Subject: What can we learn about Doug Pederson in the playoffs?
Subject: Flyers 6, Islanders 4: A statement win from the orange and black
That was a fun hockey game!
Something that was great to see as this game began was the energy level of the Flyers. Solid forechecking lead to some early chances for the home team. Nolan Patrick forced a turnover along the boards that eventually lead to one of Robert Hagg’s early shot attempts. An energetic start was a necessity after the trainwreck that was Tuesday night.
Jordan Weal intercepted a pass at the blue line and looked as if he’d be off on a breakaway but was hooked by former Flyer Dennis Seidenberg and after a few solid chances on the delayed penalty, the first man advantage of the game finally began for Philadelphia.
Yesterday, Tyrell Goulbourne was called up to bring energy to the Flyers lineup; well Travis Konency must have taken offense to this, because the diminutive Konecny answered the bell against Shane Prince and won the fight with a knockout blow.
Generally, the Flyers controlled play for the remainder of the period; they weren’t sitting back on their lead as they typically do. However, in typical Flyers fashion, they surrendered a goal on the only scoring chance the Islanders had up to that point. A point shot from Nick Leddy deflected off of Cal Clutterbuck’s knee and past Elliott. Despite having decimated the Isles for the entire period, the Isles clear the slate and it’s a 1-1 game.
After a period of play, the Flyers lead the Isles in Corsi-for: 22-13, scoring chances-for: 10-5, and high danger chances-for: 5-2. The top line was excellent in the first along with the third line of Jordan Weal, Nolan Patrick, and Wayne Simmonds.
WELL THAT ESCALATED QUICKLY.
Michael Raffl started the goal scoring in the second just a minute and 36 seconds in: a deflection off an Ivan Provorov shot found its way by Greiss and put the Flyers back in front by a 2-1 score. Less than a minute later, Wayne Simmonds buried a rebound chance after great work along the boards by Jordan Weal to work it to the point for a Hagg shot. After dominating so much of the first period, the Flyers were finally burying their scoring chances.
Andrew MacDonald would then draw a four minute double minor via a high stick from Tanner Fritz, which gave the Flyers their second power play of the night. They would make no mistake as Patrick setup Provorov to let another wrister go from the point, it found the back of the net and just like that, the Flyers have a 4-1 lead with over half of the second period yet to play.
The Isles would answer however, as Clutterbuck once again lit the lamp for his second of the night to make it a 4-2 game. Despite never really taking control of the game, the Islanders definitely had a bit more sustained pressure in the period.
Just a minute and a half after Clutterbuck’s goal, the Flyers were right back at it. Couturier made a beautiful flip pass to send Konecny in on a breakaway, and finally Teeks was able to bury one of those golden opportunities and gave the Flyers back their three goal lead.
After two the Flyers lead in corsi-for: 43-29, scoring chances-for: 23-11, and high danger chances-for: 12-4. Hagg, Konecny, and Claude Giroux lead the team in CF% heading into the final stanza.
The final period started just about how you’d imagine, the Islanders pushing play and the Flyers sitting back for the most part. Scott Laughton would take a hooking penalty early on and send the Isles to their first power play of the night and what do you know, John Tavares snipes one by Elliott to make it a two goal game yet again. The penalty kill has been a problem all year, but it only seems to be getting worse.
With 13:10 left in the period, Andrew Ladd was called for tripping and the Flyers went to the power play looking to essentially ice the game. They were unable to convert despite a prime chance from Couturier at the side of the net. It looked like he had a tap in of a goal but decided to make the extra pass to Simmonds. I’m all for making a more creative play than just shooting the puck a la Radko Gudas, but that’s a shot Couturier needs to take.
As the Flyers continued to sit back, the Islanders continued to generate scoring chances, and with just over five minutes in the game, Ryan Pulock blew by Hagg and went top shelf on Elliott. The Islanders all of a sudden are within a goal with the game winding down.
Then Sean Couturier obliterated Josh Bailey.
Sean Couturier vs. Josh Bailey pic.twitter.com/FIW6pJPyPT— Broad Street Hockey (@BroadStHockey) January 5, 2018
This completed the Gordie Howe Hat Trick for Couturier, the first time he has done this in his career.
