no shade here. Truth be told, it’s remarkable the Panthers are 2-0 at this point, and fans should be happy. Being the worst of the NFL’s unbeaten tier is far better than anyone expected for the Panthers, who were pegged by Vegas to finish with a 5-11 record this season. The Carolina defense has been otherworldly through two games, and Sam Darnold has been good enough to win. Granted, it’s probably a little easier for the defense to look elite when you’re facing the Jets and the Saints, who have proven to be paper tigers. Carolina has all the trappings of a 10-7 or 9-8 football team that finds its way into a Wild Card spot, and that’s a hell of a lot better than anyone expected.

Off Day Debrief #55: Did the Packers right the ship + Week 2 Power Rankings - The SB Nation NFL Show
Rob “Stats” Guerrera and Brandon Lee Gowton react to a great second half from the Packers on Monday Night Football with Justis Mosqueda of Acme Packing Company. Plus, we present the only 100% accurate power rankings in the NFL podcast kingdom. BLG pays off his bet with Stats and sings, “I left my heart in San Francisco” Did the Packers actually right the ship with this win? Does Rodgers have to beat the 49ers next week to quiet the doubters? Why Baker Mayfield and the Browns should be getting more love. Week 3 Power Rankings. MVPs and LVPs of the Week.


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