Eagles

Roob's 10 observations: Competition at Eagles training camp, insane QB stats and more

Roob's 10 observations: Competition at Eagles training camp, insane QB stats and more

Dallas Goedert, Andy Harmon, Motorhead, Nate Gerry, a crazy Nick Foles stat, a crazier Carson Wentz stat and obsessing over the "Philly Special."

It's a Wednesday edition of Roob's 10 random Eagles observations just for you! 

1. For a team coming off a Super Bowl championship, the Eagles have done a nice job creating competition in a lot of spots this summer, and training camp has certainly felt more like a competition than any sort of celebration of what happened six months ago in Minneapolis. Three guys who’ve been battling this summer I’m especially looking forward to seeing Thursday night in the preseason opener against the Steelers are Donnel Pumphrey, Gerry and Sidney Jones, who were all 2017 draft picks. Pumphrey literally looks like a different person. But can he carry it over to the games? Gerry is on track to replace Mychal Kendricks at weakside linebacker and has had a good camp, but Kamu Grugier-Hill, while not as stout at the point of attack, looks like a real playmaker. And Jones has done nothing to make me think he’s not going to be a star. Can’t wait to see those guys Thursday night.

2. One thing about Gerry — he’s really fighting history when it comes to late-round linebackers making an impact. The Eagles have had some late-round linebackers start — guys like seventh-round picks Moise Fokou and Jamar Chaney, sixth-round pick Brian Rolle and fifth-round pick Omar Gaither — but none of them were very good. Honestly, the last linebacker the Eagles drafted in the fifth round or later who has been an above average player was Seth Joyner, an eighth-round pick in 1986 and an all-time great. Gerry’s not Joyner, but he’s not Fokou either. 

3. Standing in the Pro Football Hall of Fame on Friday staring at the "Philly Special" football behind a glass case, I couldn’t stop thinking … “Doug Pederson called a trick play where an undrafted rookie running back flipped the ball to an undrafted backup tight end who threw a pass to the backup quarterback … in the end zone … in a Super Bowl … on fourth down … just before halftime … against Bill Belichick’s defense.” I still don’t know if I’ll ever grasp just how insane that really is. 

4. I’m not sure how this is possible, but no Eagles quarterback has ever thrown 25 or more touchdown passes in consecutive seasons. Among the 53 NFL QBs who have? Brian Sipe, Ken O’Brien and Aaron Brooks.

5. I try not to get too carried away by rookies at training camp, but my goodness, Goedert looks scary good. 

6. This is insane: Wentz in his last nine games last year averaged 248 passing yards, three TDs, 60 percent accuracy and 0.6 interceptions per game. The last Eagles quarterback before Wentz with two consecutive games with 248 yards, three TDs, 60 percent accuracy and one or fewer interceptions? Would you believe Randall Cunningham against the Cards and Broncos in September of 1992? Wentz averaged that over nine games.

7. There are 28 quarterbacks in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Only six of them have had more career playoff games with a passer rating of at least 100 than Foles (Joe Montana, Brett Favre, Troy Aikman, John Elway, Dan Marino and Steve Young).

8. I’ll be surprised if Corey Clement doesn’t catch 50 passes this year.

9. Here’s another weird one: Trent Cole, a fifth-round pick in 2005, is the only player the Eagles have drafted in the last 25 years with a 10-sack season as an Eagle. Before Cole, you have to go back to 1991 sixth-round pick Harmon. Matter of fact, the last player the Eagles drafted in the first four rounds to record a double-digit sack season was 1987 first-round pick Jerome Brown! That ends now. I’ve got Derek Barnett down for 13½.

10. Hey, how many people think I should choose the music at the Linc during Eagles games? Forget the vapid dance-pop they play now. This is football, not a 12-year-old's bowling party. There's nothing worse than watching the defense run on the field to that "I drove my car into a bridge" song. You really think that's going to intimidate the Redskins? We'll go Iron Maiden, Scorpions, Motorhead, Pantera, Megadeth, Metallica, Uriah Heep and Ozzy. If you agree, contact the Eagles at 1 NovaCare Way, Philadelphia, Pa., 19145.