Then Scott Laughton promptly beat Jordan Eberle up. This game was awesome.
Scott Laughton vs. Jordan Eberle pic.twitter.com/bQ9UW9esXC— Broad Street Hockey (@BroadStHockey) January 5, 2018
After Giroux missed two empty nets because WHAT IS THIS GAME???? Provorov buried his second goal of the game and the Flyers go on to win 6-4 over the Islanders in a wild one against their division rivals.
Subject: Apparently the Patriots are pretty dysfunctional
Pretty interesting stuff.
On Thursday night, some rumors leaked about ESPN’s plan to run a story about dysfunction within the New England Patriots. That ESPN report, authored by Seth Wickersham, is now available. Stop whatever you’re doing and check out this must-read material.
Real, real interesting stuff in there. The “too long; didn’t read” version is that there’s tension between quarterback Tom Brady, head coach Bill Belichick, and owner Robert Kraft. Some of the tension has seemingly been caused by Brady’s personal trainer, Alex Guerrero. But it’s more complicated than just that. There’s a lot of layers to the Pats’ dysfunction. It seems like their success has become a burden in some ways. And the issues could be “the beginning of the end” of an era in New England.
We’ll see if that’s the case. The Patriots are still obviously among the NFL’s elite. Despite all these reported issues, they’re still 13-3 and the No. 1 seed in the AFC this season. They could easily win another Super Bowl ring.
But maybe, just maybe, the Brady-Belichick era is really coming to an end. And if that’s the case, that has a huge impact on the rest of the league. Gone would be a strong favorite to win the title game every year. The door would then be more open for some of the league’s ascending teams, such as the Philadelphia Eagles.
I can’t lie: given the way this Eagles season was going, I was fully imagining a scenario where Carson Wentz and Doug Pederson would beat Brady and Belichick in the Super Bowl to usher a new era in the NFL. With Wentz out for the season, that won’t be able to happen now. It’d still be pretty sweet for the Eagles if they could somehow get to the title game and beat the Pats in what could be New England’s final year of their current structure. Not to mention avenge 2004.
Again, we’ll see what happens. Knowing the Pats, they’ll probably somehow find a way to win the next 100 Super Bowls just to spite this ESPN story. In the meantime, though, it’s interesting to know one of the NFL’s most successful franchises isn’t as invulnerable as it may appear.
PS: LOL at this
At the same time, as his age has increased, Brady has become an advocate of positive thinking. Belichick’s negativity and cynicism have gotten old, Brady has told other Patriots players and staff. He feels he has accomplished enough that he shouldn’t have to endure so much grief. Patriots staffers have noticed that, this year more than ever, he seems to volley between unwavering confidence and driving insecurity. Brady has noted to staff a few times this year that, no matter how many game-changing throws he makes, Belichick hasn’t awarded him Patriot of the Week all year.
Subject: Eagles News: Torrey Smith makes the case for Carson Wentz to be MVP
Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 1/5/18.
Let's get to the Philadelphia Eagles links ...
Give Torrey Smith an MVP vote - NBC Sports Philadelphia
“Tom Brady’s the G.O.A.T. though. He is the G.O.A.T.,” Smith said. “But Carson was able to make plays athletically that Tom can’t physically do, even though he’s the greatest quarterback ever. Carson plays the game differently and what he’s meant to us on third down, when he’s scrambling, the crazy plays he’s made. It’s not like he’s Vick or anything, but the way he makes those plays, it was huge for us. At times we were struggling and those plays turn into opening the gates. He’s made some amazing plays all year. I don’t know, put their highlight tapes together and see what you think.”
What can we learn about Doug Pederson in the playoffs? - BGN
The newest edition of BGN Radio is here! (Episode #291). In this episode, we talk about Doug Pederson, how the Eagles are spending the bye week, and much more.
