Let’s get to the Philadelphia Eagles links ...
Establish the Fun: Christian Wilkins turns into a star - SB Nation
The Eagles have one of the best defenses in the NFL, by any metric you look at. They’re 4th in defensive EPA/play, 7th in total defensive DVOA and 3rd in yards allowed per game. However, they’re at their best when they can consistently get pressure. According to SIS the Eagles are 15th in pressure rate, but when they do pressure teams they’re first in EPA allowed per pass attempt and have seven interceptions off of pressures. Against the Giants, that pressure came in full force, sacking QBs Daniel Jones and Tyrod Taylor seven times in the 48-22 victory. Their pressure is fueled by the edge rushers, who not only get sacks, but open the game up for others as well. In the latest update of True Sack Rate by Brandon Thorn, the Eagles have two players in the top 15: EDGE’s Haason Reddick and Josh Sweat. Reddick is tied for 9th in the NFL in sacks and is 6th in Thorn’s True Sack Rate. Reddick brings speed and great hands in his pass rush, which normally comes out of a five man front (either structurally built that way or a walked up LB). On his first sack against the Giants he gets RT Evan Neal to open his body up to the speed, then darts back inside, leaving Neal spinning like a top.
Eagles-Bears game preview: 5 questions and answers with the Week 15 enemy - BGN
If you’ve read this far, or watched this season, you probably think I’m going to say the Eagles win. But nobody has called me out for being wrong in one of these, so I’ll keep predicting the Bears win, this time 42 to 35. Justin Fields leads the Bears offense to score on every drive through sheer force of will and ursine vigor, and UDFA rookie linebacker Jack Sanborn seals the game with a late pick-6 on Eagles only drive that doesn’t reach the end zone.
At the Podium: Nick Sirianni on Justin Fields - BGN Radio
Eagles Head Coach Nick Sirianni spoke with the Philly media about Justin Fields and shares his thoughts on trap games.
5 Questions with Bleeding Green Nation: watching Jalen Hurts ascend has been a wild ride - Windy City Gridiron
I’d think they’re going to make it their top priority. The Eagles simply cannot allow him to beat them with his legs. They need to do everything it takes to force Fields to win with his arm. Especially given that his wide receiver options are currently Equanimeous St. Brown, Dante Pettis, N’Keal Harry, Byron Pringle, and Velus Jones. Fields is not the first mobile quarterback the Eagles have faced this year. Kyler Murray had four rushes for 42 yards against them back in Week 5. The Eagles generally did a good job of staying disciplined with their rush lanes, which is an area that Nick Sirianni praised the defense for in the aftermath of their win over the New York Giants. Daniel Jones is obviously not on Fields’ level when it comes to running the ball but he’s still a good mobile threat and the Eagles kept him to just four carries for 26 yards. And so I expect pass rushers playing under control to be emphasized again in this matchup. Eagles defensive coordinator Jonathan Gannon is going to attempt to make Fields lead the Bears on long drives in order to put up points.
Mailbag: Could the Eagles have two 1,000-yard rushers and receivers, and how rare would that be? - PhillyVoice
If my research isn’t failing me here, the last time a team traded a known top 10 pick (as in, the draft positioning was known at the time of the trade) for a veteran player was in 2005, when the Vikings traded a 28-year-old Randy Moss to the Raiders for the seventh overall pick and a seventh-round pick. At the time that deal was made, Moss was a mega-star who was averaging 82 catches for 1306 yards and 13 TDs per season over his first seven seasons. So it’s very uncommon. The Eagles are not flush with projected cap space in 2023 or 2024, and they have a contract extension for Jalen Hurts looming on the horizon, so they feel like an unlikely candidate to break convention and trade that pick for an expensive (or soon to be expensive), established player. It’s a lot more likely that if they trade that pick, it’s for a bounty of extra picks that they can use to fill their talent pipeline with young, cheaper players.
Game Preview – PHI at CHI - Iggles Blitz
While Fields is an elite weapon as a runner, he’s very much a work in progress as a passer. You see big time potential, but there isn’t the kind of consistency you need out of a high level QB. Fields has good size and a strong arm. He can make impressive tight-window throws. His mechanics are sloppy. I don’t like his footwork at all. His decision-making is all over the place. Fields is learning a new offense, dealing with new coaches and he doesn’t have top skill players so this season should be one of erratic play. He has only thrown for more than 193 yards in a game once all year. Now, that was last time out when he threw for 254 yards against the Packers. Fields completed passes of 49 and 56 yards. Those kind of big plays had been missing. He’s not likely to beat the Eagles deep, but he should try.
Roob’s Observations: How smart coaching boosted Miles Sanders’ value - NBCSP
6. Jalen Hurts has the highest passer rating in the NFL at 108.4, and if he finishes atop the rankings, he’ll become only the second quarterback 24 or younger to lead the NFL in passer rating since the mid-1980s. The only other one was Nick Foles in 2013. Technically, Hurts will be younger on the final day of the regular season (24, years, 152 days) than Foles at the end of the 2013 season (24, 343), so Hurts would be the youngest passer rating leader since Dan Marino, who was just 22 when he led the NFL with a 108.9 rating as a rookie in 1984. The only Eagles other than Foles to lead the NFL in passer rating are Tommy Thompson in 1948 and 1949 and Adrian Burk in 1954 — before passer rating was invented.
