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About MrSimpson

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  1. My thoughts on Sunday's game in D.C: The positives-- 1. Beating Washington!!!!--it may not have always been pretty, but the Eagles beat that dirty team that put such a brutal, cheap hit on Sproles last year. No, I haven't forgotten. 2. Mychal Kendricks--The fierce (legal) hit that Kendricks put on the Skins RB. That stopped him. Proof that trading Kendricks would have been a mistake. 3. Nelson Agholor--best game ever. The two drops were poor passes. All the hard work appears to be paying off. Agholor does look like a different player, and it's great that he's proving me wrong!!! Stay the course. Don't look back. 4. Our 'fearsome foursome' D-L, plus help--I can't wait to see how they handle lesser O-Ls around the league. 5. Zach Ertz played great. Mr. Dependable when we most needed him. 6. I get the feeling that Wentz & our WRs are just getting started. Jeffrey almost had that crucial jump catch--so close, and it looks like Torrey Smith can still burn anyone long. 7. The defensive coverage was for the most part consistently tight. You can't ask for much more. They also stopped the run well. Even so, you gotta realize that if Kirk Cousins had been passing more accurately, it would have been a tougher game... 8. I really liked seeing the Eagles use Blount as a receiver in the red zone!!!! There's no way an opposing D can cover Jeffrey, Agholor, Ertz, Sproles in the red zone.... and Blount at the same time, on the same play. One of them is going to get open. And if it's Blount, how in the heck are you going to prevent him from getting into the end zone if he catches the ball on the 2 or 3 yard line? You're not. No way. The negatives: 1. Darby's injury. I hope it's not a serious injury and that he recovers fast. Darby is the real thing. I'm proud to call him an Eagle. 2. The offensive play calling still isn't quite up to snuff. It's definitely better (& expanding), and it's great to see Wentz at last throwing the ball long & opening up the field--like Favre, but those screen passes to Agholor clearly weren't working (not last year either), so why do they keep calling them over & over again? They're just wasted downs. I also thought the O-L was opening up some good lanes to run through in the first quarter, but it wasn't taken advantage of. 3. The Eagles don't seem to have a running back that runs really well to the outside. That makes their running game easier to defend against. I'm afraid Smallwood didn't impress. All the Eagles had working in their running game yesterday was Blount going up the middle. The Eagles will have to get better at running to the outside, if they hope to beat the top teams (and part of that will depend on better play calling & execution of the running game). 4. The O-L isn't protecting Wentz well enough. It has got to get better. Yes, he scrambles incredibly well for a big guy, great athlete, but his passes are too often hurried. No great offense can be built on a consistently scrambling QB. Eventually, he's going to get hit. Also, it looks like the O-L is still vulnerable to blitzes.
  2. There are no real surprises for me on that list. Grymes reportedly played well in OTAs and pre-season practices, but he didn't really stand out in the 4 games. & I don't think he tackled quite as well as they wanted to see--although I don't recall Grymes getting beaten on any passes (which is a positive sign). Apart from losing Paul Turner--our best receiver last year!, who I believe can and will play in the NFL--I was only mildly disappointed about losing Rashard Davis. I thought Davis showed greater speed as a punt/kick off returner than Pumphrey, who didn't overly impress. In all 4 games, I can't recall Pumphrey making one player miss badly or breaking any tackles (which isn't a good sign). Though of course if Pumphrey does makes the team, & he probably will, I hope that will change. I also hope Paul Turner finds a team that can appreciate and utilize his special gifts. He's a quicker, more talented WR than I think the Eagles have realized. Though the competition at WR was especially tough this year (a good thing), and Turner didn't get a real chance to compete, due to his injury. If Turner isn't picked up, I hope the Eagles will sign him to the practice squad again, but realize it isn't likely. As for Adam Zaruba--he caught every ball thrown in his direction (was that two or three passes?), and looked *extremely* difficult to tackle afterwards. The guy's a truck, and even tougher to bring down than Celek (I suspect). I really liked his superior mindset and energy. Clearly, Zaruba is a great athlete, and that shouldn't be ignored. If the Eagles were to take him on as a 'developmental' project, I think they'd eventually get rewarded with a great NFL tight end (or running back?) in return. But do they have that kind of vision and patience? If no team signs Zaruba (a good possibility), I hope the Eagles will sign him to their practice squad for a year, and watch him grow--because he will.
