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Tra Thomas

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SPORTS
August 21, 1998 | by Marcus Hayes, Daily News Sports Writer
Every time a pass rusher made contact with Tra Thomas, the big left tackle's head jarred. The holes in his gums where five teeth once held root sent pain shooting through his cranium. Thomas, the Eagles' first-round pick this year, struggled through the ordeal of his oral surgery July 28. He altered his diet. He lost 10 pounds and significant strength. "Every time he would butt heads, there was a jarring sensation in his gum area," coach Ray Rhodes said. "He had to be a little cautious in some areas.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 28, 2012 | Dan Gross
NBC News' Jenna Wolfe spent Monday in Medford with former Eagles tackle Tra Thomas at his youth strength and conditioning center, 7 Deuce Sports. Thomas is offering the Camden High football team eight weeks of free strength and conditioning coaching at his facility. "Everything that's been going on in Camden, we were looking for a school we could give something to who would take advantage of it," Thomas told us Wednesday. Wolfe, co-host of the weekend "Today" show and former sportscaster for Channel 17, said she liked that Thomas requires the students to donate time toward community service in exchange for the free training.
SPORTS
July 31, 1998 | by Paul Domowitch, Daily News Sports Writer Daily News sports writer Marcus Hayes contributed to this story
When the Eagles took Tra Thomas with the 11th overall pick in the April draft, they sensed that the selection of yet another offensive lineman in the first round probably wasn't going to go over real big with the local media. In an uncharacteristic display of public relations savvy, they invited reporters up to their offices on draft day to watch a "Best of Tra Thomas" videotape. Thomas's punching bag in most of the highlights was a defensive end out of North Carolina named Greg Ellis, who just happened to be drafted three spots ahead of Thomas by the Dallas Cowboys.
SPORTS
November 12, 1998 | By Phil Sheridan, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
In a season that has been like a long, slow drowning, the Eagles at least have their heads above water this week. As ugly as their 10-9 win over Detroit was, it gave them a chance to take a breath and get some oxygen into their lungs. No one appreciated that any more than rookie left tackle Tra Thomas. In his four years at Florida State, Thomas was on the losing side just five times. As a pro, the first-round pick experienced that many losses before the Eagles finally won their first game.
SPORTS
August 20, 2014 | By Jeff McLane, Inquirer Staff Writer
The Eagles had been handling Marcus Smith with first-round draft pick gloves - the type of cradling a team gives a No. 1 selection who isn't expected to start right away. But the team had surely hoped Smith would contribute and play a part-time role this season. However, after Friday night's preseason loss to the Patriots, the Eagles have taken the gloves off. Chip Kelly was critical of Smith, saying, "If you're going to play that many plays [the second-highest total on defense]
SPORTS
December 22, 2004 | By Shannon Ryan INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
During the week, Eagles offensive tackle Tra Thomas studies his playbook diligently so that he can protect quarterback Donovan McNabb from sacks. Twice a week, Thomas puts down his playbook on the intricacies of gritty lineman work and studies the language of love. Thomas, in his seventh season as an Eagles starter, has taken private French lessons since the beginning of the season with his wife, Rosa. On Tuesdays and Fridays, a French tutor enters the couple's New Jersey home with a "bonjour" and speaks only French until she bids them au revoir about two hours later.
SPORTS
August 17, 2012
THE MOST important quarter of Tra Thomas' impressive career was the one he didn't play. It was easy to forget during Thomas' retirement announcement - under the crescendo of a highlight film and in Thomas' teary words of thanks - that Andy Reid once benched Tra Thomas. Thomas stood on the sideline, humbled, helmet in hand, for the first quarter of the 14th game of Reid's first season, at Dallas. He was hard to miss; a 6-7, 350-pound testament to potential and petulance. Thomas, a second-year player, had taken himself out of the previous week's game with a mild groin strain.
SPORTS
August 17, 2012
Tra Thomas has some pain in his back these days where he had surgery once, and his knees bark at him occasionally, but for a man who played a dozen seasons of offensive tackle in the NFL, Thomas got away almost clean. He came out of the game physically whole, but he didn't get away clean from the part of him that will always remain with the Eagles. Thomas came home Thursday to officially retire as a member of the team once again. "All I ever wanted to be was a Philadelphia Eagle," Thomas said.
SPORTS
March 4, 2009 | By Bob Brookover INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Tra Thomas said he doesn't believe the Eagles want him back, and there is reason to believe he is correct. "They haven't shown any interest in bringing me back, so as hard as it is, I have to move forward," Thomas said via a text message yesterday after returning from a visit with the Jacksonville Jaguars. "The Eagles have always been the team I wanted to play for, but now I have to go to the team that wants me. " A source with knowledge of the situation said the Eagles' offer to Thomas before the start of free agency was "way too low. " Eagles president Joe Banner declined to comment.
SPORTS
June 11, 1998 | By Phil Sheridan, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Eagles players dispersed yesterday, winding up the last of their minicamps and scattering until July 19, when rookies and selected veterans will report to Lehigh University for training camp. Coach Ray Rhodes said he was happy with the players' presence and performance during these last two weeks of practices. But the coach reiterated that little can be learned while the players are running around in shorts and jerseys, playing something like two-hand touch. "It's early right now," Rhodes said.
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SPORTS
March 7, 2016 | By Jeff McLane, Staff Writer
It's been seven years since the Eagles were active participants in the high-priced, free-agent offensive line market. They initially signed Stacy Andrews in the 2009 offseason, and while Jason Peters wasn't technically a free agent, the veteran tackle came in a trade. The Eagles were attempting to replace tackle cornerstones Tra Thomas and Jon Runyan on the fly, and while Peters ultimately became one of the team's better acquisitions over the last decade, Andrews, like his brother Shawn, flamed out. Now, the Eagles face a similar, though not as drastic, predicament on the line.
