2014 DRAFT GUIDE
Eagles try to tighten defense with Broncos next

By ROB MAADDI - AP Pro Football Writer
    2013-09-23 18:46

PHILADELPHIA (AP) - Alex Smith, Philip Rivers and RG3 put up big numbers against the Philadelphia Eagles.

There's no telling what Peyton Manning will do.

The Eagles (1-2) are allowing yards passing at an alarming rate. They've given up 1,021 yards in the air so far, an average of 340 per game. Only San Diego and Washington are worse.

With Manning and the Denver Broncos (2-0) up next, the defense has to sort out its issues quickly.

``It's a huge challenge,'' coach Chip Kelly said. ``He's one of the all-time great quarterbacks in the history of the league, not just this season, he's done it for such a long time. He prides himself on his preparation. I think if you're a competitor, you're looking forward to it.''

A revamped secondary that includes three new starters isn't the only problem. The front seven's inability to pressure quarterbacks consistently makes it difficult for the backfield to hold the coverage.

Eventually, a receiver comes open.

``Pass defense is everybody,'' Kelly said. ``It's generating the pass rush, not letting the quarterback feel comfortable, being close in coverage. It's a combination of all those things.''

After allowing 33 touchdown passes last season, the Eagles replaced both starting cornerbacks. High-priced former Pro Bowl players Nnamdi Asomugha and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie were replaced by Cary Williams and Bradley Fletcher. Patrick Chung replaced Kurt Coleman as one of the starting safeties and Nate Allen returned, though he's splitting time with rookie Earl Wolff.

``We have to shore up some things,'' Williams said. ``We have to go back to the drawing board, but we don't give up.''

Robert Griffin III struggled through most of the first three quarters in the season opener before leading Washington to 20 points in the final 16 minutes of Philadelphia's 33-27 win on Sept. 9. Griffin finished with 329 yards.

Rivers picked apart the secondary in Week 2, throwing for 419 yards in San Diego's 33-30 win. Smith passed for 273 yards in Kansas City's 26-16 win last Thursday.

With Peyton Manning, Eli Manning, Tony Romo, Aaron Rodgers, Matt Stafford and Jay Cutler still on the schedule, things could get worse. Kelly is optimistic the group just needs more time playing together in a new system under defensive coordinator Billy Davis.

``We've got a lot of new players over there, new faces and a brand new scheme,'' Kelly said. ``They're starting to get comfortable with it, but the one thing I've told them since we started, `If you play with great effort, good things will happen to you.' I thought they did play with great effort (against the Chiefs). I thought they did a better job on some of those third-and-longs that we gave up.

``Again, I look at them in the fourth quarter, and I think a lot of it has to do with us offensively not doing our job and keeping them out there way too much.''

Kelly's fast-paced offense that was so impressive in the first half against the Redskins isn't helping the defense. The plan in Kelly's frenetic attack is to run a significant number of plays, but the offense hasn't lived up to its part. Since cramming 53 plays into the first half against Washington, the Eagles have run 145 plays in the last 10 quarters. As a result, time of possession has favored the opponents by a 2:1 margin the last two games.

But the defensive players won't point fingers. They expect to get off the field on their own.

``That doesn't matter how much we are on the field. Some of those times we kept ourselves on the field for longer than we should have,'' linebacker DeMeco Ryans said. ``We had them in third-and-long situations, we missed tackles and they made plays.

``We dug ourselves in holes on some of those.''

--

NOTE: The Eagles signed another one of Kelly's former Oregon players, adding WR Will Murphy to the practice squad. OL Isaac Remington was released. Murphy makes it five Eagles that were Ducks.

--

AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Dwayne AllenNov 23 12:42p

Indianapolis Colts TE Dwayne Allen (ankle) is inactive Sunday, Nov. 23, for Week 12.

Trent WilliamsNov 23 12:32p

Washington Redskins OT Trent Williams (ankle, knee) is not expected to play in Week 12 because of his injuries.

Danny LansanahNov 23 12:22p

Tampa Bay Buccaneers LB Danny Lansanah is moving from strongside linebacker to weakside linebacker in place of LB Lavonte David (hamstring). LB Orie Lemon will start at strongside linebacker.

