Let’s get to the Philadelphia Eagles links ...
Predicting NFL Week 15 upsets, plus weekly buzz, notes - ESPN+
What’s the current state of your NFL coach of the year ballot? Graziano: 1. Nick Sirianni, 2. Brian Daboll, 3. Mike McDaniel, 4. Kevin O’Connell. 5. Robert Saleh. The last time we did this, I had Mike Vrabel at the top, but the way the Titans have played since has seen him tumble out of my top five. Sirianni’s Eagles have met every challenge and stayed at the top of the league all year long. Daboll and Saleh have elevated moribund New York teams into contention. McDaniel and O’Connell energized offenses in Miami and Minnesota and elevated those teams into contention as well. I’m wondering whether Dan Campbell gets himself into this conversation if the Lions keep surging. Or if McDaniel tumbles out if the Dolphins keep sliding. Fowler: 1. Nick Sirianni, 2. Ron Rivera 3. Kevin O’Connell, 4. Mike McDaniel, 5. Brian Daboll/Robert Saleh. Lots of NFC East flavor here. Rivera splashes into my top five after the Commanders’ 6-1-1 run with a backup quarterback. Rivera’s job is one of the most understated of the year and should be acknowledged. At least eight names deserve major consideration. What about Mike McCarthy? Reaching 10 wins by mid-December under the Dallas spotlight should be commended. And in the AFC North, Baltimore’s John Harbaugh and Cincinnati’s Zac Taylor have done solid jobs to keep their squads together, finding different ways to win. In the end, Sirianni is outdistancing the crowd here. The Eagles impose their will every Sunday, no matter the opponent, and that’s a credit to the coaching staff.
Eagles players are having some of the best seasons in franchise history - BGN
We can’t talk about how great the team is playing and not talk about the coach. Five Eagles head coaches have reached the final game of the league’s season: Greasy Neale, Buck Shaw, Dick Vermeil, Andy Reid, and Doug Pederson. Neale, Shaw, Vermeil, and Reid were builders. They all took over teams that had been bad for at least a couple of seasons and turned them around into a contender, and in Neale and Shaw’s case, winners. Pederson did not. He became head coach after a singular bad season, which wasn’t even that bad, the state of the roster was good, the team was a year removed from back to back 10 win seasons. In his second season he pushed all the right buttons to bring a veteran-laden team the Super Bowl. What he did that season was unbelievable. He won the Super Bowl with his backup QB, called the ballsiest play in the history of the sport, and that season single handedly permanently changed how NFL coaches treat 4th downs. Sirianni’s career has parallels to Pederson’s so far, as he too took over after one bad season but with a solid core, and has the Eagles as top contenders in his second year. Most importantly, like Pederson, Sirianni is pushing all the right buttons.
Previewing Eagles-Bears Week 15 + Picks against the spread - BGN Radio
Brandon Lee Gowton and Jimmy Kempski discuss the latest Eagles news, including a potential Dallas Goedert return and Micah Parsons commenting on Jalen Hurts. The guys also preview this week’s Eagles vs. Bears matchup and make their weekly NFL picks against the spread. Interact with us on Twitter: @BrandonGowton, @JimmyKempski, @BGN_Radio, @BleedingGreen. For a LIMITED TIME only, use discount code BGN20 at RighteousFelon.com for 20% off your order!
