Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Questions, Questions, Questions.

Will Brian Westbrook holdout? No.

Is Westbrook crazy for asking for $10M a year? Yes.

Will Lito Sheppard be traded? No.

Will McNabb get injured? Yes.

Is this McNabb's last season with the Eagles? Yes.

Will Kevin Kolb see any playing time this season? Yes.

Will Greg Lewis be on the roster come September? No.

Will Lorenzo Booker be Westbrook's back up? Yes.

How will the LB's perform? Above Average.

Will Asante Samuel be worth the money? Yes.

Who will start, Lito or Sheldon? Sheldon.

Can Stewart Bradley live up to the hype? Yes.

Will Trent Cole be better then he was last season? No.

Will Brian Dawkins break down again? No.

Will Desean Jackson help the offense? Yes.

How many TD's will Jackson score? 9

Who keeps a spot on the roster by getting hurt, McDougle or Moats? Neither.

Will the Eagles make the playoffs? Yes.

Many, many questions going into this season.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Where to start?

Wow...Its been so long I don't know where to start. Since the last time I posted the Sixers made the playoffs, and exited shortly after. The Flyers did more then anybody could have imagined. If you say you predicted them making the Eastern Conference Finals, well, you're a liar. Liar. The Eagles drama has continued. McNabb has shoulder problems, oh my god. This couldn't be more blown out of proportion. Desean Jackson is very confident for someone who hardly saw the field during the recent mini camp. I just pray he's not another Freddie Mitchell. "I'm a special player, I wanna thank my hands for being so great." To bad his mouth was writing checks his hands couldn't cash. Apparently he's still bitter about the 2004 season and has been trashing McNabb and Hugh Douglas. Lito Sheppard is still an Eagle. Which is a little surprising. I do like it though. What else, what else. Oh yea the Phillies. Wow. What a start. Utley has been killing it. The bullpen is the best in baseball. Never thought I'd live to utter those words. But as I write this the Phillies are getting their doors blown off by the Angels. Adam Eaton has returned to earth giving up 12 hits and 3 walks. Very nice. Oh, and Chase Utley is battling through a bad slump right now. 0-22. I think that covers everything. I'm going to try to write more. Don't know if it matters cause I really don't know how many people actually check out this blog. But I'm going to write anyway cause I like to do it. I'm pissed at myself for not writing for the last 3 months. Oh well. Is anybody out there? HEEEEEEEEEEEEEELLLLLOOOO?? No. Okay.

Monday, March 10, 2008

The Best Draft Picks in the Andy Reid Era.

Originally posted on March 15, 2007: I have to say after looking at the drafts from 99-06, it was harder to narrow the best draft picks then the worst draft picks. I had a hard time picking 5 bad picks. Could of I put Na Brown or some other 5th round draft pick on the worst list, sure. But making those 5th round draft picks into really good NFL players is not easy. The Eagles have been able to do that on a few occasions. The best picks include 3 players that are already solid Pro Bowl caliber players and 2 that are on their way to being very good NFL players and look like they have a great future with the franchise.

Top 5 Best Picks

5) Lito Sheppard, Florida, DB, 1st Round(26th Overall) Sheldon Brown, South Carolina, DB, 2nd Round (59th Overall): Remember 3 or 4 years ago when the Eagles decided to let Bobby Taylor and Troy Vincent go at the same time. What the hell were they thinking? That they had Lito Sheppard and Sheldon Brown to replace them. Well, they were right. The Eagles DB's didn't flinch. Out of the two I'd have to go with Lito as the better. He's a solid DB. He made it to the Pro Bowl in 2004 and would have made his second trip to Hawaii had he not gotten injured in the Playoffs.

3/10/08: That was then, this is now. I still think Lito was a great pick. He is currently sixth on my list. In 2007 it was just the same old thing with Lito. He got injured in the first game of the season, and missed key games vs. the Redskins and Giants, both of which the Eagles lost. He played from week 7-15 and only had 2 picks. So this year it came down to Sheldon and Lito again. So I looked closely at both guys career stats and ended up going with Sheldon. Sheldon Brown is a good corner who doesn't get as much credit as he should cause he doesn't get a lot of picks. The thing that sticks out most to me is that he has played in every game since his rookie season in 2002. 96 straight games he's played in. He has started every game since taking over the starting RCB in 2004. That's impressive. Lito on the other hand has played in 77 games since 2002, 19 less then Sheldon. Now Lito has more picks than Sheldon with 17 for his career. Compared to Sheldon who has just 13. But again that's not what Sheldon does well. Sheldon is a great tackler and has good coverage skills. He breaks up a lot of passes but again, doesn't get a lot of picks. Sheldon's biggest problem is the fact that he can not cover Plaxico Burress. Now to his credit, Sheldon has one of the best hits ever in the history of the NFL. Of course you remember the playoff game vs. the Saints when Sheldon almost killed Reggie Bush. So this year I moved Sheldon up. Could Lito be here, sure.

4) Trent Cole, Cincinnati, DE, 5th Round(191st Overall): The fifth was hard to choose. You have guys like Sheldon Brown, Corey Simon, and Derrick Burgess. You could make a case for any of those guys to be in this spot, but I went with Trent Cole. It is still a little early to gauge how good Trent Cole will be, but as of right now, he is looking like he could be the Eagles future starting DE. Is there anyone who doesn't think he should be starting over Darren Howard. Cole had 5 sacks his rookie year and 8 sacks last year. He had 8 sacks basically splitting time with 3 guys. Not bad. Right now, I can say that for 191st pick in the draft, Cole is pretty good. The Eagles have locked up Cole up for pretty much the rest of his career barring a trade of some kind.

3/10/08: Trent Cole is slowing climbing up the board. I don't ever expect him to crack the top two, cause with McNabb and Westbrook there, it would take a lot. But if continues doing what he has been doing he could pass Shawn Andrews. Trent Cole had another stellar season in 2007 posting 12.5 sacks, 70 tackles and 4 forced fumbles. Cole also made the Pro Bowl. In his first three seasons Cole has seen action in 47 out of 48 games. Very impressive for the 191st pick.

3) Shawn Andrews, Arkansas, G, 1st Round(16th Overall): The 2004 Draft. I remember it like it was yesterday. The Eagles had traded up to the 16th pick. They were finally were going do it. Draft a RB or LB in the first round. Sitting there were, DJ Williams and Steven Jackson. Which one do I like better? I like both so much, which would I like to be Eagle more. Then with the 16th pick, the Philadelphia Eagles select: Shawn Andrews, G, Arkansas. Shawn Andrews, what the hell? Well in hindsight, it turned out to be a good pick. Would've Jackson or Williams be great for the Birds, sure, but we have a offensive lineman that could be one the best in the NFL in the near future. Made the All-Pro team this past season. His first season as a starter. Great Pick. Start 15 games in 2008.

