Eagles

Trade Alshon Jeffery? Yeah, right after the Eagles sign Plaxico

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AP Images/Matt Rourke

Trade Alshon Jeffery? Yeah, right after the Eagles sign Plaxico

Remember when the Eagles were going to trade for Plaxico Burress? Remember when they were going to trade for Le’Veon Bell? Remember when they were going to cut DeMeco Ryans before the season? Weren’t they going to trade for Antonio Brown at some point?

We live in an era of instant information, and that also means we live in an age of instant misinformation.

And that means on a random Saturday in August you could wake up, check Twitter and have 13 people asking if the Eagles are really trading Alshon Jeffery.

And when you try to figure out where this is all coming from, you get an endless string of tweets and retweets that eventually winds its way to an unsourced “trade rumor” that’s generally just somebody saying, “Hey, maybe this will happen!"

Of course it never does.

To recap: A site that calls itself Pro Football Network (fancy title, 5,026 followers) tweeted Saturday night that “Trade talk is picking up. Keep an eye on guys like Kenny Stills and Alshon Jeffery.”

This wasn’t a sourced “report,” it was just kind of idle speculation, which is totally within their right. But you know how these things go. They invariably snowball. 

Fans are starving for every bit of information on their team, and that’s understandable. But that’s how speculation turns to rumors and rumors turn to reports.

This just in: Alshon Jeffery isn’t getting traded.

Come on now.

Why would the Eagles trade one of their most valued offensive pieces 15 days before opening day in a season where they have legitimate Super Bowl aspirations?

Think about it.

This year is all about making life as easy as possible for Carson Wentz. Getting him in a comfort zone, getting him through the season healthy, getting him to the playoffs intact.

Guess what wide receiver Wentz has targeted the most over the last two years? Guess which wideout he’s completed the most passes to? The most touchdowns?

Jeffery.

Why on Earth would you get rid of Wentz's favorite wide receiver two weeks before opening day? It makes zero sense.

We’ve all been impressed by JJ Arcega-Whiteside, and maybe one day he’ll replace Jeffery. But you’re talking about a guy who hasn’t played a regular-season NFL snap vs. a guy who was a huge part of the Eagles’ Super Bowl run two years ago. Not happening.

According to Spotrac’s salary cap tracker, the Eagles have the third-oldest roster in the NFL. Which is fine. The two teams ahead of them are the Patriots and Saints. 

These are veteran-laden teams that are built to win in 2019.

When you’re rebuilding, yeah, you trade for the future. Not when you’re hoping to win 12 or 13 games and fight for a first-round bye.

What about Jadeveon Clowney? He’s a guy who would help the Eagles immediately, but the Texans seem set at wideout with DeAndre Hopkins, Will Fuller and Keke Coutee, and they reportedly want a front-line left tackle in exchange for Clowney. And Jason Peters and Andre Dillard obviously aren’t going anywhere.

Neither is Jeffery. 

No matter what Twitter says.



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A blunt assessment from Jim Schwartz on Sidney Jones and Rasul Douglas

A blunt assessment from Jim Schwartz on Sidney Jones and Rasul Douglas

Cornerbacks always talk about how crucial it is to put bad plays behind them.

Gotta be confident. Gotta have a short memory. Gotta forget about it when you get beat.

Every cornerback gets beat. The great ones bounce back quickly.

Fair to say Rasul Douglas and Sidney Jones didn’t bounce back quickly Sunday.

I asked Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz Tuesday how Douglas and Jones have handled having a short memory and putting bad plays behind them, and his answer was surprisingly blunt.

Inconsistently,” he said. “There have been times that they have, but you know like a 3-3 team, we’re all striving for consistency and I think that those guys are striving for that.

Douglas has played fairly well much of the season, although he’s been inconsistent. Jones has struggled both on the field and to stay on the field.

On Sunday, both struggled through their lowest moments. Kirk Cousins victimized both young corners to the tune of four touchdowns and 333 yards in the Vikings’ 38-20 win at U.S. Bank Stadium.

This was the first time Schwartz has spoken this bluntly about Douglas and Jones and their confidence issues.

I don’t know that any of those were lack of confidence or [not] putting a play behind them, but whether it was a penalty, whether it was a physical error or a technique error or a communication error, another bad play ended up rolling up on them and that’s the life they live,” he said. “There were a lot of technique errors, there are a lot of miscommunications in every game with D-linemen and linebackers and everything else, whether you win the game like we did against the Jets or you lose a tough game like we did against the Vikings.

But generally those don’t get the attention that the cornerback position takes, and that’s part of the job description. That scrutiny. Kickers. Quarterbacks. Head coaches. It’s just what we deal with, and corners need to be able to put bad plays behind them, and we’ve been inconsistent doing that.

Jones is only 23 and Douglas is 24, and both come from big-time college programs and were high draft picks in 2017 — Jones in the second round and Douglas in the third. 

The Eagles clearly are hopeful both can go on to become high-level long-term starters.

But Jalen Mills and Ronald Darby could both be back for the Cowboys game on Sunday or, if not, soon after.

We all know both of them have allowed their fair share of big plays, but they’ve also started for a Super Bowl championship team, and nobody has ever questioned their confidence. They’ve both shown a knack for bouncing back.

Who’s going to wind up starting when everybody’s healthy? 

Too early to answer that. But if you’re a coach and you have two cornerbacks who have confidence issues and two who don’t? Who would you play?

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Eagle Eye podcast: These Band-Aids aren’t working

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USA Today Images

Eagle Eye podcast: These Band-Aids aren’t working

On the latest Eagle Eye podcast, Reuben Frank and Dave Zangaro are joined by Ray Didinger to break down Zach Brown’s release as a part of a more troubling trend. 

Why can’t JJ Arcega-Whiteside get on the field? At least Miles Sanders is finding ways to produce. 

And some help is coming at the cornerback position. 

• See ya, Zach Brown 
• These veterans aren’t working 
• Arcega-Whiteside can’t get on the field 
• Miles Sanders is a deep threat … that’s good and bad 
• Some injured players are close to returning
• Andre Dillard settled in after a rough start 
• How will they handle the CB rotation? 
• Why did Doug Pederson say what he did?  
• Early thoughts on the Cowboys game 

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