Ranking the NFL’s 12 playoff QBs: Brady, Brees, then who? - ESPN
12) Nick Foles stepped in for Wentz for the final three games of the season, helping Philadelphia finish by locking up the NFC’s No. 1 seed. Although he was very good in Week 15, throwing four touchdown passes in a come-from-behind win over the Giants, Foles had an unsteady finish, completing 23 of 49 passes in his last two games (he played only four series in the team’s Week 17 loss to the Cowboys). The Eagles’ roster is outstanding, which still gives them hope to advance with Foles playing turnover-free, efficient football.
Brandon Brooks: I came to the Eagles to win it all - PhillyVoice
The season went exactly as I thought [personally] and I was happy to accomplish that [making the Pro Bowl]. I came here and chose to come here because it’s a real family atmosphere and a super close-knit, and also to win it all. The season I had with some individual accolades are good, and I’ll enjoy that more in the offseason. I’m trying to get to the Super Bowl, man. I’ll enjoy those once we get to where we need to be.
Is Doug Ready? - Iggles Blitz
We talk a lot about Nick Foles and whether the Eagles are ready for the postseason. There is also the question of how Doug Pederson will do. Pederson guided the Eagles to a 7-9 record in 2016 and a 13-3 record this season. He should be a strong candidate for Coach of the Year. I think in his two seasons he has proven that he can motivate and lead a team. He can put together an effective gameplan and is a good play-caller. This year he’s taken a big step forward with strategy and being aggressive. Pederson is a quality head coach.
‘We’re Here To Make The Most Of The Moment’ - PE.com
The Eagles had just lost to Tampa Bay in the worst loss in the history of Philadelphia sports (personal opinion) in the 2002 NFC Championship Game, the last football game at Veterans Stadium, and as I waited for head coach Andy Reid to appear at his postgame press conference, sitting in a locker with my head hanging, assistant coach Ted Williams walked past ...
Is Jay Ajayi’s right knee troublesome or are the Eagles resting their workhorse? - Inquirer
“If they want to run me and use me in the game plan a lot, I’ll be ready for it,” Ajayi said. “That’s what I’ve been preparing myself for. Basically just getting ready for war out there. Three-game season. Leaving it all out on the line.” The Eagles, of course, don’t want Ajayi to empty his bucket. Unlike Blount, they have him under contract for one more year. Ajayi will be playing next season for his second deal. But with concerns about his longevity at a position at which players often wear down before they reach 30, it’s unclear whether the Eagles will be in that picture. But first there is a postseason game that could be played in wintry weather. A year ago, Ajayi gained only 33 yards on 16 carries in the Dolphins’ first-round loss at Pittsburgh. The game-time temperature was 17 degrees. But Ajayi, having played in Idaho, knows what’s it like to play in difficult conditions. “You can see defenses sometimes get worn down because of the weather, along with running the ball hard all game long,” Ajayi said. “It’s definitely something we can use to our advantage.”
How Patrick Robinson found his way with the Eagles - The Athletic
But in his heart, Robinson believes he’s a late bloomer who has a lot left. At Florida State, he played almost exclusively man coverage. He didn’t put the time in to understand route concepts and different types of coverage schemes. And he was a superb athlete who didn’t have to worry about taking care of his body. It’s different now, and he realizes that. Whether it’s the cold tub, stretching or focusing on his shoulder strength in the weight room, Robinson knows he has to take measured, specific steps to prolong his career. At age 30, he is playing the best football of his career. And he’s hoping that the arrow continues to point up at 31. “It’s very rewarding,” Robinson said. “Around my age, they start to get those, ‘Oh he’s getting older. He’s slowing down.’ People just assume that you’re going to slow down. Right now, I’m just trying to prove that I’m still good. I’m still running fast as I’ve been [running], still as quick as anybody in the league. So I’m definitely not slowing down right now.”
Who Will Win Super Bowl LII? Our NFL Playoff Predictions - The MMQB
According to our staff, home-field advantage will play a role in Super Bowl 52. The Vikings are the heavy favorite in the NFC, picked to win the conference by 10 of our 11 prognosticators. (There was little confidence in the NFC’s top seed, the Nick Foles-led Eagles, who were pegged as one-and-done by all but one voter.) As for the AFC champ, it was a near-even split between the top two seeds. Ultimately, Minnesota, with the opportunity to play as a (likely) home underdog on February 4, ended up tied with the Patriots as the leading vote-getter to win it all.