  3. Pumphrey hasn't impressed me. Not as a running back, a receiver, or a punt/kick off returner. Byron Marshall has shown a lot more Sproles-like qualities than Pumphrey--sure hands, quick lateral movement, toughness, first class effort, an ability to break tackles and make players miss, etc.. The Eagles should have drafted Tarik Cohen to be Sproles replacement. That was a no brainer, in my opinion--if they were looking to replace Sproles as an offensive weapon, since Cohen is speedy, very elusive, and a very good receiver too. Last night, Rasheed Davis showed himself to be a more impressive punt/kick off returner than Pumphrey, who was overly cautious and hesitant on returns, and when he got the blocks to get free, wasn't able to break any tackles, or make anyone miss (not a good sign). In my view, Davis showed greater speed, less hesitancy, and gave a stronger, more dynamic effort (albeit with less opportunities). Pumphrey isn't ready to play at a high level in the NFL. At best, he should spend the year on the practice squad. And yet, I doubt the Eagles will retain Davis as their punt/kick off returner--not with Sproles still around. So who's going to be the Eagles #1 kick off returner, if not Davis or Pumphrey--the oft-injured Smallwood? or Agholor?...? (Will Victor Boldin Jr. get released?) In my opinion, the following is the best RB line up the Eagles can put together right now (short of picking up or trading for another RB): Sproles, Blount, Smallwood, Clement, Marshall... and then Pumphrey. So I'd try to stash Marshall and Pumphrey on the practice squad. If they lose Pumphrey, so be it, chalk it up to a draft mistake (though the Eagles are probably too stubborn to admit their mistake). The truth is the Eagles weren't focused enough on the RB position in the off season. Blount was an afterthought--a last minute remedy. Hopefully Smallwood will prove more durable and play great this year, or Clement will emerge as a force to be reckoned with. My money is on Clement and Marshall. Though I wanted the Eagles to draft Mixon or Cook, Perine, and Cohen.
  4. MrSimpson

    [News] Game 3: Eagles Show Promise For Season

    I know, but I can't help it. I'm a let's win the Super Bowl this year kind of guy. ;-)
  5. MrSimpson

    [News] Game 3: Eagles Show Promise For Season

    Here are my thoughts on Thursday night's Eagles-Dolphins game: 1. Offensive Line--The O-L protection for Wentz once again totally fell apart when the opposing defense blitzed. If they don't get better at handling blitzes, Wentz will be sacked often by multiple players in the regular season (when he sits in the pocket), and that will likely lead to an injury. (Imagine if Wentz had played all 4 quarters on Thursday night? ) So I hope Foles throwing arm really is 100%, and his absences "precautionary", as claimed. The first-string O-L didn't run block well enough either. They weren't as good as the Dolphins' O-L in this respect. That and the O-L's failure to protect Wentz in the pocket has me skeptical about how good they really are right now--as a unit. 2. Running backs--I'm not overly impressed. They're okay, decent, but no one really stands out as a great RB. I hope Blount will shift into another gear once the regular season begins, and that coach Pederson has figured out how to use him most effectively. The addition of Sproles will undoubtedly help (and may be enough). But it's looking more and more like the Eagles have overloaded on D-L and WR at the expense of their running game. Watching Clement and Pumphreys, I couldn't help but think the Eagles could have done much better if they'd drafted some combination of Joe Mixon or Dalvin Cook, Samaje Perine, and Tarik Cohen in the 2017 draft (as they had a chance to get 3 or 4 of these players). Each of those rookies has looked more dynamic & athletically gifted in the preseason than Blount, Clement, & Pumphreys. I also found myself wondering if the Eagles haven't underrated Byron Marshall versus Clement and Pumphreys? Marshall impresses me as a real fighter, with possibly more grit and determination than the other two. 3. Wide receivers Hollins, Johnson, and Treggs have greatly impressed in the preseason--it looks like they've got a ton of talent. Unfortunately the Eagles don't need all three WRs, not when they've got Jeffrey, Smith, and the refurbished Agholor. Although the team can always use a WR as quick and speedy as Treggs, who looks to be the fastest player on the offense. Treggs makes players miss, & that gives the Eagles offense a much needed extra dimension. I hope the Eagles will find a way to keep 6 WRs in 2017 (and maybe place the injured Turner on the practice squad or IR). There's so much talent on this WR squad right now that it would be a shame to lose any of these young, promising receivers, when looking to the future. 