Pat Shurmur the NFLs Worst Coach of 2012, According to Grantland

Pat Shurmur the NFLs Worst Coach of 2012, According to Grantland

Some of you may be wondering what this story has to do with
the Eagles. Well, while the team has yet to formally announce any assistant hires,
it has been learned that former Cleveland Browns head coach Pat Shurmur will be
Chip Kelly’s offensive coordinator. Now that we got your attention…

Grantland’s Bill Barnwell took an in-depth look at some of
the best and worst in coaching from the NFL season that was on Friday, and
Shurmur’s name popped up in the latter category – twice. Besides grading out the
lowest of all 32 head coaches in 2012, including seven others who were relieved
of their duties this offseason, Shurmur picked up the award for “Most Useless
Challenge.” He must’ve made his mentor very proud with that last one, beings
that it is Andy Reid.

Anyway, what does a guy have to do to deserve being called
the worst?

It's not that Shurmur made one bad
decision in one particular aspect of the game in 2012; it's that he made
obviously wrong calls in so many different spots. He failed to go for two up
15-10 in the fourth quarter in Week 1 and it cost him the game in a 17-16 loss.
He used a timeout before punting on fourth-and-1 from the Indianapolis 41-yard
line with 6:38 left in a close game and ended up having to go for it on
fourth-and-6 later on. He called nine pass plays on third/fourth-and-short in
one Ravens game alone.

If Shurmur had developed his young
talent into successful players, you would excuse his play-calling blunders.
Instead, Shurmur failed to develop either Colt McCoy or Brandon Weeden into
anything resembling an NFL-caliber starter, ran an injured Trent Richardson
into the line for no gain for most of the season, and left the Cleveland
organization with a lot of young players who have failed to reach anything
resembling their potential. Bizarrely, he was hired by Chip Kelly to serve as
Philadelphia's new offensive coordinator, a role that thankfully is unlikely to
include play-calling duties. You have to assume that the Eagles are hoping
whatever skills Shurmur showed in St. Louis coaching Sam Bradford come out
again with Nick Foles in Philadelphia. It's possible that Shurmur could be a
better offensive coordinator than a head coach, but only because it's hard to
imagine anybody being a worse head coach.

Yikes. From afar, it looked like Shurmur had the Browns
competing in almost every game last season. When you put it like that though,
it sounds more like he was one of the only things holding them back. What could
Kelly or the Eagles possibly see in this guy?

Geoff Mosher provides a bit more insight into the how
Shurmur can help the Birds, which he picked up from his time covering the
Senior Bowl in Mobile, Alabama
this week:

Kelly and “offensive coordinator”
Pat Shurmur will have a symbiotic coaching relationship. Shurmur, a West Coast
offense proponent, will help Kelly develop and enhance the team’s passing game.
Kelly, meanwhile, will school Shurmur on the spread offense, an education that
could help Shurmur get back to a head coaching job.

In other words, the offense will be Kelly’s, but Shurmur’s
knowledge of a pro-style scheme could be helpful in adapting the spread for the
NFL – and in turn, he might just be able to parlay this into a new gig of his
own. Then again, based on Barnwell’s analysis, Shurmur is going to need all the
education he can get.

While there is some truth to each and every criticism of
Shurmur, and they are reasons to be skeptical of his role on the staff,
the
outgoing offensive coordinator makes for a good cautionary tale about
jumping
to conclusions. When Reid first brought Marty Mornhinweg into the fold
in 2003,
he was coming off of one of the worst head-coaching stints in NFL
history,
producing five wins in two seasons with the Detroit Lions. He once famously
elected to take the wind after winning the coin toss in sudden-death overtime, then watched the
opponent take the ball right down the field and score. The moral is Mornhinweg was
promoted to coordinator in ’06, and although the past two years are
still fresh
on everybody’s mind, the Eagles did set the franchise record for points
scored
in back-to-back-to-back seasons from ’08-’10.

Shurmur is unlikely to have anywhere near that level of impact in Philadelphia, but Mornhinweg's story should give some pause to those wondering how this guy even got the job. By the same token, Shurmur being the choice to see Kelly through this transition is sure to prompt some concerns, perhaps rightfully so.