The 2018 NFL playoffs explained in 10 momentous events - SB Nation
For Wentz, the Eagles picked up Alshon Jeffery and Torrey Smith. Little did they know, Nelson Agholor would have a resurgent season after having a nightmare rookie campaign, and played a big part in the offense. They also signed LeGarrette Blount, and would later trade for Jay Ajayi giving the Eagles a backfield so powerful it would finish the regular season third in rushing yards per game. Wentz of course, would get hurt, but the Eagles are as stacked as can be in hopes that Nick Foles can keep the train going.
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Subject: Friday Morning Fly By: SnowBomb edition
Today’s open discussion thread, complete with your daily dose of Philadelphia Flyers news and notes...
*The Flyers, energized by bombogenisis, absolutely destroyed the Islanders last night. This team is so weird. Sometimes it is fun. RECAP!
*Big news yesterday was the Flyers recalling Tyrell Goulbourne ahead of last night’s game. Unbelievably, our own Bill Matz predicted this would happen literally an hour before it actually did. We’re good here, folks. [BSH]
*And after all the fuss, the kid couldn’t even get to Philly because of the dang snow. Plow your roads, Pennsylvania!! [BSH]
*The Flyers are hoping Goulbourne will provide a spark of energy whenever he actually joins the team. [Philly.com]
*You can check out the full version of this week’s episode of BSH Radio, which is actually quite good. As we do. [BSH]
*If you’re looking for something to do on a lovely winter Saturday morning, free public ice skating is being offered in Philly thanks to the Ed Snider Youth Hockey Foundation. [Philly.com]
*A couple of the Phantoms’ most remarkable players have been named to this season’s AHL All-Star Classic. [Sports Talk Philly]
*The fine folks at Hockey Graphs always do some interesting stuff, and this piece on how goal scorers score goals is no different. Excellent Friday morning reading. [Hockey Graphs]
*We’ve reached the medal round in the World Junior Championship and the Americans will not be competing for gold. [Habs Eyes On The Prize]
*Ron has some thoughts on how the Flyers’ prospects have performed at the tournament. [NBC Sports Philly]
*And finally, NAZEM KADRI RIPPED JOE THORNTON’S BEARD OUT OF HIS FACE. Horrors. [SB Nation]
Subject: Crossing Broadcast: Bar Songs and Beating Belichick
Subject: Your Friday Morning Roundup
Subject: The best photos from the Flyers win against the Islanders
Subject: Flyers 6, Islanders 4: Revenge is sweet
Some observations for your morning...
Well, they did it. The Flyers had a chance to redeem themselves after a flat game on Tuesday, and losses in their last two meetings against the Islanders. And in the process, they picked up two points in the standings with this regulation win. After Tuesday, there wasn’t much to like, but now there’s certainly a lot more. Let’s get into it.
1. Off to a better start
So that rough start stuff we were talking about? And how the Flyers really need to get it together and knock that out? Well, it looks like they’re working on it. And last night was the first step.
Pretty much from the start, the Flyers’ passing looked sharper and they seemed to have an easier time finding ways to connect. It wasn’t perfect, but it looked cleaner, and it helped them to get going earlier and create chances, rather than giving them up.
But the early part of the first period wasn’t without its problems. The biggest hindrance for the the Flyers? Controlling their zone entries. Through the first half of the period or so, the Islanders defended the blue line tightly, making it difficult for the Flyers to cleanly exit the neutral zone. As such, they were left to fall back on dump and chase, and had to deal with the broken plays that followed. They did well enough to collect a good number of those dumped pucks, so they were winning the races, at least. It was a good enough start, if a little disjointed. But, most of all, it’s a step in the right direction.
