Philadelphia Eagles Quarterback Dennis Dixon: 2012 Year in Review and 2013 Fantasy Football Outlook

Former Oregon Ducks QB Dennis Dixon Joins the Philadelphia Eagles

With the former Oregon Ducks Quarterback Dennis Dixon joining the Philadelphia Eagles, it would seem that Michael Vick has some competition.  After being behind Pittsburgh Steelers Ben Roethlisberger and Charlie Batch and with Michael Vick’s lackluster performances during this past season, it is Dennis Dixon who might just take the job away from him — as Michael Vick took the job away from Kevin Kolb and Donovan McNabb.  But is everything as bright as it seems or is Dennis Dixon merely motivation or a stepping stone for a future franchise quarterback?  Time to check the numbers and see…

2012 Year in Review

With the Pittsburgh Steelers 2009 and 2010 season being the two applicable NFL bearings for Dennis Dixon, he has made a total of 34 of 58 attempts those past two seasons for an average of 58.6 percent and 399 passing yards.  He had an average quarterback rating of 70 which is mediocre.  On the bright side, he had 8 attempts rushing for 59 yards and an average of 7.4 yards per attempt.

While Dixon was an Oregon Duck in his 2007 season, he performed much better with a 161 quarterback rating with 2,129 passing yards, but then again, he was facing much lesser competition and age was still in his favor.

2013 Fantasy Football Outlook

This might be the season Dennis Dixon finally takes over the reigns as starting quarterback if he performs and exceeds Michael Vick in the training camp.  But this is a big might

It’s too early to tell, but given a chance, he should be capable of performing below Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III and definitely below San Francisco 49ers Colin Kaepernick.  If Dennis Dixon does start, he should place with a ceiling of QB2 at best and bench — and maybe waiver wire fodder — at worst.

2013-14 Philadelphia Eagles: Rebuilding for a Better Tomorrow

With the off-season already in tow and Chip Kelly as now the Philadelphia Eagles head coach, here’s my blueprint for the Philadelphia Eagles:

  • Quarterback Michael Vick. With San Francisco 49ers Colin Kaepernick and Seattle Seahawks Russell Wilson rising, it would seem that Michael Vick would be a logical choice to remain a quarterback for the Philadelphia Eagles.  But Vick is actually quite outdated compared to either of those. Vick is comparable to a old-school Corvette versus a modern Saleen S7 in Kaepernick and Wilson. As sleek as Vick may be, his engine would burn out long before he reached the finish line. Vick is outmatched and outdated in this new era of quarterbacks.
  • Quarterback Nick Foles. Nick Foles is no Jeff Garcia nor will he ever be.  Nick Foles has slight potential, but he lacks an upside. Foles is far too predictable.  I would gladly barter both Michael Vick and Nick Foles for San Francisco 49ers Alex Smith, even as a backup.  Smith is an intellectual quarterback, but he lacks mobility.  Still though, he would be a good option for the Philadelphia Eagles.
  • Return to 4-3 and Contain Defenses. The Eagles used to be the best at containing the quarterbacks under Jim Johnson, and the Eagles should return to the 4-3.  What the Eagles had in talent in 2012-13 they lacked in mentality and preparation. With Robert Griffin III and his Washington Redskins in their division, the Eagles defense must adjust properly.
  • Running Back LeSean McCoy. He’s one the few bright spots of the Eagles organization.  Talent and skill-wise, he’s been better than Brian Westbrook.  He should be kept.
  • Tight End Brent Celek. He’s another of the few bright spots of the Eagles organization.  He should be kept.
  • Wide Receiver DeSean Jackson. His free lunch with Andy Reid is officially over — and should have been over a while back.  If Coach Kelly wants him to play as kick returner, he plays kick returner.  If he wants him to play cornerback or safety, he plays cornerback or safety.  Otherwise, he gets traded and exchanged for someone more than willing to play, like soon-to-be free agent Green Bay Packers Greg Jennings.
  • CEO Jeff Lurie. Well, he should keep his reins on Chip Kelly.  At least for now.
  • Head Coach Chip Kelly. Chip Kelly must instill discipline of the Eagles team from the start.  However, he seems like a pushover which does not seem to bode well.  Kelly could play favorites like Reid did, and the house of cards will again crumble.

