Kelly: Kendricks Not On the Trade Block
When the Eagles used their third-round pick on Texas inside linebacker Jordan Hicks, many observers immediately considered the impact the selection might have on Mychal Kendricks.
Kendricks has been mentioned in various trade rumors, and it’s easy to connect the dots. The Eagles added Kiko Alonso in the LeSean McCoy trade and also gave DeMeco Ryans an extension.
Asked if he’s received any calls from other teams about Kendricks, Kelly said, “No, not at all.”
Does he expect Kendricks to be a part of this team going forward?
“Yeah, I really do,” Kelly said. “We’re excited to get him back here. I know he spent the draft with his brother, which we understand. He said he should be back here next week, but I think you’re always gonna draft players, and when you bring ‘em in here, the one thing you want is you want competition at positions. We knew going in at the end of last year that with just Mychal and DeMeco that we really had to shore up the inside linebacker spot. “
Maybe Kelly does plan to keep Ryans, Alonso, Kendricks and Hicks. He admitted that Alonso could get some looks at outside linebacker.
But it’s also fair to wonder whether Kendricks will be here by the time Week 1 rolls around. He’s entering the final year of his contract, and the team has invested elsewhere at the position.
Asked directly about Kendricks, Brandon Boykin and Evan Mathis, Kelly said: “No. We haven’t talked to anybody about trading those guys during this draft.
“A lot of those reports about us offering all these players is kind of false. I did have to make some phone calls to guys on our team saying that that’s not the case. We haven’t offered any of our players in any packages for anybody for anything.”
At the owners meetings, Kelly did not offer a ringing endorsement of Kendricks. But on Friday, he was much more complimentary.
Asked if he was bothered by Kendricks’ absence during the start of workouts, he said: “No. I tell our guys it’s 100 percent voluntary. That’s what the league set up, and that’s the way it is. So if you want to be here, then I think you’re gonna get outstanding teaching, coaching and all those other things. But I’m not gonna make you come here. That’s your decision.
“I understand where Mychal’s coming from. It’s only one time your brother gets drafted. And I think it’s a special time for his family, and he told us he was gonna be with his brother Eric. We anticipate him coming in next week. One thing I know about Mychal is he always works, so I don’t think Mychal’s gonna show up here and be 25 pounds overweight. He’s gonna come running through the front door and running around like he always does. So we’re excited to see him when he gets back here on Monday.”
If the Eagles don’t deal Kendricks during the draft, it’s possible that they move him for a player or a 2016 pick.
Or, as Kelly says, he could be on the field Week 1 against the Falcons.