Camp Notes: Wolff And the Knee

Photo by: Jeff Fusco.

Photo by: Jeff Fusco.

Earl Wolff was a full participant Sunday after sitting out team drills the previous two sessions with a sore knee. Wolff strongly hinted afterwards that it was the same right knee that sidelined him down the stretch last season.

“It was a little sore but it feels a whole lot better. I might be on a little bit of treatment. I’m feeling good, though,” said Wolff.

The second-year safety is confident that this won’t be a lingering issue.

There was some cloudiness last season when it came to Wolff’s hyperextended knee and whether he and the training staff were on the same page. There were rumblings late in the season that Wolff had been given the green light for a return but decided to hold  himself out.

“I wouldn’t necessarily say it was that. It might have been something similar to that,” Wolff said back in early January. “And it wasn’t that I didn’t want to play, I just felt like if I would have went out there, I wouldn’t have been able to play my game.”

Chip Kelly sounded like he was expecting Wolff to practice in full on Friday when he last addressed the media, but that turned out not to be the case. Prior to Sunday’s practice, Kelly phrased it this way:

“He has a sore knee. He’s supposed to go full today, so we’ll see. It’s his call. He’s going to tell you how good he feels but according to the trainers he is full-go today, so we’ll see how he goes,” said Kelly.

Wolff ended up practicing and running with the first team opposite Malcolm Jenkins.

“My thing is, if I can go, I’ll go. I need that full range of motion because all I know is one speed,” Wolff said after practice Sunday. “I don’t know how to play slow, that’s not how I play. I play full speed all the time. If I can’t play that game I really can’t play because I don’t know how to play [that way].”

Wolff made it clear that he doesn’t feel like he needs to be 100 percent to practice or play, and rattled off the number of injuries that he has played through dating all the way back to the eighth grade.

“Something has happened every year. It’s not like I’m not used to playing hurt. I played with a torn shoulder my whole sophomore year in college from the second year on,” he said. “I know how it feels to play with an injury, but I just feel like with the legs it’s kind of different.”

Have there been instances when the training staff has given you the go-ahead and you have held yourself out?

“I feel like if I can’t help my team as much as I think I can, I don’t need to be out there because I feel like I’m hurting the team more than I’m helping,” he responded. “And that’s not what I want to do.”

Williams Sits Out

Cary Williams did not take part in team drills Sunday. He was vague as to why initially, but later told reporters that Kelly gave him the day off because of general soreness.

So nothing to do with Patriots comments?

“No, it had nothing to do with that. I haven’t even discussed anything with Chip. I don’t think he’s shown any type of agreement or disagreement with what I said. I’m sure maybe we’ll have a conversation, but I don’t know,” he said. 

Kelly was asked about Williams’ recent remarks about his dislike for the Patriots and joint practices.

“I appreciate Cary’s input but I think the value you can get for every single player and every single coach in terms of what we’re doing, to get a chance to go against another scheme and another team, I think it’s really beneficial as long as you and tne other team are on the same page, and I think it worked really well for us last year.”

Kelly said he is not concerned about the Patriots gaining any extra intel that would serve them well should they somehow face one another in the Super Bowl.

Riley Cooper (foot), Jeff Maehl (ankle) and Chris Polk (hamstring) also sat out.


Approximately 25,000 fans were in attendance for Sunday’s practice at Lincoln Financial Field. Just under 15,000 showed up for the first open session on Monday. The final open practice of training camp will be held on August 10 at Franklin Field.

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  • Explorer51

    OK, I’m now officially worried about Wolff…

    • cliff h-MOAR white goons

      welcome to the S-O-F-_ club, Rip Illa and I are founding members. man, i want this kid to be something. he is so crazy athletic and not Nate Allen

    • RTP210

      Yeah, it’s not very reassuring to hear that he’s sitting out after being medically cleared. I can see him ending up in Chip’s doghouse.

    • Token

      The kid was was given the full go ahead to play last season. How many 5th round rookies get a chance to start on a NFL team? He said no. Had a chance to play in a NFL playoff game. Nah, he was still a little sore. He couldnt go at his one speed.

      Ive been over this guy. If his play gave me enough optimism id try to downplay this injury stuff. But this is a guy whose yet to show his worse. On top of that he sounds mental about the injury stuff.

      • RichC, brings duck to cockfigh

        really hoping we have a better option than the Lamborghini that’s always in the shop or the Ford Taurus.

        • Kelce’s Beard

          Maybe Maragos or Reynolds show enough to be our 3rd safety for the year. And the CBs all look good (silver lining?)

          • anon

            Agree — Maragos will take that spot, or one of the guys we drafted this year — someone hungry.

        • Soybot

          Nate Allen is more of a Pinto than a Taurus, what with getting burned so often.

  • cliff h-MOAR white goons

    see if he can stack 2 or 3 practices on top of eachother. kid is freaking jacked though.