Mount Union, hard times and family: How Sirianni connects with his players - NBCSP
WR Devon Allen: “I think, for one, being a younger coach, he already connects with the age demographic. We have guys in their 30s, I’m 28 as a rookie. He’s close to our age to where he relates and understands the same things we’re going through as athletes because he was a football player in high school and college. And I think, too, he has a lot of passions. He played basketball growing up so he’s in there shooting with us in the team meeting. His dad is a high school track coach, coaches the hurdles, and he was a track athlete growing up as well. To me, he connects through that. And I got to meet his dad. That was pretty cool. I think he does a good job of just trying to find something in common with everybody on the team and makes an effort to reach out. Not that most coaches don’t talk to everybody but there’s a lot of guys on the team so it’s hard to do that with everybody. And I think that’s why the team is doing so well. Because even the players go out of their way to reach out to each other and that’s pretty cool with how many people come and go throughout the year. When a new guy comes in, he’s accepted right away. When I got here, I was accepted right away. Everybody made the effort. During OTAs, Jalen invited me over to his house for a crawfish boil a couple days before the Penn Relays. And then I was here running in the Penn Relays and I invited some of my teammates and about 10 of them showed up to watch and they just met me five days before. It’s pretty cool. I think that’s part of the culture here and I think that’s part of the reason we’re doing so well and Nick does a good job of instilling that in us.”
Nick Sirianni and Jalen Hurts are inseparable as NFL coach of the year and MVP - Inquirer
Six times in 40 seasons. That’s a remarkable thing. The symbiosis between coach and quarterback has been well enough established to border on cliché. There is nothing like it in organized team sports. This is particularly evident at the extreme ends of the spectrum, where success and failure are almost always package deals. Yet when it comes to doling out credit, we more often than not pick one or the other. Andy Reid and Patrick Mahomes, Sean Payton and Drew Brees, Brett Favre and Mike Holmgren, Joe Montana and Bill Walsh — none of those pairings has swept coach/MVP honors. Hurts and Sirianni may not yet have earned a permanent place among those duos, but they’ve more than earned the hardware in 2022. Frankly, few pairings in NFL history have demonstrated a coach-quarterback co-dependency like the one that has the Eagles sitting on the doorstep of home-field advantage throughout the playoffs. It probably isn’t a coincidence that the last two duos to sweep the honors both included a quarterback with a skill set similar to Hurts’. Like the Eagles in 2022, the success that the Panthers and Ravens enjoyed in 2015 and 2019 both required coaches who were willing to forget everything they thought they knew about the position.
Mailbag: If the Eagles clinch the 1 seed early, how soon should they rest starters? - PhillyVoice
In my opinion, the Eagles have to put all of their efforts behind winning a Super Bowl, right now. I’m sure that their analytics nerds will dissect that debate from every angle imaginable, and it will be discussed among every department in the organization (front office, coaching staff, etc.), and if they feel that resting starters for two games to close the season is what gives them the best chance of winning a Super Bowl this season, then that is what they should do, even if it means that a potential loss to the Saints hurts their draft positioning with that pick. Having said that, if they were to rest starters against the Saints, and then again against the Giants Week 18, and then have their bye during the wildcard round of the playoffs, by the time they play a game in the divisional round it will have basically been a month since they tried to win a football game. There’s risk in the team losing its edge. Personally, I’d probably lean toward playing starters against the Saints, and then hoping to get them out at some point during the second half. If a player gets hurt and it’s not season-ending there’s a reasonable enough chance that they’ll be good to go for the playoffs.
Fantasy Football: Week 15 key wide receiver questions and tight end analysis - PFF
Key question: How much has life changed for DeVonta Smith with and without Dallas Goedert (shoulder, IR)? A fair bit. Nobody has ever doubted the talent of the 2021 Heisman Trophy winner, but there’s only so much pass-game volume to go around inside of one of just seven offenses to throw the ball on under 55% of their snaps in non-garbage time situations. The absence of Goedert has at least partially helped Smith rack up at least eight targets in each of his last four games – a mark that he only hit four times in Weeks 1 to 10 combined with the Eagles’ stud tight end also involved. The extra volume has helped Smith post PPR WR20, WR57, WR12 and WR16 performances over the past month of action. He’ll continue to warrant upside WR2 treatment as long as Goedert is sidelined, but that time might be coming to an end after the Eagles designated him to return from IR on Tuesday. Reports indicate the expectation is for Goedert to return to the active roster Sunday, and if not then almost certainly on Christmas Eve against the Cowboys. Smith won’t drop too far down the ranks once Goedert returns; even a slightly reduced target share can still go a long way with a talented pass-catcher inside the league’s top-ranked scoring offense. Ultimately, this pristine offensive environment should win out in the majority of close start/sit questions throughout the fantasy playoffs; it’s probably a good thing if your fantasy squad has anybody involved from the league’s single-best offense in terms of combined supporting cast PFF grades.