Greg JenningsNov 23 11:52a

Minnesota Vikings WR Greg Jennings (rib) is active for the team's Week 12 game.

Blidi Wreh-WilsonNov 23 11:52a

The Tennessee Titans have declared CB Blidi Wreh-Wilson, QB Charlie Whitehurst, WR Kris Durham, CB Marqueston Huff, TE Richard Gordon, DL Ropati Pitoitua, OT Will Svitek inactive for Week 12.

Arian FosterNov 23 11:42a

The Houston Texans have declared RB Arian Foster, WR DeVier Posey, OT Jeff Adams, S Josh Aubrey, CB Kareem Jackson, LB Max Bullough, QB Tom Savage inactive for Week 12.

Andre BranchNov 23 11:42a

The Jacksonville Jaguars have declared DL Andre Branch, LB Jeremiah George, WR Mike Brown, OT Sam Young, RB Storm Johnson, CB Teddy Williams, OG Tyler Shatley inactive for Week 12.

Crezdon ButlerNov 23 11:42a

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have declared CB C.J. X. Wilson, CB Crezdon Butler, DL Da'Quan Bowers, OT Kevin Pamphile, LB Lavonte David, RB Mike James, WR Robert Herron inactive for Week 12.

Jordan CameronNov 23 11:42a

The Cleveland Browns have declared TE Jordan Cameron, LB Karlos Dansby, WR Marlon Moore, CB Pierre Desir, DB Robert Nelson, WR Rodney Smith, OT Vinston Painter inactive for Week 12.

Rex BurkheadNov 23 11:42a

The Cincinnati Bengals have declared CB Chris Lewis-Harris, WR Dane Sanzenbacher, WR Greg Little, DL Margus Hunt, RB Rex Burkhead, OT Tanner Hawkinson, LB Vontaze Burfict inactive for Week 12.

Dwayne AllenNov 23 11:42a

The Indianapolis Colts have declared TE Dwayne Allen, OT Gosder Cherilus, CB Greg Toler, DL Kelcy Quarles, C Khaled Holmes, OG Lance Louis, NT Zachariah Kerr inactive for Week 12.

Arian FosterNov 23 11:33a

Houston Texans RB Arian Foster (groin) is out Sunday, Nov. 23, for Week 12.

Brandon WattsNov 23 11:32a

The Minnesota Vikings have declared OT Austin Wentworth, LB Brandon Watts, OG David Yankey, RB Matt Asiata, LB Michael Mauti, DL Sharrif Floyd, FB Zach Line inactive for Week 12.

Dennis KellyNov 23 11:32a

The Philadelphia Eagles have declared OT Dennis Kelly, DB Jaylen Watkins, WR Jeff Maehl, OG Julian Vandervelde, QB Nick Foles, CB Rashad Carmichael, DE Taylor Hart inactive for Week 12.

Josh GordonNov 23 11:22a

Cleveland Browns WR Josh Gordon will not receive a fine or suspension for pleading guilty to driving under the influence charge in North Carolina, according to a source.

Reggie BushNov 23 11:12a

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Lavonte DavidNov 23 10:52a

Tampa Bay Buccaneers LB Lavonte David (hamstring) will miss the first game of his career Sunday, Nov. 23, as he's out for Week 12.

Larry FitzgeraldNov 23 10:32a

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Julius ThomasNov 23 10:02a

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Ben TateNov 23 09:52a

Minnesota Vikings RB Ben Tate will be active Sunday, Nov. 23, and have a role in Week 12. RB Matt Asiata will be inactive.

Lamar MillerNov 23 09:52a

Miami Dolphins RB Lamar Miller (shoulder, knee) will play Sunday, Nov. 23, according to a source.

Josh GordonNov 23 09:22a

Cleveland Browns WR Josh Gordon is expected to play 20-30 snaps Sunday, Nov. 23.

Jonas GrayNov 23 09:22a

New England Patriots RB Jonas Gray will play Sunday, Nov. 23, after being late to practice Friday, Nov. 21. He'll split carries with RB LeGarrette Blount in Week 12.

Reggie BushNov 22 05:32p

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Arian FosterNov 22 04:22p

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Josh GordonNov 22 01:32p

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A.J. JenkinsNov 22 12:42p

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