3/10/08: Nothing more to add still a great pick.

2) Donovan McNabb, Syracuse, 1st Round(2nd Overall): I really don't think I have to go into great detail on why McNabb was a great pick. Looking back, the 1999 draft had some stars in the rough, but also had a lot of land mines that the Eagles could have easily tripped over. Um, Ricky Williams, Akili Smith, and David Boston to name a few. Overall the Eagles made the right decision and I don't think there would be much argument that Donovan is in the top 3 players to come out of that draft class.

3/10/08: Donovan had a rough year in 2007. He struggled after coming back from his torn ACL a couple of months early. I will McNabb a mulligan for last season, but even without it he still deserves to be here.

1) Brian Westbrook, Villanova, 3rd round(91st Overall): Going into the 2002 draft, if someone told you Brian Westbrook was going to be in the top ten best RB's in the league, you would have said they were crazy. Well, they weren't. The Eagles had high hopes for Westbrook and so far so good. He has had an injury here or there, but he is the key to the Eagles offense as it stands today. 91st overall, best pick Andy Reid has ever made. RB's taken before Westbrook: William Green, TJ Duckett, Clinton Portis, DeShaun Foster, Maurice Morris, and Ladell Betts. Clinton Portis is the only one worth mentioning in the same breath as Westbrook.

3/10/08: Ummmm, Westbrook is a top 5 Running Back if not top 3. There isn't much more to say then he continues to perform on a higher level year in and year out. One of the best draft picks in the NFL in the last 9 years.

Friday, March 7, 2008

The Five Worst Draft Picks of the Andy Reid Era.

It's almost a year to the day that I wrote up the Best and Worst picks made by Andy Reid. A lot of things have changed obviously, but most of the picks I will keep the same. I remember when I made this, I posted it on a bunch message boards. You wouldn't think, but I caught hell. Mostly for having Matt McCoy on the worst list. People were saying that it was way to early to tell with McCoy. That I didn't have a clue what I was talking about, and the funnest one, that McCoy would be a starter in 2007. But I had seen enough and knew there was not a chance in hell that he would ever amount to anything. The Eagles don't normally don't cut players for making a mistake. But Matt McCoy made so many mistakes in such a short period of time that they just had to cut their loses. He will be moving up a slot in this years worst. But pretty much, I will keep everything the same.

So what were the worst picks that Andy Reid has ever made since coming to the Eagles in 1999. He has made some interestingly bad choices and some very good choices over the past 7 seasons. For obvious reasons I'm not going to include last years draft picks in this list cause its just to early to tell how Bunkley and Justice will turn out. The Eagles best draft by far has to be the 2002 draft. In this draft they were able to get their 2 current starting corners Lito Sheppard & Sheldon Brown (probably in the top ten of CB duos in the league), Michael Lewis (who up til last year was a excellent safety for the Birds), Brian Westbrook (no need to say much there), and in the 7th round they picked up Raheem Brock out of Temple (who never did much for the Eagles, but was the starting DE for the Colts last season). Their worst draft could be 2005 were they had 11 picks and managed to only hit on maybe 3 players. Time will only tell for the 2005 draft picks. Some of those players are still developing, McCoy, Patterson, Considine. Yes I did cringe when I wrote McCoy as still developing, but in the Eagles eyes, he still is competing for a starting spot at LB. Now the 2000 draft was pretty bad but I really think the 2001 draft takes the crown for the worst. Freddie Mitchell, Quinton Caver, Derrick Burgess, Correll Buckhalter, AJ Feeley, and Tony Stewart. Now Burgess is a good find. But some how they managed to let him go and now hes a top ten DE. Buckhalter has been injured almost his whole career. AJ Feeley is an okay pick. Actually the biggest thing Feeley's done to help the Eagles is when he was traded to Miami for a 2nd round pick, which turned out to be Reggie Brown. That's not so bad. Its how they used their first two picks that gets me. First, the peoples champ himself Freddie Mitchell. I have one good thing to about FredEx. 4th and 26th. That's it. Oh yea, they could have picked Chad Johnson. That always stings a little. With their second round pick, Quinton Caver. Terrible. The Eagles have to be one of the worst teams when it comes to scouting LB's and WR's. They need to hand that job over to someone else. With that here's who I believe were the worst picks by the Eagles in the Reid era(99-05). Now I'm not really gonna harp on 3rd to 7th round picks cause those are some hard picks to choose, but mostly 1st and 2nd round picks that they missed on.

Top 5 Worst Picks

5) Barry Gardner, Northwestern, LB, 2nd round(35th Overall): I have a hard time putting BG here cause I actually met him and had the opportunity to play basketball with him a couple of times. Very nice guy, not the best linebacker. He had some good games here and there, but never was an impact on defense. Was always second fiddle to Trotter. Was not worth the 35th pick in the draft.

4) Quinton Caver, Arkansas, LB, 2nd Round(55th Overall): Played like 15 games for the Birds. Big, strong, fast, and had the football IQ of a 9 year old. Never made the adjustment coming out of college. Never made any kind of impact on defense. Lifetime special teams player. That's what you look for in your 2nd round draft pick. Yes some how I managed to find a picture of Caver.

3) Matt McCoy, San Diego St., LB, 2nd round(63rd Overall): I know I said, give the 2005 draft picks time to develop, but if you watched any of the Colts game last season, I think you would agree, you've seen enough. Route 51 was consistently on his back the entire game. And really it wasn't just that game. He plays out of position and can't shed a block to save his life. I'm sorry, bust. It took two seasons, but McCoy was cut after making multiple mistakes on special teams. The final straw was his roughing the kicker penalty which took the Eagles out of Vikings territory. After the play, McCoy was seen getting ripped by Brian Dawkins.

2) Freddie Mitchell, UCLA, WR, 1st Round(25th Overall): Ah yes the peoples champ. Yup the nick name given to him by none other than, himself. His top skills, charisma and personality, about 8th & 9th on the list of skills needed to be a great football player. Remember the days he would catch a 3 yard pass on 3rd and 8, then slap that belt on. Man he sure loved himself. Now Freddie had some good hands. But his attitude, and lack of speed are what killed him in the end. He always thought he was going to be an elite WR. He could talk the best game in town, but rarely backed it up. One time, he managed to step up to the plate, and yes I'll say it again. 4th and 26th. It deserves to be in bold every time its written. Other WR's the Eagles could have chosen. Steve Smith,Car (74th pick), Chad Johnson, Cin (36th pick), Reggie Wayne, Ind (30th pick), and Chris Chambers, SD (52nd pick). The Eagles would pay a hefty price right now to have pretty much any of those WR's with the exception of Chambers. If they had any ability to pick a WR, we would probably be in a lot better shape.