SPORTS
January 30, 2016 | By Bob Brookover, Inquirer Columnist
A lot of players who do not really belong there are going to participate in the NFL Pro Bowl on Sunday at Aloha Stadium in Hawaii. Jason Peters will not be one of them. He was selected to play in his eighth Pro Bowl, but the assortment of injuries that dogged the 6-foot-4, 328-pound left tackle throughout the 2015 season prompted him to stay away from a ridiculous game that he has played in many times before. It was a wise and no doubt easy decision by one of the greatest Eagles of all-time.
SPORTS
August 7, 2015 | By Mike Sielski, Inquirer Columnist
During an on-field brawl in 2009, a black running back had dropped a white linebacker to the blue turf of Boise State's Albertsons Stadium with a single brutal punch, and one game into his head coaching career at Oregon, Chip Kelly had a crisis to confront. LeGarrette Blount - Oregon's star running back, 6 feet and 235 pounds of coiled muscle - had cracked Boise State's Byron Hout in the jaw, both of them fortunate that Blount had delivered no lasting damage to Hout's face. Kelly initially suspended Blount for the rest of that season, but he soon began to wonder whether the punishment was too severe.
SPORTS
August 6, 2015 | By Zach Berman, Inquirer Staff Writer
Two years have passed since Chip Kelly made the decision to keep Riley Cooper after a video showed the Eagles receiver shouting a racial slur at a concert, but the incident is still raised whenever the topic of Kelly and race is discussed. It's still a topic two years later, because two former members of the organization - running back LeSean McCoy and coaching assistant Tra Thomas - made references this offseason to race as an issue in the Eagles locker room. Then, cornerback Brandon Boykin, after his trade on Saturday, told Comcast SportsNet reporter Derrick Gunn that Kelly "is uncomfortable around grown men of our culture.
SPORTS
August 4, 2015 | By John Smallwood, Daily News Columnist
BY THE TIME Brandon Boykin starting taking back his inflammatory comments, another hit to Chip Kelly's reputation already had been soundly delivered. Instead of questions about becoming the newest Pittsburgh defensive back, the former Eagles cornerback was peppered yesterday at Steelers training camp with questions about why he had hinted that the Eagles traded him on Saturday because Kelly was "uncomfortable around grown men" of African-American culture. Boykin tried to clarify that he was not calling Kelly racist when he texted Comcast SportNet reporter Derrick Gunn with his comments.
SPORTS
May 13, 2015 | By Zach Berman, Inquirer Staff Writer
Mike Coccia would understand if he hears an occasional boo from the crowd while playing for the Eagles. The undrafted rookie center is a Bethlehem native and son of an Eagles season-ticket holder whose memories with his father include sitting in the 700 level at Veterans Stadium and collecting stories unfit to print. Malcolm Bunche, an undrafted lineman from Newark, Del., would understand, too. His father, Curtis Bunche, was an Eagles draft pick in 1979. Bunche grew up rooting for the Eagles less than one hour down I-95.
SPORTS
May 13, 2015 | BY JEFF NEIBURG, For the Daily News
IT WAS every Sunday, Curtis Bunche said. Bunche and his son, Malcolm, would - like thousands of other Eagles fans - sit in front of the television and watch their beloved team. Malcolm loved watching Eagles greats like Tra Thomas, Brian Dawkins and Hugh Douglas. "A few times we did go to the game," Curtis Bunche said. "But we enjoyed it more so at home in front of the television than actually sitting in the stadium. That was every Sunday his entire life, really, growing up. " Now, Malcolm has a chance to wear an Eagles helmet on Sundays.
SPORTS
February 5, 2015 | By Les Bowen, Daily News Staff Writer
THE EAGLES' 2015 coaching staff might be complete, after yesterday's announcement of the hiring of Princeton inside linebackers coach Stephen Thomas as defensive quality control coach, replacing Michael Clay, who is now the assistant special teams coach. The former assistant special teams coach, Matthew Harper, is now assistant defensive backs coach, replacing Todd Lyght, who left for a position at Vanderbilt. Lyght had assisted John Lovett, now reassigned to pro scouting. Lovett was replaced last month by former Broncos assistant Cory Undelin.
SPORTS
February 5, 2015 | By Zach Berman, Inquirer Staff Writer
The Eagles made minor changes to their coaching staff on Tuesday, giving Matthew Harper and Michael Clay new roles and adding Stephen Thomas to the staff as defensive quality control coach. Harper, 30, becomes the assistant defensive backs coach after spending the last two seasons as the assistant special-teams coach. Harper played defensive back at Oregon and joined the Eagles staff with Chip Kelly in 2013. He also worked under Kelly at Oregon. Harper replaces Todd Lyght, who left to coach cornerbacks at Vanderbilt.
SPORTS
August 20, 2014 | BY LES BOWEN, Daily News Staff Writer bowenl@phillynews.com
MARCUS SMITH says he is not thin-skinned, and that is a darned good thing. Sunday, Eagles coach Chip Kelly complimented Smith on his "burst," but said Smith's production didn't match his 73 snaps Friday night at New England, said the Eagles will need to see more from their first-round pick if they are going to play him so much. Before practice yesterday, defensive coordinator Bill Davis said the game is still moving too fast for Smith, who "had his share of mistakes" Friday and "just needs to do his job and let the plays come to him. " After practice, Smith worked with offensive assistant coach Tra Thomas on how to do a better job of fooling offensive tackles.
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