  • Jernst

    You simply cannot rely on someone that refuses to play if his legs are a little sore or stiff. Wolff does not have any injury or damage to his knee that we know of. The training staff has given him a full go on multiple occasions, but he continues to hold himself out despite all this because he “can only run one speed”. Jesus…he better get over that real fast, because football is not a sport where you can pick and choose when you’re going to play based on how great your legs feel. Could you ever imagine Brian Dawkins refusing to play even though the docs gave him a full go, just because he was sore?

    • John Paine

      I am starting to get a bit concerned with what’s going on this year, but I don’t blame him at all for sitting out at the end of last year. Everyone seems to forget that the trainers gave him the go ahead once (after a game or two) and after he played the knee swelled up, and that’s when he sat out the last 5 games or so. Considering that, I’m not surprised that he doesn’t trust the trainers. They tried to rush him back, because Chung sucked, and he reaggravated the injury. Why would he ever believe them if he doesn’t feel as good as they’re telling him he is? They already showed that they’re either untrustworthy or incompetent.

  • Chris Jones

    I get the feeling wolffe is not going to be very reliable.

  • Token

    “He’s going to tell you how good he feels but according to the trainers he is full-go today, so we’ll see how he goes,” – Chip. lol. I dont know in what tone that was said. But I picture Chip saying that with a sarcastic vibe. I doubt he relies on this kid very much.

    Wolff sounds borderline phobic about getting injured. Id rather this experiment comes to an end sooner rather then later. Whose the next late round safety experiment on deck…. Reynolds right? Maybe next year then may go really nuts and take a safety in the 4th round.

    • Kelce’s Beard

      aside from HaHa in the 1st, there was no other safety of value to take. Getting 2 DBs from the draft is pretty impressive considering the other needs

      • Token

        Yea they missed their chance last year and took the RT thats hopped up on PEDs instead.

        But I dont buy the common defense that just because we dont see a top safety in the draft we could have had instead….that makes it ok that Wolff is the best they can come up with at starting safety. Or Nate Allen. Or Ed Reynolds. Or Keelan Johnson. Its not just one year of failure at scouting the position. Its year after year after year.

        • furiousxgeorge

          Last year? No, that was a good pick. But never forget Earl Thomas. Never.

          • Say No to Marc Mo From Easton

            I was watching Earl Thomas on the NFL top 100 (number 16 I think) and boy was that tough to swallow. NEVER FORGET!

  • Kelce’s Beard

    maybe this is why we kept Keelan Johnson around. C’mon, Reynolds….
    Would love for Wolff to get there. Work some magic, Huls

  • 370HSSV 0773H

    Next we’ll be reading that Wolff is eating lunch in his car and not with the team.

  • Reef215

    Someone has to tell me where in the 7+ months did Earl re injure his knees of non football contact?

    This is insane… He’s was medically cleared in the playoffs, cleared months later for practice and still not ready?

    Football is not that important to him. He should of probably played baseball

  • anon

    Look I understand what Wolff is saying. I think he’s not there mentally with his read and his speed — without the athleticism he’s afraid he’ll mess up – b/c he can only rely on athleticism.

    Honestly don’t know if that’s better or worse.

  • Anebriated

    the general soreness ‘injury’ is a touchy subject around these parts after the Papelbon fiasco. Damn milk bottles…

  • Jerry Pomroy

    I’m getting the feeling that Wolff is getting hypersensitive in regards to the knee & then becoming over cautious thinking his life long dream may go down in flames before it’s even really begun (that first non-rookie contract). Being healthy but playing scared of injury can be much harder to overcome than playing with an injury but reckless. At some point he’s gotta trust that knee or he could become his own worst enemy to fulfilling that dream.

    • DirtyWaters
      • Jerry Pomroy

        I see what you’re saying and Dawk is my guy, but I think this is a tad different. My point is that I think the knee is in Wolff’s head. Not that it isn’t sore, but just that Wolff may be hypersensitive thinking it’s worse than it really is or if he doesn’t rest it, it will get significantly worse. So I think his issue ‘could’ be more in his head than in his knee.

        • DirtyWaters

          My point is the problem may lie in his heart not his knee or mind.

  • JofreyRice

    It’s a weird situation with this kid. He’s shown good instincts and has the athletic ability–the job opposite Jenkins should be his for the taking. But this knee just keeps coming back up. Given the way the org is run, and the amount of diagnostic biodata they seem to gather, I tend to think this may come down to a very subjective degree of pain Wolff is comfortable with. My guess is that the Eagles docs & training staff can’t find anything “wrong” with the knee, and think Wolff needs to just get over it and get on the field.

  • Andy Six Score and Four

    Practice?! We talking ’bout practice!

    I want to read about him stringing a few good practices together, but I’m not really going to worry until we’re reading this same type of stuff during the regular season.

  • peteike

    medically cleared doesnt mean squat, he knows his body. This doesnt bother me at all as a fan. If its starts to be more of a trend and during the season (again) then Ill worry.