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Vick Leaves Early (Again), Foles Plays the Hero (Again) But Has the Depth Chart Changed?

Vick Leaves Early (Again), Foles Plays the Hero (Again) But Has the Depth Chart Changed?

In many ways, Monday night's preseason football game was eerily similar to the one the Eagles played against the Steelers a week and a half ago -- only this was far, far worse. With any and all of their relevant starters on the bench, the New England Patriots somehow jumped out to an 11-0 lead early in the second quarter. The Eagles defense had trouble getting off the field, and Michael Vick once again was hurt early with an apparent injury to his ribs, the same type of injury that caused him to miss games in each of the past two seasons.
But hey, don't sweat it. Rookie/savior Nick Foles entered the game in his place and proceeded to lead three touchdown drives, in the process helping the Birds to a 27-17 victory. Things are totally all right. In fact, we can probably just forget about Foles making a play as the number two quarterback. Andy Reid should name him the starter effective immediately. /eye roll
Although Foles' faster-than-anticipated ascendency is saving what would otherwise be a torturous preseason to date—and we the football-starved people appreciate that—it comes with a few grains of salt. 
To begin, while Foles' was again impressive last night, his first couple of scoring drives were aided by a pair of turnovers. Fellow rookie Brandon Boykin forced a fumble working as a gunner on the punt coverage team, flying up the sideline and landing a shot on the returner as the ball arrived. From there, the Eagles were able to go 24 yards on three runs for the score. A couple plays later, a Philip Hunt strip-sack gave the Birds the ball on New England's 12, setting up Foles for a two-play march and TD pass. Great news for folks interested in seeing how the offense looked near the goal line. 
Later, with most of the Eagles' first stringers still in the game, Foles led an eight-play, 80 yard scoring drive against the Patriots' third string defense to open the third quarter. Take that, Vick!
Don't get me wrong, like anybody else, I am impressed with the rookie quarterback. His performances have been fun to watch during what has been an otherwise vastly disappointing preseason. He's shown a ton of poise and promise, especially in extended action following Vick's injury on Monday night. (Yes, Vick is supposedly okay... again… but more testing will be done.) So far, the Arizona product is 24/36 for 361 yards, four touchdowns, and one pick.
That said, we probably all need a friendly reminder that Foles' accomplishments have come when he has staring solely down the barrel of second- and third-string defenses during a time of year when opponents aren't exactly throwing the types of fastballs that typically make young quarterbacks flinch. For a third-round pick, it's fair to say Foles has exceeded expectations at this early juncture in his career, and if he winds up being the starter in Cleveland this Friday for exhibition number three, he may just have a shot at slipping into the primary backup spot behind Vick with another strong outing.
Let's not get ahead of ourselves though. Mike Kafka's last preseason was not so bad either -- granted not quite this good – but he is quickly being written off amidst the combination of an injury and the guy behind him on the depth chart playing better than expected. Kafka seemingly demonstrated he was a gamer last summer, going 34/49 for 368 yards (7.5 Avg) with two touchdowns and two picks in 2011, good for a passer rating of 87.8. He also very nearly led the Eagles to a comeback victory in Atlanta in Week 2 of the regular season, which holds considerably more weight than what either he or Foles has done in the preseason.
Obviously Foles has greater upside, and that's why the Eagles drafted him. But, he's a rookie, and not one being immediately groomed to start. This is year three for Kafka, and while nobody will confuse him as the QB of the future, as long as he gets healthy, I'm not so sure he isn't still the backup if Vick got hurt in... let's say Week 1. That's what Kafka's been groomed for since his arrival in Philadelphia, and as long as we're basing one's ability on preseason action, let's not forget he too has succeeded to some degree on that level, plus he's had considerably more time in the offense.
None of which is to say the job isn't up for grabs, and that Foles couldn't or shouldn't be the first name called if Vick continues to get bitten by the injury bug. We just don't know yet. Of course, there's also very little to compare Foles against in these two exhibitions -- just nine passes from Kafka, several of which apparently were after sustaining the injury that would ultimately keep him out of the Pats game. Missing snaps due to injury certainly isn't an excuse that will keep the backup role warm for Kafka, but for now, if we're being realistic, I feel it's best to view Foles' success to date with tempered enthusiasm. If we're just looking for some enjoyment in the preseason, by all means, Foles has been a major bright spot, and that's even more encouraging in the long term. So have at it. 
The competition for backup QB is probably still up for grabs though, and the depth chart will be heavily influenced by Kafka's health between now and the start of the season, rather than just Foles' success against vanilla and/or second/third string defenses.
As for Vick, he needs to be smarter or this discussion becomes a lot more than a wait-and-see pondering. With one of Vick's bigger question marks being his ability to stay on the field, he's done little to inspire confidence in the few preseason snaps he's taken. On the play during which he was injured in game 2, Evan Mathis did not hear Jason Kelce change the blocking assignments at the line, resulting in a free rusher with a direct line at the quarterback. Rather than scramble out of the pocket and throw it away -- or hell, this is preseason, just spike it for an intentional grounding -- Vick turned back toward the pass rush to heave a pass downfield, exposing himself to a huge hit to his ribs. Obviously much of the blame rests on the offensive line here, but sometimes the QB also needs to know when to wave to white flag.
We'll have a more detailed review of the game later.
(Photos by Mark L. Baer, US Presswire)

