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Eagles News: “No comforting explanations” for the Matt Patricia promotion

Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 12/18/23.

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Why so unserious?: Philadelphia Eagles replace Sean Desai with Matt Patricia, sort of - PHLY
Despite apparently being in an emergency at 10-3, the Eagles surely know Patricia is not Fangio. In his seven seasons as Patriots defensive coordinator and three years as Detroit Lions head coach, Patricia’s defense never finished in the top 10 in defensive DVOA. Those three Lions defenses, when Patricia was away from Bill Belichick, from 2018-2020 finished, chronologically, 21st, 23rd and 32nd. From a decision-making perspective, there are no comforting explanations. If this was Sirianni’s doing alone, it’s an uneasy reflection on the steadiness of his hand. As Cox intimated, it’s hard to stay calm when the boss is acting like the house is on fire. If this is a Howie Roseman push, it’s hard to read Desai as anything other than a scapegoat for what looks now like a poorly constructed defense. The pass rush, which entered the season with a top nine that included seven former first-round picks, a third-rounder on his rookie contract (Milton Williams) and a highly paid former fourth-rounder (Josh Sweat), entered Sunday ranked 21st in sack rate. The linebacker situation has been a predictable disaster while the secondary took an expected step back considering its collective age. And if instead this is an ownership-driven change, well, this won’t be the last of the drama to befall the 2023 Eagles.

Matt Patricia takes over as Eagles’ defensive playcaller - ESPN
There has been a sense of unease in the Philadelphia locker room despite being tied for the top record in the NFL. A team source described “too much finger-pointing” among teammates following a pair of blowout losses to the San Francisco 49ers and Dallas Cowboys over the past two weeks and not enough focus on the collective good of the team. There was a sense that frustrations were mounting in particular among some players on defense. Veteran leaders have been stressing the importance of staying together as the Eagles prepare for the stretch run, beginning Monday night in Seattle. Philadelphia has the easiest closing schedule in the NFL, according to ESPN’s Football Power Index, with two games against the New York Giants and a home tilt against the Cardinals remaining after this week.

Eagles DC Sean Desai demoted; Matt Patricia will call defensive plays moving forward [UPDATE] - BGN
You may remember Patricia from his failed stint as the Detroit Lions head coach from 2018-2020 and as New England’s defensive coordinator from 2012-2017 (when his defense allowed 41 points to the Eagles in Super Bowl LII). Patricia joined the NFL coaching ranks in New England as an assistant o-line coach before being switched to linebackers coach, one season as safeties coach, and then his tenure as their DC.

Breaking News - Sean Desai OUT as Defensive Coordinator, Matt Patricia in + Jalen Hurts QUESTIONABLE for MNF - BGN Radio
So much has happened over the last few days! John Stolnis gets you caught up on the latest news including the Eagles replacing Defensive Coordinator Sean Desai with Matt Patricia and Jalen Hurts’ questionable game status ahead of MNF.

Report: Eagles demote Sean Desai ahead of Seahawks game - Field Gulls
This is an incredible decision to make this late into the season, and certainly a tough moment for Desai in his first year with the Eagles. Philadelphia’s defense, statistically one of the best in the NFL in 2022, has cratered to one of the league’s worst in 2023, sparking predictably anger among Eagles fans. Evidently, the Eagles organization concurs with the fans. Patricia was last seen running the New England offense, which was a disaster. He previously spent three seasons as head coach of the Detroit Lions, which was an even bigger disaster. His career highlight was as Patriots defensive coordinator from 2012-2017, winning two Super Bowls along the way—we’ll ignore one of those rings for... reasons. Patricia could’ve had three Super Bowls as Patriots DC if his 24th ranked defense by DVOA didn’t give up 41 points to the Nick Foles-led Philadelphia Eagles.

Report: Eagles defensive coordinator Sean Desai benched in favor of Matt Patricia - PhillyVoice
A season ago, the Eagles faced virtually no adversity whatsoever, and so far their response to two bad losses is interesting, to put it mildly. While the defense has unquestionably been bad, this is a drastic panic move that screams bad vibes for a 10-3 team that still has a decent chance at earning the 1 seed.

Game Preview – PHI at SEA - Iggles Blitz
It will be interesting to see what Matt Patricia does with the defense. Will there be a noticeable difference? Can he push the right buttons for this group to get back on track? The Eagles have allowed 33 or more points for the last three weeks. They don’t need a shutout. The defense just needs to hold Seattle in the 17 to 24 point range. We’re not asking for the ’85 Bears. It will also be interesting to see how Seattle attacks. Zach Cunningham will miss the game so you might have Shaq Leonard and Nick Morrow as the starting LBs. If so, you run at those guys until they prove they can stop it. Maybe the Eagles play more of a 5-1-5 look, since they have better DL than LBs.