21st Philadelphia Eagles Head Coach Chip Kelly: The Deconstruction of the Off-Season

With the hiring of Chip Kelly, the former University of Oregon Ducks and a brilliant mind for college offensive schemes, as the 21st Philadelphia Eagles head coach, he has his work cut out for him. Not only will he be in one of the toughest sports environments as fans can easily bastardize him one moment and praise him the next, he will have to rescue a flogging offense, a porous defense and two quarterbacks reeking of mediocrity. The pistol and read-option offenses have come to a smashing success this season, and the Philadelphia Eagles and the rest of the league will adapt defensively — and change their offensive gameplans accordingly during the off-season. So before everyone in Philadelphia decides to burn the man at the stake before he even has the first opportunity to make a decision of any consequence…

With all this in mind, Chip Kelly has made a good impression — at least with the media.  He has that so-called “winning” personality — smiling, boisterous, catering to the media and knows exactly what to say in a soundbite. In reality, he has established himself as nothing more than Jeff Lurie‘s overpaid $32.5 million lapdog already — to be brutally honest.

Chip Kelly will hopefully remove some of the malignant parts of the Philadelphia Eagles in his attempt to please everyone.  With him already baiting Michael Vick, however, it is not good.  Michael Vick is an outdated and fragile (physically) player even in the new read-option offense.  Vick couldn’t survive another season of punishment.

All in all, Chip Kelly is one interesting choice.  Not one that I would have made, but then again, I am not Jeff Lurie.  I think that Jeff Lurie believes Chip Kelly can produce him the success of Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll, and he possibly might.  However, I would have personally opted for former Seattle Seahawks defensive coordinator Gus Bradley or San Francisco 49ers offensive coordinator Greg Roman myself.  I would have preferred Greg Roman myself for an offensive-minded coach, but he probably couldn’t endure the Philadelphia frenzy.

I am not so quick to crucify him.  Not just yet.

Andy Reid and the Philadelphia Eagles: The End of an Era

Former Philadelphia Eagles head coach Andy Reid gets handed a gameball in his last press conference as a head coach

It’s officially the end of an era for former Philadelphia Eagles head coach Andy Reid with a devastating record of 4-12 for the 2012 regular season.   Eagles owner Jeff Lurie stood by his word as he bid Andy Reid farewell after an 8-8 record for the 2011 season.  For those fans clamoring that we should not have let Andy Reid go since he was the Eagles franchise most successful coach to date, the Eagles organization is still a business.  And if Jeff Lurie kept Andy Reid for another season as a coach or otherwise, Lurie would be made to be nothing more than a paper tiger at best and a pushover at worst.  In as much as some of us criticize Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder for being a pushover, Jeff Lurie would made to look much worse.

Former Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Terrell Owens and quarterback Donovan McNabb

Andy Reid became head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles on January 11, 1999.  It was not without criticism upon arrival in Philadelphia after he was lured from the Green Bay Packers. In 2000, the Philadelphia Eagles reached the playoffs with a 11-5 regular season record.  In 2001, the chain of playoff wins came.  With quarterback Donovan McNabb, running back Brian Westbrook and safety Brian Dawkins coming to maturity, the Philadelphia Eagles was the team to beat in the NFC East with conference championships in 2001, 2002, 2003 and 2004.  In 2004, with the acquisition of wide receiver Terrell Owens, the Eagles were at this time the cream of the crop of the NFC East and decisively the NFL.  The Eagles made it to Super Bowl XXXIX but was ultimately defeated by Tom Brady and his New England Patriots 24-21.  Donovan McNabb simply cracked under pressure in this Super Bowl, and with the Eagles essentially without a functioning quarterback, the New England Patriots won.

