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Eagles News: Kenneth Gainwell has emerged in a big way

Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 2/2/23.

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NFC Championship - San Francisco 49ers v Philadelphia Eagles Photo by Kevin Sabitus/Getty Images

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Spadaro: Miles Sanders leads a productive quartet at running back -
2. Kenneth Gainwell. The second-year back has emerged in a big way during the postseason. That’s a great thing, because Gainwell’s touches went down during the season as Sanders took control, stayed healthy, and showed outstanding consistency. Gainwell gained 240 rushing yards and scored four ground touchdowns on 53 regular-season carries, and added 23 receptions and 169 yards in the passing game. Decent numbers, but not as many opportunities as in his rookie season when Gainwell contributed 291 rushing yards and five touchdowns on 68 carries and had another 33 receptions for 253 yards and a score in the passing game. Then came the postseason. And, oh boy, has Gainwell been a weapon. In the rampage over the Giants, Gainwell ran and slashed and dashed and powered his way to a career-high 112 yards, including a 35-yard touchdown. On Sunday against the 49ers, Gainwell picked up a team-high 48 yards on 14 rushing attempts. He has also added three receptions for 35 big yards in the passing game. Gainwell has been a major factor, and the best might be yet to come. “Kenny has done a good job for two years now. He just had a knack for the end zone last year, he’s having some more touches here in the playoff run and he takes advantage of the opportunities that he gets,” Sirianni said. “Miles is obviously our guy, our go-to guy, and I believe our other two guys (Boston Scott and Trey Sermon) have excelled in their role when they’ve come in and they’ve known what to do.

Roob Stats: Jalen Hurts already making postseason history - NBCSP
2A. Kenny Gainwell’s 250 postseason scrimmage yards are the most in Eagles history by a player before his 24th birthday, 31 more than Jeremy Maclin. Gainwell had 55 scrimmage yards vs. the Buccaneers last year, 121 against the Giants and 74 vs. the 49ers. Gainwell’s 250 yards are already 10th-most in Eagles postseason history by a running back – 43 more than LeSean McCoy. In his career, he’s averaged 29 scrimmage yards per game in the regular season and 83 in the postseason. The only Eagles RBs in history with more career 50-yard scrimmage games than Gainwell are Duce Staley, Brian Westbrook and Wilbert Montgomery.

Eagles Offense All-22 Film Review: Takeaways from the 49ers game - BGN
The other thing that was obvious from the game was the number of checkdowns Hurts was throwing. As I mentioned earlier, he did miss a few open receivers, but a lot of the time he smartly took the checkdown because the 49ers were playing really soft coverage and rallying to the football. Warner and Greenlaw are about as athletic as they come at linebacker, so the 49ers are happy to force a defense to checkdown and rally to the football quickly. I don’t think they expected Kenny Gainwell to make them both miss, though! [...] Even when the 49ers’ defense plays the run well, Kenny Gainwell does this! Gainwell had a great game and I have a feeling he is going to have a big role in the Super Bowl.

The EPA Podcast #15: Recapping the Eagles win against the 49ers - BGN Radio
Shane Haff and Victor Williams assess Jalen Hurts’ performance against the 49ers pass rush, share their thoughts on 49ers QB Brock Purdy’s injury and express their frustrations with the Eagles’ awards snubs.

Game Review – NFC CG – PHI 31, SF 7 - Iggles Blitz
You can’t rush the passer if you can’t stop the run. The Eagles knew run defense would be critical. SF had averaged 145 yards a game on the ground since Halloween. They have one of the most creative rushing attacks in the league and an OL with outstanding run blockers. The Eagles held them to 81 rushing yards on 24 carries. An amazing run by CMC gave them 23 yards and then a draw play of 16 yards on 3rd and long was also in there. Take away those two runs and SF had 22 carries for 42 yards. The Eagles got off blocks, played the right gaps and tackled well. Very good run defense.

NFL Conference Championship: Team of the Week & player awards - PFF
Offensive Line of the Week: Philadelphia Eagles. The Eagles’ dominance up front can not be overstated. Four of the five starters earned a PFF grade above 70.0, with Jordan Mailata and Landon Dickerson each grading above 85.0. Combined, the line gave up just five pressures — and not a single sack or hit — from 27 passing plays.

