Report: Jaguars expected to sign Nick Foles when free agency opens

NFL free agency does not officially open for 10 days, but the market for the top quarterback appears to be settled.

According to Les Bowen of philly.com, the Jacksonville Jaguars are essentially the only suitor for Nick Foles, and expect to sign him when the free-agent period opens March 13. The Jaguars have already begun to set up the structure of a contract, according to the report.

Other potential quarterback-needy teams do not appear interested in Foles. The New York Giants are sticking with Eli Manning as their starter in 2019, and there has been no indication that the Washington Redskins or Miami Dolphins are set to launch a pursuit of Foles.

Jacksonville has been the first and only team consistently linked to Foles, and the Jags have been considered the favorite to sign him. Foles should provide the Jags with stability at quarterback after years of issues at the position.

By: Grey Papke

Original Article

Winners and losers from the Divisional Round of the 2019 NFL playoffs

The Divisional Round of the NFL playoffs got underway Saturday night with the AFC’s top-seeded Kansas City Chiefs in action against the Indianapolis Colts. A week off did nothing to slow the Chiefs’ offensive momentum.

Led by Patrick Mahomes, who did not find his first career playoff start nearly as intimidating as the pundits thought he would, the Chiefs jumped out to a 24-7 lead in the first half, and never looked back. The Colts hardly looked ready to play, nothing like the team that rode a 10-1 streak into the weekend. The Chiefs went on to win by a final score of 31-13.

The Cowboys and Rams met in LA for the late game on Saturday night to decide the first of the NFC Championship entrants. The Rams’ running game had no troubles against a usually stout Cowboys defense, and the home team rolled on for a 30-22 win.

On Sunday, the Patriots had no problems running around and through the Chargers, winning 41-28 to lock down their eighth consecutive appearance in the AFC Championship game.

The Saints turned aside the Eagles, sinking their hope of a Super Bowl repeat with a 20-14 win in New Orleans. The Saints will host the Rams there next weekend.

Winner: Michael Thomas

The postseason hasn’t been filled with inspiring performances from offensive skill players. But the Saints wide receiver changed that. He and Drew Brees single-handedly got the Saints offense rolling again after a slow start. His best catch of the day — and there were A LOT of them — was on the Saints’ go-ahead touchdown in the third quarter. Just watch it.

https://twitter.com/NFL/status/1084599206159908864

He finished the game with 171 yards and a touchdown on 12 catches.

Loser: Nick Foles’ magic

You can’t impugn what the guy did prior to this game. The Eagles wouldn’t have been playing this weekend, or last, if Foles hadn’t stepped up as the team’s “closer” again this season with Carson Wentz hurt. But he turned into a pumpkin again, underthrowing his receivers and just unable to get the ball to his receivers when the Eagles needed it the most.

With free agency looming this spring, Foles may have cost himself some money with his performance this week, maybe not much, but enough to notice.

Winner: Time of possession

It feels like we haven’t had a good conversation about time of possession since the early days of the Chip Kelly experience in Philly. This time it was the Saints putting on the clock clinic.

It happened in the third quarter. Trailing 10-14, the Saints got the ball at their own 8-yard line. From there they put together a grinding 92-yard touchdown drive over 18 plays and 11:29 minutes, essentially monopolizing the entire third quarter.

Winner: The Patriots defense

Absent most of the season, the Patriots defense looked like one of the NFL’s most fearsome in the first half of the game. Philip Rivers never had a chance against a pass rush that was previously dormant.

Loser: Philip Rivers’ legacy

He’s got more yards, more touchdowns and fewer interceptions over the course of his career than either Eli Manning or Ben Roethlisberger, but unlike those other two first-round picks from the 2004 draft, he does not have a Super Bowl ring. Instead, he and J.P. Losman have something in common.

Winner: Patriots running backs

The Chargers defense put on a clinic for how to stop a creative running game in last week’s win against the Ravens. Apparently, Patriots OC Josh McDaniels was able to find some holes in their game plan.

Sony Michel rolled up nearly 100 yards and scored three touchdowns … in the first half. He’s the first rookie running back in franchise history to rush for more than 100 yards in a playoff game. He finished the day with 129 yards and three touchdowns on 24 carries.

James White, who led the team in receptions during the regular season with 87, was Tom Brady’s favorite receiver on the day, catching 15 of 17 passes for 97 yards.

The Patriots chewed up the clock with their running backs, leaving little time for Rivers and Co. to put points on the board. It also helped keep the workload light for their defense, and teased out what their game plan might be next week against Kansas City.

Winner: C.J. Anderson

The Rams signed C.J. Anderson in mid-December, when Todd Gurley was dealing with a knee injury. Anderson had been released by both the Panthers and Raiders earlier in the season and was really just supposed to be a warm body while Gurley could heal up.

Instead, Anderson has bulldozed every defense he faced. In two games to end the season, he carried the ball 43 times for 299 yards and two touchdowns — that averaged out to 7 yards per carry. But that was against two of the worst teams in the NFL, the Cardinals and 49ers. Next up was the playoffs — and a Cowboys defense that ranked fifth in the league against the run during the regular season. Last week, they held the Seahawks’ top-ranked rushing offense to just 73 yards on the ground.

Anderson had more than that in the first half alone: 12 carries for 78 yards. Even with a healthy Gurley back in the lineup, Anderson was a force in the Rams’ first playoff win in 14 years. He used his, uh, rotund frame to help the Rams dominate the time of possession and scored what proved to be the game-winning touchdown.