Former Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jeff Garcia on the Sports Illustrated cover

After the stream of successes prior to 2004, the wheels of the truck began to fall off in 2005 as the disputes between Terrell Owens, Donovan McNabb and David Akers tore apart the team in the locker room. In 2005, the Eagles ended with a regular season record of 6-10.  In 2006, with the season-ending injury to Donovan McNabb in October, backup quarterback Jeff Garcia took over the reigns and nearly led the Eagles to another Super Bowl after defeating the Carolina Panthers, the New York Giants and the Washington Redskins. However, as Jeff Garcia led them closer and closer to the Super Bowl, Donovan McNabb came out of the woodwork and became disruptive from the sidelines in a sense.  This antagonism ultimately led to Jeff Garcia being released — and Donovan McNabb as well.

In 2008, the Eagles made their way to the NFC Championship game whereupon they lost to the Cardinals 32-25. The Eagles traded Donovan McNabb to the Washington Redskins in 2009, and after McNabb’s departure, then backup quarterback Michael Vick was named starting quarterback in 2010.  Vick’s most notable game as a Philadelphia Eagle was the decimation of Donovan McNabb and his  Washington Redskins on the night of November 15, 2010. On that night, Michael Vick was unleashed as he had four passing touchdowns and two rushing touchdowns with a passer rating of 150.7.

Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick after another loss

After Michael Vick’s spectacular run in 2010, the wheels began falling off the truck again.  Most teamis had developed a gameplan for Vick’s weaknesses and tendencies as the New York Giants and the Dallas Cowboys both built sufficient defense gameplan templates the season before.  The other teams in the NFL basically followed suit, adjusting their templates as needed.  And with Michael Vick not holding much better himself in the 2011 and 2012 regular seasons, the Philadelphia Eagles demise was gradual and climaxed in this regular season with compounding losses with ridiculous amount of turnovers.

Juan Castillo as Philadelphia Eagles defensive coordinator

With the loss of defensive coordinator Jim Johnson on July 28, 2009, the Philadelphia Eagles defense never was the same.  Sean McDermott took over, but he could never build the Eagles defense as Jim Johnson could.  Soon, even he was released to the Carolina Panthers on January 5, 2011.  And with the acquisition of Nnamdi Asomugha and Dominque Rodgers-Cromartie in the 2011 season, it seemed like a recipe for success.  Perhaps under the traditional defense of Jim Johnson.  With Juan Castillo and his implementation of the Wide-Nine defense, the defense collapsed unto itself as there were no leaders, only highly-paid players.

Andy Reid should be remembered for the successes he bought to the Philadelphia Eagles organization.  With few notable candidates currently to fill the void, 2012 Maxwell Coach of the Year Penn State’s Bill O’Brien seems to be the leading candidate.  Quite possibly, in my opinion, the former Chicago Bears Lovie Smith would be a potential option as well.  In either case, the options are not particularly tempting.  Reid went over his head with the promotion of Juan Castillo as a defensive coordinator, the firing of Sean McDermott and the wholesale acquisition of free agents. These are perhaps what did him in as a head coach.  Most likely, he will be acquired by the Arizona Cardinals as Ken Whisenhunt was recently fired.  A change of scenery will do him good.  Will it bring him as much success with the Philadelphia Eagles?  Perhaps, but I remain skeptical.

Philadelphia Eagles 2012: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (The Post-Turkey Edition)

It's About Time For Change. Definitely.

It’s About Time For Change. Definitely.

With the Philadelphia Eagles season pretty much officially drawn to a close after the horrendous 30-22 loss to the lowly Carolina Panthers, it’s time to take a honest look at the Eagles organization. Or the Turkeys organization. Seriously.

