Eagles Wake-Up Call: Cornerbacks To Keep

JaCorey Shepherd and Eric Rowe. (Photo by Jeff Fusco)

JaCorey Shepherd and Eric Rowe. (Photo by Jeff Fusco)

Today’s question comes from reader Trey:

With all the different bodies at CB, who among the CBs do you think make the 53?

Good one, Trey. The cornerback competition promises to be packed with plenty of intrigue this summer. Leodis McKelvin separated himself from the pack and was a constant with the first team for Jim Schwartz during the spring, but did not have a steady partner at the other outside corner spot. (Ron Brooks got the most reps there, it appeared.) A starting job is still up for grabs.

There’s the matter of figuring out who will man the slot, and to your question, which young talent to hold onto.  Plenty to sort through. To get a better feel for what management and the coaching staff is up against, let’s look at the corners on roster currently: Read more »

Connor Barwin, Fletcher Cox Issue Statement

 

Photo by Jeff Fusco

Photo by Jeff Fusco

Connor Barwin and Fletcher Cox issued separate statements Friday evening amid reports that they were in attendance at Cheerleaders Gentlemen’s Club with Nelson Agholor Thursday afternoon. 

“As a result of my name being mentioned in conjunction with this alleged incident, I would like to clarify that I was only present at the establishment for a very short period of time and have no knowledge about anything that happened after I left the establishment,” said Barwin. I stopped by there for about a half hour to meet my teammates and left around 2:30 p.m.”

Agholor has been accused of sexual assault. A 27-year-old dancer told police that she was raped inside the club about 3 p.m. on Thursday, Philadelphia magazine’s David Gambacorta reports. You can read the full story here.

 

Eagles Wake-Up Call: On the Player-Fan Dynamic

Photo by: Jeff Fusco

Photo by: Jeff Fusco

Mychal Kendricks‘ “Welcome To Philadelphia” moment came in the aftermath of a home loss a couple seasons back. He heard his name being howled from above the tunnel and against his better judgment, looked up as he was heading off the field.

“Some dude got my attention and he’s like, ‘Kendricks!’ — he was crying — ‘Kendricks! You ruined my liiiife!’ I mean bawling. He was drunk. ‘You ruined my life!’ I’m like, ‘Sh*t, I’m the sad one. We just lost a game.’ That was fairly intense.”

For Najee Goode, it was an attention-grabber of an entirely different variety.

“Man, going up to an autograph signing in 2013 and seeing a chick with body paint on her top half — Eagles body paint. I’m like, ‘These motherf*&%ers crazy,'” he said with a laugh. “I liked it though, but I was like, ‘Damn.'”

Dennis Kelly‘s came in the form of advice via the always civil world of social media.

“Somebody told me to jump off the Ben Franklin onto a bed of spikes through Twitter after a game,” he said. “That was a nice little [piece] of critical feedback.”

None of the dozen or so Eagles players polled by Birds 24/7 have had a similar experience to the one Ryan Howard went through at Citizens Bank Park last weekend when the slumping slugger had a beer bottle thrown at him on his way back to the dugout (though there are members of this coaching staff who would tell you that J.D. Drew isn’t the only one to have Duracells flung in his direction). Such incidents, though, can trigger an examination of the relationship between professional athletes in Philadelphia and the fans. Read more »

Cox ‘Expecting To Be At Training Camp’

Fletcher Cox. (Jeff Fusco)

Fletcher Cox. (Jeff Fusco)

Fletcher Cox briefly addressed reporters prior to practice Wednesday. He declined to talk about his contract, saying he was going to keep the discussions between the Eagles and his agent Todd France private while focusing on the here and now.

Cox has been training back in Mississippi and claims he is in the same type of shape he normally would be this time of year. He has missed most of the offseason program, though, and is easing back into the action. Read more »

Eagles Wake-Up Call: Randle ‘A Pleasant Surprise’

Jordan Matthews, Josh Huff, Rueben Randle, and Nelson Agholor. (Jeff Fusco)

Jordan Matthews, Josh Huff, Rueben Randle, and Nelson Agholor. (Jeff Fusco)

After some early interest in experimenting with Jordan Matthews on the outside, Doug Pederson has since concluded that the 23-year-old is best suited for the slot. Assuming that opinion sticks, the first-year head coach will look elsewhere to fill the ‘X’ and ‘Z’ receiver posts. Who will be the primary outside guys to start?

“Yeah, you know, Rueben Randle has really made an impact this spring,” Pederson began. “Chris Givens is another one. Nelson Agholor, of course, is another one. Josh Huff is another guy that can work both inside and outside — probably another one that’s going to be inside.

“And these guys have really, especially Rueben, has been a pleasant surprise. He’s a guy that’s a big, tall, sort of a smooth receiver that understands what we’re asking him to do. He knows his role and you’ve got three or four or five guys out there right now that are competing for that spot.”

A couple things stick out in that response. Read more »

Eagles Wake-Up Call: Reading the Cox Situation

Photo by: Jeff Fusco

Photo by: Jeff Fusco

It’s been more than four months since the first, big wave crashed ashore. Upon his return to power, Howie Roseman made re-signing his own the first order of business. Within a span of nine days, he handed out new deals to Zach Ertz, Brent Celek, Lane Johnson and Vinny Curry.

Some thought Fletcher Cox was on deck. But days turned to weeks, weeks to months, and still nothing. The offseason training program is now coming to a close. The three-day mandatory minicamp begins on Tuesday, and as of time of publication, there is still no clear read on whether Cox is going to attend.

We’re nowhere near code red here, but the lack of resolution has left many feeling uneasy and wanting answers. We went out in search of them over the last few days, speaking to a handful of league insiders to try and get a feel for what’s going on behind the scenes. Here’s what we came away with: Read more »

Wake-Up Call: Daniel Says Eagles Ahead Of the Game

(Photo by: Jeff Fusco)

(Photo by: Jeff Fusco)

It’s been a bit of a bumpy ride over the last handful of months if you haven’t gathered, what with Chip Kelly getting booted out and Howie Roseman moving back in; a coaching and personnel head search that didn’t go according to script; Sam Bradford disappearing and Fletcher Cox not appearing at all; turnover and trades and scheme changes and such.  When it comes many facets of the organization this offseason, things have been less than settled.

On the field, though, it’s been smoother sailing — at least as Chase Daniel views it from his perch. His first year in Kansas City coincided with Andy Reid‘s. Having seen both Year Ones up close, he’s concluded that the 2016 Eagles are “light years ahead” of where the Chiefs were at this stage of the game. Read more »

Nelson Agholor And the Transition To Year 2

Photo by: Jeff Fusco

Photo by: Jeff Fusco

Jordan Matthews pointed to one play in particular from Tuesday’s practice that signaled a return to form for Nelson Agholor.

“You can tell he’s back healthy. He caught a little short post today and the way he caught it, stuck his foot in the ground and got vertical? That’s the Nelson I’m used to knowing,” said Matthews. “Nelson’s transition from catch to run is crazy. I think he’s on a level that a lot of guys aren’t.”

In a sea of 90 top-level athletes, Agholor’s agility and burst stands out. It doesn’t take a trained eye to identify the elite physical gifts that the first-round pick out of USC possesses. They were equally evident last spring and summer, leading teammates and analysts alike to predict big things for Agholor in his rookie season.

Those predictions, of course, fell flat. Read more »

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