2. Better start = earlier offensive pressure
And, as you might have guessed, this comparatively more fluid start allowed for the Flyers to snag the early edge in momentum and create more offense. This was obvious enough throughout the period, but particularly so when they hit the delayed penalty on the Islanders. They were able to keep the puck moving, buying time to pull Elliott and get the extra attacker out, and put up a solid shift of both generating chances and being elusive enough to keep the Islanders from intercepting the puck, keeping the pressure up.
This pressure, then, continued into the power play and it was no surprise when they were rewarded with a goal under a minute into the shift, off the stick of Couturier. The stats seemed promising, with the Flyers going 10-3-3 when they struck first, and this was a welcome change to what we’ve been seeing. They brought it early, and they were rewarded, in turn.
3. Improvement in quality chances
And there’s even more improvement to talk about! Let’s keep going with it, and check in with our old pal, the heatmap.
Something that frustrated the Flyers most in their last two meetings was the way that the Islanders were able to effectively seal off the area around the crease, holding the Flyers overwhelmingly to the outside, left to lean back on perimeter shots. But this wasn’t the case at all last night. Rather, the Flyers made the front of the net their office, picking up three goals in close. They still did some shooting from farther away--especially on the power play where one of their goals came from the perimeter--but they didn’t rely on this area like they have been, or have been forced to. They kept things simple, and put greater emphasis on being aggressive and shooting from high danger areas. And it worked for them. Imagine that.
4. The flip side
On the opposite end of that success, literally, is how the Flyers were able to effectively shut down the Islanders, especially as it relates to generating shots in and around the crease. When all was said and done, the Flyers were able to hold the Islanders to 1.41 xG and an adjusted 45.91 CF% at five-on-five. Though they were allowed to start to crawl back late in the game, the Islanders were never allowed to gain full control of momentum in all of the sixty minutes of play. And part of this, sure, was the fact that they often found themselves in the box, on the penalty kill, but it was also a testament to the Flyers’ work in controlling the quality of many of the chances they allowed. They effectively flipped the script, limiting the number of shots the Islanders could take, but also their location. They were kept from establishing a real netfront presence, held at least equally to the points and far ends of the faceoff circles. Elliott didn’t exactly have an easy night, but his teammates made it just that little bit easier.
5. Provorov bounces back
After an admittedly rough night for Ivan Provorov on Tuesday--partially through no fault of his own--he and the rest of us were almost certainly all hoping for him to bring a markedly improved game against the Islanders. And he did just that.
Remaining paired with Shayne Gostisbehere, the two did well enough to defend against Johnathan Tavares’s line, and Provorov remained his usual responsible self in his own zone.
But where he really shined was on the offensive side, and area where he isn’t typically known to be particularly flashy. But ever was he last night. Over the course of the game, he registered four shots on goal--second on the team--and picked up two goals on the night. It looked like he had picked up his first goal earlier in the game, but it was actually given to Raffl, who tipped the puck into the net. But no matter, he was able to pick up a goal on the power play just a few minutes later. He would then close out scoring for the even as he notched the empty-netter, after a bit of shuffling the puck around by his teammates, effectively solidifying the win for the Flyers. It was an impressive night, no ways about it, even if it was one we shouldn’t totally expect to be typical. But, all the same, it was nice to see him coming back strong after an off night.
6. All lines rolling again
As we’ve talked about at length by now, one of the more exciting parts or prospects of the Flyers’ game through the pre- and early season was the way they could get each of their lines going on a given night, that they could roll out with four legitimate scoring lines. And while they got away from that for a while, hit a bit of a lull in the middle six, it seemed that last night they showed that they were working to get back to that old form.
Though it tapered off a bit as the night went on, the fourth line was the one to bring some of the most dangerous pressure, early in the second period. Through the rest of the evening, each of the top three lines pick up a goal, and averaged an adjusted CF% of over 50 percent at five on five. And we can nitpick, say that we would’ve liked to have seen more from the fourth line--and this would be completely fair--but on the whole, it was a more or less complete effort seen from the team. Which we could use a little more of.