THE GOOD

  • Die-hard Philadelphia Eagles fans. You’ve got to give them props for still able to tough it out.  The few that still attend the games should be given a nod, if anything else.
  • Backup quarterback Nick Foles. We now know what he’s made of — and more of what he isn’t.
  • Backup running back Bryce Brown.  On the bright side, the Eagles finally know how to use running backs.  However, it took a losing season for them to recognize it.
  • Running back LeSean McCoy. He has demonstrated he is one of the stellar parts of this team.  Although he had fewer touchdowns to date than when he was a rookie, he was on pace to beat his yardage total.
  • Tight End Brent Celek. Brent Celek has been one of the stalwarts of the Eagles organization. Tough, classy, and  respectable.  He was on pace to exceed his yardage total over the previous seasons.

THE BAD

  • Backup quarterback Nick Foles. At this point, he’s not worth much in trade value after seeing what he’s capable of performing in the national spotlight.  At best, he’s no worse than Kevin Kolb; and at his worst, he’s no better than A.J. Feeley.
  • Quarterback Michael Vick. Even though he had a phenomenol 2010 season, it is no longer 2010.  The league has changed while Michael Vick hasn’t.  Michael Vick is no elite quarterback.  He does not have the intellectual prowess nor the pocket presence on the field as with New England Patriots’ Tom Brady or Denver Broncos’ Peyton Manning. He never did. And he never will.
  • Running back LeSean McCoy. Well, his touchdown production is worse than when he was a rookie.  In fact, he had only two touchdowns to date compared to four in his 2009 season.  And he doubled his fumbles since his 2009 season.
  • Tight End Brent Celek.  Well, like LeSean McCoy, his touchdown production this season matched his rookie season with only one.
  • The Defense as a Whole. By the numbers, the defense has only gotten slightly worse than the previous seasons. The Eagles defense currently ranks about middle of the pack, and it hasn’t changed much over the past few seasons with or without Sean McDermott.

THE UGLY

  • The Yankees The Eagles Ain’t. Andy Reid got a bit too ambitious perhaps and over his head these past few seasons.  He sought to buy talent like the New York Yankees, but that was not the prize-winning formula for the Eagles during their winning seasons.  Reid always found ways to find diamonds in the rough and transform them into generally great players.  Jeremiah Trotter was one example as he was a mess in the beginning but eventually became a four-time Pro Bowler.
  • Head Coach Andy Reid. He’s unable to energize the troops.  He’s unable to have decent play-calling. He’s an impotent coach.
  • Juan Castillo and His Wide-9 Defense. After Juan Castillo was let go, unfortunately, the defense improved very little.  The Wide-9 defense requires highly talented players at the end/corners who are consistent.  Unfortunately, the Eagles defense does not possess either in Dominque Rodgers-Cromartie or Nnamdi Asomugha.  One more point, the Eagles should return to 46 defense or the 4-3.
  • Turnovers. We can only wish these were the breakfast kind. The Eagles have one of the worst turnover ratios in the entire league this season.

With five games left, and potentially three or four more losses ahead, the regular football season is drawing to a close. With yet another potential loss to the Dallas Cowboys,  the charade of the Philadelphia Eagles may finally come to an end.

2012-13 NFL Season Preview for Fantasy Football: Chaos in Motion

With most of the fantasy football leagues already in tow with their drafts and the preseason games closed, it’s time to see how this season will fold.  Now onto my predictions for the NFL 2012-13 regular season:

