Tag Archives: Kelce

These Birds Carry Heart of 2004 Eagles

After about the most agonizing and at the same time possibly most satisfying wins to open a season in a long time, the Eagles find themselves in an interesting spot. Not since 2004 (yes that was really 8 years ago) has Andy Reid’s Birds started 2-0.
While the first two games have been at times excruciatingly difficult to watch, they have proven that this team has it where it counts, they have heart and they refuse to just give up. I give immense credit to the Defense for taking a leadership stance in the second half Sunday. They rose up and allowed only two field goals, giving a sputtering Offense the opportunities it needed to score.
Le’ts not mince words here. Michael Vick must get better. He must make better decisions and if this is to be a Super Bowl year he cannot continue to expose himself to all of the hits he took against the Ravens. It only gets tougher with the loss of Jason Kelce, but that is all the more reason to get rid of the ball quicker. These Eagles will only go as far as Vick and LeSean McCoy can take them, and they both must take care of the football better than they have.
If the Offense can manage to play more mistake-free, its scary to me how good these guys have the potential to be. The bottom line is that they and only they can decide how good they want to be. The members of the 2004 team are watching. They see the potential for these Eagles to finish what they could not, and I see it too. I believe that after two ugly wins, they have shown that inside, the heart of 2004 is beating.
Time will tell if there is a heartbeat in February.

Alone On Top – EaglesFanCast 134

Our Philadelphia Eagles play the home opener against the Baltimore Ravens in a slugfest and the Eagles come out on top, banged and bruised, but winners.  This leads the Eagles to be 2-0 on the season, and sitting at the top of the NFC East Division.  We saw the team pick itself up and continue to fight the entire game, despite more turnovers that would have done most other teams in on the day.  To make it even better, the team fought from a deficit in the fourth quarter to take the lead late, and the Defense once again did a phenomenal job to keep the Ravens Offense from scoring.  Unfortunately the Eagles lose center Jason Kelce for the year when he tore is knee’s MCL and partially tore his ACL.  He will surely be missed on the Offense.

Cody Benjamin from Bleed Green joins us this week, and we talk about the Ravens game, coaching efforts, improvements, and the coming Arizona Cardinals game on the road.

What we discussed:

  • Eagles beat the Baltimore Ravens 24-23
  • Michael Vick shows confidence and determination that we didn’t see a lot of when Donovan McNabb was under center
  • Brent Celek had an amazing game, and helped the fans go crazy with acrobatic and enthusiastic display
  • DeMeco Ryans is emerging as the powerhouse leader of the Defense
  • The Eagles Defense looked especially good this week, and the Defensive coaching schemes were great to handle what the Ravens threw at them
  • Coaching all around in this game was impressive… adjustments were key
  • Eagles travel to Arizona to take on a tough Cardinals team
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Back To Eagles Football

Ah, the smell of burgers on the grill and the sight of leaves changing colors. The familiar chant of E-A-G-L-E-S EAGLESSSS rising out of the Linc is about to deafen opposing teams again. Yes, people. It is September once more, and football season is finally here.

As we get prepared for another season filled with hopes of a Super Bowl for our Birds, it’s easy to look past all of the transformation this team has undergone over the past couple of years. It seems crazy now to think that Brian Westbrook, the mainstay of Eagles teams over the past decade is now RETIRING.

However, one man who has been here since 1999, and hasn’t changed (ok maybe his weight has) is Andy Reid, who will be entering his 14th season. In what will be perhaps his most pressure-filled season as Head Coach, Reid has already dealt with the pain of burying his son and the looming comments from owner Jeffrey Lurie that anything less than “substantially better than 8-8” will most likely result in his firing.

The “Dream Team” fiasco from last year, combined with the turbulent offseason the Eagles have endured hasn’t seemed to affect analysts, many of whom are predicting a Super Bowl run for these Eagles.

I hate to be a downer, but my opinion was last year and still is this year that the Eagles, while surely talented, are not a Super Bowl caliber team.

Blasphemy, you say?

Or have WE, as fans, overlooked the key deficiencies of this team? Lets explore together, shall we?

First of all, lets look at passing and third down conversions. The Eagles were 9th in passing last season, but the only team in the top ten who completed less than 61% of their passes (59.6%).  They converted on third down 41.5% of the time, good enough for 9th in the league in that stat as well. I look for both of these numbers to remain around the same as last year, UNLESS Michael Vick suffers an injury.

The bottom-line with passing numbers? Keep Vick healthy, and the Eagles are unlikely to have as many turnovers as last season, and they won’t have to play a rookie backup quarterback who, while impressive in the preseason, probably won’t be able to win but maybe two of the four or five starts he might have to make if Vick gets sidelined.

