Kelce On Mathis: ‘They Didn’t Want the Distraction’

Photo by: Jeff Fusco.

Photo by: Jeff Fusco.

 Jason Kelce said that there was more of an “underlying tone” to the Evan Mathis contract protests this time around, one that apparently clashed with the symphonic harmony emanating from One NovaCare Way.

“Last year there was some under-the-radar talks about it, stuff that was going on in the media, but nothing really concrete and he never really let it take place in front of the team or anything like that so it wasn’t a distraction,” said Kelce. “At this point obviously he would have missed all of OTAs. It was a much bigger deal throughout the season at this point.”

It was no surprise to Kelce, then, that Mathis was cut out of equation. Same for the rest of the Eagles players we talked to.

This week’s minicamp will wrap on Thursday, marking the end of the offseason conditioning program. Mathis was absent all spring. While everything save the minicamp is voluntary, several of his teammates suggested that he was in violation of an unwritten code of conduct. Read more »

Chip Kelly, Mathis Address Release

Photo by Jeff Fusco

Photo by Jeff Fusco

Evan Mathis didn’t want to play for the Eagles at his current salary, so Chip Kelly cut him loose.

That was the explanation Kelly gave to the assembled media prior to the start of minicamp Tuesday.

“We were asked by his agent for a release on multiple occasions,” he said. “We weren’t going to come to a conclusion in terms of a contract extension, we weren’t going to extend any contract or adjust any contract, so we granted what his agent asked for.” Read more »

Eagles Wake-Up Call: Questionable Call By Kelly

Photo By Jeff Fusco

Photo By Jeff Fusco

A quick survey of the landscape reveals that there are contract disputes occurring all across the NFL this offseason.

Dez Bryant is threatening to be a no-show for the season opener if he doesn’t have a long-term contract by July 15. Unhappy with the team’s decision to place the franchise tag on him, Demaryius Thomas boycotted Denver’s offseason training program — including last week’s mandatory minicamp.

Tampa offensive tackle Demar Dotson is in search of a new deal and opted to skip OTAs. Same for Niners offensive lineman Alex Boone.

Seahawks’ defensive lineman Michael Bennett, who signed a four-year, $28.5 million deal ($16 million guaranteed) in 2014, wants Seattle to give him a new contract that will make him one of the top-eight paid players at his position. He missed OTAs. Ditto Chargers safety Eric Weddle, Bears tight end Martellus Bennett and Jets defensive lineman Muhammad Wilkerson.

Evan Mathis, in other words, was not alone in his contractual protests. The only thing that makes him unique among this group is that his team — more precisely, his head coach — responded to the protests by cutting him. Read more »

Eagles To Work Out Jared Wheeler

Photo courtesy of USA Today.

Photo courtesy of USA Today.

The Eagles are set to sign free agent guard/center Jared Wheeler, according to his agent Brett Tessler.  Per Tessler, the signing will happen on Monday pending a physical. A league source confirmed that Wheeler will be in town for a workout Monday.

Wheeler (6-4, 318) was signed as an undrafted free agent by Carolina in 2014. He spent time with the Panthers and Bills that preseason. The Seahawks picked him up this offseason but released him before the draft.

The Eagles are obviously in need of some reinforcement along the interior after releasing Evan Mathis this week.

The coaching staff has some familiarity with the Hollywood, Florida native, as Jeff Stoutland coached him at the University of Miami during his true and redshirt freshman seasons. Wheeler started six games for the Hurricanes as a senior — one at left guard, three at right guard and two at center.

 

Herremans: Mathis ‘Brought It Upon Himself’

Photo by: Jeff Fusco.

Photo by: Jeff Fusco.

Todd Herremans joined 97.5 The Fanatic Friday and weighed in on the Eagles’ decision to release Evan Mathis.

“I think it’s very unfortunate how it all went down,” he said. “I think it’s tough not to add any offensive linemen and then get rid of both of your starting guards in one offseason. But Chip’s got a plan — nobody knows what it is (chuckles) — but he’s got a plan and he’s putting it into action.