1) Jerome McDougle, Miami, DE, 1st Round(15th Overall): Where to start with McDougle. Well first things first, I really can't believe he is still on the Eagles at this point. I understand second chances, and the guy had some unfortunate things (getting shot right before training camp was about to be begin) happen to him. But enough is enough. This is a sport/business, and it is time to cut your losses with this guy. How long is upside going to carry you on the roster. With the Eagles, about 4 years. Every year its, McDougle is going to have a chance to start this year, next thing you know hes buried on the injury report or on the inactive list. Time for the permanent inactive list for Jerome. As of March 6th, 2008, McDougle is still on the Eagles active roster. Will this be the year he gets the boot. My money is on him getting injured the day before he's supposed to be cut, and the Eagles end up throwing more money in the toilet aka Jerome McDougle. McDougle's career statistics look like this: 35 total tackles, 3 sacks, and thats about it. To put that in some perspective. In his first three seasons DE Trent Cole a fifth round draft choice, has 178 total tackles, 25.5 sacks, and 1 touchdown. McDougle is due to make $1.9M this season and to date the Eagles have paid McDougle over $9M.

There are some honorable mentions. Corey Simon, Todd Pinkston, Bobbie Williams, Matt Ware. Bobbie Williams? Exactly, a 2nd round pick wasted away. Simon and Pinkston could be debatable depending on who you talk to.

Best draft picks in the Andy Reid Era tomorrow.

BallHype: hype it up!

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Takeo Spikes out, Stewart Bradley in.

As you probably have heard, the Philadelphia Eagles released LB Takeo Spikes. Takeo is on the Howard Eskin Show as I write this and he has said some interesting things. He said the Eagles came to him last Friday when free agency started and asked if he would be willing to take pay cut. He was due to make $5M, and he was asked to take a $3M pay cut. Takeo said he slept on it and got back to Andy Reid on Saturday and told him that he wasn't going to take a pay cut. That's interesting cause Saturday was when the whole debacle with the depth chart happened. I actually took a screenshot of the Eagles Website depth chart early Saturday morning cause I knew it didn't look right. The depth chart, pictured to the right, has Akeem Jordan at WLB and Omar Gaither at MLB. But Takeo said when he talked with Andy Reid, he was told that Stewart Bradley will likely take over as MLB and Omar will be shifted to WLB. Takeo went on to say that he has no hard feelings and he appreciates the way that Andy Reid handled the situation. Andy first tried to trade Takeo but when they couldn't unload him they released him less then one week from the start of free agency. Takeo was glad that he was released now and not during training camp like Jeremiah Trotter, cause there are a number of teams thought to be interested. He said during this whole process he was really surprised at how much Andy Reid kept in contact with him and is happy with the way the Eagles handled it. It was probably best for all parties involved to part ways. This will give the Eagles some more cap room for if they make a trade, and its still early into free agency, to were Takeo can still find a place to play and make the money he deserves. Eskin is reporting that there are three teams that have been in contact with Takeo's agent, the Patriots, Browns, and Jaguars. With that, Stewart Bradley looks to be the Eagles new starting MLB. That means Omar Gaither will shift back to his old position at WLB. Bradley would be an upgrade from Gaither at the MLB spot. Bradley is listed at 6-3/255, compared to Gaither who is listed at 6-1/235. This will be better for Gaither. Akeem Jordan will be the back up to both Gaither and Bradley. I think the Eagles young LB core could be very good next season. If Stewart Bradley can perform like he did at the end last season, they should be a fun group to watch.

Andy Reid interview from The Howard Eskin Show.

Andy Reid was a guest on the Burger King's show yesterday. Some interesting stuff. Listen below.

Andy Reid Interview - Part 1

Andy Reid Interview - Part 2

Andy Reid Interview - Part 3

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Where will Lito Sheppard land?

The possibility of Lito Sheppard being traded is around 99%. Right now every blogger and sports analyst has his or her opinion about where he might land. The most popular choices are the Arizona Cardinals and Detroit Lions. There is a shot that he could land in one of those cities but we might not know till draft day. The Eagles don't seem to be in any rush to kick Lito out but it is inevitable. The day is coming. So with the deadline for the Eagles to trade Lito being a little over a month away I thought I would go through what teams may land Lito and give the chances of Lito being traded there. And what who the Eagles might get in return.

Arizona Cardinals:

This has been the most popular landing spot being rumored for where Lito might end up. The biggest reason being the Eagles need for a WR, and the Cardinals being in salary cap hell because of their miss management of Larry Fitzgerald's contract. Fitzgerald is owed $32M over the next two seasons. Fitzgerald holds all the leverage in this situation and is using it to his advantage. The Cardinals have been trying to negotiate a new contract with Fitzgerald so that could lower his cap value over the next two years, but Fitzgerald is not budging at all. The Cards are either going to have to pay him, and not have any cap space, or trade him. Now the Cardinals say publicly that Fitzgerald is not available but the rumors say otherwise. The latest report is that the Eagles offered the Cardinals, Lito and a second round draft pick for Fitzgerald. The Cardinals said no, but said make it Lito and a first round pick and then we will talk. So right now the Eagles have to wait and see how contract negotiations go with Fitzgerald before they unload Lito. The last thing they need is to trade Lito, and then the next day hear Fitzgerald is on the trade block. The situation in Arizona may play out until the draft at least, and that would be the deadline for the Eagles. They have to unload Lito by draft day, when he may have his highest value.

Cardinals get: CB Lito Sheppard, WR Reggie Brown, 2008 2nd rd pick, 2008 3rd rd pick.
Eagles get: WR Larry Fitzgerald.

Chances of a trade happening: 25%

Baltimore Ravens:

The Baltimore Ravens are in need of a CB. They lack depth and youth at the position and Lito could start over Samari Rolle immediately. New head coach John Harbaugh is very familiar with Lito and has plenty of ties within the Eagles front office which could make a deal more likely. Now the Ravens don't have much to send back so a trade would probably involve swapping draft picks. The fact that this years CB class is very deep, the Ravens could gain a veteran CB, in Lito, and draft another CB with the Eagles 19th pick. This would solidify a position in need of a makeover. The Eagles in turn would get the the 8th pick in the draft. Now in terms of the NFL Draft Point Value Chart, which all NFL teams use to put a value on draft picks, the jump from 19th to 8th would be worth 525 points. 525 points is a early 2nd round draft pick. A 2nd round pick seems about right for what Lito should be worth straight up. Now the Eagles might jump to do this so they could get one of the top three OT's that are available. I think if they moved up in the first round they would target Boise St. OT Ryan Clady or Pitt's Jeff Otah.

Ravens get: 19th pick in 2008 Draft, and Lito Sheppard.
Eagles get: 8th pick in 2008 Draft.