Anderson was the leading rusher with 123 yards and two touchdowns. Plus, he did this:

All the Winners and Losers here

 

 

Winners, losers from Thursday Night Football

We hope the rest of the Week 3 NFL preseason slate doesn’t come close to what we saw Thursday night between the Cleveland Browns and Philadelphia Eagles.

For the defending champion Eagles, it was about as bad as one can imagine. Reigning Super Bowl MVP Nick Foles turned the ball over four times.

He was consistently threatened in the backfield by Myles Garrett, and couldn’t click with Philadelphia’s second-team offense.

On the other side of the ball, Browns quarterback Tyrod Taylor exited in the game with a hand injury in the first quarter. Seemingly done for the remainder of the preseason, Browns head coach Hue Jackson made the most Hue Jackson of calls by bringing Taylor back into a meaningless game.

These are among the winners and losers from Cleveland’s ugly 5-0 preseason win over Philadelphia Thursday evening.

Winner: Myles Garrett, defensive end, Cleveland Browns

a close up of a person wearing a helmet © Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Eagles left tackle Halapoulivaati Vaitai had absolutely no answer for this second-year stud Thursday evening. Throughout the first half, it was apparent that Garrett could get to Nick Foles on a consistent basis.

Philadelphia even sent double teams in Garrett’s direction without much success.

It’s this type of domination that the Browns expected from the Texas A&M product when they made him the No. 1 overall pick back in 2017. It’s a game-changing ability, one that will help this defense improve leaps and bounds once the regular season starts.

Coming back from a minor injury, the reigning Super Bowl MVP struggled in his second consecutive preseason outing. This week against Cleveland, it was about both a lack of accuracy and an inability to get rid of the ball on time. Out of the gate, he threw the ball late on an out route. It was a pass that Browns cornerback Terrance Mitchell almost turned into a pick-six.

Then, later in the first half, this Foles pass was picked off by defensive back Briean Boddy-Calhoun.

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Nick Foles Returns to Philadelphia

Written by Vinnie Iyer at SportingNews.com

Just when you thought the Eagles had moved on from trying to fix everything Chip Kelly broke, they had to throw one more offensive move in his face for good measure.

Philadelphia on Monday signed its former starting quarterback, Nick Foles — who had been released by former coach Andy Reid’s Chiefs last week  — to be its top backup behind franchise QB Carson Wentz.  That shoots down the status of short-lived No. 2 Chase Daniel, who signed a three-year, $21 million free-agent deal last March.

It’s no doubt it happened because Foles, with a reported $11 million over two years, is cheaper insurance of the same quality. But it also was a way to remind everyone of the mess Kelly made.

Foles once was Kelly’s QB of choice with a Pro Bowl-worthy, near turnover-free ’13 season. Then came the unpopular move of cutting game-breaking wideout DeSean Jackson, and Foles’ hard fall in ’14. That prompted Kelly to be fickle with Foles, and trade him for preferred but pricier Sam Bradford in ’15.

Bradford wasn’t better in the new system, and Foles was further damaged with no shot to succeed with the Rams’ shaky supporting cast. Kelly piled on the Jackson decision by also not wanting to re-sign Jeremy Maclin in ’15, leaving Philadelphia with one of the league’s worst wideout corps.

Last year, Howie Roseman, back in the GM role, quickly erased the fired Kelly’s two defensive personnel mistakes, by shipping out both Kiko Alonso and Byron Maxwell in a trade with the Dolphins. Then they went out and got aggressive in the draft Wentz, a more Reid-like QB for Doug Pederson. By the end of the offseason, the Vikings’ misfortune with Teddy Bridgewater allowed the Eagles to also flip the Bradford flop.

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Nick Foles Signs With Chiefs

Written by James Brady at SB Nation.com

The Kansas City Chiefs have signed free agent quarterback Nick Foles,according to Fox Sports’ Mike Garafolo. Foles, 27, asked for his release from the Los Angeles Rams after the team spent a first-round pick on Jared Goff in the 2016 NFL Draft. The team granted his release on July 27.

Foles signed a two-year contract extension with the Rams shortly after they acquired him in a trade with the Philadelphia Eagles, before he ever saw the field for them. Foles played in 11 games and completed just 56.4 percent of his passes for 2,052 yards. He had seven touchdowns against 10 interceptions and was eventually benched in favor of Case Keenum.

His play was lacking enough to convince the Rams that he was not the long-term option at quarterback, prompting them to trade several high picks for the right to draft Goff. The Rams initially claimed there would be a quarterback battle, but Foles wanted no part of whatever they were offering and thought he’d do better elsewhere.

As a member of the Chiefs, Foles will be the backup to the entrenched Alex Smith. NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport reports Foles also fielded offers from the Minnesota Vikings and Dallas Cowboys.

Foles is still trying to replicate the amazing season he had with the Eagles in 2013, when he threw 27 touchdowns against just two total interceptions. He completed 64 percent of his passes for 2,891 yards that season, but threw 13 touchdowns and 10 interceptions in eight games with the Eagles in 2014, prompting his trade to the Rams.

Foles was a third-round pick by the Eagles in 2012. He’s played in 39 career games and has 53 touchdowns and 27 interceptions over the course of his career.

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