Eagles Notes: Eagles' Evan Mathis decides against holding out

Eagles president Don Smolenski (back to camera) shows off Lincoln Financial Field's new features.
Eagles president Don Smolenski (back to camera) shows off Lincoln Financial Field's new features. (CLEM MURRAY / Staff)
Posted: July 27, 2014

Evan Mathis considered holding out of training camp, but the veteran guard reported and will be a participant when practice begins on Saturday.

"I try to look at it from my point of view, try to look at it from their point of view," Mathis said. "I didn't want to have a negative impact on the team, didn't want to send the wrong message to players, coaches, fans. I look at what I'm doing as doing the right thing in this situation."

Mathis, a 32-year-old late bloomer who made his first Pro Bowl last season, is due a $5 million base salary in 2014 as part of the five-year, $25 million deal he signed after 2013. He was named first-team all-pro last season and was compensated a notch below the highest-paid guards.

As training camp neared, he elected against holding out. Mathis said he did not even like missing school as a child because he did not want to fall behind.

Mathis conceded the best leverage a player has is by holding out. He also admitted that he has even more leverage after Lane Johnson's four-game suspension, because the Eagles now have less offensive line depth.

"I'm not trying to strong-arm the team or put them in a bad situation to get what I want," Mathis said. "I'm trying to do the right thing."

Johnson excused

Eagles safety Keelan Johnson was excused from training camp after Saturday's arrest in Tempe, Ariz. Johnson, who is entering his second season with the team, met with coach Chip Kelly on Thursday in Philadelphia.

There is no timetable for his absence. He will still count against the 90-man roster.

Johnson, 24, was arrested after Tempe authorities said he pushed a police officer following a bar brawl, according to various reports.

The Arizona State product joined the Eagles' practice squad at the beginning of last season. He spent 15 weeks on practice squad before being signed to the active roster on Dec. 17. Johnson finished the season with two tackles. 

All 89 players besides Johnson reported to training camp on Friday.

Stadium renovation

The Eagles are nearing completion of their $125 million stadium renovation project. Lincoln Financial Field now includes 22,000 square feet of high-definition video boards. There is a new board behind each end zone and LED ribbon-board displays along each side of the stadium.

Eagles Notes:


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