Chances of trade happening: 65%

Detroit Lions:

This team is the second most talked about team that Lito could be traded to. The Lions secondary is horrible and has been horrible for years. Lito would be an instant upgrade. The Lions are thought to be willing to let Roy Williams go for the right price even though they have said publicly that Roy is not available. Everyone is available. They have Calvin Johnson who looks who is the future at the WR position, and with the rise of Mike Furrey, Roy could be expendable. The Eagles would have to package Lito with draft picks, most likely a 2nd this year and maybe a 2nd or 3rd for next year. With the Lions sitting at 15 in April's draft they could get a solid CB there. Add that with Lito Sheppard and they could have two new starting CB's by the end of April.

Lions get: CB Lito Sheppard, 2008 2nd Rd pick, 2009 3rd Rd pick.
Eagles get: WR Roy Williams

Chances of trade happening: 55%

Houston Texans:

The Texans are a team that I'm surprised isn't getting more attention. They have struggled at the CB position pretty much since they came into the league six years ago. Now the only trade piece they have is WR Andre Johnson. He has missed some significant time in the last three seasons but still is a great WR. He may not be Fitzgerald or Roy but he would be a upgrade from Kevin Curtis and Reggie Brown. I really think that if you called the Texans they would have no problem trading Johnson. They signed Johnson to 8 year deal last season and the first year into the new contract he missed 7 games. The Texans are sitting at 18 in the draft could draft CB, or WR if they trade Johnson. I think this could happen as a last resort for the Eagles.

Texans get: CB Lito Sheppard
Eagles get: WR Andre Johnson

Chance of trade happening: 40%

New England Patriots:

If the Eagles can't get a deal done for Fitzgerald or Roy, this is the next spot I think Lito could go. With the Cards and Lions being so adamant about keeping their WR's, this seems to be the place Lito will end up. The Patriots lost Asante Samuel and Randell Gay to free agency and are in need of a veteran CB. Lito would fit great into there cover two scheme, and would strive if he can stay on the field. Now this would be an easy trade. Lito and the 19th pick for the 7th overall pick. This would put the Eagles in great position to get a OL or the top CB available. The Patriots on the other hand would fill the hole left by Samuel and still be in position to get a good LB. Not many teams have an immediate need at LB like the Pats do.

Patriots get: CB Lito Sheppard, 19th pick in 2008 and 2008 4th rd. pick.
Eagles get: 7th pick in 2008 Draft.

Chances of trade happening: 70%

There are numerous teams who may want to trade their 2nd or 3rd round pick straight up for Lito Sheppard. Those teams are Saints, Redskins Titans, Bengals, Chiefs, and the Vikings. Any one of these teams has a shot if all else above fails.

Chances of trade happening to any of these teams: 50%

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

The NFL Draft Magazines are out.

In the words of my homie Ice Cube, I have to say today was a good day. I was driving home and realized it was March 4th. I thought for a minute, March 4th, March 4th, there is some reason why March 4th is important. Then it hit, NFL Draft Magazines. The Draft Geek in me was screaming March 4th and I almost forgot. Now something you might not know about ol'HatePhilly. I love the draft more than any other sporting event. It's true, you may say Super Bowl, or March Madness. Not me, I'm all about the NFL Draft. Its like a two month long event for me. The magazines, the horrible mock drafts people come up with, the scouting, and of course good old Mel Kiper and his big board. I like Mel sometimes but most of the time I just watch him for the shear entertainment of being annoyed. Same reason I listen to Eskin. Anytime I can take a swipe at Eskin I will. The scouting combine is the first leg of my triple crown of the NFL draft. The second was today, with Lindy's releasing their annual draft magazine. I like Lindy's but I'm more of a PFW guy. So I went to Barnes & Nobles which is on my way home and went right for the magazine section. There it was Lindy's 2008 Draft Mag. Then right next to it, PFW's NFL Draft mag. Jackpot. First week into March and I have two draft mags already and couldn't be more happy. Now normally I go right to the mock draft section and see what horrible pick they have the Eagles making. Almost every year they have the Eagles taking a WR or LB. I always think what the hell makes them think the Eagles will take WR or LB in the first around. It's funny, I guess from the outside they just look at the Eagles top needs and think thats how Eagles management make their decisions, when that couldn't be further from the truth. The Eagles will either draft a DL, OL, or CB in the first round. That's it. So to my surprise PFW had the Eagles landing South Flordia's Mike Jenkins. I would be okay with that. They have to draft a CB somewhere in the first three rounds. The Eagles need to start planning for the future and they are lacking depth at the CB position. Lindy's also has the Eagles taking a CB, but they had them taking Leodis McKelvin from Troy. Again, I like it. Wouldn't mind it. If he's there I could see them taking him. But with the signing of Asante Samuel, I think that pushes the need of a CB from first round to second or third round. And this years CB class is very deep.

GCobb is on top of Breaking Eagles News.

With all th PFT's of the world taking credit for breaking news and rumors, I would like to give credit where credit is due. In the past week has been right on top of every single move the Eagles have made. is run by former Eagles LB Garry Cobb and his son Garry II. He must have some good sources high up in the Eagles front office cause he broke the Asante Samuel signing the night before free agency started. He was right on top of the Eagles pursuit of Randy Moss. His most recent news is that the Eagles offered the Arizona Cardinals Lito Sheppard and a second round pick for WR Larry Fitzgerald. They said no. Now as I write this I have WIP streaming on my computer, and I'm listening to Howard Eskin spew his bull crap. He claims that his "source", which doesn't exist, that the Eagles didn't make an offer for Larry Fitzgerald. Yesterday when Eskin started his show, he claimed that GCobb's story of Andy Reid speaking with Moss extensively about coming to Philadelphia, was just a formality. That it wasn't a serious need. Now who do I believe. A guy who was ahead everyone with Asante Samuel, and broke the Randy Moss story before or the guy who's views change with the weather everyday.

Here is an article about Howard Eskin flip-flopping from

I had a big laugh yesterday while on the way to Wachovia Center to do Comcast Sportsnet's Daily News Live Show. I was driving and my son Garry was riding in the passenger seat and we had the radio on listening to Howard Eskin on 610-WIP.

Howard was on and he got word of my report on that Andy Reid had been on the phone with Randy Moss and his agent for over a hour and a half on Monday afternoon before Moss decided to sign a 3-year $27 million dollar deal with the Patriots.

Upon learning of my report about the Reid/Moss phone conversation, Eskin said he thought that the conversation had probably been nothing but a formality, as the Eagles would never offer a wide receiver that type of money. He went on and on about how you can't justify giving that type of money to a wide receiver.

He gave numerous reasons why the Eagles should never give out that type of money to a receiver. Of course I didn't agree but I listened.

It was about 4:45pm in the afternoon and we arrived at the Wachovia Center. Garry and I left Howard and the radio and went inside and I did the television show. I broke the story about Reid and Moss being on the phone that afternoon for over an hour. When asked about what took place in the conversation, I told Michael Barkann, Les Bowen and Paul Domowitch, that I didn't know but didn't feel the Eagles had made a better offer than the Patriots.