7. Giving up a lot in the third
But despite this intensity brought up and down the lineup, it wasn’t a full sixty minute effort. Up 5-2 heading into the third period, the Flyers sat back a bit, giving the Islanders a chance to try to pull momentum back in their favor. In the final 20 minutes, the Flyers allowed 17 shots and two goals, and only averaged an adjusted CF% of 35.2 percent at five-on-five. They gave up far too many chances, and nearly let the Islanders tie things up towards the end of the period. All of the hard work that they had put in through the first two periods was nearly undone because they got a little complacent. It wasn’t an complete trainwreck, to be clear, but there was a very distinct feeling, once the Islanders got within one goal, that “oh man, they’re really going to blow this lead and find a way to lose in overtime again, huh?” They were able to shape up and reign things in, in the last few minutes, to keep the game from slipping away, but one wonders if they ever really should have been in that position, to begin with.
8. Not breaking news: the PK is still struggling
Wow, who’d have ever thought we’d have to bring it up? Surprise! The Flyers’ penalty kill still isn’t good.
To start and give credit where credit’s due, the Flyers are continuing to do well to not take a huge number of penalties. They ended the game with 29 penalty minutes--due mostly to fighting and roughing majors--but only allowed one power play chance for the Islanders. And this, on the surface, is good news, or would be if their penalty kill wasn’t just plain bad.
The shift looked promising, at first. They weren’t able to clear, but were getting more aggressive, going after the puck. Until they weren’t. They quickly settled back into their more passive mode, getting set and hoping to block a shot, and this was all the Islanders needed. You could see the goal coming a mile away, and Tavares was given far too much to work with.
9. The night we’ve been waiting for from Konecny
You guys, it finally happened. The game we’ve all been waiting for. Travis Konecny’s finally starting to break out. And it’s glorious.
Konecny had a big game last night. It started with the fight against Prince, which earned him a five minute major penalty, but really added some jump to his teammates’ game. And from there, he was all over the place all night. He put up five shots on goal--tied for the most among all Flyers--averaged an adjusted CF% of 61.70 percent at five-on-five, and picked up a pretty breakaway goal. And after being pulled for a shift in the third period, he still saw the ice with the rest of his line throughout much of the period, showing the coach’s trust in putting him on the ice against Tavares’s line, even as they protected a lead.
And, like I said, this is pretty much exactly what we’ve been waiting to see from him. He’s been putting in good work to date, but hasn’t been seeing the results. And now that he’s been moved up in the lineup and is getting some more minutes, he’s finally starting to get them.
10. The only damn thing I know
Snowed in and watching the game from my couch, I was blessed to receive the gift of catching the candid b-roll footage of folks watching the game from the Wells Fargo Center. I hadn’t been paying super close attention to the people being shown, but for one brief, shining moment, I thought I caught a glimpse of the best person of all: one man eating two ice cream cones at the same time. And I was ecstatic.
This visual was at once hilarious and deeply resonant. It would turn out that it was just a framing mishap, an illusion, and it was actually two people each eating their own ice cream. But I remain undeterred. This true hero must be out there somewhere. Actually double fisting ice cream cones. Actually living my best life.
Subject: BSH Radio reacts to the 6-4 win over the New York Islanders
Well that was unexpected!
It was a very weird night — the Flyers won, the couch people took over our Facebook chat, Tyrell Goulbourne ended up not playing. Steph Driver took over the postgame duties and got all of her socialization for the week out in one video. Seriously, I talked to myself for nearly two hours. Between the fights, the goals, and the fun we have been missing for most of this season, there was a lot to talk about. We also had to take some time out to discuss potential future trades, how The Germ is a terrible nickname, and what the hell this front office is doing.
Subject: Texans interested in Eagles executive Joe Douglas for general manager job, report says
The Houston Texans are interested in Philadelphia Eagles vice president of player personnel Joe Douglas for their general manager vacancy, according to a report from John McClain of the Houston Chronicle.
Houston has a vacancy at the position since current Texans executive vice president of football operations and general manager Rick Smith is taking an extended leave of absence as his wife battles cancer.
It’s not a surprise to see Douglas linked to a general manager opening. Previous reports indicate he’s viewed as one of the top GM candidates in the NFL. The Eagles have gone 20-12 since Douglas was hired in May 2016. Douglas obviously deserves credit for some of that success He’s the one who sets the Eagles’ draft board, although EVP of football operations Howie Roseman has final say on all personnel moves.
