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Gold medals for U.S. at Summer Olympics, more than any other country

Nobody can predict exactly what will happen during the Eagles’ season. But, with tongue firmly in cheek, we take our best shot.

Despite concerns about Nerlens Noel’s inconsistency, he’s playing better in January. Eric Fisher also provides good news and bad news about two 20-year-olds who are supposed to be part of the Sixers’ future, tells us which teams are moving up toward playoff position and examines the Sixers’ upcoming schedule.

Eric Fisher’s weekly column on a variety of topics. This week Eric serves up opinions on why the Eagles’ win over the Cowboys was important for Philly fans’ mental health, a wonderful tribute at Penn State and three NFL coach of the year candidates with Philly connections.

First-and-10

A quick look at 10 sports stories in the news…

1. Wentz throws again Eagles rookie quarterback Carson Wentz, the No. 2 pick in the NFL Draft, does light throwing on sideline Monday, just as he did Saturday in first practice activity since fracturing rib during fourth quarter of his NFL debut against Bucs in preseason opener. Head coach Doug Pederson says he hopes Wentz can return for final preseason game on Sept. 1. OT Lane Johnson (back), kicker Caleb Sturgis (concussion), CB Blake Countess (concussion), DL Mike Martin (knee), CB JaCorey Shepherd (hamstring) return from injuries to practice Monday. WR Jordan Matthews (left knee strain), CB Aaron Grymes (shoulder) remain sidelined. Matthews says he’ll be ready for season opener on Sept. 11 against Browns.  Eagles reduce roster to 84 by cutting LB Deontae Skinner. On Sunday Eagles cut WR T.J. Graham, WR Xavier Rush, RB Cedric O’Neal, center Bruce Johnson. Eagles must reduce roster to 75 by Aug. 30 (4 p.m.).

2. Eagles sign Tulloch Eagles sign veteran LB Stephen Tulloch. Need for Tulloch, who played for Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz, increased after rookie LB Joe Walker, a 7th-round draft pick, tears ACL during Thursday’s win over Steelers and will miss entire season. Eagles already thin at LB before Walker’s injury. Don Cherry, signed as free agent from Villanova, becomes primary backup to middle linebacker Jordan Hicks. Eagles trade offensive lineman Dennis Kelly to Titans for WR Dorial Green-Beckham (6-5, 237), a second-round 2015 draft choice who had 32 catches for 549 yards during rookie season. Green-Beckham has history of off-field problems (he was kicked off the University of Missouri team) and work ethic and consistency issues.

3. Listen to Eagles talk on Blog Talk Radio Listen as Gordon Glantz and Eric Fisher evaluate the Eagles’ performance against the Steelers and discuss Phillies fans’ reaction to Chase Utley’s return and the Olympics during PhillyPhanatics.com’s Blog Talk Radio show. To listen to the show, please click here(To listen to past shows, please click here.)

4. Eagles shut out Steelers Eagles intercept 4 passes in first half en route to 17-0 victory over host Steelers in preseason game. Cornerback Nolan Carroll opens scoring by returning interception 38 yards for TD with 9:18 remaining in 1st quarter. Sam Bradford completes 14 of 19 passes for 115 yards, but only points produced by first-team offense come on Cody Parkey’s 40-yard field goal 3 seconds before halftime after Jaylen Watkins’ interception. Safety Malcolm Jenkins, CB Aaron Grymes make interceptions in end zone. Backup QB Chase Daniel completes 10 of 16 passes for 82 yards. Eagles’ next game is Sat., Aug. 27 at Indianapolis.

5. Cardinals crush Phillies Cardinals hit 4 home runs, Phillies can’t manage extra-base hit during Cardinals’ 9-0 victory. Vince Velasquez strikes out 7, but allows 2 homers, 5 runs in 6 innings while throwing 106 pitches. Cardinals add 2 homers, 4 runs in 8th inning against Frank Hermann. Phillies off Monday, then Jake Thompson starts today (8:10 p.m.) as Phillies begin road trip against White Sox.

6. MLB clears Howard Major League Baseball clears Phillies first baseman Ryan Howard of any wrongdoing with regard to performance-enhancing drugs story on Al-Jazeera.

7. Eflin’s season is over Phillies shift pitcher Zach Eflin from 15-day disabled list to 60-day DL, ending his season. Eflin has surgery Friday to repair patella tendon in right knee. He may have similar surgery on left knee after right knee has healed. Phillies already moved pitcher Aaron Nola from 15-day DL list to 60-day DL, ending his season. Nola had right elbow examined by Dr. James Andrews on Monday, according to GM Matt Klentak. Nola received injection of platelet-rich plasma, according to Klentak, who says injury is low-grade sprain of ulnar collateral ligament (UCL). Klentak says plan is for rest rather than surgery. UCL replacement commonly known as Tommy John surgery.

