Note this: Babin considers himself witty, so, when he finished his conversation, Cole was not totally unprepared for Babin's announcement:
"Yo, they just released me."
Cole shook his head at such an obvious ruse.
"You're lying. I'm not going for that," Cole said. He resumed checking his phone.
"No. Really," Babin said.
Babin got into his truck and left. Cole stood in his driveway, silent.
"I didn't have any words for him," Cole said Wednesday.
Then, Cole shrugged.
The man with whom he combined for 29 sacks in 2011 as a bookend defensive end had just been fired.
And Cole shrugged.
Cole's teammates shrugged, too.
Whether it is shell shock or apathy in a season full of jarring moves and crippling injuries, the Eagles could not care less that the centerpiece of their wide-nine defensive scheme was axed.
"There's nothing you can really say. We're going to miss him," Cole said. "Hopefully, Babin finds another home and is successful and has a great career."
OK. It's apathy.
You could tell this team that Andy Reid was marrying Jason Babin, and you would not get a rise.
"Hope they're happy," they would say.
Babin's dismissal is unprecedented. He is a productive star; the Jaguars, with two wins, claimed him and his $1.64 million in salary off waivers with an eye toward next season.
He got cut 11 games into the season, not two games into the season. Asked whether he had seen a similar dismissal, veteran linebacker DeMeco Ryans said, "Um . . . no."
"There's a reason for everything," Cole said.
The stated reason makes no sense.
Reid issued a statement saying Babin's release freed playing time for younger players. That is an insult to the intelligence.
Reid could just bench Babin, or limit his snaps.
If Reid meant to send a message, that ship has sailed, too. It was the good ship Castillo, whose scapegoat firing as coordinator after six games spurred the Eagles' defense to recordsetting incompetence.
Maybe this was Reid's message: Don't be a jerk.
In the locker room, teammates generally ignored Babin's brand of wry humor and intellectual jousting. Many actually appreciated his energy, though his one-trick act - hitting quarterbacks - often hindered other defensive objectives.
Babin's attitude set an uncomfortable tone on a team bursting with impressionable young linemen: Brandon Graham, Fletcher Cox, Cedric Thornton, Vinny Curry.
Babin was wreathed in tribal tattoos, but his most distinguishing characteristic was the chip on his shoulder. He was a first-round bust who averaged slightly more than three sacks in his first six seasons among four teams, one of them the Eagles.
Paired with mad-scientist line coach Jim Washburn in Tennessee in 2010, Babin saw his job condensed to one prime directive: sack the quarterback.
Babin has followed the directive.
He logged 12 1/2 sacks, went to the Pro Bowl, followed Washburn to Philadelphia in 2011, netted more than $10 million in two seasons and collected 23 1/2 sacks.
All along, he acted as a single star, not part of a constellation.
He was a locker-room lawyer of the worst kind; a me-first, me-last, self-absorbed bully who inexplicably spent an inordinate amount of time shirtless.
Perhaps Reid, having fired Castillo and benched two starting linemen, simply sought another scapegoat to serve as a distraction.
Babin's 5 1/2 sacks this season are more than any other two Eagles combined.
"It wasn't about production," linebacker Jamar Chaney said.
Maybe it was about profile.
Babin named his post-sack celebration "Babining," a takeoff on "Tebowing;" except Tim Tebow affects his pose with complete sincerity, and does it mostly on the sideline.
Another difference: Tebow's website features a Bible verse and asks for donations for Tebow's children's hospital in the Philippines.
Babin's website directs a visitor to shop for gear.
One solicitous picture on www.babinfanclub.com features a busty woman in a tight, white tank top whose curves slightly obscure the script: "got babin?"
The obvious answer for the Eagles now is, no; they do not have Babin.
Next to that picture is another. The same woman wears the same style shirt, and again, her anatomy makes the message hard to read:
"I got sacked."
Babin could wear that one himself.
Whatever the real reason for Babin's release, his teammates were neither surprised nor upset.
Certainly, he was not released because he didn't support his boss.
Babin recently criticized fans at Lincoln Financial Field who abused Reid and Reid's family. Reid's eldest son died while working at training camp, and Babin was aghast at some of the things he heard Reid endure.
On Tuesday, it was Reid who called Babin outside of Cole's garage.
Reid did not call Babin to thank him.