Eagles-Bears preview: Matchups, storylines to watch, game predictions - The Athletic
Wulf: I had my antenna up last week against the Giants because division games can be wonky and the coaches knew each other well. Then the Eagles came out and blew the doors off. So now I’m trying to fight the same instinct again. The Bears are coming off their bye week. Surely, they’ll be rested and ready with a special game plan, right? And Eberflus will have the book on Sirianni? But this Eagles team has pretty much passed every test that has been sent its way, save for an uncharacteristic spat of turnovers against the Commanders. Even the ensuing letdown against the Colts was a testament to their mettle. So I won’t bet against them in a game that otherwise looks like a prototypical “trap.” One other thing they’ve done throughout the season? Correct what looks like weaknesses midstream. I think they’ll find a way to do that against Fields the rusher/scrambler, even if he’s bound to make his fair share of big plays. Without Chase Claypool, I’m not sure what else they have on offense. Even more so, I don’t know how Chicago stops the Eagles’ offense. Eagles 33, Bears 20
Week 15 betting cheat sheet: Expect plenty of points in Eagles-Bears, Raiders have edge over Pats - ESPN
This matchup presents a classic look-ahead spot for Philly, which travels to Dallas next week for a high-profile game that already has seen some trash-talking. I do think there is something to be said about the human element and it would certainly make sense if the Eagles are not entirely focused on the Bears. I lean to the Bears +8.5 for that reason, but I prefer the over. I think Justin Fields will generate enough offense and the Bears defense is fourth worst in efficiency. Seven straight Bears games have gone over for a reason. Pick: over 48.5
The Giants’ Saquon Barkley-Daniel Jones Dilemma - Football Outsiders
Saquon Barkley leads the Giants in scrimmage yards, with 1,344 rushing and receiving yards to Darius Slayton’s 608. He has been the Giants’ best skill-position player by a wide margin. Barkley has also been battling injuries for weeks. He has rushed 53 times for 152 yards (2.9 yards per rush) over his last four games. He is a battered running back entering free agency. The franchise tag is a possibility, but Schoen was hired almost explicitly to NOT overcompensate players such as Barkley. So Barkley will probably walk. Wise move. But where will those 100-plus yards per game come from in 2022? Daniel Jones refused to develop and refused to backslide in 2022. He’s stubbornly a third-quartile-on-his-best-days starter. Jones is also a free agent about to enter what’s likely to be a topsy-turvy quarterback transaction market. Again, the franchise tag is available, but that’s an expensive proposition for a C-minus quarterback. The Giants need a real long-range plan. But what will it be, and how much will it cost? Barkley and Jones could return to the Giants on lowball contracts, but that’s unlikely. Former first-round picks rarely take pay cuts to stay with the teams that drafted them. The lowball offer is usually a signal that it’s time for a change of scenery. And (Trent Baalke) someone (Trent Baalke) is likely to overpay (Baalke Baalke Baalke) for Barkley. The Giants offense will look very different next year. But in what way? We’ll spare you all the permutations. Just brace for changes that teams in the wild-card chase in mid-December rarely make in the following year.
Big Blue View mailbag: Running game, playoff money, Landon Collins, more questions - Big Blue View
Saquon Barkley being fully healthy, which he says he is, would help. The Giants need a big game from him. Reality, though, is that much of the struggle on the ground has come because of the offensive line issues. The Giants started the same offensive line in each of the first seven games. They have started four left guards, two center and two right tackles since, and rookie right tackle Evan Neal had an awful game vs. the Eagles. They need to block better. I have also said I would like to see more creativity from offensive coordinator Mike Kafka in the run calls. We haven’t seen the Wildcat or much in the way of two-back formations lately. Anything in terms of motion or formation that would give Washington something to think about. Teams have also done a better job in recent weeks taking the zone read keeper away from Jones, something that was a big part of the running game early in the season.
Washington Injury Update: Chase Young not expected to play vs Giants after meeting with Ron Rivera - Hogs Haven
Fans are still waiting for his return to the field, and according to Ian Rapoport they will be waiting another week. Chase Young is not expected to play in tonight’s primetime game against the New York Giants. He reportedly met with Washington Commanders Head Coach Ron Rivera and they both agreed on the plan to continue keeping him sidelined until he is fully ready to play again. Rivera has said that he would likely be on a 12-16 play snap count when he returns, but that will have to wait another week. Rapoport left the option open that he could play in the final 3 weeks, but all that really means is that they are not shutting him down for the season...yet.
Cowboys made a late run at Odell Beckham Jr. after signing T.Y. Hilton - NFL.com
When the Cowboys signed T.Y. Hilton last Monday, the immediate thought was that it closed the door on any possible signing of Odell Beckham Jr. The reality was far different. Sources say that following the signing of Hilton, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones called Beckham to make a run at signing him. In fact, since Beckham left Dallas after his free-agent visit, it has been Jones speaking to him directly almost exclusively, discussing a possible signing. When the Cowboys signed Hilton, a member of the organization actually asked Hilton, “How would you feel if we signed Beckham, too,” according to a source with knowledge of the team’s actions. Hilton’s response was along the lines of, “That’s great. I’m here to win a Super Bowl.” Hilton would have been totally fine with it. The Cowboys might have been Beckham’s landing spot (as compared to his other suitors: the Giants and Bills), but the timing hasn’t worked out and neither have the contractual discussions.
Cowboys at Jaguars: Writer predictions for road trip to Duval - Blogging The Boys
RJ Ochoa: If it had not been for last week I would be very worried about the potential of this being a trap game for the Dallas Cowboys. Generally speaking this group has been great at responding when the going has gotten tough and while the Jaguars have been cute as of late, they got blown out by the Lions just two weeks ago. Give me the Cowboys with confidence.
Fans’ Confidence in Jaguars Rises - Big Cat Country
Following the loss to the Detroit Lions in week 13, the fans’ confidence in the team dropped to 61%. After last Sunday’s exciting 36-22 win over divisional rivals, the Tennessee Titans, fans’ confidence in the Jacksonville Jaguars rose. We asked, and 98% of voters are confident that the team is headed in the right direction.
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