Eagles Notes: Eagles set to work out Florida State quarterback E.J. Manuel

Second chance: Quarterback E.J. Manuel was recruited by Eagles coach Chip Kelly for Oregon, but chose Florida State. PHIL SEARS / Associated Press
Second chance: Quarterback E.J. Manuel was recruited by Eagles coach Chip Kelly for Oregon, but chose Florida State. PHIL SEARS / Associated Press
Posted: March 22, 2013

PHOENIX - The Eagles will hold a private workout with Florida State quarterback E.J. Manuel, Eagles coach Chip Kelly confirmed Wednesday. Kelly was not certain if he would attend the workout, but quarterbacks coach Bill Lazor will be present.

A 6-foot-5, 237-pound dual-threat quarterback, Manuel would seem an ideal fit for Kelly's offense. Kelly once recruited Manuel at Oregon, but Manuel wanted to stay closer to his Virginia home.

"I knew him coming out of high school, thought he had a really good career at Florida State," Kelly said. "Big, tall, physical. Athletic specimen. We're still in the process of evaluating everybody. E.J.'s certainly somebody we're excited about."

Kelly sounded open to the idea of adding a quarterback in the draft, even with Michael Vick and Nick Foles already on the roster. He was impressed by the workout of West Virginia's Geno Smith last week.

Kelly was asked why he would take a quarterback early in the draft with Vick and Foles on the roster. "It would make sense if they are the best player out there for us to take," he said. "The best players are going to get on the field."

Progress for Peters

Eagles left tackle Jason Peters is scheduled to return to football activity when the coaches can begin working with players on April 1, Kelly said. Peters twice ruptured his Achilles tendon and did not play last season.

"What I was told was that they think he should be pretty good when he gets here April 1," Kelly said.

Kelly had no update on Todd Herremans and Jason Kelce, both of whom finished on injured reserve last season.

DeSean Jackson on returns?

Don't be surprised if DeSean Jackson starts returning punts again. Kelly is willing to use starters on special teams, depending upon their use during games, and also could envision Jackson taking some punt returns. Jackson returned just one punt last season.

"I think there's certain times you want to see DeSean," Kelly said. "I think if there's certain skill-sets and they can help you win a game, like DeSean did, I think you need to see him back there. But it also depends on who your other returner is. Your other returner may be really dynamic, and you don't need him."

Extra points

Kelly advocated staying at the NovaCare Complex for training camp because he did not want the Eagles to move and thinks they can better utilize the training facility. . . . Kelly said the team's first minicamp will be the third week of April. . . . When Kelly was asked what has been the most difficult thing to deal with since taking the job, he joked: "The Schuylkill."


 

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