Eagles in the NFL: November 2018
By: Bryan Bruwer
The NFL season has officially reached the home stretch, meaning it is time for another update on how BC’s most prevalent football alum have played recently.
Matt Ryan (QB) Atlanta Falcons: The Falcons have limped to a 4-7 record this season, but Matt Ryan has continued to be one of their lone bright spots. He is on pace for his best statistical season outside of his 2016 MVP campaign, now boasting 24 touchdowns and only five interceptions. Ryan is also on pace to shatter his previous career high in passing yards per game, as he currently leads the league with 334.8 yards per game. The Falcons dynamic aerial attack is the one thing keeping their team afloat, as the defense has been pitiful, largely due to being ravaged by injuries early in the season.
Luke Kuechly (LB) Carolina Panthers: Carolina has fallen from grace as of late due to dropping their last three contests, but they still have a solid chance to make the playoffs. Kuechly has been his usual dominant self as of late, averaging about ten total tackles per game in his last four games. Kuechly has also been living in the backfield this season, already setting career highs in quarterback hits and tackles for a loss. Expect Kuechly to once again be named a first team all-pro, as PFF has graded him as the third best linebacker in all of football this season.
John Johnson III (S) Los Angeles Rams: Johnson III has put together a strong season thus far, but November was definitely his weakest month. He failed to record an interception or pass deflection, and the Rams defense as a whole struggled mightily all month, allowing almost 40 points a game over their three November contests. Despite these shortcomings, Johnson III fared well in the tackling department, notching 18 solo tackles over three games. Johnson III is ranked as the 16thbest safety in football according to PFF, so there is no reason to panic over a below average month for the second year pro.
Matt Milano (LB) Buffalo Bills: Milano, now in his second year with the Bills, had a very interesting month of November. He recorded two interceptions, one in a blowout win against the Jets and the other in a home defeat of the lowly Jacksonville Jaguars. Milano didn’t contribute much in terms of tackles, but he also added two pass deflections. It appears Milano has really come into his own as a coverage linebacker, and PFF has recognized his progress by rating him as the 7thbest linebacker in all of football. If Milano continues to develop, the Bills could have another potential lynchpin on defense to pair with Tre’Davious White and Tremaine Edmunds.
Justin Simmons (S) Denver Broncos: The Denver Broncos have surged back into the AFC playoff picture with two straight wins, and Simmons has also upped his game as of late. He has officially set a career high in tackles, despite playing in two fewer games than he did last year. Simmons has notched 9 and 10 combined tackles in his last two games, and he’ll look to keep the good times rolling against the Bengals and Jeff Driskel, who will be making his first career NFL start in place of the recently injured Andy Dalton.
Harold Landry (LB) Tennessee Titans: After surprising falling to the second round of the draft, Landry is proving all the doubters wrong so far this year. November may have been his best month yet, as Landry recorded 1.5 sacks and 16 combined tackles to go alongside 2 tackles for a loss. Landry was also named to PFF’s midseason all-rookie team, where he graded out as the best rookie edge rusher. Now that Landry is beginning to put it together and gain steam, Titans fans would hope that the rest of their team can do the same, as Tennessee currently sits on the fringe of playoff contention at 5-6.