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June 18, 2015 | BY LES BOWEN, Daily News Staff Writer bowenl@phillynews.com
IT'S HARD to contend that the Eagles will have a better offensive line without two-time Pro Bowl guard Evan Mathis, so Chip Kelly didn't try all that hard. "We obviously are down a good football player, but we're confident in the guys we have, and that's why we made the decision we made," Kelly said yesterday, as the team opened a three-day mandatory minicamp. Kelly had not previously addressed the release of Mathis, which happened last Thursday. Kelly called Allen Barbre, expected to take over for Mathis at left guard, "an outstanding football player," but said "we'll see what happens at the other [guard]
SPORTS
June 18, 2015 | By Les Bowen, Daily News Staff Writer
HEARING CHIP KELLY, Evan Mathis and various Eagles weigh in yesterday on the release of the two-time Pro Bowl guard reinforced what we already knew or suspected: This break didn't really hinge on money, or whether Mathis planned to hold out of training camp. (He said yesterday that he would have reported and played. And he said Kelly never asked him what his plans were.) Mathis' release was about reinforcing the Kelly culture, about the coach's attempts this offseason to turn the page on any sort of discord or dissatisfaction as he rebuilds the roster, now that he has gained control of personnel.
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June 18, 2015 | By Paul Domowitch, Daily News Columnist
TRAVIS LONG feels Sam Bradford's pain. The Eagles linebacker knows what it's like to have a torn ACL knock you down not once, but twice. He knows what it's like to spend lonely months recovering from the devastating injury, and then, just when you feel whole again, just when you think it's OK to smile again, bam, it happens again. Bradford's back-to-back ACL injuries to his left knee are all anybody can talk about around here, and rightfully so. His ability to make a full recovery from his latest ACL tear and stay healthy very well could help determine whether the Eagles are able to make a serious Super Bowl run this season or miss the playoffs again.
SPORTS
June 18, 2015 | By David Murphy, Daily News Columnist
THERE WERE moments yesterday when Sam Bradford's face became a portal into his soul. Standing on a practice field in the sweltering heat, wearing a conspicuous black brace around his left knee, he drew back the veil on the emotions that raged within. They were all there, in their rawest forms: frustration, bewilderment, pain. By the time he had finished speaking, it was clear that the new Eagles quarterback had experienced a trial that no man should have to endure. I mean, seriously, have you ever been surrounded by 30 people yelling over the top of one another to ask repetitive questions about one of your body parts?
SPORTS
June 18, 2015 | By Bob Brookover, Inquirer Columnist
T.O. never would have made it to the driveway. Had Chip Kelly been the Eagles coach a decade ago, the egomaniacal receiver who arrived at training camp in 2005 determined to be a disruptive force would have been long gone before he had a chance to show off his six pack on the cement of his Moorestown McMansion. We have learned that much about Kelly, and the players who have stuck around for his third season have taken notice. "I'm definitely not surprised," center Jason Kelce said Tuesday when asked about Kelly's decision to release Evan Mathis before the two-time Pro Bowl left guard had a chance to join his teammates for this week's mandatory minicamp.
SPORTS
June 18, 2015 | By Zach Berman, Inquirer Staff Writer
Before Eagles quarterback Sam Bradford even answered a question Tuesday, he confessed that he does not know when he will be fully healthy. However, even though Bradford is not yet participating in 11-on-11 drills during minicamp this week, he made it clear that he plans to take part in full-team work when training camp opens Aug. 2. "If I'm not ready for 11-on-11 by training camp, then I think something has gone terribly wrong," Bradford said....
SPORTS
June 18, 2015 | By Jesse Dougherty, Inquirer Staff Writer
If any Eagles player was tired at the end of last season, safety Malcolm Jenkins said it was because of that individual and not Chip Kelly's rigorous practices. That belief doesn't line up with what former Eagles and current Seahawks cornerback Cary Williams told a Seattle radio station last week. Williams said, amid a blanket disapproval of Kelly's methods, that "towards the end of the year we were exhausted, and we were outcoached the majority of the games. " The Eagles lost three of their last four games, but Kelly and Williams' former teammates said Tuesday they don't think long-term fatigue or coaching was a factor at the end of the 2014 season.
SPORTS
June 17, 2015 | By Zach Berman, Inquirer Staff Writer
Mark Sanchez spent the spring the way he finished last season - taking snaps as the Eagles' first-team quarterback. Depending on Sam Bradford's health, this week's mandatory minicamp might be Sanchez's last opportunity to take the majority of the snaps. The Eagles will practice Tuesday through Thursday before packing up for summer and returning for training camp Aug. 2. Bradford could be recovered from the torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee by the start of camp. Although coach Chip Kelly said it would be an open competition at quarterback, the Eagles probably did not surrender Nick Foles and a second-round pick for a healthy Bradford to hold a clipboard on the sideline.
SPORTS
June 16, 2015 | BY LES BOWEN, Daily News Staff Writer bowenl@phillynews.com
CURTIS MARSH, Trevard Lindley, Jack Ikegwuonu, Rashad Barksdale, Macho Harris. The ongoing disaster at the safety position gets more attention, but Brandon Boykin, taken in the fourth round in 2012, is the only cornerback the Eagles have drafted since 2002 who has made a significant contribution to the team. In 2002, the Birds drafted Lito Sheppard in the first round and Sheldon Brown in the second, so, that season, they had Troy Vincent and Bobby Taylor as their starters, Al Harris for the nickel, and Sheppard and Brown just in case.
SPORTS
June 15, 2015 | Zach Berman, Inquirer
The Eagles will work out offensive lineman Jared Wheeler on Monday, according to a league source. He will sign if he passes his physical, according to agent Brett Tessler. Wheeler, 24, is 6-foot-5 and 319 pounds and played at the University of Miami. He was waived by the Seattle Seahawks after the draft in May. Wheeler spent last summer with the Carolina Panthers and Buffalo Bills. He was with the Bills during the preseason, but did not make the final roster cut. Wheeler started six games at Miami in 2013 - one at left guard, two at center, and three at right guard.
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