Eagles News: Offensive line expert says Lane Johnson was the best NFL tackle in 2017

Let’s get to the Philadelphia Eagles links …

The Best OT in the League? – Iggles Blitz
Having a dominant OT means a lot to an offense. The Eagles are insanely lucky to have two of them when Peters is healthy. Johnson might already be the best RT in Eagles history. Jon Runyan was good, but nowhere close to Johnson as an overall player. Runyan could be dominant as a run blocker, but his pass protection was an issue when going against a stud like Michael Strahan. Johnson shut down elite pass rushers all year long.

Sneaky concerns and overblown worries for the 2018 Eagles – BGN
James, BLG, and Tra Thomas discuss some of the sneaky concerns that could face the Eagles this upcoming season. The guys also look at concerns others have that they believe to be overblown. Plus, the crew analyzes the competition in the NFC, talks about injury recoveries, and much more.

Lawlor: How The Eagles Have Gained An Edge Using Free Agency – PE.com
The Eagles had good reports on Nate Sudfeld coming out of college and liked what they had seen of him from his time in Washington. Sudfeld was signed to the practice squad and then added to the 53-man roster later in the season. The Eagles are very high on Sudfeld and think he’s got a bright future. I doubt casual fans gave him a second thought when they saw his name on the transaction wire when he got cut. Joseph and his pro scouts can be incredibly crucial when it comes to moves like that. This isn’t simply a matter of finding good players. There are a couple of key factors for pro scouts to focus on beyond talent. They need to find players who are a good scheme fit, and they must find players who fit the budget.

Eagles training camp glance: 5 Birds on the roster bubble – Morning Call
Although there is no doubt about Wendell Smallwood’s abilities, concerns about consistency and durability remain as he heads to his third season. Smallwood will battle Matt Jones, Donnel Pumphrey and rookie Josh Adams for what probably will be only one open spot.

Are 2018 Eagles better or worse at tight end? – NBC Sports Philadelphia
There’s no denying the changes at tight end should make the Eagles’ offense more dynamic. Celek, age 33, could barely move anymore, while Burton is undersized at 6-foot-3, 235 pounds. Selected No. 49 overall out of South Dakota State, Goedert lists at 6-foot-4, 260 pounds, and the 23-year-old plays “above the rim,” with plus speed and a knack for highlight-reel catches. Even Richard Rodgers, a fifth-year veteran from the Packers and frontrunner for the third tight end spot, is larger than Burton at 6-foot-4, 257 pounds with roughly twice as much career production. More athleticism. Bigger targets. Defenses are going to have their hands full with this group.

Modiano: Michael Bennett is the NFL’s unsung feminist, and that matters, too – New York Daily News
“If you still do not understand why I have refused to stand for the anthem,” writes new Eagles linebacker Michael Bennett, “start with Charleena Lyles.” Charleena who? some of you might ask. The pregnant Charleena Lyles was shot seven times in front of three of her four children by Seattle police on June 18, 2017. “Charleena Lyles weighed less than one hundred pounds,” Bennett continues, “The police made no effort to speak to this woman, who allegedly threatened them with something you use to peel an apple. They also didn’t try using nonlethal force: no taser, no mace. They just killed her.”

Trey Burton sees a ton of similarities between Bears and Eagles – PFT
“There are a ton of similarities,” Burton said. “You look at Philly two years ago, the majority of our games we lost by less than a touchdown. If you look at Chicago last year as well, there’s a good amount of games that they lost. It’s just getting over that hump. You gotta be able to win the close games and here’s so many small detail things that happen in order for you to lose those games.”

Metrics that Matter: Yards per route run – PFF
[BLG Note: Torrey Smith ranked in the bottom 10 of yards per route run last year.]

2017 Quarterbacks and Salary – Football Outsiders
With that out of the way, let’s look at the most recent season. Alex Smith led the pack in 2017 with a TANY/A of 7.43 (1.12 lower than the previous season’s leader, Matt Ryan). He didn’t, however, finish with the highest PAYD. Carson Wentz’s rookie adjustment brought his PAYD to $27.7 million, $0.4 million above that of Smith’s. The lowest PAYD value went to Brett Hundley with $3.6 million, which is the highest mark that the lowest player has earned. This is due to a combination of the league having a poor year for efficiency and all of the least efficient players benefitting from a rookie adjustment.

Ranking the NFC East: Wide Receivers – Hogs Haven
Speaking of the Eagles, winning a super bowl makes everyone look better. Their group of wide receivers looks a lot better today than it seemed to twelve months ago, even after trading away Torry Smith, one of the key offseason free agent signings for Philly last year, and signing Mike Wallace, a 3rd round draft pick coming out of college who has had a good, but not spectacular, career, and is playing for his 5th team in his 10th season.

Can Hunter Sharp win role as kick returner, reserve wide receiver? – Big Blue View
[BLG Note: Former Eagles UDFA signing.]

Cowboys CB Marquez White faces assault charge in road-rage incident – ESPN
Dallas Cowboys cornerback Marquez White is facing a charge of aggravated assault resulting from an incident in October in which he pulled a gun on another driver. White, 23, was in court on Thursday and has another appearance scheduled for Aug. 10. He was released on $7,500 bond. The charge is aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, a second-degree felony, according to Collin County court records. White, a sixth-round pick out of Florida State, spent last season on the Cowboys’ practice squad and is currently on their roster.

Giants tackle A.J. Francis blasted the TSA for allegedly spilling his mother’s ashes – SB Nation
Everyone hates the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). New York Giants defensive tackle A.J. Francis just has a better reason to hate it than most. The four-year NFL veteran took to Twitter Monday morning to share a photo of his luggage. Inside are some clothes, an official “Notice of Baggage Inspection” from the TSA, and a loose scattering of mother’s cremains. Yes. The TSA checked his bag so carelessly it spilled his deceased mother’s ashes in the process. Heads up — Francis’s tweets contain some well-earned profane language.

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