4. The Eagles have a similar glut at DE and DT. Again, they have more D-L players than they can use. Curry, Barnett and Means could all be starters on other teams. Of course that's not a bad problem to have. If I were a GM, I'd be closely watching to see who the Eagles might cut at DT, DE, and WR. Therefore, if possible, Roseman should try to trade a DT and/or a WR in the next week for a future draft pick, or to supply more depth at O-L, LB or for a first class RB--rather than to simply release those players in a couple weeks. Maybe the Eagles could even pick up the hard hitting LB Reggie Ragland from the Bills, for instance? My only real concern about the Eagles' defense right now (other than some lingering doubts about CBs & LB depth) is--will they be able to stop the run well enough in 2017? (I have no doubt their pass rush will be awesome.) I'll be curious to see how well they contain RB Samaje Perine (or whoever the Redskins start at RB) in week one. If Perine rushes for over 100 yards it won't be a good sign. 5. CB Ronald Darby--I'm not in a panic over how Darby played Thursday night. Here's why: on the first play where Darby got beat, his hand was only inches away from deflecting the ball--so his coverage was tight. Secondly, even though the Dolphins WR took off running after catching the ball, Darby was able to shift into another gear and catch up to him before he reached the end zone. That showed tremendous effort & first class speed. Darby did the same thing on the next play where he got beat, showing another huge burst of speed to catch up to the Dolphins WR in the end zone. Both plays nearly went in Darby's favor. As I see it, Darby simply needs to locate the ball a little earlier, and he'll be fine. (Plus, you've got to give the Dolphins WRs some credit, they're very good.) With that said, the Eagles could possibly consider using a taller CB when there is a significant height mismatch to the 5'11" Darby. 6. Finally, I thought Jalen Mills played well Thursday night. I've always liked the way Mills tackles, but what a huge difference between Mills' coverage in the 2016 preseason and now in 2017. I still worry about Mills getting beat long--due to his less than ideal speed, but I may be finally coming around to him as a starter. I thought C.J. Smith and Rasul Douglas played well too. Add Sidney Jones into the mix and the Eagles are going to have strong outside corners next year, with very good depth at the position.
  6. MrSimpson

    [News] Game 3: Eagles Show Promise For Season

    I doubt Kaepernick will take the salary of a 3rd string QB, and I don't think the Eagles can afford to pay him like a 2nd string QB, can they? Besides, Kaepernick isn't as good as Tim Tebow. So maybe it's time to snatch Tebow away from baseball!!! buy out his contract from the Mets. (Hey, Kaepernick hasn't been playing either.) Laugh, if you must, but Tebow won a playoff game against the Pittsburgh Steelers, and no other 3rd string QB in the league can say that. What a bum deal Tebow got from Chip Kelly. The Eagles treated Tebow badly, by dumping him after he had beat out Matt Barkley for the 3rd QB position. Remember when Tebow scored a running touchdown and Kelly yelled at him for not passing... ridiculous. QB Matt Blanchard is available too. No one seems to want him, maybe because he's outspoken in his support of President Trump? Blanchard has a super strong arm.
  7. True, with the exception of RB Tarik Cohen, who I think may turn out to be even better than Sproles, and who the Eagles could have taken with the pick just ahead of the Chicago in the 2017 draft. Instead they chose Pumphreys. I can't help but feel that was a mistake, as Pumphreys hasn't been overly impressive, at least not yet, and (the Sproles-like) Cohen is already becoming a huge fan favorite in Chicago, for all the right reasons. Cohen looks very impressive in the pre-season. He is everything the Eagles had hoped to see out of Pumphreys. Though it's probably too early to say, personally, I think the Eagles made a serious misjudgment of athletic talent here by not taking Cohen instead of Pumphreys. PFF listed the top 5 Eagles players after the Bills game, and guess who they rated the highest--Steven Means! The Eagles should definitely take a better look at Means against a 1st team O-L, just to see how he does. As it's possible that Curry should actually be our 2nd or 3rd string DE, behind Barnett & Means. From GreenBleedinNation: "Pro Football Focus releases the top five graded players from each team after every single NFL game. Here's what PFF had to say about the Philadelphia Eagles following their preseason matchup against the Buffalo Bills. Top 5 Grades Edge--Steven Means, 90.2 overall grade DI--Fletcher Cox, 86.0 overall grade Edge--Derek Barnett, 85.5 overall grade CB--Ronald Darby, 83.5 overall grade S--Rodney McLeod, 83.3 overall grade It would be nice to see players on the Eagles offense make this top 5 list in the remaining weeks of the pre-season.
  8. I'm a big fan of LB Mychal Kendricks, & hope the Eagles won't trade him, especially at this point in the pre-season (as I think it would be very unwise to do so). IMO, Kendricks has gotten an unfair rep here in Philly: I gather partly due to his playing injured in 2015 and not playing up to his very best. As I recall, it all began with a torn hamstring injury that Kendricks sustained from having to chase down a speedy WR in a foot race to the end zone, some 35-45 yards beyond the line of scrimmage. That was how poor Chip Kelly & Bill Davis's defensive coaching was--to have a linebacker covering a speedy WR deep downfield. Kendricks should never have been put in that position, and yet despite that, he gave it everything he had, and as a result, tore his hamstring, which hampered the rest of his 2015 season (just after the Eagles had signed him to a four year contract, and Eagles fans expected more of him). Now Kendricks is healthy, and playing up to his potential. That's very good news for this team, and for Eagles fans, and I expect Kendricks will have a great year, as he is a very talented football player & athlete.
