Roddy Review: Falcons Receiver Scouts Eagles' Corners

Roddy Review: Falcons Receiver Scouts Eagles' Corners

Sports Illustrated ran a superb article on their web site yesterday in which Jim Trotter sat down with All Pro wide receiver Roddy White for a little film review. The subjects: Asante Samuel, Nnamdi Asomugha, and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie.

White sounds like a seasoned offensive coordinator as he breaks down tape, describing the elaborate differences in style between each member of the all star cast. You know Asante is a ballhawk, Nnamdi is a press corner, and DRC is a speedy playmaker. These are the techniques each of them use to shut down their opponents -- and how to beat them.

The most fascinating part of the review focused on Asomugha, who Roddy talked about at length. It was surprising because, at times, the Falcons' wide receiver made getting open against Nnamdi sound so easy.

This guy right here ..."

White circles the receiver Asomugha is preparing to press.

"... He's doing a bad job, to me, because I would never have been this close to the line of scrimmage," Roddy continues. "Nnamdi's arms are so long that it makes it very easy for him to get his hands on you. That's his comfort zone. So you back this out a half-yard, get some distance and prevent him from getting his hands on you. And with a guy like him you've got to use your feet -- hands and feet. You've got to get ready and put your hands up quickly because he's going to launch at you and try to put his hands on you to disrupt routes. So you always have to be going forward and your hands in a position to be above his, because if you can get his hands away from you, then you can pretty much dominate."

Pretty much dominate, eh? It's worth noting, White only contributed three catches for 23 yards on Sunday night -- though he also added a score.

Great read for fans who enjoy delving into the X's and O's. It's obvious Roddy White is not only one of the best wide receivers in the NFL, but one of the most intelligent as well.

>> Roddy White breaks down the strengths, weaknesses of Eagles CBs [SI.com]

Nerlens Noel joins Sixers in New Orleans, may play Sunday vs. Pistons

Nerlens Noel joins Sixers in New Orleans, may play Sunday vs. Pistons

NEW ORLEANS — Nerlens Noel made another step toward his return from arthroscopic left knee surgery by joining the Sixers in New Orleans for their game against the Pelicans.

Noel arrived on Wednesday with Robert Covington, who is slated to start after missing the last three games with a left knee sprain. Noel is not cleared to play, but Brown doesn’t think it will be long until he suits up. 

“I don’t think far away,” Brown said of Noel’s regular season debut after shootaround.

When asked about the possibility of Noel playing this weekend when the Sixers face the Pistons on Sunday in Detroit, Brown replied, “Maybe.” 

Noel has missed the entire regular season recovering from elective surgery for an inflamed plica in October. He completed the first phase of his rehab in Birmingham, Ala. and has been continuing his work with the Sixers. This trip to New Orleans is the first time he has been with the Sixers on the road. 

“[He is] integrating with the team, studying a lot of tape, scripting with his teammates with the understanding that we have a chance to see him soon,” Brown said. “All that trying to ramp it up where he can go to an NBA court more comfortably.”

Noel spoke out about his displeasure with the Sixers crowded frontcourt at the start of the preseason. He recently stuck with his stance, saying, “I don’t think the roster’s changed.”

Brown is working to keep the team moving forward as a unit while still being aware of and recognizing Noel’s perspective. 

“It does,” Brown said when asked if Noel’s open frustration concerns him as it pertains to team cohesiveness. “But I feel like it’s so much a part of what we try do around here that it’s not like you’re going to blink and you’ve forgotten something that equals camaraderie, that equals team, that equals trying to keep this together, and you’ve left it for a week … 

“It’s a day-to-day focus for me and it’s a very candid conversation with me and the player. The team hears it, the individual hears it, we all understand it … We need to coexist and we need to understand the reality of it all, too. There’s a human side you understand. It’s also pride, it’s competitiveness, it’s do your job, it’s nothing is given, you’ve got to take stuff, draw your own line in the sand, competitors rule the day.”

Last season Noel averaged 11.1 points and a team-high 8.1 rebounds per game. The Sixers will look forward to having him back on the court in that once-crowded frontcourt that is now shorthanded. Jahlil Okafor remained in Philadelphia with gastroenteritis. Ben Simmons still is rehabbing from a right foot fracture. 

"Soon you’re going to see Ben Simmons coming to a team bench where he doesn’t come out with boots and have to push him in some type of wheely apparatus," Brown said. "We’ve dealt with so many injuries trying to find that balance of dealing with their health and so on, and then trying to integrate them back into a team is part of growing a program."