Funny, Juan Castillo was the least talked-about man at the NovaCare facilities this week. While Marty Mornhinweg and Andy Reid and Michael Vick were taking arrows, and DeMeco Ryans and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie were being praised, Castillo quietly slipped into the backdrop.
He offers so little at his press conferences, terrified of giving away anything that could help the opposition, that some reporters have given up on the exercise altogether, opting instead to visit the locker room in search of a more willing dance partner. So Castillo sits on stage in front of a modest gathering, speaks about exactly nothing for a few minutes, and then makes his way out of the auditorium and back behind the scenes.
After a year of public struggles and endless criticism, this is undoubtedly the preferred existence. A down effort against the Ravens will bring some of the heat back, but internally there is a sense that the situation has stabilized. The players have noticed a different Juan Castillo in Year Two, and it has had a ripple effect.
Selection was based simply on who was available. But it just so happened to be four defensive players and four offensive players. Here are their responses.
It’s that time of year when teams are actively molding their rosters in search of that perfect blend of potency and balance. The Eagles just so happen to have an excess of talent at a couple key positions. It is a perfect case of supply and demand, and the calls are coming in fast and furious.
“They’re very active. People are…Howie [Roseman] is constantly on the phone,” said Andy Reid. “That’s how it works.”
He was asked whether the Eagles could keep six defensive ends, and the head coach wanted to make clear that he’s not too fond of letting capable pass-rushers walk for nothing.
“There’s a chance,” Reid said. “I’m stingy when it comes to defensive linemen, so we’ve got to work the numbers and just see how all that pans out. There will be some tough decisions all the way around there.”
“You know how I feel about that. If I can keep them all, I will,” said Reid. “As many as you can keep. I think that’s an important position. Put a lot of responsibility on them. We’ll have to see how the numbers turn out, but I don’t like giving up good defensive linemen.”
As we’ve discussed at length here on Birds 24/7, when that deadline arrives, Andy Reid and company will have difficult decisions to make on their defensive line.
One player whose role could go a long way in determining who stays and who goes is Cullen Jenkins.