Eagles

Eagles Rookie Report: Derek Barnett disruptive, Corey Clement scores yet again

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USA Today Images

Eagles Rookie Report: Derek Barnett disruptive, Corey Clement scores yet again

The Eagles took over the second half of a 37-9 road win Sunday night over the rival Cowboys (see breakdown).

First-round pick Derek Barnett continued to look the part and Corey Clement found the end zone yet again.

Here are a few highlights in this week's rookie report.

1st quarter, 1:15, 2nd-and-10 at DAL 20 - Eagles 7, Cowboys 6
Barnett doesn't record a sack here, but he certainly makes this play. Byron Bell isn't given any help on this play and Barnett beats him badly with an outside speed rush. Barnett arrives as soon as Dak Prescott finishes his drop and forces the second-year quarterback to throw it before he's ready. Safety Malcolm Jenkins gets the tip coming on a delayed blitz. The ball then hits off Terrence Williams and into the arms of safety Rodney McLeod. 

2nd quarter, 2:37, 1st-and-10 at DAL 25 - Eagles 7, Cowboys 6
On this play, Barnett isn't blocked. Bold strategy, Cotton. Prescott fakes the handoff right and bootlegs left. The hope is Barnett will crash down the line, hoping to blow up the run from the weak side. Instead, Barnett stays disciplined and runs straight at Prescott. This is probably Barnett's most impressive success so far this season. He bears down on Prescott, who is extremely elusive, and wraps the Cowboys' signal caller for the sack (see Roob's observations).

2nd quarter, 9:13, 3rd-and-17 at DAL 18 - Eagles 7, Cowboys 6
I'm not sure if Barnett actually affected Prescott on this throw, but I'll give him credit. Lined up in a two-point stance, Barnett initially looks like he might just settle into zone coverage. Instead, it almost works like a delayed blitz. Barnett charges in on Prescott, who then makes a terrible throw and decision to force a ball to Dez Bryant. The errant throw is easily picked off by cornerback Ronald Darby.

3rd quarter, 10:56, 2nd-and-2 at DAL 11 - Cowboys 9, Eagles 7
When the Eagles have needed a big play this season, they've called on No. 30 on more than one occasion. An eight-yard carry by Clement on first-down sets this play up. Carson Wentz in lined up in the shotgun with Clement to his right. The Eagles' were incredibly effective using traps to help mitigate the aggressiveness of the Cowboys' front four. On this play, right guard Brandon Brooks pulls to the left and seals off defensive tackle David Irving. Both left guard Stefen Wisniewski and left tackle Halapoulivaati Vaitai did an excellent job getting to the second level to take on linebackers, allowing Clement to get into the Dallas secondary. Clement yet again shows off his patience and vision and dives in for six.

3rd quarter, 10:56, Two-point conversion attempt at DAL 2 - Eagles 13, Cowboys 9
With kicker Jake Elliott out with a concussion, Doug Pederson made the decision to go for two instead of having backup linebacker Kamu Grugier-Hill attempt a kick. And Pederson pulled something interesting from his bag of tricks on this one. Initially, the Eagles line up fairly traditionally with two receivers to the right, a tight end tight to the left and Clement in the backfield. Then the players all motion out wide to the right in a diamond. Clement is the player in the back. Wentz throws the ball immediately after the snap. The ball is thrown backward so it's actually considered a run. Clement secures the catch and plunges in. This was a fun play design.

4th quarter, 10:37, 3rd-and-5 at DAL 45 - Eagles 29, Cowboys 9
Man, the Cowboys are in an awful lot of trouble without Tyron Smith at left tackle. Barnett just blows right by Bell yet again. The best part of this play is the awareness from Barnett. He sees Prescott wind back to throw and knows he won't be able to make the tackle. Instead, he reaches for Prescott's right elbow, knocking the ball loose. Linebacker Nigel Bradham scoops it up and runs it back for a touchdown.

Analysis
What else can you say about Barnett? Sure, the Cowboys are really struggling without their All-Pro left tackle, but the rookie Barnett took full advantage. He's now up to 4 1/2 sacks through 10 games while being a part-time player. Damn impressive rookie season thus far (see report card).

I'm also not sure what else you can say about Clement. Even with the addition of Jay Ajayi, Pederson still trusts the undrafted rookie. He finished with 50 yards on six carries. He's now up to six total TDs this season.

Eagles catch break with Jameis Winston's reported suspension

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USA Today Images

Eagles catch break with Jameis Winston's reported suspension

This is bad news for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, but good news for the Eagles. 

The NFL is planning on suspending Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston for the first three games of the 2018 season for a violation of the league’s personal conduct policy, according to a report Thursday by ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

That means the Eagles’ Week 2 game in Tampa Bay might be a whole lot easier. After opening the season at home against the Falcons, the Eagles play their first road contest of the year against the Bucs.

Winston has played the Eagles just once in his career and was great. He led the Bucs to a 45-17 win over the Eagles at the Linc during his rookie season in 2015. In that game, he completed 65 percent of his passes for 246 yards and a career-high five touchdown passes with zero interceptions.

Winston is one of just seven quarterbacks to ever throw five touchdown passes against the Eagles in a single game; no one has ever thrown more against them in a game. The others are Matthew Stafford, Eli Manning, Joe Montana, Craig Morton, Don Meredith (twice) and Sonny Jergensen.

Winston, 24, has thrown for at least 3,500 yards and 19 touchdowns in each of his first two seasons. He made the Pro Bowl as a rookie in 2015. To put his early success into perspective, Winston has two 4,000-yard seasons in his first three seasons, the Eagles’ franchise has never had one. 

The Bucs’ backup quarterback is veteran journeyman Ryan Fitzpatrick, who actually went 2-1 in his three starts in place of Winston last season. 

But don’t let those three games fool you, the Bucs are obviously much better with Winston behind center than Fitzpatrick, who has played for five different teams over the past six years. 

According to NFL Research, the Bucs’ first three games of this season are the toughest first three games for any team in the Super  Bowl era based on last year’s records. 

Winston’s suspension stems from an alleged incident with an Uber driver in 2016. 

Roob Knows: A Billboard's chart-topper and a huge Eagles fan

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Reuben Frank

Roob Knows: A Billboard's chart-topper and a huge Eagles fan

On the latest edition of Roob Knows, Reuben Frank discusses Carson Wentz's character through his injury rehab. He takes a look at the Eagles' running back depth. Also, Roob chats with Mondo Cozmo's lead man Josh Ostrander. His single "Shine" hit number one on Billboard's Adult Alternative Songs chart in January 2017. Ostrander, a Philly native and big Eagles fan, shares his journey and experiencing an Eagles Super Bowl championship.

"He's going to play opening day. I'll go as far as saying I'll be surprised right now if Carson Wentz is not the Eagles starting quarterback on opening day."

1:00 - Carson Wentz's character is unique.
5:00 - Doug Pederson has handled this offseason perfectly.
10:00 - Eagles' running back situation
15:00 - Roob Knows unbelievable stats.
17:00 - Roob's interview with Josh Ostrander of Mondo Cozmo.
19:00 - Josh's memories of the Super Bowl run.
22:00 - Josh's crazy path in music.
31:00 - Josh's Philly roots are still important to him.

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