  • Rookie Quarterbacks.  After the Wildcat, rookie quarterbacks are the new sensation in football.  With Detroit Lions’ Matthew Stafford and Cincinnati Bengals’ Andy Dalton both performing well, given their short tenure in the league, now it’s time for others to shine — and collapse under the burden of the NFL.  Washington RedskinsRobert Griffin III is a hot commodity to be sure, but you better count your eggs before your chickens in his case.  Otherwise, he might leave your basket half-empty.
  • Chaos, Chaos Everywhere.  With veterans already injured, like Minnesota Vikings’ Adrian Peterson, fantasy football players will be scrounging early and often.  Waiver wire will be the godsend and disaster for many, many people.  Whereas in earlier seasons, the waiver wire was fundamentally for backups and gamblers.  EVERYONE will be scrounging.
  • Indianapolis Colts Andrew Luck vs. The World.  Andrew Luck has high expectations on his shoulder in the Indianapolis Colts locker room.  He has almost the same quality weapons that now Denver BroncosPeyton Manning has, but will he live up to expectations?  He should get close and surpass Robert Griffin III.  Anything beyond that, I won’t risk.
  • Denver Broncos‘ Peyton Manning vs. New York Giants’ Eli Manning.  The Mannings have already done their commercial work.  I don’t think Peyton Manning won’t be driving his Buicks through any goal posts this season.  He should do a better-than-average job as quarterback for the Broncos.  He should be capped as a low-end QB1/high-end QB2.  Eli Manning should be capped as a high-end QB2.  Both will average each other out.
  • Philadelphia Eagles Michael Vick and Nick Foles: The Jeff Garcia Effect.  You know how history repeats itself.  The Eagles will repeat history again.  Vick will get injured, and Foles will indeed take the Eagles at or near the playoffs with his leadership and ability.  Once the Eagles get into the playoffs (or near it), Vick will miraculously return and take the reins.  However, the wheels will fall of the Eagles truck — once again.
  • New York Jets’ Tebow Wildcats and His Jesus-Voltron.  Jets’ head coach Rex Ryan created a combustible quarterback situation.  How long do you think Tim Tebow will take a backseat in the Wildcat formation?  Hmmm, not too long, I think.  Once Mark Sanchez fails even slightly, Sanchez will be pulled.  If Ryan doesn’t pull him, the angry New York fans will.  The clock is ticking…

This is a short taste of what’s to come during the NFL 2012-13 regular season of fantasy football in my honest and blunt opinion.

Philadelphia Eagles Quarterback Michael Vick: 2011 Reality Check and 2012 Fantasy Football Outlook

2011 Reality Check

2011 was the year in which Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick fell to earth.  I commented on this earlier in the year, decidedly saying that he would fall into solid QB2 or low-end QB1.   In either case, he produced as expected in most of the regular season games. producing such solid QB2 or low-end QB1 numbers.  Aside from him contending with injuries and the DeSean Jackson debacle, 2011 was not one of his better seasons with the Philadelphia Eagles.

This regular season, he produced 3,303 passing yards, 18 touchdowns, 14 interceptions and an above-average 84.9 quarterback rating.  On top of that, he had 3 turnovers.  Compared to his 2010 regular season, he produced 3,018 passing yards, 21 touchdowns, 6 interceptions, 6 fumbles and a 100.2 quarterback rating.  Obviously, Michael Vick had a heavy dose of reality, but he still did better than his 2004 season with the Atlanta Falcons.  However, this is not saying much as Vick has reached his peak, more or less, in my honest opinion.

Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick was inconsistent much of this past season.  He started fairly strong against his former team, the Atlanta Falcons, with 242 passing yards, 2 touchdowns, an interception and a 103.6 quarterback rating.   His best game was against the Dallas Cowboys in which they were trounced 34-7.  Vick had 279 passing yards, 2 touchdowns and a 129.9 quarterback rating.  To keep things in perspective, he was facing the Cowboys 23rd-ranked passing defense during the regular season.  During the 2011 regular season, he had his worst game against the Arizona Cardinals.  Ironically, the Cardinals defense was almost as comparable to the Dallas Cowboys defense.  The Cardinals defense was ranked 18th in overall defense and 17th in passing defense during the regular season.  Yet Michael Vick only threw for 128 yards, had 2 interceptions and a dismal 32.5 quarterback rating.

