The Eagles visit the Steelers for their second preseason game tonight at 7, and even with Carson Wentz sidelined, there will be plenty of interesting storylines. Here are five we’ll be following closely. Read more »
UPDATE NO. 2: Ken Sarnoff, Johnson’s agent released a statement after the NFLPA’s.
Lane Johnson's agent, Ken Sarnoff issued a statement pic.twitter.com/NtgfYwjmYV
— Liz Mullen (@SBJLizMullen) August 13, 2016
UPDATE: The NFLPA responded to Johnson’s comments about the players union not standing up for its members.
Full NFLPA statement below on Lane Johnson, supplements:
"We always stand up for the rights of our players." pic.twitter.com/xLf32EFE8H
— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) August 13, 2016
Lane Johnson is “not very confident” his B sample will be negative and clear him of any wrongdoing, he said Saturday after practice. He addressed the media for the first time after reports surfaced of him facing a 10-game suspension for failing a drug test a second time.
Johnson said everything he has taken was approved beforehand through the Aegis Shield app, which the NFL Players Association provides to players. He bought the amino acid supplement online, like the rest of the supplements he purchases, and checked to see if it was approved through the app, which the USADA and NHL also use. Read more »
The Eagles open up the preseason tonight with a 7 o’clock home game against the Bucs. Here’s what we’ll be watching:
Right tackle, obviously.
Lane Johnson has not been suspended as of yet, and even if he were, he’d still be able to take part in preseason activities. With news swirling of a failed drug test, though, the Eagles have to weigh how to proceed here as they get ready for the start of the regular season. The team has been quiet on the Johnson front and hasn’t said if he will suit up tonight. While the Johnson camp hadn’t received definitive word as of Wednesday afternoon, its assumption was that the Eagles would play him.
Either way, the first team likely won’t be on the field long and Doug Pederson will want to get a look at some possible replacements should Johnson be unavailable to him. Dennis Kelly is listed as the backup at right tackle on the unofficial depth chart with Halapoulivaati Vaitai behind him. The Eagles could also try Andrew Gardner or Allen Barbre in that spot. The more reps the better for these candidates, just in case. Read more »
The Eagles remained in pads today, and had one of their longest practices of training camp so far. Here’s what we saw. Read more »
Jeff Stoutland gives each of his linemen areas to work on during the break between OTAs and training camp. By the sounds of it, when Brandon Brooks came looking for his assignment, the o-line coach didn’t have a whole lot to choose from.
“I told him, ‘Boy I’ll tell you what, after evaluating your film in free agency’…I said, ‘some of the things I thought maybe there was some issues with, that’s your strength.’ The use of his hands in protection are unbelievable; getting into the second level and blocking linebackers, he’s been extremely productive doing that,” said Stoutland for a podcast on the team’s website. Read more »
Projected starters (left to right): Jason Peters, Allen Barbre, Jason Kelce, Brandon Brooks, Lane Johnson.
Reserves: C Bruce Johnson, C/G Josh Andrews, C/G Barrett Jones, C/G Stefen Wisniewski, G Malcolm Bunche, G Dillion Gordon, G Darrell Greene, G Isaac Seumalo, G/T Andrew Gardner, G/T Dennis Kelly, G/T Matt Tobin, T Halapoulivaati Vaitai.
The Eagles weren’t shy about spending money this offseason on the offensive line in an attempt to counteract Chip Kelly’s years of neglect. Howie Roseman handed Lane Johnson a 5-year, $56.26 million extension, and he signed Brandon Brooks to a 5-year, $40 million deal in free agency. Meanwhile, Jason Peters is in the second season of his 4-year, $41.3 million extension, and Jason Kelce is in the second season of his 6-year, $37.5 million extension. Read more »
Doug Pederson was asked about which rookies stood out to him with OTAs and mandatory minicamp in the rearview mirror, but it didn’t take long for his mind to instead wander to one player who wasn’t at either. Because of the graduation rule, which does not allow a player to participate in team activities until their school’s academic year is complete, third-round pick Isaac Seumalo could only attend the Eagles’ rookie camp and nothing else.
“I wish Isaac could have been here the entire spring,” Pederson said. “I think more about him probably than I do the guys that are here.”
When the Oregon State product arrives in Philadelphia for training camp next month, Pederson said they’re going to put him at left guard. Although Allen Barbre has been named the starter, it wouldn’t be surprising if someone else beats him out. Read more »
During a 75-minute conference call with reporters Monday morning, ESPN draft expert Mel Kiper Jr. said he believes the Eagles need to focus on building their offensive line, and that Michigan State offensive tackle Jack Conklin could be a good fit at No. 13 in this year’s draft.
“I think, in terms of offensive line, I think that’s the [Eagles’] big need area, the big problem they have right now and going into this year, is solidifying the guys up front for the quarterback, whoever that may be,” Kiper said. Read more »
The Eagles’ offensive line couldn’t have played much worse against the Cowboys in Week 2. They gave up so much penetration that the team totaled just seven rushing yards, averaging 0.4 yards per carry. If not for Sam Bradford’s 9-yard scramble, they would’ve finished in the negative.
Down two starters (Jason Peters and Andrew Gardner) heading into their rematch against Dallas Sunday night, the offensive line appeared poised for another poor performance.
What followed surprised many, however, as they paved the way for a dominant performance on the ground. The Eagles rushed for 172 yards, averaging 4.9 yards per carry, and won largely because of how well they ran the ball. Read more »