October 24, 2013 |
EMMANUEL ACHO never gave up his place in Philadelphia, Acho told reporters yesterday; he just packed a suitcase after he got cut at the end of the preseason and was signed to the Giants' practice squad. Acho "had a feeling that I'd be back eventually," he said, following his first practice on the Eagles' 53-man roster, in the wake of the hamstring injury suffered Sunday by linebacker and special-teams core player Jake Knott. It's been a strange journey, and this shapes up as an especially strange week for Acho, as the Eagles prepare to play the Giants.
September 2, 2013 |
As difficult as the choices became for Chip Kelly when he trimmed the Eagles roster to 53 on Saturday, the more difficult part of the equation might arise when he actually tries to implement his high-tempo vision for a full season with that limited number of active players. The reality of the final cutdown is that Kelly was deciding among one group of players not good enough to start for his team and another group (as they comb through those released) that wasn't good enough to even stick with some other team.
March 20, 2012 |
Now we know why the Eagles weren't casting lines to Stephen Tulloch or Curtis Lofton. They were fishing for a bigger score. And they pulled him in Tuesday night - Pro Bowl linebacker DeMeco Ryans - and on first impression the Eagles looked like they bagged a big one. All they had to give up was a fourth-round draft pick and a swap of third-round picks with the Houston Texans to get the 6-foot-1, 250-pound Ryans. On the surface, the acquisition plugs what were gaping holes on the Eagles defense last year.
August 24, 2011
The Eagles linebackers know what you think - and they don't like it very much. They can look at the roster just like anyone else and count the star players, the high draft picks, the respected veterans on all the other units. And, well, that leaves them, doesn't it? "We know that people don't expect us to do what we need to do," said second-year player Keenan Clayton, listed as the backup to Moise Fokou at the weakside spot. "They always look down at us and always try to find an excuse not to like us. But we're not going to allow any excuses.
October 3, 2013 |
It might not sound like a lot to you, but after four games this season, Eagles linebacker Casey Matthews has been on the field for 29 meaningful defensive snaps. It might not even sound like a lot to Matthews yet, but he'll take them. The 2011 fourth-round pick who was tried and discarded on both the inside and the outside as Juan Castillo's defense fell apart is getting a tentative rebirth now that the coaching staff that drafted him has left town. There isn't much good to say about the defense at the moment, particularly after the pasting it absorbed against Peyton Manning in Denver.
May 1, 2011
CASEY MATTHEWS Fourth round, 116th overall Position: Linebacker College: Oregon Size: 6-foot-1, 231 pounds Hometown: Agoura Hills, Calif. The skinny: Matthews is the latest NFL player from a family that has produced Hall of Fame offensive lineman Bruce Matthews (his uncle), longtime linebacker Clay Matthews Jr. (his father), and older brother Clay III, the Pro Bowl Green Bay linebacker who terrorized the Eagles in the 2010 season opener and the wild-card round.
August 30, 2013 |
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - In one of the most woeful football games ever contested under the aegis of the NFL, the backups of the New York Jets defeated the backups of the Eagles, 27-20, last night at MetLife Stadium, as the preseason lurched to an end for both teams. Of some concern to Eagles fans might be the fact that Jets quarterback Matt Simms, fighting to be the third-stringer on a team few people think is going to be any good, completed 20 of 26 passes in the first half, for 156 yards, despite being sacked seven times.
September 24, 2012 |
Like most great leaders, DeMeco Ryans doesn't want credit. He doesn't want bouquets of praise for turning the Eagles defense around. The middle linebacker doesn't believe he's the missing piece to make the wide-nine work. And despite being called "Cap" or "Coach" since high school days, Ryans doesn't think much about why others follow his lead. "There's no magic tricks," Ryans said last week. "For me, I just go out there and be myself and try to do things the right way, so guys if they see me doing it the right way then they'll be more prone to listen to what I'm saying.
August 20, 2011 |
Andy Reid is sticking with one rookie and going with another. Despite criticism that Casey Matthews wasn't up to the task of being the starting middle linebacker after his rocky outing in Thursday night's preseason game against the Steelers, the Eagles coach stuck with the rookie at Saturday's walk-through. The Eagles' entire starting linebacker crew, in fact, did not change after the 24-14 loss in Pittsburgh. Jamar Chaney stayed at strong-side linebacker and Moise Fokou was still at weak side.
September 21, 2011 |
The Eagles are nowhere close to a sinking ship, but the waters were rough enough for the team to shuffle their linebackers after two games. No one was benched, however, despite the swelling call for rookie middle linebacker Casey Matthews to be demoted. Instead, Jamar Chaney will move into the middle, where he showed signs of promise late last season. Moise Fokou will replace him at strong-side, and Matthews will slide outside to weak-side in place of Fokou. Apparently, two games of watching running backs gash the middle of Juan Castillo's defense was enough for coach Andy Reid to make the moves with the home opener against the New York Giants looming Sunday.