Mathews, whose injury wasn’t noticeable as he walked by reporters today when he reported for training camp, is expected to receive the bulk of the carries this season in the Eagles’ new offense.
After Mathews there are a lot of questions in the Eagles backfield. Darren Sproles does the most damage as a punt returner and receiver out of the backfield on offense, and he’s now 33-years-old. Kenjon Barner has only 34 career carries, although Wendell Smallwood has continued to impress Doug Pederson this summer. Smallwood could be a guy to benefit the most with Mathews missing reps.
Wednesday, July 20, 2016, 12:43pm
Darren Sproles missed the voluntary portion of Eagles offseason workouts. The coaching staff genuinely didn't seem to to be too concerned about that. Unlike Ryan Mathews, Sproles is a very good fit for an offense that plans on using its backs heavily in the passing game.
Expect Sproles to used more creatively in Pederson's offense than he was in Chip Kelly's, but likely only for one year, as Sproles is 33 years old and in the final year of his deal.
Sproles is always worth a look in the later rounds of PPR drafts. It sounds as if he'll have a sizable role in the offense.
When Eagles RB Ryan Mathews got playing time last season, he was very good. He carried the ball 106 times for 539 yards (5.1 YPC) and 6 TDs, which made him the most productive runner on the team. We stress that he was a good "runner."
Mathews is not a great fit for Doug Pederson's offense. Pederson has said that he wants to be able to move his backs around to create mismatches for opposing defenses in the passing game. That is not at all a strength of Mathews'.
Mathews has caught 78.3% of his career targets, which is good for 11th among 102 running backs with at least 100 catches since 2006. His hands are fine. Where he may be lacking is gaining yards after the catch. His Y/R (7.57) is mediocre. He's by far he best running back on the team at this point and we like his value in the 5th or 6th round. In the 24 games over the past three seasons where Mathews has at least 10 carries, he has averaged 87 total yards and 0.50 TD, or 13.4 PPR points per game. Those are solid RB1 numbers.
It looks like we’re going to have another running-back-by-committee season in Philadelphia. While Ryan Mathews got the bulk of first-team reps this spring, he also shared them with Kenjon Barner and Darren Sproles. The team also has fifth-rounder Wendell Smallwood.
“Well, you go in thinking that one guy can handle the load,” HC Doug Pederson said. “If that's Ryan, he can handle all the stuff and the pounding. But with the guys we have, with the depth we have at that position, Darren is obviously a big part of that and now with Wendell [RB Wendell Smallwood] coming on, I think it could be a little bit of a running back by committee.”
This doesn't worry us, since Mathews appears to be one of the better values at the running back position even with a conservative projection of touches. He's ranked 17th in standard and 21st in PPR formats, and that's only with 240 touches, which is very reasonable as the lead back in a committee. Mathews' career production (4.5 YPC) and 2015 production (5.0 YPC) allow him to generate yards on fewer touches.
Kenjon Barner has made some noise at OTAs with Mathews sidelined with a hamstring injury. Rookie Wendell Smallwood also looks good, per reports. Mathews returned to workouts, however, and should start for the Eagles. He's coming off of a 5.0 YPC season and in 54 career games with at least 10 carries, Mathews has averaged 14.6 FP in PPR formats. Those are strong RB1 numbers. He's an injury risk, but at the cost of a 5th or 6th round pick, he's worth it.
Eagles coach Chip Kelly has finally begun to realize that DeMarco Murray, his prized free-agent signing, is not a good fit in his offense. But Kelly is still giving Murray more touches than his production warrants.
In Sunday’s win over the Bills, Murray actually got plenty of touches: Murray had 11 carries for 34 yards, plus two catches for three yards.
That continues a trend that has been going on all season: Murray is getting the ball a lot and not doing much of anything with it. Murray has 174 carries for 603 yards this season, an average of 3.5 yards a carry. Murray’s average is by far the worst on the team: Ryan Mathews averages 5.3 yards per carry with 465 yards on 87 carries, Kenjon Barner averages 4.6 yards a carry with 106 yards on 23 carries and Darren Sproles averages 4.0 yards a carry with 275 yards on 69 carries.
There were reports that Murray was going to be inactive or reduced to the team's RB4 in Week 14, but that wasn't the case. Instead, it was worse for fantasy owners as Mathews, Murray and Sproles seemed to split up the workload. This is going to be a tricky situation going forward. Mathews is probably the best fit for a full workload and has often produced with more with less touches than he got this week. But without a full workload, he'll still have some risks going forward.
Friday, December 11, 2015, 6:22pm
Eagles RB Ryan Mathews (concussion, groin, probable) took full practice reps again Friday and is probable for Week 14. The Philadelphia RB corps will be difficult to predict. Mathews has vastly outplayed DeMarco Murray, who may or may not be in Chip Kelly’s dog house. Mathews could see 10-15 touches in a lead back role, or the team may elect to ease him in slowly.
Thursday, December 10, 2015, 6:31pm
Eagles RB Ryan Mathews (concussion, groin) took full practice reps Thursday after being limited Wednesday. Mathews says he’s going to play in Week 14 and it appears that DeMarco Murray is in the doghouse. Mathews could see 10-15 touches in a lead back role, or he could be eased in slowly.
Wednesday, December 9, 2015, 6:33pm
Eagles RB Ryan Mathews (concussion, groin) took limited practice reps Wednesday. Mathews says he’s going to play in Week 14 and it appears that DeMarco Murray is in the doghouse. Mathews could see 10-15 touches in a lead back role, or he could be eased in slowly.
The Eagles got a boost from beating the defending Super Bowl champion Patriots Sunday, and they could get another one Tuesday, when running back Ryan Mathews might return to practice for the first time since suffering a concussion Nov. 15 against Miami.
Mathews passed neuropsychological testing Monday, which had been holding up his return, a source close to the situation said. The source said Mathews will see an independent neurologist Tuesday morning, and if that goes well, the Eagles' most effective back could practice Tuesday and presumably return to action this coming Sunday against Buffalo.
DeMarco Murray had just 14 snaps against the Pats so the door is pretty open for Mathews to get a bulk of the carries. He's proved so far this season to be a much better fit than Murray in the Chip Kelly offense. The Eagles have played Murray lack of touches this past week on the flow of the game, but owners now have to wonder if this could be a trend for the rest of the season.
Friday, December 4, 2015, 6:28pm
Thursday, December 3, 2015, 5:56pm
Wednesday, December 2, 2015, 6:12pm
Monday, November 30, 2015, 5:52pm
Eagles running back Ryan Mathews suffered a concussion in a Nov. 15 loss to the Miami Dolphins at Lincoln Financial Field and is still not cleared to resume football activities according to head coach Chip Kelly.
Kelly said that he did not have a definitive update on Ertz at the time of his Monday press conference but believed that the only remaining hurdle was the tight end being cleared by an independent neurologist before he could return to the practice field.
- Page 1