*Pre-editor post (forgive any typos)
The Eagles entered this game with everything to play for and the Redskins nothing to play for…and the game played out just like that. Washington had the ball to start the game and threw an interception on the first play – and it was all downhill from there…24-0 Philly.
Not much more I can describe about the game overall, except it seemed very odd re-watching it and listening to the announce team talk about Nick Foles so glowingly…like he was a magician that THEY all have liked for so many years now. Wait? Did I miss the part THEY apologized to everyone for denigrating him since his first season and all along the way for 5 years while he was setting records and pulling miracles out of situations he wasn’t even supposed to be in – his coaches didn’t want him, and thus the fans didn’t…all because the football media assured us Foles somewhere between ‘lucky’ and ‘sucks’.
Now, they love him…and always have.
Now, do you believe me about Nick Foles after all these years? Part of me wants him to take Philly all the way again, even though it would cost me money (got preseason $$ riding on CHI-LAR-NO to get to/win the Super Bowl) – just so I could beam with pride again how I was right all along, and THEY were wrong about Foles every step of the way every year.
Fantasy Player Notes…
-- Josh Adams’s (11-50-0, 3-33-0/3) regular-season ended with whimper. For a spell, Adams became ‘the guy’, the lead RB. It didn’t last long as Doug Pederson went back to his nature in recent weeks and there in this game…an RBBC. I agree with that for NFL strategy, but I hate it for FF…and for Adams.
As I was re-watching this game and watching Adams’s work intently – he really is one of the 10 most gifted RBs in the NFL…right now. I knew it when I scouted him this past preseason, and after he got comfortable in the NFL…he showed how talented he was. His running ability – his vision, his agility/ability cut from tacklers so gracefully, his burst. A super-talent.
…a super-talent that sat on the Eagles’ practice squad for several weeks…anyone could have grabbed him and had a franchise RB. If you wanted more evidence that NFL scouts and analysts have no idea what they’re doing…Exhibit A, undrafted Josh Adams 2018.
I want to get excited about Adams for fantasy 2019, and I’m sure I will…but in this key game, Wendell Smallwood ‘started’ (a meaningless label for Pederson’s plan) and played more snaps (26) than Adams (18)…and Sproles bested them all with 27 snaps. I truly feel Doug Pederson doesn’t fully appreciate what he possesses with Adams, and I’m not sure he ever will…or care. He sees RBs like we should see RBs in fantasy – interchangeable, disposable diapers…here today, gone tomorrow.
One neat thing, for Adams, in this game – 3 targets…he got some interesting passes to work with (not just easy screens), some unplanned targets with Foles in trouble/throwing off target passes to him, and Adams make terrific catches. Adams is a better-than-average pass game option and a stud as a runner. You’ll see…I hope. I think you saw some of it this season. Hopefully, we see more in the future – a Josh Adams/Boston Scott (as Sproles) future duo.
-- Another RB that I like, not near as much as Josh Adams, but that I am also right about in my scouting, also played in this game – Samaje Perine (3-7-0). Yes, Perine actually got to touch the ball…and almost led the team in rushing with 7 whole yards (Chris Thompson ‘led’ the way with 10 rushing yards).
I’m not giving up on Perine…we just have to see where he lands away from Washington, because he’s dead in DC. Been dead. Washington will try to go Derrius Guice + Adrian Peterson (if they can re-sign him/he’s a free agent now) + beloved Chris Thompson next season…no room for Perine, and there hasn’t been for over a year now.
2019 should be the year they finally cut or trade him. I say trade, but that would require Washington or 31 other teams not to have their head’s up their own arses 24-7. *See: Josh Adams.
When Perine hits, if he does, it will be out-of-the-blue, unplanned, forced by injury to another – like 95% of the non-top 50 players drafted in a given year who become successes in the NFL.
-- Nick Foles (28-33 for 221 yards, 2 TDs/1 INT) does it again. Pulls another miracle by leading Philly to a long-shot playoff birth. Oh, and tied an NFL record with 25 straight completions in this game. More records for ‘terrible’ Nick Foles…must have been 25 RPO’s he ran to trick defenses to set the record.
Foles is changing the game for his 2019 free agency every week this 2018 season. As I mentioned, suddenly he’s a beloved, respected QB by everyone. I just saw analysts fighting over how they thought he should have been named starter after his Super Bowl win. Must of not heard them say that, or anyone (but me), ever say that back last February-September.
Foles is going to be a very wealthy man in 2019…the question will be – for what team? If Foles beats the Bears this week…how do the Eagles not just pick up his $20M option and then try to trade him? Better yet…why don’t they work out a long-term deal and trade Wentz?
I know the NFL. Here’s what will happen…Philly/Foles gets squashed by the Bears like all QBs do, and the media will do another 180 on Foles. There will be less media/fan pressure to keep him with a loss to the Bears, and Philly will let him go and he’ll sign a pretty healthy deal with Jacksonville or whomever for like 4-years/$80M with $50M guaranteed.
I don’t think Foles will sign with Washington or NYG, out of respect for the Eagles…avoiding intra-division. Most people in the NFL are whores with not a shred of character or dignity bowing before the almighty dollar. Foles is not one of them… Unless it’s a really, really big offer – then, come on? Honestly, Foles may be the best human in the NFL. Denver, Miami, Jacksonville…the only real places he can go if Washington is out of the picture. Denver will have the inside track, but we’ll see who Miami names as head coach to make a run at him. Denver just seems so obvious right now.
Foles + Sutton/Hamilton, Lindsay-Freeman…fantasy excitement!!
-- If Nick Foles isn’t quarterbacking the Redskins…who will be in 2019? Great question, and I don’t know is the answer.
I think Jay Gruden loves Colt McCoy AND they are tied hard fiscally to Alex Smith. They won’t have the money, potentially, to buy a Nick Foles or even Teddy Bridgewater. Their best bet would be to draft a QB this year, mid-1st or late-1st/early-2nd for the salary. See if McCoy limps them by or they hit gold with their draft pick…and if they strikeout then try again in 2020.
Washington is so poorly run in the front office…they’ll never draft the right QB, even by accident. Gruden is so arrogant he thinks he can win with Colt McCoy and a 1970s run game (like his brother also thinks). So, Washington is probably doomed, again, in 2019.
Hard to value Doctson-Sprinkle-Guice, etc., until we know what’s going to happen at QB, and whether Alex Smith ever plays again. Likely, this is going to be a bad scene for all things fantasy…except the main RB (likely Guice).
-- Philly CB Rasul Douglas (6 tackles, 1 TFL, 1 INT) deserves consideration for the Eagles’ defensive MVP this season.
Douglas was floating around as a backup to the backups and then when so many injury hit, Douglas HAD to play and became their best CB.
In his last/final 5 games of 2018 season – 9.0 tackles, 1.0 TFLs, 0.40 INTs per game.
In some respects, Douglas’s emergence has been as important helping save the season as Foles has.
-- Washington rookie LB Shaun Dion Hamilton (8 tackles, 1.0 sacks, 2 QB hits) impressed me some in the preseason and again with an extended look the past few weeks – two 8 tackle games the last 4 games of the season.
6.0 tackles, 0.38 sacks per game over that 4 game span playing 50% of the snaps approx.
A sleeper IDP, tackle accumulator for 2019. Our scouting models are skeptical of his abilities, but he’s shown on tape he has an effort and penchant for getting in on tackles.