When Garry and I got back in the car, we were shocked with what we were hearing from Howard. He was talking about how the Eagles had made a better offer to Moss than the Patriots. Eskin, who had been going off about how there was no way you can justify giving that type of money to a wide receiver, was now applauding the Eagles for doing just that.

All we could do was laugh and laugh and laugh. I nearly drove off the rode laughing.
Howard Eskin, one of the hardest-working and best sourced sports media persons, who has ever worked in Philadelphia had twisted himself into a pretzel on his own show. You can't argue that Howard isn't a staple in the Philadelphia sports community, but at the same time, you can't argue against his being a voice for the Eagles.

In the same show, he had given a million reasons why it was justifiable that the Birds should refuse to give big money to a wide receiver. In the same show, he had to tell us that the Eagles had done exactly what he told us that they shouldn't do.
You gotta love Howard, he's something else. Source:

Monday, March 3, 2008

Eagles offered Randy Moss more money than Pats, he turned it down.

Not sure how much truth there is behind this, but the Philadelphia Daily News is reporting that Eagles coach Andy Reid spoke with Patriots WR Randy Moss today about joining the Eagles. The report says that the Eagles offered Randy Moss more than the $27M he got in New England. If this is true it gives fans in Philadelphia some hope that the Eagles might eventually land a true #1 WR. Randy Moss had this to say on his website after signing today, "I want to take time out to thank all of the fans for their support and for wishing me well in my return to New England," he wrote. "I'm ready to get back. We have some unfinished business to take care of." I don't know what color the Kool-Aid is they're drinking up there in New England, but it sure is working.
Source: Birds pursued Moss hard. (,

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Eagles sign DE Chris Clemons to 5 year deal.

Signed a five-year contract on March 1, 2008.The 26-year-old Clemons registered a career-high eight sacks for the Oakland Raiders in 2007, despite being on the field for just 37% of the team's defensive plays. His sack total tied for the team lead with Derrick Burgess. Clemons, who played in all 16 games (two starts) for Oakland, also added 20 tackles, 13 knockdowns, 8 hurries, and two forced fumbles.Clemons was one of just four players in the NFL to record at least eight sacks while starting in fewer than 10 of his team's contests in 2007. The others were Giants DE Justin Tuck (2 starts, 10 sacks), Packers DE Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila (2 starts, 9.5 sacks) and Buccaneers DE Greg White (2 starts, 8 sacks).For his career, the five-year veteran has appeared in 36 games (three starts), tallying 36 tackles, 13 sacks, four forced fumbles and three passes defended. Clemons was originally signed as a rookie free agent by Washington in 2003 and recorded 5 sacks in 20 games for the Redskins from 2004-05. He signed with the Raiders in 2007 after sitting out the entire 2006 campaign.A native of Griffin, GA, Clemons played collegiately at Georgia. His brother, Nic, also played at Georgia and was a rookie free agent signee of the Redskins in 2003. Nic is currently a member of the Denver Broncos.

The Aftermath of the Asante Samuel Deal.

Well the Eagles broke the bank open signing the top free agent on the market. Asante Samuel is an upgrade to a secondary that despite their big names, was arguably one of the worst in the league last season. The Eagles ranked 18th against the pass which isn't that bad, but when it came to turnovers, the Eagles were flat out terrible. They were last in the NFL with 11 interceptions and 0 defensive TD's. As much as people would like to think that this was not a need, it was. Was it an immediate need, maybe not, but Asante Samuel is an upgrade from Lito Sheppard. Those who say that Lito is as good as Asante are mistaken. There are three reasons why it was good to do this. One, Lito has missed 14 games in the last two seasons, and has only played one full season in his entire career. It is well documented that when he does get hurt, which is often, that he takes his time coming back and sometimes doesn't give the full effort to try and get back on the field. When he is healthy, Lito is a top ten cornerback. Not in the top five, or the best, top ten. He is not in the elite. Two, he wants a new contract. He told Comcast SportsNET's Derrick Gunn that he was going to ask the Eagles for a new contract or ask for them to trade him. He saw what Nate Clements got last year, and knew what kind of money Samuels would demand this year and was going to use that, along with his thought that he was one of the elite, as leverage to get a new deal with the Eagles. Bad move. Three, you don't want a disgruntled player in the locker room, see Terrell Owens. So knowing that Lito is unhappy, wants more money, and the fact that he has missed 30% of the games that the Eagles have played in the last three years, would you give him a new contract.

Let me put this way. Say you're working at the office or where ever it is that you work. Now there are roughly 253 work days in a calender year. Over three years that's roughly 759 work days. Say you miss 30% of work at the office over those three years, which would be 228 days or 76 days per year. Which broken down further, you would be missing one and half days of work per week. You decided over the last three years that you like to call out on Monday's and on Friday's you leave work at lunchtime and go get drunk with your homies, or whatever it is you do when your skipping work, or maybe your actually sick. Then one day you come to work, which is rare for you on a Friday afternoon, and you hear that Bob, who does the same job as you but better, and rarely misses a day, has gotten a promotion and a nice raise. So you, "feeling" that you're just as qualified, which you are not, and have been with the company longer, deserve the same promotion and raise that Bob has gotten. So the next day you go to your boss and tell him you would like the raise and promotion Bob got or you would like to be traded to another office. Now the boss has the choice of letting you go or giving you the raise you want but don't deserve. The boss has the money and the ability to give you the raise but doesn't want to. He likes you. You perform great every once and while. You have great potential, but you've been here six years and have not lived up to your resume. So, instead he looks on to see what new talent is available. He sees Mike available. Mike worked for Microsoft for five years, and has numerous achievements. He wants a salary which is around Bob's and would like to start immediately. Mike has a great resume, and never misses work. Now if you were the boss, what would you do? Give Lito a raise that he doesn't deserve or hire Asante off the street. Lito demanding the same money, maybe a little less, then what Clements and Samuel got when he doesn't deserve it, is not right. So now what to do with Lito Sheppard. For those hoping that we would keep Lito and use him with Sheldon and Asante or move Sheldon to safety, keep dreaming, its not going to happen. Lito is on the trade block. The NFL network reported that the Eagles are shopping Lito to other teams right now. The Eagles have already updated the depth chart on their website and it shows Lito as a second string CB. Quick note off the subject, Takeo Spikes is not on the depth chart, they have Akeem Jordan as starting WLB. Anyway, Lito is out. It could happen in the next week or by the draft, but it is going to happen.

Recent Eagles posts:

Friday, February 29, 2008

Asante Samuel is an Eagle.

Asante Samuel to sign with Eagles. UPDATED 4:14 pm.