Losing Douglas wouldn’t be ideal for the Eagles. He’s thought to be the “football guy” complement to Roseman’s strengths of handling contracts/trades/etc. The two seem like a good pairing.
Given the potential temporary nature of the opportunity, the feeling here is that the Texans job might not be enticing enough for Douglas to leave. It’s at least possible Smith returns at some point.
The Eagles can encourage Douglas to stay in Philadelphia by giving him a raise. Given his importance to the organization, it’d be surprising if they weren’t aggressive about keeping him around.
Subject: Everybody Gets a Point (well, almost everybody): Five Takeaways from Flyers 6, Islanders 4
Subject: Carson Wentz among four Eagles players named to 2017 NFL All-Pro Team
A total of four Philadelphia Eagles players have been named to the 2017 NFL All-Pro Team as determined by The Associated Press.
Some thoughts on these honors:
- Johnson, Wentz, and Cox were also elected to the Pro Bowl this season.
- Kelce was an obvious Pro Bowl snub. Good to see him make this list. Kelce was also named to the PFF All-Pro Team.
- Lol at Tom Brady getting 47 votes while Wentz only got two. That’s a joke. You can sure make your case for Brady over Wentz, but you can’t act like it wasn’t even a debate. Wentz finished the 2017 season with more touchdowns than Brady despite playing in 3.25 fewer games.
- Brandon Brooks made the Pro Bowl but didn’t make the All-Pro team. He received one vote at left guard and three at his actual position: right guard.
- Brandon Graham didn’t make the Pro Bowl and he didn’t make the All-Pro team. But he did receive one vote.
- Malcolm Jenkins received four votes at safety and two at the “defensive back” position. Jenkins made this year’s Pro Bowl.
- Patrick Robinson also received one vote at the “defensive back” position for his strong work as a nickel corner. Robinson made second-team PFF All Pro.
- Kamu Grugier-Hill received a vote as a special teamer! Awesome.
Here’s the entire 2017 NFL All-Pro Team.
Quarterback: Tom Brady, New England
Flex: Le’Veon Bell, Pittsburgh
Tight End: Rob Gronkowski, New England
Wide Receivers: Antonio Brown, Pittsburgh; DeAndre Hopkins, Houston
Left Tackle: Andrew Whitworth, Los Angeles Rams
Right Tackle: Lane Johnson, Philadelphia
Left Guard: Andrew Norwell, Carolina
Right Guard: David DeCastro, Pittsburgh
Center: Jason Kelce, Philadelphia
Edge Rushers: Calais Campbell, Jacksonville; Cameron Jordan, New Orleans
Interior Linemen: Aaron Donald, Los Angeles Rams; Cam Heyward, Pittsburgh
Linebackers: Chandler Jones, Arizona; Luke Kuechly, Carolina; Bobby Wagner, Seattle
Cornerbacks: Jalen Ramsey, Jacksonville; Xavier Rhodes, Minnesota
Defensive Back: Darius Slay, Detroit
Placekicker: Greg Zuerlein, Los Angeles Rams
Punter: Johnny Hekker, Los Angeles Rams
Kick Returner: Pharoh Cooper, Los Angeles Rams
Punt Returner: Jamal Agnew, Detroit
Special Teamer: Budda Baker, Arizona
Quarterback: Carson Wentz, Philadelphia
Running Back: Le’Veon Bell, Pittsburgh
Flex: Alvin Kamara, New Orleans
Tight End: Travis Kelce, Kansas City
Wide Receivers: Julio Jones, Atlanta; Adam Thielen, Minnesota
Left Tackle: David Bakhtiari, Green Bay
Left Guard: Rodger Saffold, Los Angeles Rams
Right Guard: Zach Martin, Dallas
Center: Alex Mack, Atlanta
Edge Rushers: Everson Griffen, Minnesota; Demarcus Lawrence, Dallas
Interior Linemen: Fletcher Cox, Philadelphia; Calais Campbell, Jacksonville
Linebackers: Von Miller, Denver; C.J. Mosley, Baltimore; Telvin Smith, Jacksonville
Safeties: Earl Thomas, Seattle; Micah Hyde, Buffalo
Defensive Back: Xavier Rhodes, Minnesota
Placekicker: Justin Tucker, Baltimore
Punter: Brett Kern, Tennessee
Kick Returner: Tyler Lockett, Seattle
Punt Returner: Pharoh Cooper, Los Angeles Rams
Special Teame: Matthew Slater, New England
Subject: Sixers Notes: More Markelle Video and the Justin Anderson/Jrue Holiday Connection
Subject: NFL Picks Wild Card Playoffs 2018: Predictions by Football Writers
Predicting the winners of this week's NFL games.
