Dennis Kelly’s Big Adventure… Eagles at Cleveland Browns Friday night…

Barely time for we fans to catch a breath… the Eagles travel to Cleveland Browns Stadium tomorrow night for preseason Game #3…

Nick Foles will get the start at QB for the Birds…and Dennis Kelly, the huge tackle from Purdue whom we lovingly call “Hagrid” here at EEB, will get to start at RT…

Dennis Kelly aka Hagrid gets the chance of a lifetime… 5th round pick out of Purdue, 6-8, weighing somewhere between 325 and 340… He gets a start vs. the Browns due to a funeral leave granted to Todd Herremans

Right tackle Todd Herremans will not play in Friday’s preseason game against the Browns because of a family funeral, a report from the Eagles website confirmed Wednesday. Herremans, a staple of Philadelphia’s offensive line for the last eight years, will be replaced by fifth-round pick Dennis Kelly, who will get his first professional start.

“I think it’s going to be very valuable,” said Kelly, who added that he found out he’d be starting Wednesday morning. “It’s going to put me under the spotlight I guess you could say. It’s going to give me an opportunity to play with the 1’s during a game, so hopefully I take advantage of the opportunity and show the coaches that if I’m called upon I’ll be ready to play…”

For those who are not familiar with Kelly’s college career, here are some basic scouting summaries:

Dennis prepped in suburban Chicago, where he was a 240-pound tight end who also played basketball… was slated to greyshirt, but put on enough weight to garner a scholarship and appeared in five games as a true freshman in 2008… Moved into the starting lineup and started all 37 games at left tackle 2009-11… Team captain and two-time team offensive MVP…

Tall, lean, high-waisted, finesse pass protector still growing into his frame — needs to continue filling out and getting stronger… Tough and durable… Places his hands correctly and can pop and recoil. Plays upright, shows some stiffness and struggles to quickly redirect or cut off fast-flowing linebackers… Experienced three-year starter with terrific football character and a team-first attitude.

Kelly ran a 5.37 40-yard dash on his Pro Day at Purdue last March.

As for the Cleveland defensive line he’ll be facing, we’ll get into that a little later…

But first…

Thank you to our new friend, Tony Granieri of ESPN Monday Night Football, who graciously has accepted my “discovery” of his new blog “Monday Night Spotter“…

Tony Granieri has been the official “spotter” for Monday Night Football for the past nine years. Prior to that he worked for Scouts, Inc. alongside Todd McShay.  You can find plenty of his game reviews from back then in the archives of

It’s a small world. I never in my wildest dreams thought we would have a fellow Bored member who actually sits in the MNF booth with Gruden and Tirico! But now we do… In a way it makes some sense, because Granieri is a diehard Eagles fan who lives in Linwood, New Jersey, as it turns out…

I urge you to check out Tony’s site. It meets the Bored requirements to “Educate and Entertain”…

Meanwhile, I’ll take a midnight break… and save space for JB’s Game Weeview…and come up with some pre-game scouting material on the Cleveland Browns for Thursday morning…

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Hagrid will be facing a Browns defensive line that’s trying to improve on two main stats from last year: Rushing Yards Allowed per game (147) and Total Sacks (32).  Those stats were 30th and 23rd best in the league, respectively.

The Browns defensive line has 3 legitimate starters: DE Jabaal Sheard (6-2, 255, 2nd year, Pitt), DT Phil Taylor (6-3, 340, 2nd year, Baylor) and DT Ahtyba Rubin (6-2, 330, 5th year, Iowa State)…In free agency the Browns added two defensive ends—our very own Juqua Parker and Frostee Rucker. Parker is expected to fit in a rotation, Rucker is expected to start. 3rd-round pick John Hughes , a 6-3, 310 DT out of Cincinnati, was a surprise pick to many, but I expect to see him a lot in Friday night’s rotation. Rookie DE Billy Winn should also see playing time—Winn is 6-3, 296, from Boise State, and was taken in the 6th round last April.

Sheard led the Browns with 8.5 sacks and five forced fumbles. He posted the second-most sacks by a Browns rookie — second only to former Cleveland linebacker Kamerion Wimbley’s 11.0 in 2006. Sheard was third among all NFL rookies and first among first-year defensive linemen in sacks. Sheard trailed only Baltimore’s Terrell Suggs (seven) and Cliff Avril from Detroit (six) in forced fumbles.

Taylor registered 59 total tackles, 37 solo stops and four sacks for 14.0 lost yards. He also broke up one pass and forced a fumble. Although Taylor’s first year in the NFL ended successfully, his second season started poorly. During an offseason workout at the Browns’ facility, Taylor was injured while bench-pressing and will miss time as he rehabs from his surgery which repaired the torn pectoral muscle.

Here’s Billy Winn on his unit’s objective for Friday night: “The biggest thing we should be worried about, first and foremost, is getting better every day, coming out here and competing…these are our major concerns. It’s not necessarily to put on a show; those are things that need to be done on a daily basis out here. It shouldn’t be one of those things that happens because you have a special occurrence come up, but the things that are done day-in, day-out and are part of your job.”

Get him, Hagrid!

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And now the moment you’ve been waiting for: The GREAT SAGE JB’s Game Weeview of the Patriots affair on MNF:


First tings first… few are talking about the run D… which was stellar. They had an 8 yarder… and a 3rd & 3 for a first… but other than that… it was pretty much shut down. In particular… Ryans, Rolle and KEndricks all looked great.

 You can really see the D coming along. Our Zones are much quicker to the tackle this year. BIiiiiiiiig improvement.


11:31 of the 2nd Q… they muffed that P. It was 27-6 the rest of the way.


McBriar boomed that 56 yarder… with great hang… that was returned for 5. 51 net. I was donkey kicking oin my hands and knees throughout the house. Then he smarshed the next one 9 yards deep in the EZ. sheesh


Dunlap played well… but is extremely goofy down the field.


Foles is unique for the Eagles. Big, strong with the big arm. Weird seeing that play for us. He looks good…. but 3 passes should have been picked… but only 1 was. Admittedly… Peanut should have come back to the ball on that one.


Havili!!!1!!1! The big run… then on the next play lead with a big block on the TD run by Shady. Plus the ST’s blow up also. But catching and running are his best assets. He’ll be a big time player for us.


The Pats went for two after our penalty on the xtra point. I thought Reid should have gone for two after theirs. He missed an opportunity to send a message.


Aso is such a good player. He made so many good plays. Sniffing out screens… supporting vs the run… and shutting down his guy. Great player.


Nate Allen showed great awareness on that deep ball down the middle he knocked away smoothly. Thats what I wanted to see from him after the Kenny Britt debacle. He looks MUCH better. Playing the run tough. Looks veeery comfortable out there.We just keep hitting those 2nd round picks.


I was skeptical of Ryans… but he is really impressing me. Big time upgrade for us.


KEndricks is the best LB in the NFL. He made too many plays to be listed. Young Lance Briggs. I cant wait to see Kendricks vs the skins Zone Block.


McCoy is amazing. He created many yards. He created 5 on the late hit penalty play by Kelce… and then on the next play he created 5 on a screen. He looks fantastic.


ALl three LB’s look quick and are attacking. Major upgrade across the board.


Landri gets dominated more than I’d like to see. We need Fatt Patt back.


Thomas Jackson

About Thomas Jackson

Jax Sports Media has been reporting on NFL teams in the mid-Atlantic region since 2006. Thomas Jackson is its senior writer. Tom started covering the Philadelphia Eagles for the MVN Network in 2007. In 2009 he joined the Bloguin Network. He now also covers the Baltimore Ravens.