Micah Parsons did not intend to start a “shit storm” but concedes “I’m sure they hate me” in Philadelphia - PFT
Parsons has never shied away from expressing his opinion, no matter how controversial. He got into hot water last week with his Twitter comments following WNBA star Brittney Griner’s release from Russian captivity. Parsons later apologized. He is not apologizing for questioning whether it’s the Eagles’ system and their personnel — not Hurts’ play — that has led to the league’s best record. Parsons, though, insists he did not intend to be disrespectful toward Hurts, a favorite for the MVP award.
Week 15 NFL game picks: Bills thwart Dolphins on Saturday night; Lions stay hot with road win over Jets - NFL.com
The Bears’ offense is a great test for an Eagles run defense which has improved over the last month. Jordan Davis still doesn’t look healthy, however, and there may be no perfect defense for the way Justin Fields is playing. Luckily for the Eagles, they only have to worry about one side of the ball in this trip to Chicago. With Jalen Hurts’ enhanced timing and anticipation in the passing game, there’s nothing this offense can’t do.
NFL playoff contenders: Big questions for 5 teams, including Bills, Eagles, Lions - The Athletic
Is the Eagles’ run defense fixed? In the two games after 2022 first-round draft pick Jordan Davis was hurt and before they signed veteran defensive tackle Linval Joseph, the Eagles ranked 30th in defensive success rate (50.7 percent). After those two games, general manager Howie Roseman took steps to fix the problem, signing Joseph and Ndamukong Suh to shore up Eagles’ front. Davis returned from IR in Week 13 and is slowly working his way into the rotation. With the signings of Joseph and Suh, and Davis’ return, the Eagles’ front added a combined 965 pounds, the effect of which is being felt immediately. The trio has two-gapped, split double teams and held its ground effectively. In the last four weeks, the Eagles rank fourth in rush defense success rate (68.6 percent). During that span, they held Jonathan Taylor, Aaron Jones, Derrick Henry and Saquon Barkley in check. This week, the Eagles face the Bears, with Justin Fields leading Chicago’s resurgent rushing attack. The Bears rank fifth in EPA per rush, ever since the Bears’ coaches tailored their offense around Fields’ rushing ability in Week 7 (not including Week 12, when Fields missed the game due to injury). Trying to stop Fields will be a unique challenge for the Eagles and a good test for their revamped front.
Spadaro: The unsung heroes of this 12-1 Eagles team - PE.com
Marcus Epps, safety. Here is a guy who has played 99 percent of the defensive snaps as a first-time, full-time starter next to three different safety partners – C.J. Gardner-Johnson, Reed Blankenship, K’Von Wallace – and Marcus Epps has been rock-solid. Outstanding, even. As much as Seumalo is a “glue” guy for the offensive line, Epps is very much that in this terrific secondary. He’s always in the right place at the right time. Preparation and dedication and want-to have helped make Epps into a hugely important part of the defense.
NFL Mock Draft: The Texans, Colts, and Panthers Add Their QBs of the Future - The Ringer
5. Philadelphia Eagles (from Saints): Edge Myles Murphy, Clemson. The Eagles have emphasized the importance of a deep and talented defensive line in recent years, and GM Howie Roseman doesn’t deviate from that philosophy here. With Brandon Graham set to turn 35 this spring, Murphy gives Philly an infusion of youth as an edge rusher. The former Clemson star combines excellent length with top-tier athleticism; he racked up 36.5 tackles for loss, 17.5 sacks, and six forced fumbles in three seasons with the Tigers.