CSNPhilly Internship - Advertising/Sales

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CSNPhilly Internship - Advertising/Sales

Position Title: Intern
Department: Advertising/Sales
Company: Comcast SportsNet Philadelphia
# of hours / week: 10 – 20 hours

Deadline: November 20

Basic Function

This position will work closely with the Vice President of Sales in generating revenue through commercial advertisements and sponsorship sales. The intern will gain first-hand sales experience through working with Sales Assistants and AEs on pitches, sales-calls and recapping material.

Duties and Responsibilities

• Assist Account Executive on preparation of Sales Presentations
• Cultivate new account leads for local sales
• Track sponsorships in specified programs
• Assist as point of contact with sponsors on game night set up and pre-game hospitality elements.
• Assist with collection of all proof of performance materials.
• Perform Competitive Network Analysis
• Update Customer database
• Other various projects as assigned

Requirements

1. Good oral and written communication skills.
2. Knowledge of sports.
3. Ability to work non-traditional hours, weekends & holidays
4. Ability to work in a fast-paced, high-pressure environment
5. Must be 19 years of age or older
6. Must be a student in pursuit of an Associate, Bachelor, Master or Juris Doctor degree
7. Must have unrestricted authorization to work in the US
8. Must have sophomore standing or above
9. Must have a 3.0 GPA

Interested students should apply here and specify they're interested in the ad/sales internship.

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Jake Elliott drills 2 field goals in game's final minute to push Eagles past Giants

Jake Elliott drills 2 field goals in game's final minute to push Eagles past Giants

BOX SCORE

Jake Elliott is getting a free beer tonight. Anywhere in Philadelphia.

The Eagles' rookie kicker drilled a 61-yard field goal as the clock ran out to give the Eagles a 27-24 win at Lincoln Financial Field on Sunday.

After giving fans heart attacks throughout the Delaware Valley, the Eagles pulled off a tight win on Sunday afternoon at the Linc.

The Eagles let the Giants back into the game, but were able to take them down 27-24.

With the win, the Eagles improve to 2-1 on the season and are 2-0 in the division. Meanwhile, the Giants are off to a disastrous start at 0-3.

The Giants came into the weekend against the ropes and the Eagles might have delivered the knockout punch. Although it wasn't pretty. It'll be extremely tough for the Giants to rebound from an 0-3 start.

The Eagles defense was pitching a shutout until the fourth quarter and they were doing it without four starters on defense. They didn't have Rodney McLeod or Ronald Darby and then they lost Fletcher Cox and Jordan Hicks during the game.

The Giants were shutout on their first seven drives but put up 21 points in less than six minutes in the fourth quarter.

On offense, Doug Pederson actually called running plays and they worked. LeGarrette Blount led the way and the Eagles were able to make big gains on the ground against the Giants' talented front four.

Turning point
The field goal. Duh.

Key stat
The 61-yarder from Elliott is a franchise record.

