By Kevin McGuire
Hall of Fame Philadelphia Phillies third baseman Mike Schmidt once said, “Philadelphia is the only city where you can experience the thrill of victory and the agony of reading about it the next day.” In 2015, that appears to be the same case with the Philadelphia Eagles, who broke into the win column against the New York Jets this week but did not do so cleanly enough for some. Questions about the running game and quarterback have been among the talking points this week, which is to be expected given the offseason moves and payroll committed to the positions this season.READ MORE: Dozens Of Mom-And-Pop Shops In Manayunk Prepare For Small Business Saturday
DeMarco Murray or Ryan Matthews?
After missing Sunday’s game against the Jets, Eagles running back DeMarco Murray got back to the practice field with the hope of being available this weekend against Washington. With Ryan Matthews filling in and having a productive afternoon in Sunday’s win, one of the many sports talk topics this week has been whether the Eagles are better off with Matthews running the football or Murray. If both are healthy, who should carry the football for Philadelphia? The answer is Murray, of course, and that is not just because of the salary (entirely).
Murray’s running style may not seem like the ideal fit for the kind of offense Chip Kelly prefers to run, and maybe Matthews has more tendencies that fit Kelly’s offense, but Murray is still a proven running back capable of carrying the load for any offense he is in if the offensive line is doing its job up front. The problem the first two weeks was not that Murray was a bad fit in the Eagles offense. The problem was the offensive line was absolutely atrocious blocking for the run and creating lanes and keeping defenders out of the backfield. That is where the frustration ignited.
Can Sam Bradford still cash in on his contract season?
The first three games of the Sam Bradford era in Philadelphia have been less than inspiring, especially with the play of the new Eagles quarterback. Bradford’s battle back from multiple injuries is not to be overlooked, because it can be tough adjusting and getting back in the flow even for a former top draft pick in a brand new offensive system in a new city. This is a contract year for Bradford though, and Joel Corry, a former sports agent currently writing for CBSSports.com, says Bradford is one of the top players with money on the line this season and notes Bradford does not have the urgency a player in a contract year should probably have.READ MORE: Stray Bullet Kills Man Eating Thanksgiving Dinner Inside Norristown Home, Police Say
Bradford’s urgency may be a sticking point for some, especially if the Eagles are struggling to score wins. The criticism may be fair, but there are some players who keep calm even when times are rough. That can be viewed in a negative way, especially in this city regardless of the sport.
Eagles wiggle up Prisco’s NFL power rankings
After picking up the first win of the season, the Eagles managed to move up four spots in this week’s power rankings from CBSSports.com NFL writer Pete Prisco, who has a track record of being skeptical of the Birds under Chip Kelly. The Eagles moved up to No. 16 in this week’s power ranking. How does that compare to other power rankings this week?
ESPN.com moved the Eagles up five spots to No. 17. FOXSports.com moved the Eagles up seven spots up to No. 15. NFL.com is a little more skeptical of the Eagles this week, ranking the Eagles at No. 20, despite moving the team up eight spots in the power ranking this week. Nobody ranks the Eagles lower than Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk. Florio ranks the Birds No. 22 this week, also bumping the team up eight spots from No. 30 the previous week.
Kevin McGuire is a Philadelphia area sports writer covering the Philadelphia Eagles and college football. McGuire is a member of the FWAA and National Football Foundation. Follow McGuire on Twitter @KevinOnCFB. His work can be found on Examiner.com.MORE NEWS: Philadelphia Sets New Record With 501st Homicide In Single Year After Man Killed In East Mount Airy