Eagles Notes: Bradford, O-line, Alonso

The Eagles will look to avoid an 0-3 start when they square off this afternoon against the Jets, who are looking to open the season 3-0. Much has been made of the Eagles’ disappointing start to the 2015 campaign, and Jeff McLane of The Philadelphia Inquirer points to the run game as the biggest culprit. Head coach Chip Kelly‘s play designs are not nearly as effective without a “read” option–i.e., a quarterback who can run the ball–and Sam Bradford is not a threat to run. The offense has also lost some of its unpredictability, as package plays, which involve run and pass options that are decided post-snap, have been limited due to Bradford’s immobility. Bradford remains the starter for now, but one has to wonder how much longer he will last under center in Philadelphia if the team’s allegedly high-powered offense continues to struggle.

Now let’s have a look at a few more Eagles links:

  • Bob Ford of The Philadelphia Inquirer examines another flaw in Bradford’s game, which was well-publicized during his time in St. Louis: his inability to throw the deep ball. The Eagles continue to insist the problem is not Bradford, but the running game, but as McLane pointed out above, the running game is struggling at least in part because of Bradford. When combined with the tendency of teams quarterbacked by Bradford to fall behind early in games, Philadelphia may be privately grateful that Bradford was unwilling to engage in serious talks about a long-term deal this offseason.
  • Of course, not all of the Eagles’ offensive woes can be pinned on its quarterback. As Zach Berman of The Philadelphia Inquirer writes, the offensive line deserves its share of the blame. Kelly, who let go of two longtime starters along the O-line and did little to add depth during the offseason, is not making any lineup changes, so the unit will be given the opportunity to prove that it can produce. Through two games, Philadelphia has gained just 70 yards on the ground, the fewest in the league.
  • Kiko Alonso is expected to see Dr. James Andrews this week to get a second opinion on his torn ACL, according to Les Bowen of The Philadelphia Daily News (via Twitter). That visit will likely entail a second MRI.
  • All is not lost for the Eagles, says Bob Brookover of The Philadelphia Inquirer. The NFC East is up for grabs this year, so if Philadelphia can sort out its run game, there is no reason the team cannot still emerge with the division crown in 2015.
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