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Zero
Talk about the Season of IF has mainly centered around Bradford's health, but I keep forgetting what the defense did and didn't do last year. How many games were lost just because of Williams and Fletcher? They weren't average, they were horrible at the worst times. Would that 10 win season have been 12 wins, maybe 13 with average CB play? How long will it take Maxwell and Rowe and _____ to assimilate into the system and improve the secondary to average? How much better would the D have been if they had some stability w/o injury at MLB?
QUOTE
Considering the massive amount of plays the Eagles' defense faced, looking at total stats for their defense doesn't paint the whole picture a picture, when you take a step back, paints one of a unit that is very close to being very good.

Last season, the Eagles' defense allowed an average of 1.85 points per drive, 15th in the NFL. They allowed only 30 touchdowns, 28th in the NFL, and an impressive number considering they faced 202 drives.

The defense also forced plenty of turnovers, finishing with 12 interceptions and 16 forced fumbles (best in the NFL). The 28 total take aways mean that the Eagles had almost as good of a chance as creating a turnover (28 times) and they did allowing a touchdown (30).

In addition to turnovers, the Eagles also got stellar play from their front seven, finishing fourth against the run allowing an average of just 3.7 yards per carry. They also had 49 sacks, tied for second in the league.
Linc ...

This season can't start soon enough!
Phits
One game that jumps out at me right away is that game against the 49ers. If it weren't for the defense that would have been another in the W column. The problem (certainly) wasn't with the front 7....

QUOTE (Zero @ May 21 2015, 06:15 AM) *
Talk about the Season of IF has mainly centered around Bradford's health, but I keep forgetting what the defense did and didn't do last year. How many games were lost just because of Williams and Fletcher? They weren't average, they were horrible at the worst times. Would that 10 win season have been 12 wins, maybe 13 with average CB play? How long will it take Maxwell and Rowe and _____ to assimilate into the system and improve the secondary to average? How much better would the D have been if they had some stability w/o injury at MLB?
Linc ...

This season can't start soon enough!

mcnabbulous
QUOTE (Phits @ May 21 2015, 11:41 AM) *
One game that jumps out at me right away is that game against the 49ers. If it weren't for the defense that would have been another in the W column. The problem (certainly) wasn't with the front 7....

Do you mean offense? I think you mean offense.
Phits
QUOTE (mcnabbulous @ May 21 2015, 12:46 PM) *
Do you mean offense? I think you mean offense.

I stand corrected. I mistakenly focussed (solely) on the blown coverage on the Gore TD.

QUOTE
Kaepernick rolls left after feeling pressure but throws against his body and finds a WIDE OPEN Frank Gore on the right side of the field for a catch and run for a score. Whoever was responsible for Gore on the play totally lost track of him. Terrible play for Philadelphia's defense. Wolff failed to make a tackle on Gore to prevent the score.
Joegrane
Keys to the season:

1. Healthy O Line. They need a credible running attack to keep pressure off Bradford and help to keep him in one piece. This will also result in a reasonable time of possession situation for the D that played too many snaps last year.

2. Pass rush from the front 4. My impression is that the Eagles got their sacks and pressure when they sent a 5th rusher. Barwin's sack total is consistent with this. In the games where the pass rush was successful, the secondary did not look so bad.

The eagles currently have a different philosophy from Jimmy Johnson. JJ wanted to get to the QB. Remember the years the birds were poor in stuffing the run but were still successful. This is a passing league. When defending the lead in the 4th quarter you have to disrupt or sack the QB.
mcnabbulous
QUOTE (Phits @ May 21 2015, 02:14 PM) *
I stand corrected. I mistakenly focussed (solely) on the blown coverage on the Gore TD.

I'm still not sure if you're serious. That was a bad play, but our offense got shut out on the day. Obviously they were to blame for the loss.
samaroo
QUOTE (mcnabbulous @ May 22 2015, 07:35 AM) *
I'm still not sure if you're serious. That was a bad play, but our offense got shut out on the day. Obviously they were to blame for the loss.

One of several games where our ST's were the MVP.

Joe, I agree with your #2 for sure. And I think we have the guys to do it. Of all the things I'm excited to see this year (and there are a lot) that is one of the biggest, especially Cox. I hope he takes that last step to uber-dominance that we all expect him to.
nephillymike
This season has possibilities, that's for sure.

First things first.

If you use predicted point spreads from last year's end of season power ratings for us and our opponents, we are favored in 13 of our 16 games.

So if we improved by the same as our competition did, 13-3 is a starting point.

Unlike two years ago, I thought we earned our record last year. There were no GB without Rogers or DAL without Romo games. Matter of fact, we had a real tough schedule as far as where our games were shceduled in relation to byes, rests etc.

The main reason we didn't get in the playoffs was the schedule. DAL got in with a weaker schedule. Swap schedules and we get in.

Another huge reason was our CB play. Instead of being piss poor, if our CB trio improves to being just below average, we win one more game last year. (DAL at home)

Our QB situation last year. Foles got hurt, Sanchez came in. If Bradford plays, gets hurt a few games and Sanchez comes in, I gotta believe that the combination of half Bradford and half year 2 Sanchez is better than the Foles/Sanchez combo last year. A better Sanchez beat Washington.