All-time Super Bowl QB rankings: Where do Patrick Mahomes and Jalen Hurts land? -
Below is my annually updated list of Super Bowl starting quarterbacks, which now numbers 66, taking into account Hurts as the Eagles’ starter in Super Bowl LVII. It’s important to note that with regard to players like Johnny Unitas and Bart Starr, who started Super Bowls but whose peak years came before the Super Bowl era, I considered their entire careers, not just what they did from 1966 onward. I ranked all quarterbacks based on career achievements, with regular-season excellence, All-Pro/Pro Bowl appearances and seasons as top-five and top-10 players at the position carrying more weight than just Super Bowl success. (Spoiler: Jim Plunkett, winner of two Super Bowls, did not have a better career than Marino, who won none.) It’s impossible for Hurts to fare well on a list like this after only 34 career regular-season starts, but this ranking is like a low introductory offer in a negotiation. He will be rising in these ranks annually over the next decade-plus, just like his salary.

Why Jalen Hurts considers Michael Jordan one of his idols: ‘That’s a hero of mine’ - The Athletic
A poster hangs just above eye level in Jalen Hurts’ locker at the Philadelphia Eagles’ practice facility, staring him in the face every day. It’s a picture of Michael Jordan pumping his arms in celebration with a quote from MJ next to it: Some people want it to happen, some wish it would happen, and others MAKE it happen. So why, of all the posters, did he choose this one for his locker? “Because I like Mike,” Hurts said. “I like the quote.” With the Eagles in the Super Bowl and Hurts as their starting quarterback, a player accustomed to the spotlight (he reached three national championships in college and was a Heisman Trophy finalist) is set to explode to a different level of public fame. And the athlete who Hurts most reveres is perhaps the most famous — and greatest — athlete alive. “I think MJ, along with Muhammad Ali, is one of the most transcendent, rare type of guys that have played sports,” Hurts said. “His ability was before his time. He was a relentless competitor. He overcame adversities. He just had an aura to himself. I’ve always admired that.”

Chiefs vs. Eagles Wednesday injury report: 4 Chiefs to monitor ahead of Super Bowl LVII - Arrowhead Pride
The Chiefs listed four players who would not have practiced on Wednesday: wide receiver Mecole Hardman (pelvis), wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster (knee), wide receiver Kadarius Toney (ankle/hamstring) and cornerback L’Jarius Sneed (concussion). These become the names to monitor as we move through this week and next. The media will have a brief look at the practice on Thursday.

49ers’ Super Bowl hopes melt in a nightmare NFC Championship - Niners Nation
Dre Greenlaw had two crucial penalties and the Eagles toyed with him in space in the run game. Jimmie Ward’s pass interference penalty on 3rd and 6 was a ticky tack call, but Charvarius Wards’ illegal contact penalty gave Philly fresh downs on the same drive before they punched it in for a touchdown. The 49ers were down 14 at the start of the second half, and there was life in the players despite the two first-half fumbles. The defense was able to get a stop on Philadelphia’s second drive in the second half, but Jordan Mason’s roughing the kicker penalty ultimately put the game away. Blocked punts are tough with the protection of the punter these days. Mason must know he can’t hit the punter there, especially when your defense gets a stop down 14 with no one to throw the ball past 10 yards.

Detroit Lions reportedly lose Duce Staley to Panthers - Pride Of Detroit
The Detroit Lions are having more changes to their coaching staff this year. According to ESPN’s Dan Graziano, Lions assistant head coach/running backs coach Duce Staley is getting hired by the Carolina Panthers. At this point, it is not clear what Staley’s role will be with the Panthers. The Panthers just hired Frank Reich to be their head coach and he has a connected history with Staley. Reich was the offensive coordinator for the Eagles from 2016-17 while Staley was the team’s running back coach. Staley has held his role in Detroit for the past two seasons, helping develop and motivate D’Andre Swift along the way, and he’s certainly been partially responsible for Jamaal Williams’ career season, crossing over 1,000 yards for the first time in his career and setting the franchise record with 17 rushing touchdowns in a season.

The Cowboys and the Jones family need to follow the pattern set by the last 3 NFC Champions - Blogging The Boys
Despite a successful regular season, the Dallas Cowboys were still an early playoff exit, losing in the divisional round of the playoffs in what seems like a recurring nightmare for Cowboys fans. Meanwhile, their division rival, the Philadelphia Eagles, are representing the NFC in the Super Bowl for the second time in six years. One can argue that the Eagles had a very easy schedule in the playoffs. They had to beat New York Giants QB Daniel Jones in the wild card round. Following that, they faced off against San Francisco 49ers QB Josh Johnson, following an injury to QB Brock Purdy. The truth is, the Eagles had the schedule they had in the playoffs because of how dominant they were during the regular season. This was because of the way they stacked their roster. The Eagles added a lot of talent throughout last offseason and during the regular season. In fact, this is a common pattern throughout the last three teams to represent the NFC in the Super Bowl.