Week 15: Chiefs Use Ancient “Heisman” to Jumpstart Offense; Ohio’s Bigtime Backup QBs - FMIA
7. I think Nick Sirianni’s got some trust to rebuild with the Eagles’ press corps—not that this is front-of-mind for a coach whose team has allowed 34, 42 and 33 points in the last three games entering tonight’s important game in Seattle. He was asked at his press conference last Monday if he was considering any coaching changes in the wake of the recent defensive lapses. He said no. “I feel good with the people that we have in this building,” Sirianni said. “We’re 10-3. We’re in control of our own destiny, and we’re going to keep rolling and finding answers with the people that we have.” As Jay Glazer reported Sunday, defensive coordinator Sean Desai is the DC in name only now; Matt Patricia has begun running the defense and will be in charge tonight in Seattle. Maybe Sirianni, on his own, had a total 180 after he met the press Monday. Maybe, but it seems dubious that Sirianni wasn’t at least thinking about making a change seeing that this was a huge change. There’s also the chance he was forced into it by someone or some people above him. Whatever it was, this is a bad look for Sirianni.

20 years after his career began, this NFL lineman keeps defying the odds - The Athletic
Ask him favorite teammate, and he thinks about it for a moment, scanning the years. He’s had thousands. “Lane Johnson,” he finally says, referring to the Eagles’ right tackle. “He’s like my brother.” Johnson arrived in Philadelphia as the fourth pick in 2013, five years into Peters’ run there. He took him under his wing, same as Vincent, Milloy and Fletcher had done with him in Buffalo a decade before. “As soon as I got in here,” Johnson says, “there was really never any animosity or ‘I was here to take his job.’” Now Johnson is in his 11th season with the Eagles, and he remains one of the best in the game. “I just always envied how he worked,” he says of Peters. “You don’t play 20 years in the league if you don’t have a good work ethic, a good routine. So, I respect him that way. And then I always respected how he treated people. Honestly, everybody knew what player he was. But I felt like with some of the stuff he did off the field — with helping people in the facility or helping people out — he had a big heart and he always thought about the guys here.”

Micah Parsons on Cowboys’ ‘mind-boggling’ road struggles: ‘Honestly, it’s unacceptable at this point’ -
“Honestly, it’s unacceptable at this point,” linebacker Micah Parsons said. “There’s no excuse for it. It’s mind-boggling and I don’t understand why we’re not playing well, and why we’re not coming together on the road. We’ve something we need to look at and get better at, because we’re back on the road next week.” The Cowboys’ only road wins this season have come in a Week 1 shellacking versus the five-win Giants, a three-point Week 6 win over the L.A. Chargers — who just fired their coach — and a Week 11 blowout of the two-win Panthers.

10 thoughts on the Cowboys 31-10 no-show performance against the Bills - Blogging The Boys
6. WHERE WAS OUR MVP? It was strange to see the Cowboys offense perform so poorly after firing on all cylinders since the bye week. They finished the game with just 195 total yards, their lowest mark of the season. They only had 14 first downs, their lowest total since that dreadful 49ers game in Week 5. The offense looked like they didn’t know what they were doing. After finally being taken seriously as a legit MVP candidate for the first time in his NFL career, Dak Prescott couldn’t get anything going. He finished with just 134 passing yards, one of the lowest totals of his career. He also didn’t throw a touchdown pass for the first time since the season opener and had his first interception since November 12th.

Giants-Saints ‘things I think’: The Giants crashed back to reality Sunday afternoon - Big Blue View
The magic carpet ride had to end at some point for Tommy DeVito and the New York Giants. It did just that Sunday as the Giants couldn’t handle the New Orleans Saints, losing 24-6. This loss wasn’t DeVito’s fault, but it was a harsh reminder that the Giants remain a limited football team. And DeVito, an undrafted free agent quarterback, might not be the second coming of Brock Purdy — or whoever you want to dreamily compare him to. “Collectively just not good enough,” said head coach Brian Daboll. “Pretty much take any area. It wasn’t good enough. “Nothing was where it needed to be today. Just overall not good enough.” The three-game winning streak the Giants entered Sunday with, and the DeVito-mania that it caused, was a fantastic interlude in a season that hasn’t been what the Giants hoped it would be. Sunday was a reality check for the Giants. The Giants benefitted during their winning streak from a 12-3 advantage in the giveaway/takeaway ratio. Sunday, neither team committed a turnover. In a turnover-free game, the Giants simply weren’t good enough to hang with the 7-7 Saints in a harsh environment inside the Caesar’s Superdome.

Washington Commanders Vs. LA Rams - Studs and Duds - Hogs Haven
Sam Howell - Howell looks as though he has regressed from earlier in the season with his decision making. I think Bieniemy has drilled getting the ball out of his hands so quickly, that sometimes he panics and throws to receivers who are covered or tries to force the ball into zones that are full of defenders. However, I don’t blame this all on Howell. This offensive line is doing him zero favors, and I think that has him shell-shocked.

Joe Flacco has the Browns eying a Hollywood ending - SB Nation
Whenever the topic of “guilty pleasure sports movies” comes up, a few movies instantly come to mind. One of those? “For Love of the Game,” the movie adaptation of the wonderful book of the same title written by Michael Shaara, which tells the story of Billy Chapel, an aging pitcher for the Detroit Tigers (the Atlanta Hawks in the book) staring down the end of his career, and the New York Yankees, at the end of a tough season. Kevin Costner’s portrayal of Chapel is solid, but perhaps the best part of the movie comes from the late Vin Scully, as the legendary play-by-play announcer portrayed himself on the call for the game between the Tigers and the Yankees, alongside Steve Lyons. Late in the film, as Chapel’s weary body and aching arm chases perfection against the Yankees in what might be his last major league game, Scully drops this bit of baseball poetry.


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