Jake Elliott

Eagles sign Jake Elliott to 5-year contract extension

Eagles sign Jake Elliott to 5-year contract extension

Jake Elliott was already having a perfect season and it just got even better on Wednesday. 

The Eagles signed the 24-year-old kicker to a five-year contract extension that will keep him in Philadelphia through the 2024 season. 

The extension is worth over $21 million, with around $10.5 million in guarantees, according to NFL reporter Adam Caplan. The highest AVY for a kicker in the league is Justin Tucker at $5 million per season. 

While plenty of teams have struggled to find consistency at the kicker position, the Eagles have been lucky with Elliott. He hasn’t had a ton of opportunities this season, but he’s 14 for 14 on field goals, which includes a 53-yarder. 

This move comes less than two weeks after the Eagles extended long snapper Rick Lovato. Don’t be surprised to see punter Cameron Johnston get locked up long term soon to keep the trio together for the next several years. Elliott was scheduled to become a restricted free agent after this season. 

Earlier this season, before playing the Bears, who have had a notable problem with their kickers, head coach Doug Pederson was asked about the Eagles’ stability at the position. 

“Any time that you have a kicking situation — we're blessed,” Pederson said. “We've been blessed here in Philly for a lot of years to have great kickers and the history of kickers here and Jake is no exception. I think sometimes, too, playing in outdoor stadiums, you just get used to the wind. You get used to a lot of things, and I'm kind of glad I don't have those types of issues right now where we can just kind of focus in on our team. 

“I played in Green Bay where we've had great kickers and a lot of years. I don't know why necessarily that is, but I'm very pleased with Jake and really our two kickers.”

The Eagles picked up Elliott early in the 2017 season after Caleb Sturgis was placed on IR and now we’re talking about Elliott being the kicker in Philly for the better part of a decade. Out of Memphis, Elliott was a fifth-round pick by the Bengals in 2017, but he lost the kicking competition in training camp, which made him available for the Eagles. 

Of course, Elliott’s first big moment with the Eagles came when he drilled a 61-yard game-winner against the Giants on Sept. 24, 2017. That’s the longest field goal in Eagles history. Elliott also has the longest field goal in Eagles playoff history (53 yards). 

In fact, Elliott owns two of the four longest field goals in Eagles regular-season and playoff history. His five field goals of 50-plus yards in 2017 were a franchise record. 

Elliott also went 3 for 3 on field goals in Super Bowl LII. 

This season, he became the first kicker in team history to start a season with 14 straight field goal makes. 

And since the start of the 2017 season (including playoffs), Elliott ranks tied for fifth in the NFL in 40-plus-yard field goals. 

He isn’t going anywhere for a while. 

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Bears’ ongoing kicker woes highlight Eagles’ stability at the position in Jake Elliott

Bears’ ongoing kicker woes highlight Eagles’ stability at the position in Jake Elliott

The best position for an NFL team to be in with their kicker is to never have to think about him. 

It seems like the Bears think about their kicker all the time. 

On Sunday, the Eagles and Bears will meet for the first time since the Double Doink ended the Bears’ 2018 season and firmly planted itself in Matt Nagy’s frontal lobe. You remember the Double Doink; Cody Parkey’s last-second field goal attempt in the wild card game was tipped by Treyvon Hester and then hit the left upright, the crossbar and bounced out. It devastated that city and it still seems like the team, especially Nagy, isn’t quite over it. 

Just as it started to look like the Bears had finally put their kicker issues in the past with Eddy Pineiro, last week he missed a 41-yard game-winner after Nagy took a knee instead of trying to pick up more yards. And then Pineiro admitted he didn’t want the ball on the left hash. He missed wide left. 

The Bears have bigger problems, but it seems like they’ve been fixated on the kicker. 

“I’m kind of glad I don't have those types of issues right now where we can just kind of focus in on our team,” Eagles head coach Doug Pederson said this week. 

Pederson’s right. The Eagles haven’t really had those issues. They’ve had Jake Elliott since 2017, when he came on the scene and delivered a franchise-long 61-yard game-winner in his second game with the team. The Eagles haven’t looked back. 

Since he arrived, Elliott has made 61 of 71 attempts (85.9 percent), which ranks him eighth among kickers with at least 50 attempts (he’s 8 for 8 in the playoffs). Elliott has six game-winners. He also owns two of the four longest regular season and playoff field goals in franchise history. 

And this year, Elliott has been even better. He hasn’t attempted many field goals, but he’s 9 for 9, one of just four perfect kickers in the NFL. He finally missed his first PAT last week, but there were swirling 40mph wind gusts in Buffalo, so I told Elliott I’d give him a pass on that one. 

“I appreciate that,” he said, nodding. 

The truth is that Elliott probably isn’t one of the top kickers in the NFL, but he’s good and he’s pretty reliable and that’s something the Bears wish they could have. 

