YOOOAdrian’s 2010 NFL Preview- Philadelphia Eagles
After an 11 year tenure with Philadelphia, the Eagles decided to part ways with Donovan McNabb. They traded him, within the division, to the Washington Redskins for a 2nd round draft pick. In Philly, Nate Allen will be forever connected with D-mac. All the pressure hinges towards 4th year pro Kevin Kolb.
Kevin Kolb- 62/96 64.6% 741 yds 4 td 3 int 88.9 rat
It’s Kolb’s time, and with the trade of McNabb, the Eagles management have the up most confidence that Kolb can excel in Andy Reid’s west coast offense. It was an agonizing 3 year wait on the pine. Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers did the same thing as he learned under the tutelage of Brett Favre. Rodgers has been quite successful. Will Kolb have the same success in Philly?
McNabb is the better all-around quarterback, but Kolb may be best equipped for the system. He’s accurate and gets the ball out quickly; the exact traits needed in a west-coast offense. He doesn’t have McNabb’s arm strength or mobility.
Others- Michael Vick, Mike Kafka
Vick looks to once again be the center piece in the wildcat. He improved as the season went along, and even became a top option at the goal line.
Kafka is a 4th round pick from Northwestern.
LeSean McCoy- 155 car 637 yds 4.1 avg 4 td 40 rec 308 yds
The Eagles said goodbye to another long-time Eagle in running back Brian Westbrook. His career took a turn downhill last season after suffering multiple concussions.
McCoy is versatile as he can catch the ball out of the backfield, along with running the football. He has good vision and speed, but he needs to quick dancing in the hole as if he’s auditioning for Dancing With the Stars. McCoy, like many other young backs, needs to improve his pass blocking.
Mike Bell- 172 car 654 yds 3.8 avg 5 td 4 rec 12 yds
The Birds have been looking for a goal-line/short yardage back for a few years now. They may have found that back in Bell. He’s a one-cut inside runner. He’s not overly creative and doesn’t break a lot of long runs.
Others- Leonard Weaver, Eldra Buckley
Reid used his former colleague Jim Harbaugh’s philosophy of utilizing his fullback as a running back in ace formations. Weaver did well. Buckley was used as a short yardage back last season.
DeSean Jackson- 62 rec 1,156 yds 18.6 avg 9 td
Jackson is the most explosive receiver in the NFL. He has blinding speed, and in my opinion he’s the best deep threat in the NFL. Last year, he had an NFL record 8 touchdowns of 50+ yards.
The only worry I have for Jackson is Kolb’s arm strength. Will he be able to get the ball down the field like McNabb did last season?
Jeremy Maclin- 56 rec 773 yds 13.8 avg 4 td
Maclin picked up the complicated intricacies of Andy Reid’s offense quickly; especially coming from a spread offense at Missouri.
Maclin has solid hands and is good after the catch.
Jason Avant- 41 rec 587 yds 14.3 avg 3 td
Avant is the 3rd down go-to-guy. 26 of his 41 receptions moved the sticks. He plays like Steve Smith of New York. He’s not fast, but he’s a good route runner and just knows how to get open.
TE- Brent Celek- 76 rec 971 yds 12.8 avg 8 td
Celek likes to run the seam, and makes plays in the open field. He needs to improve his run blocking.
Others- Riley Cooper, Hank Baskett, Cornellius Ingram
Cooper is a 5th round pick from Florida. He has impressed during training camp.
Baskett is in his 2nd stint in Philadelphia.
Ingram showed 4.5 speed at the combine, solid speed for a tight end. The dilemma is will he be able to recover from 2nd ACL injury in as many years.
LT- Jason Peters
Peters is the most talented tackle in the NFC, but he needs to show more consistency and cut down on the penalties.
LG- Todd Herremans
Herremans is versatile. He can play guard or tackle as he filled in for Peters for 2 starts at left tackle. He’s the teams best run blocker.
C- Jamaal Jackson
The offensive line as a whole mightily struggled after Jamaal Jackson tore his ACL.
RG- Nick Cole
Cole started at center in Jackson’s absence, but he’s a better fit at guard.
RT- Winston Justice
The light finally clicked for Justice in his 4th season in the NFL. Management got sick and tired of Shawn Andrew’s “Depression” antics. Justice filled in and played well. He was rewarded with a contract extension in the offseason.