The Bleeding Green Nation writers picks are in for the Wild Card round of the 2018 NFL Playoffs! Each week we'll predict the winners of each and every NFL game. We'll tally the results along the way and see who comes out on top at the end of the season.
The collective BGN Community finished in first place for the regular season. Now we’ll see how things go for everyone in the post-season as the games could be tougher to predict.
The Philadelphia Eagles are obviously off this week since they have a first-round bye. Their Divisional Round opponent will be revealed based on the outcome of this week’s games. If the Falcons beat the Rams, Philly will host Atlanta. If the Falcons lose, Philly will host the winner of the Saints-Panthers game.
Feel free to post your own predictions or discuss the writer predictions in the comments. You can also vote for who you think will win the games. I’ll tally those results in a “BGN Community” column. Vote in the polls beneath the table. (Click here if you can’t see the polls.)
Let's get to this week's picks!
Vote for YOUR picks below. (Once again, click here if you can’t see the polls.)
Subject: Quantifying The Eagles
Subject: Jon Gruden is back with the Raiders on a crazy contract
Steve Corkan reports Gruden will be formally introduced as the Raiders’ head coach on Tuesday. In addition, NFL insider Adam Schefter reports the Raiders are giving Gruden the longest coaching deal in league history: 10 years, $100 million. Wowza.
Gruden’s obviously had success at the NFL level. He won a Super Bowl and he’s 95-81 as a head coach. But he also finished 45-51 in his last six years in the league. He hasn’t coached since the 2008 season. Seems like a pretty big risk for the Raiders, who are moving to Las Vegas in the future. Maybe this was the draw they wanted as they move to a new city.
In any case, this news impacts the Philadelphia Eagles because it means there are only five head coaching vacancies left. Three of those teams have shown interest in Eagles assistants John DeFilippo and/or Jim Schwartz.
It’ll also be interesting to see who replaces Gruden in the booth on ESPN Monday Night Football.
For more reaction to this news, check out our friends over at Silver And Black Pride.
Subject: One for the Record Books: Updating the Eagles
Subject: NFL Wild Card Playoffs, Chiefs vs. Titans: TV schedule, game time, online streaming
Here’s how to watch today’s game.
The 2018 NFL playoff schedule begins today with two Wild Card games.
Saturday’s action kicks off with an AFC matchup between the Kansas City Chiefs and Tennessee Titans. The Chiefs are the home team since they won the AFC West. Kansas City enters this game as heavy nine-point favorites.
As far as Philadelphia Eagles fans are concerned, rooting interest comes down to whether you want to support Andy Reid or not. I think the Titans are pretty trash so it’d be nice to see Big Red take care of business in this one.
4:35 PM ET
Saturday, January 6, 2018
Arrowhead Stadium | Kansas City, Missouri
Announcers: Sean McDonough, Jon Gruden, Lisa Salters (field reporter), Adam Schefter (field reporter)
Yes, Gruden is still going to call this game despite being hired by the Raiders.
WESTWOOD ONE: Dan Miller, Trent Green, Hub Arkush
SIRIUS: 88 (WW1), 83 (Ten), 82 (KC)
XM: 88 (WW1), 83 (Ten), 82 (KC)
Odds via SB Nation:
Titans +9 (-115)
Chiefs -9 (-105)
Note: This is an open thread. Discuss this Wild Card game here.