We’re going to start a new weekly tradition here at ITI where every Friday we answer some questions we received on Twitter. They might be specific to the Eagles matchup that week, or just about the team in general.
Q. Does this Eagles secondary worry you as much of the rest of us? As it stands every Qb they face will look like Peyton Manning or Tom Brady. — @Eaglefan12
A. Well, yes and no. I think it’s important to set realistic goals for this secondary. Guys like Williams and Fletcher aren’t shutdown corners, they aren’t Pro-Bowl caliber players and they aren’t going to be picking off many balls. What they do well is keep the play in front of them, wrap up, and tackle well. I think they will give up yards but they will tighten up the red zone. A bend but not break approach, if you will. I do fully believe they will play better than the guys we had last year. Just getting Nnamdi, DRC and Kurt Coleman off the field, and hopefully Nate Allen before the end of the year, will improve our secondary. And that’s not to say they’re going to be great, I just think they’re going to go from from bad to to not as bad. If nothing else, they will be physical.
The one thing I noticed with this secondary and this defense as a whole is that they played sloppy on their first drives but managed to tighten it up after that. This was esepcially true in the Jacksonville game. They’ve never got a full game to show us if this is going to continue or not.
Q. Which TE finishes the season with the most catches? — @FelskeFiles
A. If Michael Vick plays a bulk of the season, I’d say it will be Brent Celek. Celek and Vick have developed a good chemistry over the years and he’s usually Vick’s release valve. I think James Casey will get involved in the offense but will be used more as a blocker than a offensive weapon. While I do believe Zach Ertz will eventually become the guy, he needs to earn Vick’s trust first and prove he can hold onto the ball. Also, rookie tight ends don’t normally have big numbers in their first season. People like to bash on Celek for his dropped balls, but he’s still one of the most reliable receivers Vick has next to Avant.
Now, if Nick Foles comes in during the season, all bets are off. He could easily develop a relationship with Ertz, Celek or Casey.
Q. Do you think defense can slow down the Skins? — @birdman1018
A. This is a real tough one. I guess the first thing is whether or not RG3 is completely healthy or not. Obviously a hobbled RG3 will be a bit easier for the Eagles to handle. In their second matchup last year he was banged up and only rushed for 4 yards and passed for ~200, but the Skins still won that game. If he’s healthy, they will need a massive game out of Mychal Kendricks to keep him contained. Even if they manage to contain RG3, you still have to worry about Alfred Morris running the ball and Pierre Garcon catching it. The front 7 will have to bring their A game and get pressure on RG3 as well as stay disciplined in the run game. Cary Williams and Bradley Fletcher will see a lot of Garcon and need to make sure he stays in front of them.
Do I think the defense can shut down the Skins? No. Can they slow them down? Maybe. But all signs point to a shoot out between these two high powered offenses, with the defenses just doing their best to tread water.
I have a lot of fun with stuff like this and hope to continue the tradition each week. Send me your questions any time to @InsideIggles!
Follow Adam on Twitter @ITIAdam