8. U.S. cruises to win in men’s hoops U.S. slams Serbia, 96-66, to win gold medal in men’s basketball. In women’s basketball, U.S. pulls away from Spain for 101-72 victory, earning team its 49th straight Olympic victory and its 6th straight gold medal. Klay Thompson scores 22 points as U.S. men’s team defeats Spain, 82-76, to reach today’s gold medal game against Serbia. Michael Centrowitz upsets Kenya’s Asbel Kiprop to win men’s 1,500 meters, becoming first U.S. man to win gold in 1,500 since 1908. U.S. wins men’s 4 x 400-meter relay. Brazil beats Germany in penalty kicks to win men’s soccer gold. Usain Bolt anchors Jamaica’s winning 4 x 100 meters relay team, earning his 9th career gold medal in what is likely his final Olympic race.

9. Toronto tops Union All scoring in first half as Toronto FC defeats host Union, 3-1. Toronto, which remains in 2nd place, opens scoring. Fourth-place Union (9-9-7) even score when Ken Tribbett heads in goal in 24th minute, with Tranquillo Barnetta picking up assist, but Toronto regains lead 6 minutes late and scores again just before halftime. Union return to action Wednesday (7:30 p.m.) at Columbus.

10. Bell won’t face Eagles Eagles didn’t face RB Le’Veon Bell last Thursday during preseason game, and won’t be facing him during regular season, either. Upon appeal, NFL reduces Bell’s suspension for missing multiple drug tests from 4 games to 3, but that will still keep him out of Sept. 25 game against Eagles at Heinz Field.

(Listen live to PhillyPhanatics.com’s weekly Internet Blog Talk Radio program on Sundays from 6:30-7 p.m. — or call in to express your opinion or ask a question — by calling 805-727-7014. To listen to past shows, please click here.)

WEEKEND RESULTS

Friday
Cardinals 4, Phillies 3 (11 inngs.)

Saturday
Phillies 4, Cardinals 2
Toronto 3, Union 1

Sunday
Cardinals 9, Phillies 0

LOCAL SCHEDULE

Monday
No games scheduled

Tuesday
Phillies at White Sox, 8:10 p.m.

Wednesday
Phillies at White Sox, 8:10 p.m.
Union at Columbus, 7:30 p.m.

Thursday
No games scheduled

Friday
Phillies at Mets, 7:10 p.m.
Arena Football
Championship game
Soul vs. Arizona, 7 p.m.
(at Glendale, Ariz.)

Saturday
Phillies at Mets, 7:10 p.m.
Sporting Kansas City at Union, 7 p.m.

Sunday
Phillies at Mets, 1:10 p.m.

FOR LEAGUE-WIDE SCORES AND STANDINGS, CLICK ON THE LINKS UNDER THE “STANDINGS” HEADING IN THE SIDEBAR TO THE RIGHT, OR IN THE HEADING AT THE UPPER-RIGHT OF THIS PAGE

Phillies Notebook: No guarantees on young arms

This season of exploration leaves the Phillies with more questions than answers regarding the future of the young arms, such as Vince Velasquez (pictured), Aaron Nola and Zach Eflin, in their starting rotation. ***** You can never have enough pitching. That seemed to ...
Phillies Notebook: No guarantees on young arms

Favorite Olympic sport?

What’s your favorite sport in the Summer Olympics? What’s your least favorite Olympic sport? Let your opinion be known through Voice of the Phanatics.

Olympic spirit missing

This year’s Olympics have been marred by several anti-Semitic incidents and violence, yet Gordon Glantz struggles whether to discuss these incidents with his daughter or shield her from the truth to avoid ruining her first real Olympic viewing experience.

Fish ‘n Chips

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Top Eagles concerns

As Eagles training camp continues and they begin to play preseason games, we’ve compiled a list of the Top 10 concerns surrounding the Birds.

Eagles cut Steelers off at the pass

August - 18 - 2016 Reporter: Eric Fisher Respond

The Eagles intercepted four first-half passes from backup quarterback Landry Jones, including one by safety Malcolm Jenkins (pictured) in the end zone, as they defeated the host Steelers, 17-0, in their second preseason game.

Heel Turns: SummerSlam headlines weekend

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Utley still ‘The Man’

August - 17 - 2016 Reporter: Eric Fisher Respond

Chase Utley played his way into the hearts of Phillies fans with his accomplishments and his attitude. In his first game back at Citizens Bank Park, Phillies fans let Utley know he will always be at home in Philadelphia.

Eagles-Steelers: Opener breeds new questions

August - 16 - 2016 Reporter: Eric Fisher Respond

After taking just three snaps during the preseason opener, how long will starting quarterback Sam Bradford (pictured) play Thursday (7 p.m.) when the Eagles face the Steelers? We provide 8 questions to prepare you for Thursday’s game.

Fish ‘n Chips

August - 15 - 2016 Reporter: Eric Fisher Respond

Eric Fisher’s weekly column about a variety of issues. This week Eric serves up opinions on Lane Johnson’s explanation of how he tested positive, Michael Phelps’ influence and an awful decision by a Wrigley Field disc jockey.

Heel Turns: Wrestling is real

August - 14 - 2016 Reporter: Achilles Heel Respond

The Greek God of Wrestling uses the outstanding Cruiserweight Classic match between Kota Ibushi and Cedric Alexander to highlight how real the emotion can be in professional wrestling. Achilles Heel also updates the SummerSlam and NXT Takeover cards, lists matches for next weekend’s events from Ring of Honor, EVOLVE and CHIKARA, and informs us of three changes in TNA.

Phillies fans greet Chase Utley with huge ovation