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Eagles News: Brandon Graham is in rare company

Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 8/22/23.

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Cleveland Browns v Philadelphia Eagles Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images

Let’s get to the Philadelphia Eagles links ...

One stat to know for all 32 NFL teams before the 2023 season - PFF
The Eagles have a star-studded defense, but one of the constants through the years has been Brandon Graham. He had another stellar season in 2022, posting an 89.8 overall grade that led the team. And it turns out to be a historic figure. Brandon Graham joined Aaron Donald and Von Miller as the only defensive linemen in PFF history with an 80.0-plus overall grade in nine seasons with at least 400 snaps played. Coming off a major injury last season, Graham displayed his usual dominance despite being in a more rotational role. At 35 years old, he doesn’t carry the load he used to, but he is still an excellent contributor when his time comes.

Should the Eagles trade for Jonathan Taylor? - BGN
The Eagles aren’t going to draft a running back in the first round, just as much as they’re not going to sign a rusher to a long term, big money deal coming off a rookie contract. It’s just not going to happen. It would be nice... every once in a while. But, it’s not Roseman’s style.

A look at some of the NFL’s other punter training camp battles - PhillyVoice
Saints: Blake Gillikin vs. Lou Hedley. Gillikin has been the Saints’ punter for the last two seasons. According to the Punt Runts, he finished 8th in EPA per punt in 2022. He is considered the favorite in this competition. Hedley was another punter we profiled during the college football season last year, like Baringer above. He was a 2021 Ray Guy Award semi-finalist in a year that four punters got drafted. He’s a big, tattooed, 6’4, 220-pound Aussie who averaged over 45 yards per punt over his career at Miami. Hedley is 30 years old, so it’s understandable why he didn’t get drafted. I thought Philly might be a logical landing spot for him during the undrafted phase of free agency, since his son lives here. Hedley has reportedly had a good camp. He is worth a look.

Preseason Game Review – PHI 18, CLE 18 - Iggles Blitz
Tanner McKee – McKee is playing like a polished veteran. He shows poise in the pocket. He’s reading the defense and making good decisions. He made some terrific throws. Accurate. Good velocity. Almost always gave his guys a chance to make a play for him. I am blown away by how impressive he’s been. I am scratching my head to think of the last Eagles rookie QB who looked this good. Not only did he win from the pocket, but had to run and be creative on 4th/goal play. Rolled right and his initial receiver was covered. Found Deion Cain in the back of the end zone and got the ball to him. Drop. Still impressive.

Spadaro: How Jalen Carter is earning the team’s trust -
Each day is a new experience for Jalen Carter, the Eagles’ first, first-round draft pick in 2023. The defensive tackle is a player who has the world watching him and who has flashed every step of the way. Right tackle Lane Johnson says, “I’ve been very impressed with him from Day 1. I think he has tremendous talent, tremendous ability, and he plays hard every down.” Center Jason Kelce has talked about Carter’s strength and burst. Other teammates playing alongside and against him have been impressed with his performance to this point in camp. For his part, Carter has gone about his business professionally and earnestly. He has worked hard to combine his talent with the requisite technical skills needed to have success at the NFL level. Carter knows he can’t get by on just being bigger, faster, and stronger than the man across the line of scrimmage from him, so he has to master the little things. The little things become the big things that define just how good a young player like Carter can become. He said he used a lot of finesse in college and has since been incorporating more strength into his repertoire. The result: Progress, development, trust from the coaching staff.

A key weapon in Eagles’ offensive arsenal we might see more in 2023 - NBCSP
There have been plenty of times this summer where James Bradberry has had perfect coverage on A.J. Brown or DeVonta Smith. And it just doesn’t matter. If Jalen Hurts delivers a perfect back-shoulder throw, there’s just nothing anyone can do to stop it. “I know it’s a tough position to be in for a corner,” Bradberry said. “Anytime you have a great throw, it’s going to make it even harder to contest that pass. I feel like that’s one of the hardest passes to contest in the game.” We’re seeing a ton of them in this training camp. Hurts was an MVP candidate in 2022 and he has looked like it this summer. Hurts has been dynamic throughout training camp and it’s clear his timing with top targets Brown, Smith and Dallas Goedert continues to improve, which should be scary for the rest of the league. This is already a top offense and it’s getting better.