You have one more chance to order a vinyl copy of the Philadelphia Eagles’ Christmas album - 6ABC
If you missed out on ordering the Christmas album featuring songs belted out by some of the Philadelphia Eagles’ biggest stars, not to worry - you’ll have one more chance. But be warned: your holiday decorations will be long gone before it arrives. The website for “A Philly Special Christmas” says there will be a third and final release on Friday, December 16, starting at 9 a.m. The store will be open for only 24 hours. “In the last few days, we have worked tirelessly with our suppliers to find a solution, even if that meant delivery after the holidays,” the website reads. Delivery of the albums from this pressing will begin in February.
Have no fear, Justin Fields practices in full - Windy City Gridiron
Chase Claypool did not participate in practice again on Thursday so his status for Sunday is definitely worth monitoring at this point.
3 questions and answers about the Cowboys heading into a potential postseason run - Blogging The Boys
Which opponent scares you the most in the NFC in a potential playoff matchup? As much as I hate to say it, it’s gotta be the Philadelphia Eagles. Right now, there’s no way to argue that the Eagles are not the NFL’s best team. Philly has scored the most points in football, won half of their games by double-digits, and turned the ball over the fewest times, and taken it away the most times. That’s going to win you a ton of games. Their quarterback, Jalen Hurts, would be the league MVP if the season ended today. Hurts has thrown 22 touchdown passes to just three interceptions, and ranks in the top three in the league in EPA + CPOE (0.161 3rd), EPA/Play (0.242 3rd), and CPOE (3.7 2nd). Hurts is accompanied on offense by arguably the best rushing attack in football, an absolutely dominant offense line, two stud receivers, and a very solid tight end. If that wasn’t impressive enough, the Eagles’ defense that leads the NFL with 23 takeaways has given up 17 or fewer points in eight of their 12 games this season. As tough as it might be to say, right now, the Eagles look like a juggernaut. They clearly are the biggest threat to the Cowboys in the NFC and potentially playing them on the road in the playoffs would be one of Dallas’ toughest games in the last decade.
Giants-Commanders Thursday injury report: CB Adoree’ Jackson remains sidelined - Big Blue View
Safety Xavier McKinney, who is on IR, and cornerback Adoree’ Jackson once again did not practice. Coach Brian Daboll said Wednesday that mcKinney would not play Sunday. It appears Jackson will not return, either. Offensive linemen Joshua Ezeudu and Shane Lemieux also did not practice. Defensive tackle Leonard Williams (neck) was a limited participant for a second consecutive day. Wide receiver Richie James and edge defender Jihad Ward, who are both in the concussion protocol, practiced as limited, non-contact participants.
Washington fans want the new owner to dump the Commanders brand - Hogs Haven
The decision to go with the Commanders name flew in the face of the team’s repeated claims that the process would be public and the fans’ voices would be heard. The Commanders was not a popular choice, and the response to the February announcement was a resounding thud.
Jets Release S Will Parks - New York Jets
Parks re-signed with the Green & White in March after he was originally claimed by the Jets last December. He spent the summer with the team before he was waived and signed Sept. 14. Parks played in 11 games this season and made 5 tackles. He took 48 snaps on defense and 136 on special teams. Originally a sixth-round pick of the Broncos in 2016 out of Arizona, he played four seasons in Denver before a stint with the Eagles in 2020.
Our expert NFL picks for Week 15 of 2022 - SB Nation
Okay, we’re getting chippy in our weekly picks. The amount of trash talking we’re hitting each other with has really ramped up as we approach the end of the season and it’s manifesting itself in incredible ways. For the second straight week we’ve seen a “first to worst” trend with RJ Ochoa being this week’s victim. When it came time for David Fucillo to think up a punishment tweet for RJ, Fooch went RIGHT for the jugular.
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