  9. Buffalo had a whopping 15 penalties!, and overall played poorly, and yet the Bills still had a very good chance to win the game at the end. If I were the Eagles' coach, I wouldn't count that as a victory.
  10. Okay, that's a fair point. But, Means did show some impressive athleticism on special teams last year during the regular season (remember the crucial blocked kick against Dallas?). So, let him start instead of Curry next week, and find out. Why not? Surely Means deserves a chance like that? and besides, it may put more fire into Curry as well.
  11. I don't think RB Byron Marshall is being given a fair chance to prove he can make a significant contribution to this team. The athleticism he showed last night by hurdling over a Buffalo defender for (hard earned) extra yardage was very impressive. You've got to give a guy like that a fair opportunity. So I'd like to see the Eagles play Marshall more than just at the tail end of each game, like he's an afterthought, who's already been cut. From what Marshall showed last night, he has improved, and may well be better than Clement, Smallwood, & Pumphreys. He might also be the best player to replace Sproles in 2018. So please, give him more of a fighting chance, Eagles. Secondly, the 1st string offensive line isn't cutting it. There has been way too much penetration by opposing Ds, first by Green Bay, and then by Buffalo last night. The Eagles RBs barely have a chance--no lanes are opening up, and too often there are swarms of opposing players all over the RBs after receiving the hand off from Wentz (it's also happening on short passes too, where at times there isn't an Eagles jersey in sight, to block). (Right now, the O-L reminds me too much of the O-L under Kelly, who like Pederson also thought he had a "good" O-L heading into the regular season, only to find out that that wasn't the case.) Could it be our coaches fault? Is the play calling too predictable and easily read by opposing Ds? or is the O-L simply not being properly coached & prepared? Or, is it the players themselves? It's hard to tell from where I'm sitting, but wherever the problem lies, it has nothing to do with the quality of our RBs. Granted, the pass protection was a little better against Buffalo last night than it was against Green Bay, but then Buffalo isn't nearly as good a team as the Packers, and they didn't blitze as much. But the O-L has got to get stronger in the coming weeks or it's going to be a long season. Right now, it isn't safe for Wentz to sit in the pocket for long. Nor is he throwing long balls. That's not good. Wentz needs to be throwing long in the pre-season. The Eagles can't wait until the regular season for Wentz to throw deep, can they? So I'd have to say that, as things stand right now, the O-L is the most glaring weakness on this team (other than I'm worried about Mills, if he starts, getting beat deep due to insufficient speed). Which means that the release of Allan Barbre is already beginning to look like a needless, foolish move. Best O-L in the NFL, as was claimed a few weeks ago? The Eagles should refrain from making such wild, speculative boasts until their O-L has actually proven they're one of the best in the NFL. It betrays the kind of blind confidence that led this team to release Barbre, who was a key starter when the O-L played well last year (& also, to let go of starting CB Rowe in 2016). Otherwise, I think the most underrated player on this Eagles team is Steven Means. I've said it before, but Means could easily be a starter for other teams, & a very good one. It's obvious he's an exceptional athlete, and he has also made his presence known on special teams too. If the season were to start tomorrow, in my view, Means should be playing more than Curry. But we'll see in a couple of weeks.
  12. "Oh so now if he doesn't catch EVERYTHING he's a bust.Isn't it a bit early???" Yes, it's way too early to tell, either way. I remain hopeful, but skeptical. We'll see. Obviously, the Eagles are looking at Agholor as their potential #1 starter in the slot, or they wouldn't have traded Matthews. Yet, as I've pointed out before, no receiver in NFL history has put up the kind of bad numbers Agholor did in his first two seasons, with the same amount of opportunities, and gone on to become a top receiver in the NFL. Though that doesn't mean it's impossible, and there were other factors, so I hope Agholor pulls it off. I'm rooting him.