Ranking eight NFL divisions from best to worst for 2023 season - ESPN+
4. NFC EAST. The Eagles and the Cowboys rank third and eighth, respectively, in FPI’s overall projections. The Eagles are third in offense (3.5) and seventh (1.4) in defense. The Cowboys are ninth in both offense (1.7) and defense (1.3), the latter of which surprised me based on their offseason improvements. Philadelphia is trying to buck a significant trend and become the first repeat NFC East champion since 2004, when they did it. They’re deserving favorites, and if they have an Achilles’ heel it’s likely how young they look on defense all of a sudden. (Of course, the same could have been said for the Chiefs last season, and that worked out fine.) Dallas’ roster is solid, but there are legitimate questions about what effect the change at offensive playcaller from Kellen Moore to Mike McCarthy will have on an offense that scored the second-most points in the league over the past four seasons.

3 things we learned about the Cowboys from the Seahawks preseason game - Blogging The Boys
Cowboys fans have become so accustomed to first-round picks making splash-type impacts that when a player doesn’t immediately flash in his first 100 snaps of football, people don’t know what to make of it. Saturday night in Seattle was not Mazi Smith’s best game and the growing pains he experienced are to be expected. Not only is Smith an unfinished product, he also gets penalized by playing a position that does not produce flashy numbers and measurable statistics to boast about. Smith’s role will consist of eating up blocks, clogging up running lanes, and just being a force in the middle. It may not look perfect early on and we all need to understand that is okay. Nobody within the building is panicking, and neither should we.

College football Week 0 games, ranked by what you should watch - SB Nation
1. Ohio @ San Diego State: 7:00 pm ET, FS1. In my Group of Five teams that could be party crashers in the final year of the four team College Football Playoff, I had the Ohio Bobcats as a team that could be a sleeper G5 team that would rise to the national eye. Not only do they return most of their starters from a fun team last year, they return star QB Kurtis Rourke. While the Maple Missile is recovering from a knee injury suffered near the end of last season, Rourke should be back healthy and ready to follow up on a fantastic season where he threw for over 3,000 yards at over nine yards per attempt. The Bobcats travel out to San Diego in Week 0 to take on an Aztecs team that prides itself on stingy defense. One of the last teams around that runs a true 3-3-5 (shoutout to Rocky Long), the Aztecs have to replace a lot of starters, including star S Patrick McMorris, who transferred to Cal. Nevertheless, the Aztecs will continue to play tough defense, while offensively a former DB in Jalen Mayden stepped in as the QB midseason and turned the offense around. Should be a pretty fun game, and it takes the top spot here.

Brian Daboll shuts down Giants Rob Gronkowski rumors - Big Blue View
New York Giants head coach Brian Daboll responded on Monday to tight end Rob Gronkowski’s statement that New York is the only team that could get him out of retirement. Appearing on the “Up and Adams” show last week, Gronkowski asserted that “Brian Daboll wants me on his roster. I know it.” Gronkowski, 34, quickly clarified that he’s too “washed up” to actually make an NFL comeback. But that didn’t stop media members from approaching Daboll with the unlikely scenario on Monday morning.

Washington Commanders Injury Update: Terry McLaurin leaves game with a toe injury - Hogs Haven
The Washington Commanders hosted the Baltimore Ravens for their second preseason tonight. The starters on offense played the first half, and on their last drive WR Terry McLaurin left with a toe injury. X-rays came back negative, but there is speculating that it could be turf toe, which a rough injury for receivers. Washington beat the Ravens 29-28, but their top receiver might miss some time.

Monday Football Monday #147: Week 2 NFL Preseason recap - The SB Nation NFL Show
RJ Ochoa, JP Acosta and Michael Peterson take you through the Week 2 NFL preseason action and biggest storylines.


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