Injuries. We got hit hard at ILB and OL last year. I expect OL to get hit again, but I think our other injuries won't be so concentrated in one area. The OL is a concern, given our thinner depth than last year, but I think in other areas we'll be better.

With all the new pieces trying to fit, we may drop back two games. It's hard with so many new guys and so many coming off injury. But even dropping two from 13 is 11 and with the upside in the other areas I pointed out, it could be a strong 11.

I'm excited.
samaroo
QUOTE (nephillymike @ May 22 2015, 10:49 AM) *
Unlike two years ago, I thought we earned our record last year. There were no GB without Rogers or DAL without Romo games. Matter of fact, we had a real tough schedule as far as where our games were shceduled in relation to byes, rests etc.

The main reason we didn't get in the playoffs was the schedule. DAL got in with a weaker schedule. Swap schedules and we get in.


True, but I'm less concerned with "getting in" than I am with solid, long-term improvement. I'm not trying to dredge up that old argument, either, just saying. I totally agree that we get in (probably by 2 games) with our schedules swapped.

QUOTE
Another huge reason was our CB play. Instead of being piss poor, if our CB trio improves to being just below average, we win one more game last year. (DAL at home)


I'd put the Arizona game in that category as well.

QUOTE
Our QB situation last year. Foles got hurt, Sanchez came in. If Bradford plays, gets hurt a few games and Sanchez comes in, I gotta believe that the combination of half Bradford and half year 2 Sanchez is better than the Foles/Sanchez combo last year. A better Sanchez beat Washington.


I expect Bradford to be better than Foles last year, but I'm not expecting a big jump from Sanchez. At this point, he is what he is. Which is one of the better backups in the league. But if that level of QB play is what you're getting for any sustained stretch, then all you have is hope.

QUOTE
Injuries. We got hit hard at ILB and OL last year. I expect OL to get hit again, but I think our other injuries won't be so concentrated in one area. The OL is a concern, given our thinner depth than last year, but I think in other areas we'll be better.


I have to think last year was just math getting even for 2013. And the fact that our injuries were clumped by position was just crazy bad luck. Players will be injured, but hopefully not all in 1 or 2 position groups. It will be interesting to see what kind of metrics come out in a few years about the sports science stuff and our injuries, though. I think we need a much bigger sample size, I think.

QUOTE
With all the new pieces trying to fit, we may drop back two games. It's hard with so many new guys and so many coming off injury. But even dropping two from 13 is 11 and with the upside in the other areas I pointed out, it could be a strong 11.


Honestly, I see 13 wins easily when I look at our schedule. However, I'm not that optimistic (or stupid, I guess.) We'll drop a game or two we should win, and a freak play or injury will cost us somewhere, I'm sure. But 11 would be great, almost definitely good enough for the division, and maybe in the hunt for a bye. If we improve steadily over the next few years, our timing is good. The NFC powerhouses are in decline, so it can be our time.

QUOTE
I'm excited.


Me too. Is it September yet?
Zero
QUOTE (nephillymike @ May 21 2015, 09:49 PM) *
The main reason we didn't get in the playoffs was the schedule. DAL got in with a weaker schedule. Swap schedules and we get in.

And how do the schedules match up this year?
samaroo
QUOTE (Zero @ May 22 2015, 08:02 PM) *
And how do the schedules match up this year?

Ours is pretty favorable, in my opinion. And all the experts seem to agree.

I haven't looked at Dallas' schedule, but in theory it should be harder than ours, for the same reason that ours was harder last year. They play all the division winners from last year, and we play the runners up. So they get GB, SEA and CAR while we get DET, ARI and TB? Is that right? Going off memory here.
Zero
I feel like we have an easier schedule this year than we did last year, I just wasn't sure about Dallas. Maybe Dreagon can chime in.
nephillymike
We play the same teams in 14 of 16 games.

Last year we played GB and CAR
They played CHI and NO

This year we play ARI and DET
They play SEA and GB

If they played our schedule last year, they would have had one more loss (GB) and we would have beated CHI. We both end up 11-5 and we win the tiebreakers and get into the playoffs.

This year, we have the easier of the two games. That should make it easier for us and more difficult for them.
samaroo
QUOTE (nephillymike @ May 24 2015, 04:36 AM) *
We play the same teams in 14 of 16 games.

Last year we played GB and CAR
They played CHI and NO

This year we play ARI and DET
They play SEA and GB

If they played our schedule last year, they would have had one more loss (GB) and we would have beated CHI. We both end up 11-5 and we win the tiebreakers and get into the playoffs.

This year, we have the easier of the two games. That should make it easier for us and more difficult for them.

Yep, I forgot that the East and South are matched up this year. Good catch.
Dreagon
QUOTE (Zero @ May 23 2015, 06:39 AM) *
I feel like we have an easier schedule this year than we did last year, I just wasn't sure about Dallas. Maybe Dreagon can chime in.

Ours got a little stiffer. We've got Seattle again, and this time GB as well. Since we're both playing the NFC south I can't really count Carolina. What with both of us also playing the AFC East I guess we're going to see what the teams in our division are made of.
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