  13. Naturally, I think it was a good move, since a couple of weeks ago on this forum I suggested that the Eagles trade Matthews & a draft pick in order to acquire a first class promising young CB that can start right away. Well, they've done it now. It was probably a necessary move, since they most likely needed more security (& depth) at CB. (Plus, they probably weren't going to pay Matthews the big money to retain him next year anyway.) Of course I have mixed feelings about losing Matthews, as I liked him as an Eagle. I'm sorry to see him go, but at the end of the day, I think it was a smart trade--assuming Darby works out as a first tier starter. (Holding OBJ to just 5 catches for 38 yards, as GBFL points out, is certainly encouraging, even it was a couple of years ago. OBJ isn't slow--so if Darby can cover OBJ that well, he's got the quickness & speed to cover many other top NFL receivers too.) In addition, one of the current promising Eagles wide receivers must now step up and prove they are more than able to fill Matthews role in the slot (without dropping balls). By the way, my former 'late round' 2016 draft favorite, CB Ashton Lampkin, who surprisingly went un-drafted (until the Chiefs picked him up), had an impressive 'pick 6' against the 49ers last night, and otherwise covered well (from what I saw) So, if the Chiefs don't hang on to Lampkin (less likely now, but you never know), the Eagles should seriously consider picking him up (for the practice squad at the very least).
  14. The Eagles keep trying to make the case for Agholor's 'rebirth'. It's as if they need to say it over & over again in order to convince themselves that it really could happen. Agholor didn't produce in Thursday's game, at least not when he was given the opportunity to do so. Some receivers would have caught that Wentz pass for a touchdown. Instead it bounced off of Agholor's arms or hands. I realize it wasn't an easy catch, but even so ... It remains that Agholor hasn't proven that he can play at a high level in the NFL, not yet. Practice doesn't count. Athletes with the 'yips' don't have problems in practice, only in actual games. I knew a pro athlete once that got a terrible case of the yips. He had been one of the best in the world in his sport, but then his wife committed adultery on him and after that he was a psychological mess. From that point on he got the yips so badly in competitions that he lost all confidence. It brought about a premature end to his pro career. Last year, Agholor was a mess in a similar way. However, in Agholor's case his personal problems had to do with his lifestyle choices, which were publicly & humiliatingly exposed (probably a good thing in the long run). Which, in turn, effected his play on the field, where he made too many mistakes, and as the pressures mounted, he lost confidence. Therefore, Agholor has two things to prove in the coming weeks, before he deserves to start as the Eagles #1 slot receiver: First, he needs to show that he has put that period of his life and the mistakes made permanently behind him. Certainly, if Agholor were to relapse into the 'night club' lifestyle, his concentration & focus would again become distracted, and the result would be that he wouldn't play well this year, at least not up to present expectations, no matter how much talent he has. Obviously, Agholor is a sensitive young man. There is something noble about him. I expect he has some special ancestors watching over him. Which is why his poor life style choices last year probably effected him worse than they might have effected a less sensitive player. That won't change, and therefore he needs to find the nobler side of his character, and strive everyday to be the best version of himself that can be, and never look back, only forward. Secondly, Agholor needs to prove that he does in fact have very good hand-eye coordination and enough ball skills to catch passes with the best of them. Evidently, coach Mike Groh has helped him in this regard, and by all accounts Agholor has done exactly that in pre-season practices. Now he needs to do it in the pre-season games. However, if the drop balls continue through the pre-season, are the Eagles going to simply wish that they'll go away once the regular season begins? If Agholor falls short in either respect, I think Paul Turner and Marcus Johnson should be strongly considered for the slot position. (I'd probably keep the speedy Bryce Treggs on the outside. Plus, from what I understand, Treggs was another frequent night crawler last year, so he has something to prove as well.) I realize that coach Pederson doesn't like small receivers, but in Turner's case, I think that's a mistake. In sports, small guys are generally the quickest players, and usually a lot quicker than big guys (though they may not run the 40 in as fast a time, due to their shorter leg span). When that kind of quickness is combined with Turner's unusual sure handedness, and an ability to get open, it gives the Eagles a distinct advantage that they can't afford to overlook. It also gives the WR group much needed variety in order to keep opposing defenses more off balance & guessing. In other words, it would be a weakness for the Eagles to retain only big WRs on this team--since every team needs (& can benefit from) a Cole Beasley, Danny Amendola, Odell Beckham Jr. or Antonio Brown type-sized receiver, who are more difficult to cover specifically because they are small and quick.
  15. Last year, I got the impression that fans wanted to see C.J. Smith get more opportunities to play than he did, especially considering how poor our CBs were. IMO, Smith showed some impressive athleticism in the 2016 pre-season, so I'm pleased to see that the Eagles are seriously considering him as a potential starter for 2017. Although it is a pity that Smith didn't share more CB duties with Mills last year, as he'd be that much further along, and the Eagles could be more confident about the current status of their starting CBs in regards to whether they still needed to make a trade or not? But that's ancient history now. Let's play some football!