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Eagles News: A.J. Brown and DeVonta Smith key to beating the 49ers

Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 1/29/23.

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NFC Divisional Playoffs - New York Giants v Philadelphia Eagles Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images

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Conference Championship same-game parlay picks: Bet on the Eagles turning to pass to exploit 49ers CBs - PFF
Bet on Philadelphia Eagles‘ passing attack to explode: The San Francisco 49ers defense has struggled against deep passing concepts this season, which should enable Jalen Hurts, A.J. Brown and DeVonta Smith to exceed their yardage props. Story: Eagles turn to the pass and exploit the 49ers’ corners. Throughout this season, the Eagles have varied their run-pass ratios by week, adjusting based on their opponents’ strength. The circled teams above are all games in which the Eagles leaned into the pass because they played a top run defense. This is the case again in this spot against a 49ers defense that ranks second in EPA allowed and second in success rate allowed against the run. The Eagles should turn to the air here. And as we spoke about last week, the 49ers defense’s Achilles heel is defending the deep passing game, where Jalen Hurts has the third most yards per deep attempt in addition to the fact that A.J. Brown and Devonta Smith are both top 5 in PFF deep receiving grade. But aside from just the deep plays, their linebackers are so good in coverage that they funnel opposing targets and production to WRs, allowing the eighth-most receptions and sixth-most yards to opposing WRs. Look for Philadelphia’s passing game to flow, not through backs and TEs, but through Brown and Smith. who should succeed in the areas in which SF is weakest.

49ers’ Path to Super Bowl LVII: Don’t Let Nick Sirianni Fool You - Niners Nation
Stand tall against the pass: DeMeco Ryans’ secondary had some hiccups against Dallas, but they executed when it mattered most. Deommodore Lenoir and Jimmie Ward forced turnovers, and Ryans’ “Swarm” mentality prevailed against the run. Sirianni’s Run Pass Options will stress each level of the defense. Jalen Hurts’ low average depth of target means plays will be there for Fred Warner, Dre Greenlaw, and Azeez Al-Shaair to make. To bracket either AJ Brown or DeVonta Smith is the question. Slowing either is achievable with active hands or getting heads around to locate the ball. By silencing these two, Ryans’ defense can show who truly has the best pass defense in the league.

Mailbag: If the Eagles reach the Super Bowl, would the Chiefs or Bengals be the more ideal opponent? - PhillyVoice
Question from @vonar_town: If the Eagles win this game, which one player (aside from the obvious answer of Jalen Hurts) is going to be talked about as the reason? I think that the Eagles are going to have some favorable matchups against Niners CB2 Deommodore Lenoir. My suspicion is that the Niners will have Charvarius Ward follow Brown, and they’ll take their chances with Lenoir on DeVonta Smith. If so, Smith will get his share of opportunities to make plays, and even if Ward trails Brown, Brown is the better player, and the Eagles shouldn’t necessarily shy away from that matchup. I think this is a game that Smith and Brown have to make a half dozen or so important plays.

In Roob’s Observations: One area the 49ers’ defense may be vulnerable - NBCSP
1. The 49ers don’t have many weaknesses on defense (or offense), but one thing they are vulnerable to is the deep ball. The 49ers had the No. 1 defense in the NFL (by 15 yards over the Eagles), but they did allow the 7th-most 30-yard pass plays in the NFL (21), the 4th-most 40-yard plays (11) and the most 50-yard plays (6). And the Eagles were tied for 2nd in 30-yard pass plays (27), tied for 2nd in 40-yarders (13) and 5th in 50-yarders (5). You’re not going to have a lot of luck trying to drive 75 yards in 15 plays against this 49ers’ defense. They only allowed 16 scoring drives of 75 yards or more all year. So you need chunk plays. The Eagles have a quarterback who can throw ‘em and they have several wide receivers who can catch ‘em. And the 49ers with their 20th-ranked pass defense will give them up. Bombs away.

Eagles-49ers preview: 5 questions and answers with the NFC Championship Game enemy - BGN
3 - What is the most concerning matchup for the 49ers in this game? This must have almost certainly been the answer for any team facing the Eagles this year, yet it must be stated: the 49ers offensive line vs the Eagles defensive line. Philadelphia’s league-leading 70 sacks gives me cause for alarm, especially when you look at the amount of pressure Dallas generated last week against a mostly untested line. If I had to point to a less extreme mismatch, there’s Jalen Hurts and his whole deal vs. the Niners D. First, he’s a mobile quarterback, the type of player which has given this unit fits in the past. The extremely aggressive pass rush in San Francisco tends to overrun plays and leave wide open scrambling lanes for QBs with speed. On the other hand, the Niners have had trouble defending the deep pass, and suffered several coverage busts that cost them touchdowns in tight games. Hurts could pick on Deommodore Lenoir or Talanoa Hufanga, players most responsible for such mental errors, and change the game with a single throw to A.J. Brown or Devonta Smith.

Above the Nest with Raichele #73: Eagles awards/snubs + What you need to know ahead of Eagles-49ers NFC Championship game - BGN Radio
Raichele Privette briefly recaps the Eagles dominant Divisional Round win over the Giants, runs through the Eagles awards and snubs and looks ahead to the highly anticipated NFC Championship matchup between the Eagles and 49ers on Sunday.

