Eagles Insider

Roob's Observations: The absurdity of Eric Allen's Hall of Fame snub

Eagles Insider

PHOENIX -- A Hall of Fame outrage, an Eagle I expect to have a huge game Sunday and a wild Kenny Gainwell stat.
Super Bowl LVII is like that scene in "Monty Python and the Holy Grail", where Sir Lancelot and his trusty knights keep sprinting toward the castle but never seem to get any closer.
But it’s finally Saturday, and if all goes well, we’ll have a football game tomorrow. If it ever gets here.
Here’s today’s latest batch of 10 Random Eagles Super Bowl Observations!
1. Good for Ronde Barber. Hall of Famer. Very good player. Long career. But come on. I have no idea why the Hall of Fame voters continue to snub Eric Allen, but it’s ridiculous. Let’s compare:

Allen: 54 interceptions, 8 TDs, 6 Pro Bowls, 4 postseason interceptions, 5 seasons with 5+ INTs.

Barber: 47 interceptions, 8 TDs, 5 Pro Bowls, 2 postseason interceptions, 2 seasons with 5+ INTs.

We went through the same thing with Aeneas Williams, another very good cornerback who got into the Hall of Fame and didn’t measure up to Allen.

Allen has more total interceptions than 22 Hall of Fame defensive backs. Only 15 have more than him. Yet he’s never even been a Hall of Fame finalist. It’s absurd and just shows that the Hall of Fame voters are clueless about the best defensive backs of the 1980s and 1990s.

Over the 13-year period from 1988 through 2000, Allen had the second-most INTs in the NFL, behind only Hall of Famer Rod Woodson. Barber’s best 13-year span was 2000 through 2012, and he had the sixth-most INTs in the league.


Any way you measure it, Allen > Barber.

I’m not saying Barber shouldn’t be in Canton, but if he’s in, there’s no question Allen has to be as well. 

2. Jalen Hurts has at least one touchdown either rushing or passing in 34 of the 38 games he’s started or played significant snaps. The only exceptions: The 44-6 win in Detroit last year, last year’s 13-7 loss to the Giants in East Rutherford, the late-season win in Washington last year and the regular-season finale this year against the Giants.

3. The team that scores first is 37-19 in Super Bowl history, so if you score first you basically have twice as good a chance to win as if you don’t.

4. Turns out Boston Scott is a pretty darn good kick returner. He’s really given the Eagles’ kick return game some juice since taking over in Week 11. Scott only has 16 returns this year, including his 29-yarder to open the 49ers game, but his 27.2 average was sixth-best in the entire NFL this year and highest by an Eagle (minimum 10 attempts) since Herschel Walker averaged 27.7 in 1994. Those are the two highest averages by Eagles players in the last 50 years.

5. Interesting observation from Britain Covey: “At the beginning of the season we had fresh legs, we felt great physically, but we weren’t really there yet mentally. We were still learning and figuring things out. Now, we’re all tired and our bodies are sore. It’s been a long year. We’ve been going pretty much non-stop since the start of training camp. But mentally, we’re sharper than we’ve ever been. We all feel so locked in mentally, and we know this stuff so well we feel prepared for anything.”

6. Got a hunch DeVonta Smith is going to have a huge game. He’s been as good as almost anybody in the league the second half of the season, and you can just see him growing more and more confident by the week. The first 10 games of the season, Smith averaged 56 yards and had three TDs. Not bad. But the last seven games of the regular season, he was up to 91 yards per game with four TDs, and only Justin Jefferson and A.J. Brown had more yards. The most yards by Eagles the last seven games of a season: Brown 711 this year, Smith 637 this year, Mike Quick 633 in 1984. Assuming L’Jarius Sneed travels with Brown, Smith could find himself working against rookie seventh-round pick Jaylen Watson, and that’s a potential huge mismatch for the Eagles.

7. Andy Reid had 10 postseason wins with the Eagles and has 11 with the Chiefs. Only 13 other coaches in NFL history have 10 postseason wins with one team (Bill Belichick, Tom Landry, Don Shula, Joe Gibbs, Chuck Noll, Bill Cowher, Pete Carroll, Mike McCarthy, John Harbaugh, Marv Levy, Bud Grant, George Seifert, Bill Walsh).


8. Kenny Gainwell ranked 57th in scrimmage yards among running backs during the regular season with 409 yards. He’s fourth in the postseason with 195. And the three backs ahead of him are no longer playing: Christian McCaffrey (299 yards), Joe Mixon (213), Travis Etienne (201).

9. Patrick Mahomes and Hurts are both among the top four active QBs with the highest yards-per-completion figure in the league. Jameis Winston has the highest YpC at 12.6, and then Mahomes, Hurts and Jimmy Garoppolo are all at 12.2, although if you want to break the tie it looks like this: Garoppolo (12.24), Mahomes (12.21), Hurts (12.20). This means Mahomes and Hurts are both driving the ball vertically down the field and getting big-time YAC yardage from their receivers. The Chiefs led the NFL during the regular season in yards after the catch (6.1), and the Eagles were fifth (5.0).

10. The only Eagle with a sack and an interception in the same playoff game was Rashard Cook in that 33-19 win over the Bears at Soldier Field after the 2001 season. Cook sacked Jim Miller on the Bears’ second offensive play of the game and – after Hugh Douglas knocked Miller out of the game (“I told him don’t move. He moved. The rest is history”) – he intercepted Shane Matthews and had a 15-yard return down to the Bears’ 20 to set up the clinching Donovan McNabb rushing TD with four minutes left in the game. The crazy thing about Cook is that he was a reserve safety, only started three games in his career and had a total of three sacks and two interceptions in the regular season in his entire four-year career.

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