Asante Samuel is on his way to Philly. The Eagles landed the first visit from the top free agent on the market, and word is the deal is done. Samuel is now in route to Philadelphia and they should have a deal inked by the end of the day. Samuel is not the only pick up the Eagles are thought to have gotten done. There is also talk that free agent safety Gabril Wilson also is ready to sign a deal with the Eagles. But in New York is reporting that Wilson will sign with the Oakland Raiders. My full belief is that if he stops in Philly first, he won't be going anywhere. It looks like the Eagles are completely overhauling there secondary for the upcoming season. Not surprising after last years poor performance. The Eagles ranked 18th against the pass in the NFL last season, and tied for 31st (dead last) in interceptions with a total of 11. So if Samuel is in, most likely Lito Sheppard will be out. There is no rush to move Sheppard at the moment but the Cardinals may be looking to do a deal quick for Larry Fitzgerald to free up cap room for free agency.

I will be posting updates all day with the latest Eagles news and rumors that you won't find anywhere else.


3:58 - The Denver Broncos have released former Pro Bowl WR Javon Walker. There is a good chance that the Eagles will be taking good look at Walker.

3:16 pm - The Daily New is reporting that Oakland Raiders DE Chris Clemons is in route to Philadelphia, and it is likely he will not be leaving. Clemons was under the radar last season but posted 8 sacks. He is a explosive, fast DE with a great motor, from what I've read and heard.

2:18 pm- SportingNews and Comcast SportsNET are reporting Asante Samuel is set to sign with the Eagles for 5 years $47.2M. That is just over $9M per season. Seems kind of low. Most likely that is the base salary, and there probalay is incentives to make the deal worth $55M. If that is the price the Eagles get him at though, that is good news.

10:15 am - 610 WIP's Howard Eskin is reporting that within 24 hours the Eagles will be signing free agent DE Chris Clemons formerly of the Oakland Raiders. Here is Chris Clemons Bio from the Raiders website.

9:53 am - GET'CHA POPCORN READY. The Eagles are reporting on their website that Asante Samuel will be in Philadelphia today, and that he will be available to the media at the NovaCare Complex at 4:30. Huge news.

9:21 am - There is a new report coming out of Kansas City that Eagles could trade for DE Jared Allen. It was reported on FoxSports Radio overnight that the Eagles would send Lito Sheppard, their 19th pick, and a fourth round pick for DE Jared Allen. Don't really like it. I think a First Round pick and Lito is just to much.

8:33 am - GCobb was just on 610 WIP and he said that his sources inside the Eagles front office have told him that the signing of Asante Samuel is a done deal. It should be announced later this afternoon. He also said that Lito Sheppard is out, and that Arizona is the leading candidate for Sheppard. He made some great points on why Arizona will be trading Larry Fitzgerald to the Eagles. The Cardinals cap problems, the fact that they already have Anquan Bolden, and the Cardinals serious need for a cornerback. GCobb said that the Eagles plan the whole time was to sign Samuel and trade Lito for Larry Fitzgerald. If this goes down, it could be a better offseason then 2004.

7:59 am - The Boston Globe is reporting that Philadelphia will likely be the only stop Asante Samuel will make today. A six year deal worth $60M is rumored to be what Samuel will be getting.

7:54 am - has said that the Eagles have been talking to Asante Samuel's agent since just past Midnight last night. He said Samuel's asking price is $12M per year. Damnnn.

7:51 am - Donovan McNabb was a guest on ESPN's Mike and Mike show this morning. They grilled him for a couple of minutes about him being traded. McNabb responded that he plans on being an Eagle this season and in the future. Nothing new there. Well he may get the playmakers he wants in the next couple of days.

Other signings and FA news:

  • RB Michael Turner will be visiting the Falcons today.

  • G Justin Smiley signed a 5 year deal with the Dolphins.

  • RB DeShaun Foster signed a 2 year deal with 49ers.

  • The Jets will be trading Jonathan Vilma to Saints for Draft Pick.

  • Saints trying to trade for TE Jeremey Shockey.

  • Packers traded DT Corey Williams to Browns for 2nd round pick.

  • WR Bernard Berrian is set to visit the Vikings today.

  • DE Justin Smith will visit 49ers today and Vikings tomorrow.

  • Top Guard Alan Faneca will be signing with either the Jets, Rams, or the 49ers.

  • CB Drayton Florence will sign with the Bucs, Lions, or Redskins.

  • DT Shaun Rogers of the Lions and Jaguars DT Marcus Stroud are both on the Block.

  • Jets have offered the Panthers 3rd and a 5th round picks for DT Kris Jenkins.

  • The Browns have re-signed QB Derek Anderson.

  • The Dolphins are expected to make huge offer to Free Agent LB Calvin Pace today.
  • Jaguars DT Marcus Stroud is set to visit the Buffalo Bills this weekend.
  • WR Donte Stallworth will be meeting with the Browns this weekend.
  • The Vikings have signed free agent safety Madieu Williams.
  • The Jaguars have signed WR Jerry Porter.
  • The Vikings are staying busy signing FB Thomas Tapeh.
  • Dolphins sign WR Ernest Wilford.
  • The Seahawks are close to signing TE Alge Crumpler.
  • The Bengals have traded for Lions DT Shaun Rogers.

Top Ten Teams with most Cap Room:

1) Jacksonville Jaguars, $46.27M
2) Tennessee Titans, $42.73M
3) Buffalo Bills, $39.61M
4) Minnesota Vikings, $35.49M
5) New Orleans Saints, $35.25M
6) Tampa Bay Buccaneers, $33.41M
7) San Francisco 49ers, $3.274M
8) Philadelphia Eagles, $31.34
9) Cincinnati Bengals, $31.21
10) Oakland Raiders, $30.59

Recent Eagles posts:

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Threat Level Midnight: 2008 Free Agency