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Add Ronald Darby to the list of injured Eagles

Add Ronald Darby to the list of injured Eagles

Starting cornerback Ronald Darby popped up on the Eagles’ injury report Friday with a hip flexor strain and is questionable for the Eagles’ game Sunday against the Redskins.

Darby wasn’t on the injury report Wednesday or Thursday and was a full participant in practice. He’s listed as a limited participant on Friday, which likely means he either got hurt during practice or an injury he suffered Monday night against the Giants got worse.

In either case, it’s yet another injury for an injury-riddled team. The only defensive players to start all 13 games are Malcolm Jenkins, Fletcher Cox, Brandon Graham and Rodney McLeod.

The Eagles do have some depth at cornerback, since they’re carrying seven corners on the 53-man roster.

Jalen Mills is expected to be OK for Sunday after hurting his elbow in the Giants game. He was a full participant on Friday after being limited on Thursday.

Rasul Douglas would likely be the starter opposite Mills if Darby can’t play. Douglas has started 17 games in his three-year career, including five earlier this year.

Avonte Maddox can play outside but has been in the slot for the nine games he’s been healthy, averaging 46 snaps per game. Sidney Jones, who started four games earlier this year, is also available. Cre’Von LeBlanc is being brought back slowly after being on IR most of the year, and Craig James hasn’t played a defensive snap in nearly two months.

Darby missed half of the 2017 season with an ankle injury, half of last year with a torn ACL and four games earlier this year with a hamstring injury. He’s played only 29 of a possible 50 games since he got here in the summer of 2017.

The Eagles have don’t have a cornerback who’s played defense in every game this year. They’ve used eight different combinations of starting corners in 13 games.

The Eagles signed the 25-year-old Darby to a one-year contract worth $6.5 million. He has two interceptions in nine starts.

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Eagles vs. Redskins 2019: TV schedule, storylines, game time and more

Eagles vs. Redskins 2019: TV schedule, storylines, game time and more

The Eagles (6-7) are visiting the Redskins (3-10) at FedEx Field on Sunday afternoon. 
 
Here’s everything you need to know:  

•12 p.m.: Eagles Pregame Live on NBCSP
•1 p.m.: Eagles at Redskins on FOX 
•4 p.m.: Eagles Postgame Live on NBCSP 
•10 p.m.: Birds Outsiders on NBCSP 
 
The FOX broadcast crew for this game is Thom Brennaman (play by play), Chris Spielman (analyst) and Shannon Spake (sideline). You can also stream the game on FuboTV.
 
Merrill Reese, Mike Quick and Howard Eskin will have the call on 94WIP. 
 
The Eagles opened as 6-point favorites in some places but that has slipped to around 4 1/2 points. The over/under is 39. 

The referee for Eagles-Redskins is second-year referee Shawn Smith. This is his first game reffing an Eagles game. The Eagles were 2-1 with him as an umpire in 2016 and 2017. 

Keep it going

The Eagles got off to a terrible start against the Giants last week before they turned it around, scoring the last 20 points of the game and getting a huge overtime win. So which team shows up on Sunday? The team that fell behind 17-3 to the Giants or the team that rallied to a win? 

It’ll be key for the Eagles to find what works for Carson Wentz in this game a little earlier. They got him into rhythm last week, but that didn’t happen until the third drive of the third quarter. 

No receivers left 

The Eagles began the season with DeSean Jackson, Alshon Jeffery and Nelson Agholor. That was nice for that one game. Going into Week 15, with Agholor’s status uncertain, the Eagles’ top three receivers might be J.J. Arcega-Whiteside, Greg Ward and Rob Davis. Not exactly what the Eagles had in mind this offseason. 

A rookie QB 

The last time the Eagles faced Washington, in the opener, Case Keenum was the starter. So this will be their first time facing rookie quarterback Dwayne Haskins. While the Redskins have won two of three, they’re still a mess of an organization, so who knows what the future holds for Haskins. They have an interim coach and it’s possible the next head coach will want to pick his quarterback, which could leave Haskins in limbo. But there’s also a possibly Haskins is still their long-term QB. It’ll be interesting to see what happens down there.  

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