2012 Fantasy Football Outlook

For the 2012 regular season, I would place Michael Vick again as a solid QB2, and he should be capped at a high-end QB2 at best.  Vick is prone to injury, fumbles and inconsistency as he has demonstrated the past two seasons with the Philadelphia Eagles.  He should be handcuffed — if not with Vince Young, then some other quarterback when drafted.  He has reached his peak or thereabouts, I believe. He’s essentially the Eagles’ Brett Favre minus the drama.  However, line coach Howard Mudd will help the offensive line, but it won’t change the fact that Michael Vick is above-average at best.  Comparatively, Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton has an upside due to his youth and athleticism.

The Carolina Panthers’ Cam Newton Conundrum: 2011 Reality Check and 2012 Fantasy Football Outlook

2011 Reality Check

Carolina Panthers‘ recent acquisition of rookie quarterback Cam Newton went better than expected, but Newton isn’t without his flaws.  Statistically, Newton produced 4,051 total passing yards, 21 touchdowns, 17 interceptions and an 84.5 quarterback rating.  That put him in the company of veterans Philadelphia Eagles Michael Vick and Tennessee Titans Matt Hasselbeck in terms of quarterback rating.  This is impressive given that it is his first NFL season after his departure from the Auburn Tigers.  However, his consistency is the issue.  Newton started spectacularly against the Arizona Cardinals in his first game with 422 total passing yards, 2 touchdowns, an interception and an impressive 110.4 quarterback rating.  However, as he faced tougher teams in his next five games, his quarterback rating went from 72.0 against the Green Bay Packers to a dismal 44.6 quarterback rating against the Atlanta Falcons.  He did well against two hapless teams the Washington Redskins and Minnesota Vikings for his next two games with ratings of 127.5 and 117.6.  Then he went up and down throughout the rest of the season, peaking against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in week 16 with 171 total passing yards, 3 touchdowns, no interceptions and a spectacular 142.4 quarterback rating.  Cam Newton may have been a fantasy beast at times, but then again, it was against weaker teams of the NFL.  He broke several records as a rookie including rushing touchdowns in the 2011 regular season and became the first player in league history to pass for 4,000 yards and rush for 500 yards.  However, Cam Newton’s statistics, when put in perspective, are a bit over-inflated.

With Cam Newton announcing that Philadelphia Eagles backup quarterback Vince Young is in the same category JaMarcus Russell, not only is it wrong, it is downright arrogant.  True, given that Newton actually started better than Vince Young and only comparable to Vince Young in his fourth season with the Tennessee Titans, Vince Young had better statistics and quarterback rating through his seasons with the Tennessee Titans than JaMarcus Russell’s three-year tenure with the Oakland Raiders.  JaMarcus Russell never got better than a 77.1 quarterback rating with 2,423 quarterback rating on 13 touchdowns and 8 interceptions in 2008.

2012 Fantasy Football Outlook

Cam Newton was a fantasy beast in 2011 with a commanding QB1 statistics, but I would cap him at a mid- QB2 when he matures and as the seasons become more difficult.  The Carolina Panthers season ended with a 6-10, which isn’t spectacular by any stretch of the imagination.  Mobile quarterbacks in the NFL are generally slightly above-average at best and at worst, mediocre.  Philadelphia Eagles Michael Vick was the exception to the rule during the 2010 regular season, but reality set in the 2011 regular season.  Cam Newton was the exception this season. The Carolina Panthers 2012 schedule have them against some of the tougher defenses in the league including the New York Giants, the Philadelphia Eagles and the Seattle Seahawks.  Newton will get a heavy dose of reality next season and going forward.  He should potentially end up at a mid-range QB2 with upside during the 2012 regular season.

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The Philadelphia Eagles 2011-12 Season in Review: The Good, the Fads and the Ugly

With the Philadelphia Eagles impressive 34-10 win over the hapless Washington Redskins last Sunday, the game was essentially meaningless as the Eagles could not make the playoffs.  The Eagles end the regular season with 8-8 and third in the NFC East.  Meanwhile, the New York Giants won over their local AFC rival New York Jets 29-14 two weeks beforehand, and with the win, the Giants saved their head coach Tom Coughlin’s job once again.  The New York Giants upped one even further by winning the NFC East title over the Dallas Cowboys and securing the last coveted spot in the playoffs against the Atlanta Falcons. Sadly, the Philadelphia Eagles are left contemplating their 2011-12 regular season on their couches and chalkboards.

