No-22: What the Eagles Have In Shepherd

JaCorey Shepherd.  John Rieger / USA TODAY

JaCorey Shepherd. John Rieger / USA TODAY

If JaCorey Shepherd had it to do over, he wouldn’t have run.

The sixth-round pick from Kansas sat out drills at the combine because of a hamstring injury. But when his Pro Day arrived, Shepherd felt like he had to show scouts, coaches and GMs that he had the speed to play cornerback at a high level in the NFL. So he gave it a go.

The results were not pretty. The hamstring was bothering Shepherd, and he ran a 4.65 and a 4.62 in the 40-yard dash. For a team like the Eagles that values measurables, those are not times that fit the prototype.

But Chip Kelly and his staff did their homework and decided that Shepherd played faster than the time indicated. They felt like it was pretty clear his hamstring was a factor and decided Shepherd’s upside warranted a pick.

“I definitely use the round I got picked in as motivation,” Shepherd said last week. “But like I said from the beginning, that never really mattered to me. I just wanted the opportunity. Being labeled as a slower corner, I know that’s not me, especially when you watch tape. Playing in the Big 12 conference, there weren’t too many times that I got a deep ball completed on me. So that definitely does motivate me going forward to show that ain’t the type of player that I am – 4.6 is not [me].” Read more »

Eagles, Ravens To Hold Joint Practices

Photo by: Jeff Fusco.

Photo by: Jeff Fusco.

The Eagles confirmed today that they’ll hold joint practices with the Ravens prior to the teams’ preseason matchup.

The three sessions will be held in Philadelphia from Aug. 19-Aug. 21. The two teams will face off on Aug. 22 at the Linc in the Eagles’ second preseason game. Read more »

Rowe’s First Impression Of Chip

Eagles Draft 2015
Chris Nicoll / USA TODAY Sports

Chris Nicoll / USA TODAY Sports

When Eric Rowe entered the hotel room in Mobile, Ala. last January, he was greeted by seven Eagles representatives.

This was part of the interview process at the Senior Bowl. Players practice during the day and meet with teams at nights. One of the faces staring back at Rowe was Chip Kelly. And Rowe didn’t exactly feel warmth from the Eagles head coach. Read more »

Eagles Wake-Up Call: A Maclin Draft What-If

Eagles Draft 2015
Photo Credit: Jeff Fusco

Photo Credit: Jeff Fusco

Today’s question comes from loyal B247 reader and Iraq War vet (thanks for your service!) Rich Colton:

It would have had an interesting domino effect, Rich. If the Eagles had re-signed Jeremy Maclin, it seems reasonable to assume they wouldn’t have signed DeMarco Murray. And wide receiver would not have been a priority in the early rounds. A long-term contract for Maclin, in addition to Jordan Matthews and Josh Huff being on their rookie deals, would have meant the Eagles were pretty much set at wide receiver. Read more »

Eagles Release Murphy, Add Mays; 11 Get Tryouts

Photo by: Jeff Fusco.

Photo by: Jeff Fusco.

The Eagles have signed defensive end Frank Mays and released WR Will Murphy, the team announced today.

Mays (6-9, 291) signed with the Birds as an undrafted free agent last summer, but was released. He spent last year with the Tampa Bay Storm of the Arena Football League.

Meanwhile, the following 11 players will participate in this week’s rookie minicamp on a tryout basis: Read more »

On McCoy, Chip, the Eagles And Race

NFL: Preseason-Philadelphia Eagles at New England Patriots

By the time LeSean McCoy got in front of the sponsored backdrop at Camden Catholic High School and saw the group of reporters jostle for position, he knew the questions that were about to be fired in his direction.

This was last April, and McCoy was hosting a football camp for kids. It was also two weeks after the Eagles had cut McCoy’s friend, DeSean Jackson. He was asked about the message Chip Kelly was sending to the rest of the squad with the move.

“You know that nobody’s safe in this game as far as being here forever,” he said. “But then you feel like, ‘Alright well I’ve established myself so much, I did so much.’ [But] anybody can go.”

Asked specifically about Kelly, McCoy said: “Chip is different. He’s a cool guy. He’s honest. He likes hard work. And he’s respectful. We have a great relationship. I think people are getting the wrong picture like he cut one of his best players. I don’t think it’s that. I think it’s just that was a decision they made. As far as personality-wise, Chip, he does well with everybody.”

It’s fair to say McCoy has done a 180 on that take. Yesterday, ESPN The Magazine released an excerpt from an interview with McCoy in which he noted that “there’s a reason [Kelly] got rid of all the black players.”

The most common reaction has been to take aim at McCoy and point out that he sounds bitter and angry because he was traded. And in truth, there’s plenty of legitimacy to that argument.

The bigger question, though, is: Does Kelly have to address this with his players? Read more »

Notes: Trades Still Possible For Kendricks, Mathis?

Photo by: Jeff Fusco.

Photo by: Jeff Fusco.

After the draft, Chip Kelly was pretty adamant in his assertion that Mychal Kendricks was not going to be traded.

With Evan Mathis, he was far more open, explaining that Mathis has been on the block for two years, and the Eagles have not received an offer.

Since the draft, Kendricks has shown up for offseason workouts, while Mathis remains missing. The question now is: Will both guys be on the field when the season starts in September?

Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com believes the answer is no: Read more »

Eagles Wake-Up Call: The La’el Collins Question

Eagles Draft 2015
La'el Collins, LSU. Kim Klement / USA TODAY Sports

La’el Collins, LSU. Kim Klement / USA TODAY Sports

Today’s question comes from Brian, via Twitter:

I’ve received some version of this question over and over again in the past couple days, although most don’t care that the Eagles passed on La’el Collins during the draft. They want to know if the Birds will be interested in signing Collins now as a free agent. Read more »

Ten Thoughts On the Eagles Draft

Eagles Draft 2015
Kirby Lee / USA TODAY Sports

Kirby Lee / USA TODAY Sports

The NFL draft kicked off with a wild 30 minutes of anticipation, but after that (from an Eagles perspective, at least), felt a bit uneventful.

In the end, the Birds added six new players – five on the defensive side of the ball and three in the secondary.

Below are 10 thoughts on the Eagles selections. Read more »

Eagles Fire Three From Personnel Department

Photo by: Jeff Fusco.

Photo by: Jeff Fusco.

The day after the regular season ends is known as Black Monday as teams around the league waste no time in firing their head coaches.

As Daniel Jeremiah has explained, the Monday after the draft serves the same purpose for scouts. Teams don’t want to get rid of people in their personnel department earlier because those guys have information pertaining to the draft. But once the final pick is made, organizations move forward.

To that end, the Eagles have let director of college scouting Anthony Patch, director of pro personnel Rick Mueller and Southwest area scout Brad Obee go, according to Les Bowen of the Daily News. Read more »

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