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Trent Cole

SPORTS
June 12, 2014 | By Zach Berman, Inquirer Staff Writer
There are a few gray hairs on Trent Cole's face, another reminder that one of the two longest-tenured Eagles is on the other side of 30. Cole, 31, came to Philadelphia as a fifth-round pick in 2005 at age 22. Todd Herremans is the only player who has been on the Eagles as long as Cole. Only 13 players have played more games in an Eagles uniform than Cole. He has more sacks than any player in franchise history other than Reggie White. "Everybody says, 'He's getting old because he's on this side of 30,' " Cole said.
SPORTS
June 3, 2014 | By Zach Berman, Inquirer Staff Writer
The Eagles did not draft Marcus Smith with the expectation that he would be a Day 1 starter, so it was no surprise that Smith did not line up with the first-team defense during organized team activities last week. Smith took most of his snaps with the third-team defense Thursday. But Smith, who is expected to improve the Eagles' pass rush, does not appear to be behind Trent Cole on the depth chart. He's behind Connor Barwin on the weak side. Cole's spot is called the "Predator" in defensive coordinator Bill Davis' system.
SPORTS
May 30, 2014 | BY LES BOWEN, Daily News Staff Writer bowenl@phillynews.com
ALL OFFSEASON, Brandon Graham turned down interview requests made through the Eagles. Face-to-face with reporters after yesterday's organized team activity session, Graham's first impulse was to walk away, saying something over his shoulder about not wanting to get himself into trouble. But Graham, 26, the 2010 first-round pick fans will forever blame for not being Earl Thomas, has never been an angry or difficult player. As a rookie - which seems a long time ago now - he routinely shook reporters' hands, even if they were the same hands he'd shaken the day before and the day before that.
SPORTS
May 30, 2014 | BY LES BOWEN, Daily News Staff Writer bowenl@phillynews.com
UNTIL YESTERDAY, reporters hadn't seen the 2014 Eagles on the practice field, though we'd been able to talk to players here and there. Watching them actually line up in formation, it turns out, has its advantages. First-round linebacker Marcus Smith was taking third-team reps, not unexpected for a rookie who is considered a bit of a project. But Smith was taking those reps on the left side, where Connor Barwin plays, not on the right side, where Smith was widely projected to add pass-rush depth behind Trent Cole, after notching 14 1/2 sacks last season at Louisville.
SPORTS
May 21, 2014 | By Marcus Hayes, Daily News Staff Writer
THERE IS little less predictable in professional sports than NFL draft dividends. There is little more enjoyable to predict. The season lasts just 16 games; careers, seldom more than 4 years. Often, one misstep dooms a player of whom little is expected. Often, a player of whom much is expected gets more chances than he's worth. The perception, somehow, is that this was the first Chip Kelly draft. That is a misperception; Kelly was the head coach last year, too. As such, what happened from the 2013 draft to the 2014 draft should serve to predict what will happen in the next year, too. The most substantial thing that happened: The Eagles traded veteran nose tackle Isaac Sopoaga in the middle of a promising season, just as the defense was rounding into shape, and handed his starting job to third-round rookie Bennie Logan.
SPORTS
May 19, 2014 | By Jeff McLane, Inquirer Staff Writer
As confident as the Eagles have been about selecting Marcus Smith with their top draft pick, it may take some time before they can point to the outside linebacker's production and say, "See, we were right. " The old adage is you need two to three years before you can properly evaluate a draft choice, but it may take an additional season for edge rushers because so few make an impact or even contribute in their rookie seasons. The Eagles would love Smith to make a first-year splash.
SPORTS
May 14, 2014 | By Rich Hofmann, Daily News Staff Writer
SO YOU WATCH them get through the 3 days of the draft and then you try to figure out how it might make the Eagles look different next fall. It is a bit of an exercise in futility, seeing as how Chip Kelly is officially unpigeonholeable - and, yes, I'm expecting a full credit in the next edition of the Oxford English Dictionary. But we'll give it a try. We'll start with first-and-10. It is the signature down-and-distance for a football team. It is when you identify yourself, for better or worse.
SPORTS
May 2, 2014 | BY LES BOWEN, Daily News Staff Writer bowenl@phillynews.com
First of a series of looks at positions the Eagles might target in the May 8-10 NFL draft. Linebacker * What they have: Inside, Mychal Kendricks is a young building block. DeMeco Ryans, leading tackler the two seasons he has been an Eagle, emerged as the defensive leader and played really well against the run in 2013, but wasn't great against the pass. Ryans, who turns 30 in July, won't man the middle forever. Outside, Connor Barwin is a solid, smart player who still should have plenty of mileage left at 27. The other spot is a question.
SPORTS
March 11, 2014 | By Jeff McLane, Inquirer Staff Writer
Even though they ranked second to last in the NFL in sacks per pass play last season, the Eagles aren't likely to hit the panic button and overspend for an edge rusher in free agency. Do they need to upgrade at outside linebacker or at the least bolster a unit that accounted for only 16 of 37 sacks last season? Certainly. But there is more to a successful pass rush than sacks. The Eagles actually had an above-average defense in that regard, according to Football Outsiders' rankings.
SPORTS
March 9, 2014 | By Zach Berman, Inquirer Staff Writer
From the time Howie Roseman was awarded a desk in the Eagles office through his ascension in the football operations staff, and even in his first three years as general manager, the pass rushers Roseman sought all would play in a similar defensive scheme. Not until Roseman helped court Chip Kelly in January 2013 did his scouting require him to pinpoint edge rushers whose positions are listed as "OLB" and not "DE. " The NFL's vernacular is changing when it comes to pass rushers, because one size does not fit all. Fifteen NFL teams run a 3-4 base defense and 17 teams run a 4-3. The Eagles moved from the 4-3 to the 3-4 last season.
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