The Good

Running Back LeSean McCoy Goes to the Pro Bowl and One of the Leading Running Backs in the NFL. It was a matter of time before LeSean McCoy matures as a running back and dominates.  As said previously, he progressed faster than Brian Westbrook did with the Philadelphia Eagles as statistics showed from the last few seasons.  In this season, he surpassed former Philadelphia Eagles running back Steve Van Buren and the entire league this season with 20 total touchdowns.

Former Pro Bowl Kicker David Akers Leaves. When former Pro Bowler David Akers left for the San Francisco 49ers, there was a hole left in the Eagles special teams.  Coach Andy Reid resorted to rookie Alex Henery, and he has been a surprise as he ranks 5th in extra-points made.

The Fads

Quarterback Micheal Vick Matures But Doesn’t Improve. The Michael Vick mystique had all but disappeared within Philadelphia.  His mediocrity has shown like he was with the Atlanta Falcons.  However, this time, he lacked the brashness of his youth.  In fact, with his overall quarterback rating of 82.9, he’s only slightly better than he was with the Atlanta Falcons with 2004 at a 78.1 quarterback rating. His 2011 quarterback rating obviously fails in comparison to his 2010 rating of 100.2. The Donovan McNabb Experiment with Michael Vick has been less than successful.

Tight End Brent Celek Gel with Michael Vick. One of the better tight ends in the league finally gels with Michael Vick.  However, this is a double-edged sword. Michael Vick has been mediocre this season compared to last season, and despite the increase in the number of targets per game, Brent Celek’s numbers has actually been worse than the previous season. Compared to last season, he has 200+ more yards, but he has the same number of touchdowns as he did last season when he should have had more.

Implementation of the Wide 9 Defense. The wide 9 defense hasn’t been entirely bad for the Philadelphia Eagles.  It was distorted by the Eagles turnovers.  In fact, the Philadelphia Eagles have nearly 1,000 less total yards gained by opponents and gained four positions to 8th this season in total defense.  Compared against the run last season, they are about comparable, ranking surprisingly at about 15th. This defensive formation has been astonishingly effective despite how it looks on the field.  Numbers don’t lie.

The Ugly 

Head Coach Andy Reid and Office Politics. Head coach Andy Reid has been on the hot seat this season as the team continuously lost despite having the talent on the roster.  The inconsistent offense, undisciplined defense and the coach hirings and firings ultimately bit Reid this season.

Juan Castillo’s Promotion to Defensive Coordinator. Juan Castillo, the defensive coordinator this season, has been on the hot seat as well.  With St. Louis Rams Steve Spagnulo looming on the horizon, Castillo may not be the defensive coordinator no longer.

Wide Receiver DeSean Jackson Goes Diva. DeSean Jackson still has been contending for a better contract all season.  However, this season, his numbers have not been that productive.  He has only 3 touchdowns to date compared to 6 last season, and he has less than 1,000 total receiving yards this season unlike the past two.  Whether he or the Philadelphia Eagles want to trade him in the off-season, that remains to be seen.  There’s no doubt he’s valuable to the Eagles franchise, but his attitude may sour the team.

Defense Lacks Discipline. Dealing with a new defensive coordinator in Juan Castillo was hard enough, but even harder, when the defensive coordinator doesn’t press discipline on the players.  Some of the Philadelphia Eagles defensive backs have been causing commotion on the field by hitting above the shoulder pads and after the tackle.  This is not the professional team that once was when Donovan McNabb, Brian Westbrook and David Akers were here.

Turnovers, Turnovers, Turnovers. The Philadelphia Eagles offense has been lackadaisical as the Eagles are ranked first in turnovers in the entire NFL.  Having the first in turnovers won’t win games, particularly when compounded with a porous run defense.