LDE- Darryl Tapp- 40 tck 2.5 sck 3 p def
Tapp will play on 1st and 2nd downs. He is a solid run defender who is an underrated pass rusher.
LDT- Mike Patterson- 55 tck 1.5 sck
Patterson isn’t the most athletic, but he has a relentless motor and never gives up on a play.
RDT- Brodrick Bunkley- 37 tck 1 sck 4 p def
Bunkley is a good run stuffer who also does a good job at putting his hands up in the passing lane. He and Patterson make a solid duo.
RDE- Trent Cole- 57 tck 12.5 sck 2 ff
Cole is becoming a complete end as he’s improved against the run in recent years. Cole has always been a good edge rusher. He fires off the ball, really fast off the edge.
Cole is utilized as a stand up rusher in defensive coordinator Sean McDermott’s “Joker” packages.
Others- Juqua Parker, Brandon Graham, Trevor Laws
Parker will be used on 3rd downs to rush the quarterback.
I love Graham, and if Ray Didinger likes the guy, he has to be good. He’ll find a way on the field.
LOLB- Moise Fokou- 37 tck 1 p def
Fokou is a bit undersized and he’s best against the run.
MLB- Stewart Bradley- DNP
The biggest blow on defense last year was losing Bradley before the season started with an ACL injury.
Bradley has size and strength and he’s smart and instinctive. He’s a 3 down guy who’s solid in both the pass and run.
ROLB- Ernie Sims- 49 tck 1 p def
This is a great opportunity for Sims who didn’t fit in the Detroit Lions defensive scheme.
He’s a bit small, but he’s fast, aggressive and good in coverage against running backs and tight ends. He fits the Eagles need. The linebacking core struggled in coverage against opposing tight ends last season.
Others- Keenan Clayton, Omar Gaither, Tracy White, Akeem Jordan
Gaither is a versatile player who can play all three linebacker positions.
Clayton and Jordan will challenge Fokou for a starting job.
LCB- Asante Samuel- 40 tck 9 int 16 p def 1 ff
Samuel is arguably the best instinctive cornerback in the NFL. He baits the quarterback into interceptions more than any corner in the league.
People criticize his poor tackling. Yes, his tackling could be better, but getting picks is what he gets paid for.
RCB- Ellis Hobbs- 11 tck
Hobbs takes over for Sheldon Brown who was dealt to Cleveland. He missed most of the season after suffering a neck injury in November.
CB- Joselio Hanson- 47 tck 2 int 8 p def .5 sck
Hanson is a better slot corner than being on the outside.
FS- Nate Allen- ROOKIE
It still baffles me why the Eagles let Brian Dawkins go in free agency.
Allen is good in coverage, but needs to improve his tackling.
SS- Quintin Mikell- 90 tck 2 int 13 p def
Mikell broke out in 2008 where he was a 2nd team All-Pro. Without Brian Dawkins playing alongside him last year, Mikell struggled at times missing more tackles. Mikell is good in coverage and can lay the lumber.
Others- Macho Harris, Marlin Jackson, Dimitri Patterson
Harris played corner in college, but never made the transition to safety.
Jackson was brought in from Indianapolis to play safety.
PK- David Akers- 32/37 52 lg
Akers has been consistent for years. He’s got a booming boot, and most importantly he’s clutch.
P- Sav Rocca- 76 punts 42.4 avg 26 in 20 61 lg
Rocca can get into balls, but he can also miss-hit some balls.
KR- Ellis Hobbs- 20 ret 24.1 avg 60 lg 0 td
Hobbs was missed as the kick returner once he got hurt in November.
PR- DeSean Jackson- 29 ret 15.2 avg 85 lg 2 td
2010 PREDICTION- 9-7
The season rests on the throwing arm of Kevin Kolb. It’s a changing of the guard in Philly with the departures of McNabb, Westbrook and Brown. That also includes Dawkins, who didn’t resign a year ago. Their defense is improved, especially at linebacker, getting Bradley back and acquiring Ernie Sims in a trade. If anything, offensively, this will be the “Greatest Show on Grass.”
Offensive MVP- DeSean Jackson
Defensive MVP- Trent Cole
Breakthrough- Jeremy Maclin
Overrated- Jason Peters
Underrated- Quinton Mikell