Key plays
•Alshon Jeffery caught a 19-yard pass to put the Eagles in field goal range and Elliott came through.

•Elliott hit a 46-yard field goal to tie the game at 24-24 with 51 seconds left.

•Malcolm Jenkins was called for a pass interference that led to the Giants' field goal that put them up 24-21.

•Torrey Smith was able to draw a huge 36-yard defensive pass interference and rookie Corey Clement ran for a 15-yard touchdown on the next play to tie the score at 21-21.

•Sterling Shepard caught a quick slant in front of Patrick Robinson and Chris Maragos couldn't make the play as Shepard went for a 77-yard touchdown to give the Giants a 21-14 lead.

•Odell Beckham Jr. made a ridiculous one-handed catch in the end zone to tie the game at 14-14. Jalen Mills had tight coverage but it didn't matter.

•Zach Ertz caught a quick pass but then fumbled the ball away to give the Giants great field position at the Eagles' 33-yard line.

•The Giants broke the shutout early in the fourth quarter, when Eli Manning hit Beckham Jr. for a 10-yard touchdown. After the play, Beckham was flagged for his celebration. He acted like a dog and fake urinated on the field.

•The Eagles stopped the Giants on 4th-and-2 late in the third quarter. They made it down to the Eagles' 13-yard line before the stop. Tim Jernigan provided the pressure and Patrick Robinson broke up the pass. The play before, Mills had a great PBU.

•On a broken play, Wentz tried to hit Jeffery deep but Eli Apple tackled him before the ball got there. That 41-yard pass interference penalty set up the second touchdown of the game and helped the Eagles go up 14-0.

•Mychal Kendricks tipped up a Manning pass and Robinson pulled in an interception. It was their second of the day.

•Elliott missed a 52-yarder that would have given them a two-score game early in the third quarter. He had plenty of leg but pulled it left.

•The Eagles dropped running back Orleans Darkwa for a one-yard loss on 4th-and-goal from the 1-yard line late in the second quarter. Vinny Curry blew up the play and Joe Walker helped take Darkwa down.

•On the play before the goal line stand, Shepard should have had a touchdown but he couldn't complete the catch to the ground. The Eagles got away with one there.

•The Giants had a short field to work with on their near-touchdown drive because of an over-aggressive play call from Doug Pederson. The Eagles' head coach went for it on 4th-and-8 at the Giants' 43-yard line. Wentz was sacked for a loss. The Eagles could have punted and tried to pin the feeble Giants offense deep.

•Rasul Douglas got his first career interception in the second quarter when Manning tried to hit Brandon Marshall deep down the left side of the field. The rookie high-pointed the ball and brought it down.

•It wasn't really a play but the Eagles' 18-play, 90-yard drive in the first half was a beauty. They took 9:34 off the clock before LeGarrette Blount punched in a one-yard touchdown.

•During that drive, Wentz pulled off another crazy Houdini move on third down. He somehow slipped away from would-be tacklers and scrambled for an 11-yard gain and a first down to keep it going.

Offensive stud
Maybe Blount got a chance to introduce himself to Pederson this week. After not getting a single carry last week, Blount had a big game against the Giants.

Offensive dud
Chance Warmack started the game at left guard, gave up a sack and was then pulled for Stefen Wisniewski. He returned but didn't do much.

And Ertz just can't fumble the ball in that situation.

Defensive stud
Mychal Kendricks had a big game. He had the assist on the interception and a big run stuff later.

Defensive dud
It's hard to give this to Mills, but we'll have to. He actually had a pretty good game but couldn't stop Beckham Jr. on the two touchdowns. It's fair to say there aren't many who would have been able to stop him, though.

Injuries
The Eagles were without Rodney McLeod (hamstring), Jaylen Watkins (hamstring), Corey Graham (hamstring), Ronald Darby (ankle) and Destiny Vaeao (wrist) for the game.

Fletcher Cox (calf), Jordan Hicks (ankle) and Darren Sproles (wrist) left the game in the first half and did not return.

Up next
The Eagles will be in Los Angeles next week to take on the Chargers. It'll be the first of two trips to LA this season.