How the Eagles, 49ers built their NFC Championship game rosters - SB Nation
Traded for: 6 players. The narrative that Roseman is a trader by heart fits as the six players added via trade are the most of the four teams left in the playoffs. Interestingly, Philadelphia has traded for top-of-the-line starters in receiver A.J. Brown and cornerback Darius Slay, a quality starter in safety C.J. Gardner-Johnson, depth pieces in defensive end Robert Quinn and cornerback Josiah Scott and their backup quarterback in Gardner Minshew. Roseman will trade for whatever he thinks he needs. Eagles Roster Acquisition: 60.4% out of NFL Draft & undrafted free agents, 28.3% in free agency, 11.3% via trade.

NFL postseason QB EPA rankings: Brock Purdy ranks No. 1, Joe Burrow rising quickly - The Athletic
Philadelphia’s overall success hasn’t slowed down a ton, though, given how well the Eagles run the football. That’s why there’s a significant disparity between Hurts’ EPA per dropback and offensive total EPA per play rates. Hurts’ success aids the ground attack even when he’s not the one running the ball. One glaring number comes with Hurts’ EPA rate when teams blitz in the postseason. The blitz sample size was so small against the Giants, however, that it could be deceiving. The Eagles rushed for 268 yards and two touchdowns in the win. What you should really like about Hurts is how quickly he unloaded the ball last week. He’s been the least-pressured passer among the four quarterbacks left this postseason and the third least-pressured among the 14 qualified postseason quarterbacks, thanks in part to his quick, in-rhythm throws.

Eagles elevate Anthony Harris for Sunday’s NFC Championship Game -
It should be noted that the Eagles elevated Harris last week for the NFC Divisional Round win over the Giants, but made him inactive on gameday. [...] Elevated RB Tevin Coleman and CB Janoris Jenkins from the practice squad. Running back Elijah Mitchell did not practice all week due to a groin injury and was listed by San Francisco as questionable for this game. Coleman suited up in five games for the 49ers this season, but had carries in just two. He posted 26 yards and a touchdown on 12 carries. The veteran has amassed 3,319 yards and 25 rushing touchdowns in his career. [BLG Note: The Eagles will likely keep Harris inactive again. If that’s the case, they bumped him up just so he can get a game check. Doing a solid for the veteran.]

NFL weather forecast for 49ers vs. Eagles NFC Championship Game, what it means for fantasy and betting - DraftKings Nation
Weather for 49ers vs. Eagles in NFC Championship Game. Forecast: The weather forecast is calling for a high of 53 degrees on Sunday in Philadelphia. There’s a slight chance of showers in the afternoon, 20 percent, with any precipitation unlikely to fall until after 1 p.m., if at all. Winds are going to be blowing 5-15 mph out of the south.

NFC Championship weekend: Eagles light up sky with drone show above Art Museum - 6ABC
Philadelphia Eagles fans were treated to a drone show Saturday night. Three hundred drones lit up the sky promptly at 7 p.m. in celebration of the team advancing to the NFC Championship. During the show, the sky was illuminated with a unique QR code for viewers to win two tickets to Sunday’s game. Earlier in the day, San Francisco 49ers fans gathered at the base of the Art Museum steps to try and remove an Eagles shirt off the Rocky statue. “Love your city, but you’re all gonna lose,” said Diana Meade, a 49ers fan from Colorado.

A reason Dan Quinn’s return could end up being bad for Mike McCarthy - Blogging The Boys
But what if things don’t go well next season? The Cowboys have a lot of work to do this spring and summer to reload a roster with numerous free agents and some big question marks. What if they don’t find the right mix, or perhaps suffer another critical injury at quarterback or somewhere else that handicaps them? The reason to think about this relative to Dan Quinn’s presence is Jerry Jones’ history with head coaches. Jones has the distinction of being involved in every head-coaching change in franchise history, going all the way to back to when he fired Tom Landry to make room for Jimmy Johnson. Seven of those eight times that Jerry has found a new head coach, that move came during the offseason. Six of those times, the new guy came from outside of the organization. Only when Dave Campo replaced Chan Gailey in 2000 did Jones go to someone already on staff. But the coaching change we should focus on was in 2010 when Wade Phillips was replaced midseason by Jason Garrett. It’s the only time that Jerry has fired a coach in the middle of the year, and it’s a situation that presents a relevant comparison to what Mike McCarthy is now up against in 2023.

Big Blue View mailbag: Offseason edition No. 1 - Big Blue View
I would agree that I don’t think the Giants will be shopping at Tiffany’s, but they won’t be buying plastic rings from the dollar store, either. In terms of the “who” part of players the Giants will pursue, that’s difficult to gauge. As Schoen said the other day we don’t know which potential free agents are actually going to reach the market. We annually try to profile some prospective targets, and Nick Falato will begin doing that soon. An obvious name to keep an eye on is Buffalo Bills linebacker Tremaine Edmunds, both because of need and the organization’s familiarity with him. I might look at the cornerback market. I’m intrigued by Mike Gesicki of the Miami Dolphins as a pass-catching tight end. I know Nick likes Jacksonville tight end Chris Manhertz as a blocker. Interior defensive line, interior offensive line, wide receiver are all places the Giants might look to add without breaking the bank.


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