August 09, 2022
Eagles training camp is nearly wrapping up, the Birds' first preseason game is on Friday night against the Jets and the hype for football season is buzzing in Philadelphia. Who on this earth can be more optimistic than an Eagles fan in August?
To keep that energy going and the hype training chugging along, here are some takes from the national media on the Eagles and a couple noteworthy NFL roster moves:
Over at the great Establish the Run site, Brandon Thorn, who specializes in offensive line analysis, gave the Eagles' o-line the highest praise possible. Thorn writes that the Birds have the No. 1 offensive line in the NFL:
The Eagles have positioned themselves to once again have a top-tier offensive line due to consistently investing in the position and pairing it with elite coaching under Jeff Stoutland. Stoutland has worked wonders with left tackle Jordan Mailata over the last two seasons, allowing the unit to avoid a dramatic drop off after the Jason Peters era ended. Now they are armed with an ascending, young talent at left tackle with an elite right tackle opposite him in Lane Johnson.
On the inside, Jason Kelce is still performing at an All-Pro level while the archetype of having two stout, powerful guards flanking him is in place with solid starters Landon Dickerson and Isaac Seumalo. Add in players like Andre Dillard as the swing tackle, Cameron Jurgens as the heir apparent to Kelce, and Jack Driscoll as the swing guard, and you have a unit with star power, depth, and the coaching prowess to help sustain it throughout the season. [ETR]
Yeah, he's not wrong. The Eagles' offensive line is the strength of this team and has been for two-plus decades. It's the best in the sport and the main reason the team made an unlikely playoff berth in 2021. I'm expecting that to continue this fall, predicting that Jordan Mailata, Lane Johnson and Jason Kelce will all make this season's Pro Bowl.
There's nothing sports fans love more than fake trades. They're catnip. No front office executive in the NFL makes more training camp trades than Howie Roseman and he has yet to this month. Could one be on the way? Heavy's NFL reporter Matt Lombardo writes that the Broncos should trade for Eagles wideout Jalen Reagor:
Following Tim Patrick tearing his ACL, the Broncos will likely turn to Courtland Sutton and Jerry Jeudy to take on significantly larger pieces of Russell Wilson’s target share. However, the Broncos currently have three rookie receivers on the roster, and could use an additional veteran presence.
Jalen Reagor is exactly the type of player who could benefit from a change of scenery and could find his stride outside of the pressure-cooker of playing in Philadelphia as a first-round pick whose production never matched his pedigree.
Reagor, 5-foot-11 and 197 pounds, has all the physical tools to be a big-play threat but has yet to consistently put it together. Now, buried in a suddenly loaded Eagles wide receiver room, behind the likes of A.J. Brown, DeVonta Smith, Quez Watkins, and Zach Pascal, the Eagles may look to take whatever they can get for Reagor.
Paton and the Broncos have shown interest in Reagor, league sources have told Heavy, so perhaps Denver can find a way to maximize the TCU alum, and the Eagles can add yet another asset to Howie Roseman’s bountiful 2023 NFL draft war chest. [Heavy]
If the Eagles could get a sixth- or seventh-round pick for Reagor, who's disappointed mightily since being a first-round selection in 2020, they'd do it in an instant. I'm not sure he has that value though. This isn't an insider take, but I expect Reagor to be on the Birds' roster this year, as the team hopes to get anything from the wideout, whether as a fifth receiver or a punt returner.
Not a concrete report or rumor, just some speculation from me as it pertains to Eagles and trades...
It was curious when the Raiders used running back Josh Jacobs for two series in last Thursday's Hall of Fame Game. That's a matchup where very few players of consequence typically see the field, especially when it comes to RBs. Correspondingly, NFL Network's Ian Rapoport reported that Las Vegas is "not planning on trading" Jacobs. That reads a lot like "please send some better offers for Jacobs" from the Raiders.
If the Eagles are soaring to start the season, but still feel the need to add a bigger back to their rushing attack, a Jacobs trade would give off some "Jay Ajayi is putting the team over the top" vibes come late October.
Kiko Alonso, who played just a season in Philadelphia back in 2015, is retiring from the NFL:
Kiko Alonso has retired, per source.— Brooke Kirchhofer (@brookechesney) August 6, 2022
The #Saints brought him in for one training camp practice, after playing the 2019 season in New Orleans. He’s decided to hang it up after 6 seasons in the #NFL @WWLTV
Just kidding. That guy stunk. I will say that he's indirectly responsible for the Birds winning the Super Bowl though. In the 2016 offseason, the Eagles traded Alonso, fellow dud Chip Kelly acquisition Byron Maxwell and the 13th-overall pick in that year's draft to the Dolphins for the eighth-overall pick. The Eagles packaged the eighth pick and a bunch of other draft capital to move up to second in the draft and select Carson Wentz. Wentz, obviously, helped lead the Eagles to a No. 1 seed in the 2017 season that helped put them on a path to the Lombardi Trophy.
For the sake of my engagement, thanks, Kiko.
Old friend Nate Gerry, who should still deserve props for being a member of the Super Bowl-winning team, is coming back to the NFC East and signing with the Commanders:
He has a ring, but he's not that good at football. Great news for the Eagles. I'm sure Dallas Goedert is salivating.
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