Eagles Analysis: Ten Bye Week Takeaways


Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

The Philadelphia Eagles hopefully spent yesterday doing what I was doing – laughing hysterically at the Giants and the Cowboys. You’d think Tom Coughlin would have learned his lesson by now wouldn’t you when it comes to punting at the end of the game? Anyway as the Eagles are on their bye week, here are ten random thoughts about this Eagles team right now:

1) Sam Bradford will be back next year 

The Eagles fan base has turned against Bradford as the year has progressed which is kind of strange because he has got better. His last performance against the Panthers was probably his best game this year. I think Chip believes in Bradford and thinks he is a perfect fit for this offense and would get better with a proper offseason where is isn’t worrying about his knee. I expect the Eagles to sort a short term contract out so you might as well get behind Bradford and get used him.

2) Eagles need to draft Jason Peters replacement  

I’m not saying Jason Peters is finished because he’s obviously still very good. But he seems to get hurt every other week and he won’t be great forever sadly. I know tackle isn’t seen as an immediate need but I’d have no problem with the Eagles taking a tackle in the first or second round next year, even if he didn’t play for a couple of years. Maybe he could play guard while Peters is still here, Eagles need some youth on the offensive line.

3) Eagles aren’t using Zach Ertz enough 

Yes, I say this every single year and every single week and its annoying. But come on, he’s the Eagles best pass catcher. Put him in the slot in three wide receiver sets, he won’t be worse than Jordan Matthews.  Put him outside more too and throw him some fade routes, especially in the redzone. He goes up and gets the football consistently.

4) The secondary is legit 

Malcom Jenkins is playing elite. He’s playing better than he ever played last year in my opinion. Walter Thurmond is the real deal at safety too and hopefully we lock him up at the end of the season. Byron Maxwell isn’t a top 5 cornerback but he’s been very solid the past few weeks and so has Nolan Carroll who should have been starting last year, no question about that anymore. Eric Rowe might struggle to start for a while barring injury which isn’t a bad thing at all.

5) The wide receivers aren’t good enough 

There is a theory that the wide receivers are really talented – Josh Huff, Jordan Matthews and Nelson Agholor – and they will get much better as the season progresses. I disagree to an extent. Agholor is obviously talented but I’m not sure he’s a ‘number 1 receiver’. I think we badly overrated Matthews and I still worry about Huff. If the Eagles spent another first round pick on a wide receiver next year, could you blame them?

6) Hicks and Kendricks are the teams best inside linebackers  

This isn’t a crazy hot take for me. I’ve always thought Mychal Kendricks was better than Kiko Alonso but not by that much. I think Jordan Hicks is almost as good as Kendricks already, although Kendricks is the only inside linebacker who can rush the quarterback really well. I think Hicks is better against the run than Kiko but Kiko is such a great player to have because of how good he is in pass coverage. It will be exciting to see these three rotate when they are all healthy.

7) The Eagles need another pass rusher at outside linebacker 

Both Connor Barwin and Brandon Graham are great but they are on the field way too much. Marcus Smith obviously isn’t very good, I’m pretty sure we know that by now. Seeing as Vinny Curry appears to only be playing defensive end right now, someone has to step up this season or Barwin is going to be extremely tired by the end of this season.

8) I like the Eagles situation at running back 

Okay, so they have too much money tied up in one position. But, Murray and Mathews are both good backs and they should be splitting carries for the rest of the season. Both of them are good catching balls out of the backfield too. Let’s not forget about Darren Sproles either who is one of the best receiving backs in the league and also should be used more. Put him at wide receiver if you  have to, just get him the ball more.

9) Vinny Curry will be badly missed 

Curry’s contract is up at the end of year and I would be shocked if he signed a new deal with the Eagles. I’m going to miss him so much and the Eagles will too. He’s the best pass rusher on the team yet he can’t get on the field because he’s not a perfect scheme fit. It’s annoying because he’s so talented but I do understand the reasoning. However, the Eagles would be stupid to assume they will not miss Curry if he goes elsewhere and they will need to replace him.

10) Division is there for the taking 

The Giants defense is so bad it’s hilarious. JPP might be coming back but he can’t make that big of a difference. The Cowboys lost last night too because Matt Cassell is not good at football, even when their defense steps up big time. The Eagles can make a huge statement if they go into the AT&T stadium and beat the Cowboys next week, it’s a huge game and I’m already very excited and nervous.

Next: Can The Eagles Salvage Their Season?

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