The running game is the biggest area I expect the Eagles to decline in this year. Although I love Shady McCoy’s talents as a runner and receiver, the loss of Jason Peters will become very apparent early in the season. They should drop from 6th in the league to somewhere around 10th adding in Vick’s running ability. That may seem like an insignificant drop, but I believe that the ability of the receivers to stretch the field is going to be predicated on play action passing, which Andy Reid is quite fond of. Bottom-line? The inconsistency of the running game (and of calling running plays) will show up this year again and be an Achilles heel of the team.

The running, passing, and receiving game all go hand-in-hand with offensive line play, which is the other area I expect a lot of struggle this season. The lack of Jason Peters on the left side not only closes huge running lanes, but forces the Eagles to use young players at other positions, and although I am quite a fan of Jason Kelce’s beard, he (to me) is too small to be a center. This group will have great games and horrible games this season.

The ONE area that this team is going to improve a lot on is Defense. Not necessarily an improvement in talent (outside of Demeco Ryans) but in cohesiveness and in maturity. After a year of learning Juan Castillo’s system, they will still be undersized and a little slow in the middle, but hopefully won’t make as many bonehead miscues as last season, and should finish around the same spot in total defense, or at least in the top ten.

Overall, expectations are very high for this team. Are they merited? Absolutely. This is clearly the most talented roster in the NFL. However, I don’t believe they will win a Super Bowl.

Call me a typical negative Eagles fan, or call me crazy.

Whatever the case may be, I see them going 13-3, splitting with the Giants and losing to Pittsburgh and New Orleans. I see them getting to the Super Bowl, but sadly I think the season will end with another Super Bowl loss to Tom Brady and the Patriots.

I THINK that is what will happen. But who am I, and what do I REALLY know? Not a whole lot more than any other passionate fan. I’m hoping that this is the year. Only God knows what will happen. But not knowing is all the fun right? It’s a new season, and we are blessed to be fans of the greatest team playing the greatest game in the world.

So sit back, have a beer, and relax. Football is back.

 

Eagles Draft 2012 – EaglesFanCast 129

The NFL Draft 2012 is now in the history books.  We are back with the scouting guru Tommy Lawlor to work through everything our Philadelphia Eagles did during the Draft weekend.  The Eagles went after the players they targeted, moving around in the order to get them.  We discuss how this all came about, and was each one worth it?  Overall things looked good for the team and if the new additions can make a difference this coming season, then the Eagles are an improved team overall.

Here are the Philadelphia Eagles 2012 Draft picks:

Round 1 – DT Fletcher Cox – Mississippi State, 6-4, 298 pounds
Round 2 – LB Mychal Kendricks – Cal, 5-11, 240 pounds
Round 2 – DE Vinny Curry – Marshall, 6-3, 266  pounds
Round 3 – QB Nick Foles – Arizona, 6-5, 243  pounds
Round 4 – CB/RS Brandon Boykin – Georgia, 5-9, 183 pounds
Round 5 – OT Dennis Kelly – Purdue, 6-8, 321 pounds
Round 6 – WR Marvin McNutt – Iowa, 6-3, 216  pounds
Round 6 – OG Brandon Washington – Miami, 6-3, 320 pounds
Round 7 – RB Bryce Brown – Kansas State, 5-11, 224 pounds

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EaglesFanCast 111 – In Vick We Trust

The Philadelphia Eagles play their third preseason game against the Cleveland Browns on a rainy night in Philly, leaving only one game before the welcome start of the regular season.  The big news, though, is the new contract that the Eagles and quarterback Michael Vick agreed to yesterday. Although the details vary, essentially it is a 6-year $100 million deal with almost $40 million guaranteed for our starting QB.  We talk about what that means to DeSean Jackson’s contract extension that both he and the fans want.  Either way, we will see Vick leading the Offense in midnight green for years to come.

What we discussed:

  • The Eagles beat the Cleveland Browns in the third preseason game
  • Vick’s contract places him among the highest paid in the NFL
  • Jason Kelce is named the new starting Center
  • Both Danny Watkins and Kelce are starting rookies on the Offensive line, and it’s a concern for Vick’s safety
  • Linebackers discussion
  • The EFC Fantasy Football League will be back, and we will be using NFL.com this year. There will be 12 teams and the preliminary Draft date is set for Wednesday, September 7th.
  • EFC has partnered with GM, who will be loaning Eric and Chuck a couple of Chevrolet Camaro’s for a week to play with in September.  We encourage you to visit their site at www.drivingthenortheast.com and follow them on twitter, @GMNortheast
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