“I think it’s kind of unfortunate for Evan. I think he kind of brought it upon himself, though, by not showing up. We expect them to stick to the contract that they offer us, that they sign us to, and they expect us to do the same. If you’re going to violate some of the things that are expected out of you then you have to be able to deal with what comes next.”
Read more »

Eagles Release Evan Mathis

Photo Credit: Jeff Fusco

Photo Credit: Jeff Fusco

The Eagles released Evan Mathis on Thursday, league sources confirmed.

The All-Pro guard was unhappy with the five-year, $25.5 million deal he signed back in 2012, and was asking for a raise that paid him closer to what the other top players at his position were making. The Eagles granted agent Drew Rosenhaus permission to seek a trade each of the last two offseasons, but nothing developed.

Mathis stayed away from the voluntary portion of the spring workouts including OTAs, which wrapped Thursday. Next week is the team’s mandatory minicamp. The big question heading in was whether Mathis would show or stand firm and absorb the $60,000 fine. Mathis told us that he did plan on attending minicamp, but does not believe the team was aware of his intentions.

The Eagles, clearly, were ready to move on, and decided to pull the trigger after exhausting their trade options.

Read more »

Eagles Wake Up Call: Travis Long, Take Two

Photo by: Jeff Fusco.

Photo by: Jeff Fusco.

Travis Long tore the ACL in his left knee in the final quarter of the final preseason game against the Jets last year.

The undrafted free agent out of Washington State had the feeling that the Eagles were going to make him part of the 53-man roster. He was on a couple of the first-team special teams units late in the exhibition season, and was being cross-trained at inside linebacker in the name of upping his versatility. His read on the situation was correct.

“Obviously, he got hurt late in the preseason, but if he wasn’t hurt, he would have made our team last year,” said Chip Kelly. Read more »

Earl Wolff, Chip Kelly And the Knee

Photo by: Jeff Fusco.

Photo by: Jeff Fusco.

Earl Wolff still experiences pain in his right knee. He said it only hits when he makes certain movements and it’s “nothing crazy,” but it’s there and serves as a signal that he is not all the way back.

The third-year safety out of N.C. State acknowledged that he expected to be full-go by this point. Still, Wolff says he has been making big strides lately and feels quite confident that he’ll be back to his old self by training camp.

“At the end of the day, man, my thing is all about being healthy, come back being 100 percent for the first time in a long time,” said Wolff, who participated in individual drills for the first time Tuesday. “Dr. [James] Andrews said sometimes it takes six months, sometimes it takes eight months, you never know. He said the main thing is make sure I’m taking care of myself, make sure I’m doing the things he gave me. He basically gave me a protocol. I’ve been doing everything I can do, just going through that right now.”
Read more »

Players Say ‘Out Of Sight, Out Of Mind’ With Mathis

Photo Credit: Jeff Fusco

Photo Credit: Jeff Fusco

Asked about the absence of Evan Mathis, Zach Ertz invoked a saying Jim Harbaugh used during their time together at Stanford.

“I hate to say it, but a college coach of mine said, ‘Out of sight, out of mind’, and that’s kind of what we have,” said Ertz. “We have a very good group of offensive linemen. I have a lot of faith in them. Obviously I love Evan, I wish he was here, but at the same time we’re focused on the guys that are here.

“At the beginning of the offseason guys would talk about it, but now that the grind is going ,and we’re running our butts off each and every day. We’re focused on the guys that are out here.” Read more »

Chip: ‘No Progress’ With Wolff

Photo by Jeff Fusco

Photo by Jeff Fusco

Earl Wolff had what he described as “mini-microfracture” surgery on his right knee back in November in hopes that he could finally put the issue in the rear-view mirror. Shortly after the procedure, he told reporters that he expected to be back to full speed by late April or early May.

It’s now June, and Wolff has spent the majority of the spring workouts on the sideline.

Asked about Wolff’s progress as he works his way back from surgery, Kelly told reporters prior to practice: “Earl has done nothing except stretch, so we haven’t seen…there is no progress right now.”

Is it just a pain threshold thing?

“He’s been cleared from Dr. Andrews a couple weeks ago, but it’s what he can tolerate.” Read more »

« Older Posts  |  Newer Posts »