Eagles

Corey Clement still making historic impact for Eagles

Corey Clement still making historic impact for Eagles

One of the more underrated plays in the Eagles’ season-opening win over the Falcons was Corey Clement’s 21-yard run on a huge third down in the closing minutes of the game.

Consider the situation:

The Eagles trailed, 12-10, with 3:57 left in the game and faced a 3rd-and-2 on the Falcons’ 35-yard line.

So if the Eagles didn’t get the first down, it would have taken a 53- or 54-yard Jake Elliott field goal to take the lead. Elliott can make that kick, but it’s not a layup. Miss it, and the Falcons would get the ball just inside midfield with 3½ minutes left with a two-point lead. 

Clement, who made such a huge impact in the Super Bowl, had been a non-factor to that point with just three carries for one yard and no receptions.

But with the game hanging in the balance and Jay Ajayi and Darren Sproles both available, Doug Pederson went with Clement.

The second-year undrafted running back from Glassboro, New Jersey, responded with the third-longest run of his career, barreling through a huge hole up the middle carved out by left guard Stefen Wisniewski and center Jason Kelce for a 21-yard gain and a first down at the Atlanta 14. 

Two plays later, Ajayi scored from 11 yards out and a few minutes later the defense closed out the Falcons, and the Eagles were 1-0.

“It’s always good to be able to spark anything, whether it’s in the pass game or the running game,” Clement said.

“I just kept believing in the system. I knew something was going to happen. We know what we have. We know how to run.”

Let’s put Clement’s run in perspective.

How rare is a run of at least 20 yards on third down in the final four minutes of a game on a go-ahead drive?

The Pro Football Reference play finder goes back to 1994, and Clement’s is the only one the Eagles have had in the last 25 years.

Using the PFR team game finder, I searched prior to 1994 for games in which the Eagles trailed at some point and won, then searched those box scores to see if they had a 20-yard run at any point, and if they did, I used the NFLgsis game book archive to see if that 20-yard run came on a game-winning drive in the fourth quarter.

That goes as far back as 1981 and still no sign of another such run.

So Clement is the only Eagle with a 20-yard run on third down in the closing minutes on a game-winning drive in at least 38 years.

Up until that play, the Eagles’ running backs had managed just 53 yards on 22 carries, less than 2½ yards per pop.

Clement’s blast up the middle helped end an evening of frustration for the running back room and the offense.

“We weren’t going to let up on the running game at all, it was just a matter of time before something hit,” Clement said.

“They’re a fast-flowing linebacker group and we knew if we could get them on their heels slanting in the wrong direction, one could hit right up the middle.

“I got one right up the gut. Should have scored, [was] mad at myself, but set up the offense.”

Clement, who finished with 26 yards on five carries, got only 13 touches on offense, a little surprising considering the impact he made last year in the playoffs.

“Everybody has to get in,” he said. “Whoever has the hot hand is rolling. We’re not a selfish group at all. Sproles is rolling, he’s rolling. Jay, me, Wendell (Smallwood), Josh Adams, whoever has the hot hand is going to keep rolling.

“Coach Pederson is going to do a great job of mixing everyone in and out and keeping us fresh.”

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Eagles injury report: A few key players miss another day of practice

Eagles injury report: A few key players miss another day of practice

Updated: 4:27 p.m.

For the second straight day, the Eagles were without three of their most important skill position players as they prepare to face the Lions on Sunday afternoon. 

Alshon Jeffery, DeSean Jackson and Dallas Goedert, who were all listed as “day to day” by Doug Pederson on Wednesday, did not practice Thursday. The Eagles actually held a real practice Thursday after a walkthrough the day before. 

It doesn’t seem likely that any of those three will play against the Lions. 

Because the Eagles had a walkthrough on Wednesday, yesterday’s injury report was an estimation. Here's today's: 

Did not practice: 

Alshon Jeffery (calf), DeSean Jackson (abdomen), Dallas Goedert (calf), Corey Clement (shoulder), Tim Jernigan (foot), Jordan Mailata (back), Johnathan Cyprien (knee) 

Limited: 

Kamu Grugier-Hill (knee), Rudy Ford (hamstring) 

Full: 

Nate Sudfeld (wrist), Derek Barnett (shoulder), Fletcher Cox (toe), Nathan Gerry (knee, calf)

Good news for Grugier-Hill, who is taking part in his first real practice since spraining his MCL in August. It’s probably more realistic to expect him to return to action next Thursday night in Green Bay. 

More good news that Barnett, Cox and Gerry were full participants today after being limited to begin the week. 

Cyprien was the only player who was limited to begin the week and didn’t practice Thursday. 

Mailata worked out on a side field today, as did Jalen Mills (foot), who is still on the PUP. Mills won’t be eligible to return until Week 7. 

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NFL trade rumors: Eagles definitely in the mix for Jalen Ramsey

NFL trade rumors: Eagles definitely in the mix for Jalen Ramsey

The Jalen Ramsey trade winds are blowing strong and the Philadelphia Eagles appear to be in the mix.

Our very own Dave Zangaro wrote about why the Eagles should absolutely kick the tires on Ramsey earlier in the week and not a lot has changed there.

A number of national NFL writers continue to toss the Eagles' name around as a team that could be a landing spot for Ramsey if Howie Roseman chooses to engage. Here's a quick roundup of the latest rumblings regarding the talented but often irksome corner.

Ramsey is expected to play this evening on Thursday Night Football for the Jacksonville Jaguars. The NFL Network's Ian Rapoport said today that, "tomorrow is a more likely target date for a Jalen Ramsey trade."

CBS Sports' Jason La Canfora said yesterday that the Friday report is "the most artificial deadline in the history of artificial deadlines. There's one deadline, it's Week 9, the trade deadline."

La Canfora points to three teams, "The sense that I'm getting from GMs and personal directors are the Kansas City Chiefs, the Seattle Seahawks, and Philadelphia."

He goes on to say that Jacksonville wants two first-round picks but whether they get that sort of return remains to be seen given their cards are all already on the table and their hand is somewhat forced. Still, Ramsey is an incredible talent that will come at a very steep price.

NBC Sports' Peter King echoed some of those sentiments in a tweet today which again puts Philly right in the hunt for Ramsey. "Roseman unafraid, can offer 1+3+SJones," he wrote in a tweet.

I assume that's a first, a third, and Sidney Jones to get the deal done. Would the Philly fanbase be OK "giving up" on Jones so early in his career when he hasn't had a ton of time to show what he's capable of when healthy? If it lands Ramsey, I'd guess so.

Finally, King adds that inquiring teams would want to talk to Ramsey's agent about a new deal which makes total sense if landing him would come at such a big price.

Thursday Night Football should be interesting this evening when Ramsey's Jags take on the Tennessee Titans on national TV. You know Birds fans will be watching for any drama. 

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