Cornerback Asante Samuel Unhappy as the Safety Position Crowds. With the acquisition of Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and Nnamdi Asomugha, former New England Patriots cornerback Asante Samuel felt that it was three’s a crowd in the safety position. Compared to last season, he’s been a more effective tackler, but he hasn’t nearly had the number of interceptions.  And with the Eagles already considering selling him as trade bait, Samuel is definitely not happy here in Philadelphia.  It is anything but sunny.

Wait Until Next Season…

This season has not been one of the better seasons for the Philadelphia Eagles.  With Vince Young’s announcement the Philadelphia Eagles as the “Dream Team” to the media and general public, the hype fell flat, and it fell hard.  There has been some rumbling about changes in personnel position. Former St. Louis Rams head coach Steve Spagnulo has been mentioned as the Philadelphia Eagles’ replacement as defensive coordinator, but nothing has been decided yet.   There will be more media chatter once a decision has been made or not. Until then, Eagles fans, we will have to wait until next season, and perhaps the Eagles will return to playoff contention once again.

Philadelphia Eagles Running Back Ronnie Brown: 2010 Year in Review and 2011 Outlook and Beyond

2010 Year in Review

With the recent acquisition of Ronnie Brown from the Miami Dolphins, the Philadelphia Eagles definitely got a better running back than former Cleveland Browns running back Jerome Harrison. With yet another trade, Jerome Harrison is now property of the Detroit Lions behind Javhid Best.  That doesn’t particularly raise Harrison’s value as a running back either for the Detroit Lions, but that’s another discussion for another day.  For Ronnie Brown, he was part of the running back tandem with Ricky Williams.  However, neither performed well last season, individually or as a team.  Now Ronnie Brown is with the Philadelphia Eagles behind the much-better running back LeSean McCoy.  Perhaps this change will give him some new legs…

In Brown’s 2010 season, he had 734 total rushing yards, a low 3.7 yards per attempt and only 5 touchdowns. He was ranked 31st among running backs in total rushing yardage. On the bright side, he was ranked higher than Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick with his 676 total rushing yardage.  On the downside, Michael Vick had twice as many touchdowns with 9 rushing touchdowns. In other words, Vick was a better running back than Brown was during the 2010 season.  That is a bitter pill to swallow for Ronnie Brown.

In his prime, Ronnie Brown did have two good seasons in 2006 and 2008.  In his 2006 season, he 1,008 total rushing yards, averaged 4.2 yards per rush and had 5 rushing touchdowns. In terms of total rushing yards, he was ranked 23rd.  On the downside, Michael Vick got him beat with 1,039 total rushing yardage during that season with the Atlanta Falcons.  His 2008 season performance was his best. During that season, he had 916 total rushing yards, averaged 4.3 yards per attempt and had 10 touchdowns. His 10 touchdowns ranked him 8th among running backs in that season in the company of elite Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson.

2011 Outlook and Beyond

Ronnie Brown only signed a one-year contract with the Philadelphia Eagles which means that he won’t be there for the long-term, if Jerome Harrison is any telling of Eagles head coach Andy Reid’s intentions.  Given his recent performance, I wouldn’t expect him to stay with the Philadelphia Eagles for longer than one season either.

Ronnie Brown would most likely join the running back carousel next season, if he has a decent performance as LeSean McCoy’s backup. For the most part, he’s spent.  He might have running back performances with shock and awe in a few games.  Anything beyond that, he has gone to the veteran running back graveyard, and I don’t mean the Oakland Raiders.

2011 Fantasy Football Running Back Prospect

I would not be so eager to pick him early in the draft or the waiver wire.  His recent performances do not bring too much optimism.  And with McCoy’s history of injuries, Ronnie Brown should be taken only as a last resort, if that.  Even if he becomes starter for the Philadelphia Eagles, he should be considered no better than a low-end RB2 or perhaps flex.  As a backup, he’s nothing more than waiver wire fodder.