>> Thank You, Coaches [Grantland]

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Former Eagle Byron Maxwell benched by Dolphins

Former Eagle Byron Maxwell benched by Dolphins

Dolphins cornerback Byron Maxwell is not starting tonight against the Bengals. Maxwell, who the Eagles traded this past offseason, was already seeing his playing time diminish. Now, he will sit in favor of Tony Lippett, who has not seen a single snap for the Dolphins this season.

The Eagles big trade this offseason keeps getting better and better.  They acquired the 8th overall pick in the draft in exchange for the 13 overall pick, Maxwell and Kiko Alonzo. Not only were they able to rid themselves of Maxwell’s awful contract, but they were able to get value for a player who is now not considered an NFL starter. 

The 8th overall pick that the Eagles acquired from Miami was flipped to the Browns among other picks to move up to number two. As you may know, that number two pick became offensive rookie of the month Carson Wentz. 

At the time of the trade, Maxwell originally failed his physical due to a shoulder injury. It was reported that the shoulder was so bad that he could not perform a simple pushup, but the Dolphins traded for him anyway.

The Byron Maxwell trade was the stepping stone for the Eagles to land their quarterback of the future, and this news can only make them feel better about the move. Howie Roseman had an incredible offseason cleaning up the mess Chip Kelly left behind, and Maxwell’s benching will certainly help his case for executive of the year. 

Brett Brown has 'completely different feeling' in training camp this year

Brett Brown has 'completely different feeling' in training camp this year

GALLOWAY, N.J. -- Brett Brown left training camp last September with an unsettling feeling. He had just completed long days of scrimmages, drills and planning, and yet he sensed the Sixers were not ready to tackle the 82 games that lied ahead. 

“I remember driving back to Philadelphia last year knowing in my heart of heart that this group was going to be challenged,” Brown said Thursday following the morning practice session at Stockton University. “That was a frightening drive home. That drive home scared me because I felt like, I know what we have and how are we going to be able to maneuver through this?”

Brown was right. The Sixers lost their first 18 games and began the season 1-30. They stumbled the rest of the way, finishing the 2016-17 campaign with a dismal 10-72 record. 

“We really didn’t know who the point guard was,” Brown said. “We came in extremely injured, we were trying to make the Nerlens (Noel) - Jahlil (Okafor) thing work, there really weren’t a lot of veterans to look around [and see], and you knew it.”

Now in his fourth training camp as head coach, with 47 wins and 199 losses with the Sixers behind him, Brown has different emotions as the team nears the end of training camp on Friday. 

Instead of a constantly-changing lineup of players, the Sixers are building a roster that can serve as the foundation for the future. There are nine new players on the team, including first overall pick Ben Simmons and rookie Dario Saric. Joel Embiid will make his NBA debut after two years of injuries, and the Sixers added veteran leaders in free agency.

Brown has a clearer picture of what the team could look like this season and beyond. He is coaching training camp to enter a new chapter, not to simply make it through the upcoming months. 

“You can leave and you can sniff reality,” Brown said. “Now what I see is there’s depth. There are challenges positionally as we’ve talked about. But there’s talent. There’s point guards. They’re sprinkled in with some veterans. How we grow it and play it is still on the table. To me, it’s a completely different feeling that I have now that I did not have last year.”

The additions of Jerryd Bayless and Sergio Rodriguez at the one spot lessen the coaching load for Brown. He also can turn to T.J. McConnell from last season. The depth is a far cry from when the Sixers were quickly changing at that position and didn’t find a consistent starter until they traded for Ish Smith in late December.

“That position, I think, is vital when you start putting a bunch of 20-year-olds around it and trying to find some type of organization,” Brown said. “You just can’t replace a point guard’s intellect. You can’t replace, I think, somebody that has great command from that position. It certainly helps me.”

Brown expects to feel “proud” when the Sixers wrap training camp on Friday. He is looking forward to getting the season underway, beginning with two practices at the new training complex in Camden before their first preseason game Oct. 4 against the Celtics. 

Brown anticipates his drive home this time will be a much different trip. 

“I feel comfortable that we’re ticking boxes and we’re achieving the goals that we set out from the start of what we wanted to get done in Stockton,” he said.

The Sixers continued to monitor load management on Thursday, as Okafor, Embiid and Gerald Henderson did not participate in the morning scrimmage. Bayless also did not go through the scrimmage because of a sore left wrist.