If you haven't heard the recent rumblings that are being thrown around Philadelphia in the last six hours or so, you're in for a treat. Apparently the rumors of Lito Sheppard being on the trade block and the Eagles wanting to sign Asante Samuel may have some truth behind them. Blogs and all the radio hosts on 610 are chattering like crazy that there are some big moves in the making. And the leak last week of Lito being on the trade block could have been a strategic move to gage interest from other teams, and it may have worked. First lets talk about what the Eagles did today. They cut about 230lbs of dead weight letting Jevon "da Turd" Kearse go. They also signed JR Reid and Josello Hanson. But lets get to the good stuff. So if you have not heard, this is what many are speculating that may transpire in the next few days. The Eagles would trade Lito Sheppard and a draft choice to A) the Arizona Cardinals for WR Larry Fitzgerald or B) the Detroit Lions for WR Roy Williams. If you have not been following what has been going on in Arizona. They have a serious problem with their salary cap this year. The problem is that their WR Larry Fitzgerald is due to make $14.6M in '08 and $17.4M in '09. That is crazy money for a WR. What the GM of the Cardinals did, which is kind of funny, he built into Larry's contract a bunch of incentive clauses that they thought were unattainable. But he hit every single one of them. When they drew up the contract they had the option to either give big money to Larry in '08 and '09 or let him be a UFA if he hit them. They chose to go with the big money option, and now they will be paying for it. Now they have been trying to get Larry to restructure his deal and add years to draw the money out over a longer period of time so that their salary cap this year won't be shot. That ain't happening. So with them needing help in the secondary badly, and needing to get rid of Larry and his contract, the Eagles may be able to make this happen. Now the news out of Detroit is that Roy Williams could be available. Earlier this week the Lions parted ways with their starting CB Fernando Bryant, leaving a hole open in their secondary. So some are thinking that Lito could be shipped to the Lions with a draft pick, most likely a third, for Roy Williams. So if either of these deals get done, there is one important thing that has to happen first. They have to sign Asante Samuel. The rumor is that at 12:01 am tonight the Eagles will be on the phone trying to get Asante to come to Philly. They want this to be done fast. With New Orleans, Tampa Bay and other teams lurking with barrels of money, they are going to have to move fast and make great offer quick. Now they are not going to give him the 10yr/$100M deal the Saints are rumored to be offering, but they will instead pay him more per year for less years. A five year deal worth $11M-$12M a year has been rumored. If this deal with Asante does not happen within the first day of free agency it ain't happening at all, and that means no Fitzgerald or Williams. It has to be the perfect storm for them to make this work. Now if this doesn't happen, they might throw a 4yr/$40M deal at Randy Moss. Its going to get interesting in the next day. It's going to be, THREAT LEVEL MIDNIGHT. Please tell me you got that.


Wednesday, February 27, 2008

The Philadelphia Eagles Offseason - Part 3 - Randy Moss to join Cowboys ?, Asante Samuels to ink deal with the Saints, Kearse to be cut.

Well this Friday the free agency signing period will begin, and the Eagles should be big players. The rumor mill has been going strong the last couple of weeks. The talk about Lito Sheppard being traded, Jevon Kearse being cut (which will become reality soon), and the Eagles being very interested in Randy Moss & Asante Samuel. The latest report on Moss is from AOLsports. They are reporting he will signing a long term deal with the Patriots. But FoxSports is reporting the opposite. They are reporting that talks with Pats have stalled and a deal with the Cowboys could happen on Friday. Chris Mortenson reported two weeks ago that the Eagles would be willing to throw Moss a 4 year, $40M deeal if he hits the market. If the Eagles let Moss go to Cowboys without trying to get him, that will be infurating. The news on Asante Samuel is that the frontrunners to land his service are the Saints, Bucs, and the Jets. Rumors coming from the NFL scouting combine say that the Saints and Samuels have a deal ready. It is said that the deal will be worth $10M per year if not $11M. Now the Eagles have been negiotions with Jevon Kearse for him to take a pay cut this season. When asked about Kearse, his agent Drew Roshendouche had this to say: “Yeah, we expect Jevon to be released,” Rosenhaus said. “I expect Jevon to be a free agent. We tried to work out a contract restructure with the Eagles. We thought he had a wonderful career there, they’re a great organization. We weren’t able to do it.” You thought he would have a wonderful career here? So did we but that thought ended about two years ago. In his four years here, Kearse has had a grand total of 22 sacks, and 72 tackles. Kearse signed a 8yr/$62.6M deal in 2004. If that isn't the biggest waste of money I've ever seen. So far they have paid him roughly $30M of that money. Including a $12M signing bonus. Kearse has base salary of $6.5M this year, but his cap value is $8.5M. Second highest next to Donovan McNabb. What a turd. The best was when he showed up to mini-camp last June weighing 230lbs. He's 6-4. He's the same size as Dwayne Wade. Thats what you want at the DE position. The Eagles and their puppet Howard Eskin are always saying that championships are won on the offensive and defensive lines, which I agree with. But do you really trust Andy Reid and the front office to make good choices a that position. I will give them props for their work at the DT position but they have had a rough time at the DE position. Trent Cole, great job, other then that they have signed and drafted crap at the DE position. And there is no help in sight. The free agency market for DE's is very thin. They should really give Victor Abiami a chance, they really don't have any other choice. I would think about taking a shot the Bengals Justin Smith but he probalaly will get over paid elsewhere. And if they draft a DE, which they will do early, you won't see him play for another 2 years. The whole system is screwed up. With all this in mind, lets take a look at the defensive side of the ball, and see where the Eagles might go.

Cornerbacks - So Lito Sheppard is not happy with his current contract, whats new. The Eagles have been doing this for 9 years. Lock up young players early with contracts that pay with a huge signing bonus, mediocre salary in the middle, then heavy at the end knowing that the player will never see the last two years of that deal, unless they are in the top 5 at their position. It's the players fault for signing those things. So with that the Eagles are weak at the CB position. They have two solid starters, and that is it. Hanson and James are both free agents and only Hanson is expected to be back. The Eagles need a solid nickel back to challenge both Sheldon and Lito for their position's. As I said earlier the Eagles are thought to be in the mix for Asante Samuel but that may not happen.
Targets: There are three guys I think they will be targeting. Drayton Florence, Domonique Foxworth, and newly released Fernando Bryant. I really think will end up with one if not two of these guys. They most likely will take a CB in either round 1 or 2 of this years draft.
Safeties - Its no secret the the Eagles safeties are weak. I love Brian Dawkins as pretty much everyone else does but he is on the downside of his career. He was hurt all through training camp and played poorly at times last season. Then you have Sean Considine. Played okay at best, but then got injured. Quintin Mikell is a back-up at best. They need a playmakers at both positions.
Targets: There is a young guy who could be availible on Friday that I like a lot. Atari Bigby. This guy is a hard hitting, aggressive strong safety who has nose for finding the football. Good in coverage. This is the guy besides the obivious Moss, Samuel, that I want the most. Things will have to the Eagles way in the next two days to get this guy. He is ERFA. If he is not resigned by the Packers by Friday he will hit the market as a UFA. Now if they can't get him they will get Gibril Wilson from the Giants. Word is that the Eagles are very high on getting Wilson. I do like Wilson also, but would rather go Bigby. Wilson has alot if the same qualities as Bigby but will most likely get a bigger contract. So if they get one of those guys to start right away that puts more depth at the FS spot. Consindine was drafted to play that position and Mikell can play well there. They have to draft a FS for the future this year though.
Linebackers - This is a position where they finally have some depth. Spikes, Gaither, and Gocong make a decent starting core. With the emergence of Stewart Bradley at the end of last season they look to be solid here. No immediate needs in free agency or the draft.
Defensive Tackle - Same as the LB position. The Eagles have some depth here, could use another guy though. Bunkley and Patterson make up one of the top ten DT tandems in the league. Most likely there won't be a major signing at this position. Our old friend Sam Rayburn could be a possibility.
Defensive End - Huge need for a DE. Trent Cole is as solid as they come but after that its a crap shoot. Jevon "the Turd" Kearse will be gone. There is a chance that Darren Howard could be released but that seems unlikely. His contract is big but they need the depth. The thought now is that he will be a Nickel package DT. They need address the DE position during free agency and in the draft. They most likely will use a 1st or 2nd round pick on a DE. But again, I'm not confident they can pick the right guys. They are just bad at picking this position.
Targets: The top DE out there is Justin Smith. They will have to over pay to get this guy if they want him. The Titans Travis LaBoy or Antwan Odom could be options. Both are young guys that have shown flashes that they could be good DE's in the NFL. Other then that, I honestly don't know.
As it stands right now the Eagles are in good shape going into free agency, money wise. They are 8th in cap space being $31.3M under the cap. Below are the top ten teams with the most cap space going into this seasons free agency period.