Giants position review, wide receiver: How will the Giants upgrade their pass-catching weapons? - Big Blue View
Could the Giants engineer a trade for someone like Tee Higgins of the Cincinnati Bengals? He is a spectacular player with back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons who can be a free agent after the 2023 season. With wide receiver Ja’Marr Chase, quarterback Joe Burrow and others to pay, could the Bengals be convinced to part with the 6-foot-4, 215-pound 24-year-old? Higgins has 215 receptions in just three NFL seasons, and would massively upgrade the Giants’ passing attack. Would the Giants pay a price like the Philadelphia Eagles did to get A.J. Brown from the Tennessee Titans, a first- and third-round pick? The Giants will possess 11 draft picks once compensatory selections are finalized, four of those in the first 100 picks. Barring a major pre-draft move like a trade for Higgins, they figure to use a premium draft pick on a receiver, and perhaps a Day 3 pick as well.

Pre-Draft Trade Stories: Brown Breaks Out - Hogs Haven
At the end of the day, Tennessee’s injuries were too much, and the draft day compensation for A.J. Brown, not enough, to salvage the Titans’ 2022 season, where they ended up finishing 7-10. Oddly, the Titan’s fired their General Manager, Robinson, after a 35-10 loss to the Eagles in early December, when they were 7-5, and then proceeded to lose every game afterwards. Alternatively, the Brown acquisition is one of several recent moves that have re-elevated Eagles’ GM Howie Roseman back into the NFL management stratosphere, as he stands on the cusp of potentially hoisting a second Lombardi trophy, in no small measure due to Brown’s contributions. Painfully, the Eagles also hold the #10 draft pick this April, gained through a trade with the lowly New Orleans Saints, in addition to their own first round pick (which will be #31 or #32). In the high stakes game of trading top end players for draft capital, the respective outcomes could hardly be more dramatic.

2023 Pro Bowl features flag football, skills competition and fun - ESPN
Now, as the NFL kicks off its reimagined Pro Bowl Games, the contrast couldn’t be starker. No, this is not your father’s Pro Bowl. After years of harsh criticism over a lack of competitive play in the traditional Pro Bowl game, the NFL this year is moving to a dramatically different format. The actual game will be replaced by a flag football game on Sunday at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas (3 p.m. ET, ABC/ESPN/ESPN+), with the various skills competitions tied to the overall points tally that will determine a winner in the AFC vs. NFC matchup. The changes are bold and, perhaps, risky. But the status quo was no longer cutting it, the league and players agreed. “The thing that didn’t feel great for the players, and for us, was the game didn’t feel on par with the rest of the games and the events that we do,” said Peter O’Reilly, NFL executive vice president for club business and league events. “The week had always felt good. The player experience, the skills events, the camaraderie. ... This is changing the thing that didn’t feel great and didn’t feel up to an NFL standard or our player standard.”

When will Tom Brady join Fox? - PFT
Andrew Marchand of the New York Post reports that Fox executives are unlikely to put Brady in the booth for Super Bowl LVII in 11 days. That seems like the obvious play. Current No. 1 analyst Greg Olsen has seen his star rise during the current postseason, an ascension that has coincided with the perception that Tony Romo, the No. 1 analyst at CBS, has faded. It would make no sense to supplant Olsen for Brady for the biggest game of the year.

Tom Brady’s final season was a huge waste of time for everyone involved - SB Nation
There will be no shortage of touching eulogies to Tom Brady’s career. Flowery prose juxtaposing grace with grit, style and substance — worthy of the greatest career we’ve seen from an NFL quarterback. This isn’t one of those. Tom Brady is done. Finally done. Really, actually, permanently done. His final season in Tampa Bay was that of a wounded zombie, making one last desperate lurch forward before being double-tapped and left behind. It wasn’t how Brady was supposed to go out, but the way he chose to — hanging on just a touch too long, repeating the same mistakes dozens of brilliant athlete have made before him. Brady’s 2022 season was founded on attempted fraud or ego. Which of the two is up for debate. Brady was implicated in a scheme to force his way to Miami with Sean Payton as his coach in a move which ultimately cost the Dolphins their first round pick in 2023 for tampering. Whether or not Brady would have gone through with it, or if his retirement was designed around this is up for debate.


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