After Parkey’s miss last year, Elliott was already sympathetic, but then things got even worse. Parkey went on the Today Show and Nagy seethed. Eventually, the Bears released Parkey and began a search for their next kicker. 

That search was a wild one. 

As documented in this MMQB story, the Bears brought in nine kickers for their initial rookie minicamp competition. Nine! That’s completely unheard of. And then they made all their competitors kick in front of an audience from 43 yards out, the significance of which was not lost on anyone. 

The whole thing seemed really bizarre. 

“I saw some stuff in the media about it,” Elliott said. “I didn’t follow it all that closely, to be honest. I know there was a lot of guys in. I don’t even remember who. I remember it came down to Eddy (Pineiro) and Elliott (Fry) and both of them are talented guys. I wouldn’t be shocked to see Elliott back in the league soon. I know him decently. But, yeah, it was a crazy situation.” 

The crazy thing is that none of those nine kickers won the job. The Bears traded a conditional seventh-round pick to the Raiders for Pineiro the day after that minicamp ended. The competition was between Pineiro and Fry with the former coming out on top. 

Once he won that job, he entered one of the highest-pressure jobs in the NFL. 

“I think, obviously, there was a lot of hype around it in the offseason,” Elliott said. “That’s for better or for worse. At the end of the day, the guy won the job and that’s awesome for him. He’s been kicking well there. I know he had the one miscue last week, but he won the job. Yeah, it’s a high-pressure situation, it’s a high-pressure city, it’s a high-pressure job. But you sign up for it.” 

Elliott is right. Things were going pretty well for Pineiro early. In fact, in Week 2, he made a game-winning 53-yard field goal to give the Bears a win over the Broncos and was named NFC Special Teams Player of the Week. 

But last week, he missed two kicks, including the 41-yard try to win the game and prevent a three-game losing streak. Wide left. 

So as we enter a rematch of the Double Doink game, the Eagles feel really comfortable with their kicking situation. Their kicker, holder and snapper have worked together for years and are in a rhythm. They won’t have to think about it at all on Sunday. 

The Bears still can’t seem to get their kicker off their minds. 

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Why the Eagles called their ill-advised fake FG vs. Vikings

Why the Eagles called their ill-advised fake FG vs. Vikings

MINNEAPOLIS — On Sunday, the Eagles returned to U.S. Bank Stadium, where Doug Pederson once called one of the most famous trick plays in NFL history.

This time, his trick play didn’t work out so well.

It was just a bad idea.

Late in the second quarter of the Eagles’ blowout loss to the Vikings, Pederson called a fake field goal on 4th-and-4. Kicker Jake Elliott took a direct snap and the play was designed to be a pass to Dallas Goedert, who would — in theory — either go for a touchdown or step out of bounds to give the Eagles another shot at the end zone.

That didn’t happen.

“I was the only receiver there,” Goedert said. “We had the look that we wanted. The linebacker played over towards my side a little bit more. It still might have been there, but it obviously wasn’t exactly how we wanted it to go. In hindsight, those three points would have been nice.”

Basically, the Eagles expected No. 41 Anthony Harris to sit in the middle and not take away Goedert on the short side of the field. Earlier in the game, on a 53-yard field goal, Harris broke to his right, but the ball was on the other hash. The Vikings left the short side wide open for Goedert. That, along with the Vikings’ tape, influenced the fake.

On the fake, if the Eagles didn’t like what they saw as they lined up, they were going to kick the 39-yard field goal. But the Eagles got the look they wanted pre-snap. It’s just that Harris went with Goedert this time.

“Yeah, we had the look we wanted, tried to take advantage of it, get a little bit closer opportunity to maybe shoot it in the end zone after that,” Pederson said. “They made a great play.”

This is a play the Eagles have been working on in practice, but Elliott said this was the first time he’s ever thrown a pass in the game. The design is for Elliott to throw the ball immediately, but when he got the ball, he thought Goedert was too covered. Elliott tried to make something happen, but even if Goedert comes back and catches the ball, the clock would probably run out. The Eagles had no timeouts and didn’t even have a QB on the field to clock it.

This play call from Pederson was a bad one for two reasons:

1. Kicking the FG would have given the Eagles three points and they were getting the ball back after half. As it turns out, the Eagles scored on the opening drive of the second half to cut the lead to seven (24-17). But had they gotten those three points, they could have tried a two-point conversion to put them down three.

2. If you’re gonna go for it, just go for it. Why put the ball in your kicker’s hand instead of Carson Wentz’s? If the Eagles would have converted with Wentz, they would have had enough time to clock the ball and try for the end zone, if that was the idea.

“I mean, hey, Coach made the call, and if it works, it would have been awesome,” Wentz said, “and it didn't, so that's football.”

There were plenty of other reasons why the Eagles lost on Sunday, but this fake field goal just wasn’t a good call from Pederson. Ultimately, maybe it didn’t matter, but a better play call there certainly wouldn’t have hurt.

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