Eagles Notebook: Eagles in no hurry to trade Sanchez

YONG KIM / STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER Mark Sanchez goes 11-for-12 Friday at New England.
YONG KIM / STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER Mark Sanchez goes 11-for-12 Friday at New England.
Posted: August 19, 2014

IT WAS AN interesting hypothetical, given the subject's recent play. And it's a topic that could pop up again should any of the NFL's other 31 teams lose their starting quarterback to injury and lack a better option.

Toward the end of his news conference yesterday, Eagles coach Chip Kelly was presented with this scenario from a reporter: Considering how well backup quarterback Mark Sanchez has performed in the preseason and training camp, how would the Eagles react if a team called with interest in making a trade?

"What are you giving me?" Kelly responded. "I mean, we'll listen to anything for anybody. We're not going to just bury our head in the sand and say no, but it better be a pretty good deal in terms of what it is. But that's not any of our thought process.

"We need him, in terms of how he's playing right now, how we can function and what we're doing. And I've always said you need to have two quarterbacks."

For the record, Kelly said the Eagles have not fielded any calls regarding Sanchez.

Through two preseason games, Sanchez has completed 18 of 22 passes for 196 yards with two touchdowns and one interception. The former much-maligned Jets quarterback was 11 of 12 passing in Friday's loss at New England, his lone blemish an ill-fated attempt over the middle that was picked off by Patriots safety Duron Harmon.

Even if a team was to inquire about Sanchez, the Eagles are high on him as Nick Foles' backup. Sanchez, who is playing on a 1-year contract, is by far the most experienced of the four quarterbacks on the roster, with 62 regular-season starts under his belt and six more in the postseason.

"I feel very, very confident in our quarterback situation," Kelly said, "probably better than a lot of teams in this league going into it because we've got two guys right now that have actually played in games."

Shady sits out

Along with Jeremy Maclin, there was another marquee Eagles player who at yesterday's practice had swapped a helmet for a baseball cap.

LeSean McCoy did not practice but declined afterward to comment regarding the reason. The star running back appeared to be walking fine as he came off the practice field and signed autographs for youngsters on his way to the locker room. Chip Kelly addressed reporters before practice and did not mention anything related to McCoy's status.

It could have just been a day off for McCoy. The Eagles are back on the field today and McCoy is one of the players scheduled to address the media, so stay tuned.

Injury updates

Starting cornerback Cary Williams (hamstring), who left Friday's game in the first quarter after intercepting Tom Brady and running it back for a touchdown, is likely to fully participate in practice today, Chip Kelly said.

Cornerback Nolan Carroll (groin) fully participated yesterday and said he is targeting Thursday's game against the Steelers for his preseason debut. "I wasn't too rusty," he said. "I felt like I just came back in. I did everything, so we'll see how it goes [today]."

The running-back position regained some numbers as Matthew Tucker and David Fluellen returned to practice. Chris Polk (hamstring) remained out.

Rookie cornerback Jaylen Watkins (hamstring) once again did not practice.

Linebacker Bryan Braman didn't play Friday, though he was not listed on the team's pregame injury report. Braman's back "seized up" during pregame stretches, Kelly said, but the injury is not considered serious and the special-teams maven was slated to return early this week.

Henery talks miss

Entering Friday's preseason game, Alex Henery had missed just two field goals throughout all of training camp.

He was perfect on 13 field-goal tries from 45 yards or longer, 5-for-5 from 50-plus.

So the Eagles' placekicker was as disappointed as anyone when his 47-yard try sailed wide right in the second quarter of Friday's game. He said yesterday he "hit a little ground, just rushed a little bit."

"Disappointed in myself just because I've been hitting the ball so good, was hitting so good there in [Gillette Stadium]," he said. "Just got one bad one and it was the only [try] I got."

Friday's was the Eagles' lone field-goal attempt of the preseason. Carey Spear, the undrafted rookie out of Vanderbilt who lacked consistency in training camp, has yet to get into a game.

The flags are flying

The NFL's new rules emphasis has resulted in an alarmingly high rate of penalties thus far in the preseason.

Through the first 30 preseason games, not including the three played last night, there had already been 570 accepted penalties for a total of 4,715 yards.

That's 19 penalties and 157.1 yards per game.

It's also a 41.8 percent increase in the number of penalties and a 35.3 percent increase in penalty yards over the first 2 weeks of last year's preseason (plus the Hall of Fame Game), when the league averaged 13.4 penalties and 116.1 penalty yards per game.

During the 2013 regular season, the league averaged 12.2 penalties and 105.6 penalty yards per game.

The Eagles last season had 95 penalties for 846 yards. In their first two preseason games, they have 19 penalties for 175 yards. That's a 152-penalty, 1,400-yard pace for 16 games.

Paul Domowitch contributed to this report.

On Twitter: @jakemkaplan

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