The Linc – NFL insiders rank Saquon Barkley as a top 4 RB

NFL: Philadelphia Eagles OTA
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Philadelphia Eagles news and links for 7/9/24.

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Execs, coaches, scouts rank NFL’s top 10 running backs for 2024 – ESPN+
4. Saquon Barkley, Philadelphia Eagles. Highest ranking: 2 | Lowest ranking: 10Age: 27 | Last year’s ranking: 4. After years of toiling in the Giants’ grind-it-out offense, Barkley upgraded to Philly. The possibilities have some around the league excited. “He’s going to be a beast,” a veteran AFC scout who ranked him second said. “The weapons around him on the outside, dual-threat QB, shotgun runs, his versatility — it’s a perfect fit.” A career reset like McCaffrey’s in San Francisco would be ideal for Barkley, whose production dipped to 962 yards on 247 carries (3.9 yards per carry) last season. Barkley battled ankle issues that sources said were worse than most knew. Many weeks it was a struggle for him to see the field. The money still spoke, with Philly signing Barkley to a three-year, $37.75 million deal in free agency. Durability is a part of the Barkley conversation. He has missed at least three games in four of his six NFL seasons. But in the two seasons when he played 16 games, in 2018 and 2022, he totaled 3,678 yards and 25 touchdowns. He makes life easier on quarterbacks, too. Daniel Jones’ touchdown-to-interception ratio was 2.3 with Barkley in his backfield, compared to 0.8 without him. “Probably not as fast as he used to be,” an NFL offensive coach said. “He has the ability to make people miss in space, which is sometimes bad since you think you can bounce it and outrun people. But when he does get downhill, running in between tackles, he’s so strong naturally that he’s hard to tackle. He runs through arm tackles. Just has to decide to do it.”

A newcomer kicks off top 10 on most important Eagles list – NBCSP
It wasn’t a 1-for-1 trade but it feels that way. After the Eagles signed former Jets edge rusher Bryce Huff to a three-year, $51.1 million contract this March they then traded Pro Bowler Haason Reddick to the Jets. So even though they weren’t traded for one another, Huff will take over Reddick’s starting spot in the Eagles’ defense. And those are big shoes to fill. In his two seasons with the Eagles, Reddick had 27 sacks in 34 regular season games and another 3 1/2 sacks in 4 playoff games. He was the constant source of production on the Eagles’ front in recent seasons and now he’s gone. The Eagles opted for the younger and presumably cheaper player with Huff, whom they also think is still ascending. Based on projection, Huff might be the better long-term bet but it’s definitely a gamble because he hasn’t done it.

Jalen Hurts joined Frankie Beverly on stage at his final concert to pay tribute to the Philly icon – Inquirer
Frankie Beverly is “by far my favorite artist ever,” Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts told GQ in a 2023 video interview. On Saturday, Hurts appeared on stage at Beverly’s farewell concert with his band Maze at the Dell Center in Philadelphia, to give Beverly his flowers — literally — and celebrate Beverly’s impact on music and the city. “I might have a lot of people in this crowd saying, ‘Well, what is Jalen doing here? This is too far beyond his time,’” Hurts, 25, said on stage. “But I was just raised the right way, and when I tell you Frankie Beverly and Maze have a song for every emotion — ‘Joy and Pain,’ ‘We Are One,’ ‘Golden Time of Day,’ ‘While I’m Alone,’ it goes on and on. I’m so thankful for the person you’ve been for me through your music and what you’ve done to inspire me to keep going, to persevere, to have gratitude, to show appreciation for my loved ones, the people around me, and great music. I just want to say on behalf of Philly, everyone here in this community, we wanted to thank you.” Hurts gave Beverly a bouquet of flowers on stage wearing an all-white outfit, a nod to Beverly’s signature on-stage dressing style.

Dallas Cowboys QB Dak Prescott made sure to let everyone know how his bootless ankle is doing – Blogging The Boys
The reality of being Dak Prescott is that anything and everything you do is going to create tizzies, fuss and commotion. This is particularly true as training camp is just a few weeks away from beginning, but all the more so because he is currently in negotiations for what could be one of the richest deals ever handed out in NFL history.

Giants favored by oddsmakers to sign star safety away from Denver Broncos – Big Blue View
Oddsmakers give the New York Giants the best odds of any NFL team to sign star safety Justin Simmons, a free agent, away from the Denver Broncos. Bet Online lists the Giants at 4-1 with the shortest odds of signing Simmons. Simmons is a two-time Pro Bowler and four-time second-team All-Pro. He will turn 31 this season, though, and will be entering his ninth NFL season. Does signing Simmons makes sense for the Giants? New York is 23rd in the league in salary cap space with $11.465 million, per Over The Cap. Simmons has established himself as one of the premier safeties in the NFL. Known for his exceptional coverage skills, tackling ability, and playmaking prowess, Simmons has been a cornerstone of the Broncos’ defense. His versatility allows him to excel in various defensive schemes.

The 5 O’Clock Club: Nick Sirianni, Mike McCarthy, Brian Daboll – Hogs Haven
Despite having enjoyed much more success recently than the Washington Commanders, the coaches in both Philadelphia and Dallas appear not to have met the expectations of the owners and fans of those two teams. Brian Daboll, despite winning the award as Coach of the Year in 2022, struggled through a tumultuous ‘23 season. He comes into 2024 amidst reports of strife within his own coaching staff and questions about his leadership and temperament.

Joel Embiid’s decision to play for USA and not Cameroon has no room for criticism – SB Nation
The 2024 Olympic games in Paris is going to be a statement for Team USA men’s basketball. Years of hearing how the “world is catching up” and one year removed from a pathetic fourth place showing at the FIBA World Cup has lit a fire under the United State to prove its still the dominant global force in basketball, and that nobody can touch Team USA when it sends its best players. Couched in the discussion of global basketball in Paris is Joel Embiid, who has chosen to represent Team USA at the games. A Cameroon national who moved to the USA at age 16, Embiid’s participation in the games is being slammed on social media, fueled by accounts with large followings branding Embiid’s decision as “taking the easy way out.”

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Title: The Linc – NFL insiders rank Saquon Barkley as a top 4 RB
Author: Brandon Lee Gowton

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