1) Jacksonville Jaguars, $46.27M
2) Tennessee Titans, $42.73M
3) Buffalo Bills, $39.61M
4) Minnesota Vikings, $35.49M
5) New Orleans Saints, $35.25M
6) Tampa Bay Buccaneers, $33.41M
7) San Francisco 49ers, $3.274M
8) Philadelphia Eagles, $31.34
9) Cincinnati Bengals, $31.21
10) Oakland Raiders, $30.59

Friday, February 22, 2008

Car accident, Smoking Pot, Getting Arrested. A night out with Eagles DT Mike Patterson.

Breaking news this Friday, is that last Saturday, Eagles DT Mike Patterson was arrested for possession of Marijuana. I don't get how athletes are getting caught for weed all the time. If smoking weed is your thing fine. But stay home and do it. You shouldn't be doing it, but IF you are, why take the risk of being caught outside your home driving around with weed. Police said they found a vehicle on the side of the road with damage caused by a minor motor vehicle accident around 6 a.m. They said they smelled burning marijuana coming from inside and found Patterson and the marijuana inside. They said Patterson admitted it was his. He was charged with possession and released. So, you get into a accident and instead of getting the F out of dodge, you decide to blaze up on the spot. Riggggght. Also inside the car was Patterson's brother, Tyrone, who had several outstanding warrants for his arrest, police said. Police said he resisted arrest. His brother was charged with resisting arrest, posted bail and was released. This is the last thing the Eagles need right now. Patterson is coming off of a breakout season and was a key to the Eagles defense last season. The Eagles and NFL have not commented on the news of Patterson's arrest.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Ryan Howard Wins Arbitration, Scores $10M.

Ryan Howard won his arbitration case vs. the Phillies and will be awarded with $10M this season. This is obiviously great for Howard, but the Phillies won by losing this case. In the court of public opinion they were losing ground fast in the last week. After the bad start last year, Howard has taken this offseason very serious. He showed up 5 days early looking trim. For the 5 weeks prior to showing up to Clearwater, Howard was working out with the likes of Derek Jeter, Ryan Zimmerman, and Ryan Braun. He was part of a 5 week, 7 days a week,that worked on core strength and flexibility, took batting practice, did some fielding work, and ate from a specialized training table heavy on proteins and organic fibers. Howard has said that he has dropped about 15 lbs, and is feeling great, unlike last spring. It looks like the stars could be aligning just right for Howard to have a great start.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Lito Sheppard Update.

So now it seems that there is not much truth to the Lito Sheppard trade rumors, as of right now. But come on, there has to be some truth to what is going around. Derrick Gunn from Comcast Sports Net reported at 6:30 pm last night, that he talked to Lito to see if he knew what was going on and Lito said he knew nothing about this, and that he thought Derrick Gunn was trying to pull a joke on him. Then the Eagles release a statement saying that the all reports of Lito being traded are false. Now its really not so far fetched that Lito could be traded in the near future. It is now coming out that Lito is not happy with his contract and would like to redo his current contract. Lito feels he is a top 5 Corner and deserves to paid like one. Lito also told DGunn that he felt he had outperformed his current contract and was going to see if the Eagles would redo his contract or he was going to push to be traded. So basically, he knows how the Eagles work and most likely he will not get a new contract, and someone in his camp leaked this to ESPN and the NFL Network. No offense to Lito, but he is not a top 5 Cornerback, and he might not be a top 10 at this point. It is his own fault that he is where he is. The Eagles do a great job of locking up young players early, and then hope that they outperform their contracts. Thats what they do, sometimes it works, sometimes it doen't. In this case I think that they both got a good deal. When Lito signed his contract in 2004 he was given a up front bonus of $8.7M. His salary for 2004 was $9.2M. The Eagles gave him a lot of money up front then gave him less for the next 4 seasons, and loaded up the end of his contract. 2005 - $532,000, 2006 - $615,000, 2007 - $1.5M, 2008 - $2M, 2009 - $3M, 2010 - $3.7M, 2011 - $4.25M. Basically the Eagles threw Lito $9.2M when he was unproven, which is a risk, and Lito, knowing that nothing is guaranteed and he could get injured and have his career be over at anytime, took the deal. They both took a risk and the Eagles ended up winning in the deal. Not the Eagles fault. Now should they redo Lito's deal. Absoulutly not. Lito saw what Nate Clements got last year and sees what Asante Samuel is going to get this year and feels he is worth what they got. If I'm the Eagles and Lito tells me he wants a Nate Clements type deal or trade me. I'm on the phone with the Bengals. The Bengals have struggled at the Defensive Back position for the last ten years. I would offer them Lito Sheppard for Chad Johnson straight up. Then I would go after Asante Samuel or Marcus Trufant, both are better than Sheppard. I like Lito. He just takes to many chances and is always injured. If Lito wants out, I give him his wish.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Breaking News: Lito Sheppard given permission to seek trade.

This is big news in many ways. The NFL Network, and ESPN are reporting the Eagles have given Cornerback Lito Sheppard permission to talk with other teams about a possible trade. Sheppard has been played one full season in his NFL career, and has been plagued by injuries. When on the field Sheppard is a great corner but he tends to take alot of chances. So now we are starting to get a better idea of where they are going to go during the off-season. The Eagles are already set to lose Josello Hanson, Will James, and JR Reed. There is a clear need for depth at the Defensive Back position. Already people are speculating that the Eagles will be making an attempt at getting Free Agent CB Asante Samuel. Samuel is one of the top five CB's in the league and will be demanding big money. Last season Nate Clements was made the highest paid defensive player in NFL history after being given a 8yr/$80M contract with $22M guaranteed money. So expect Samuel to demand at least that. This also could mean that they will draft a CB in the 1st or 2nd round in this years draft.

Shenanigans!! Kyle Kendrick gets Punk'D.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

"To Jimmy Rollins: We are the team to beat."

Well Carlos Beltran has officially started the war vs. the Mets for this year. The first thing out of over paid Center Fielder's mouth was, "To Jimmy Rollins: We are the team to beat." Its funny he wasn't talking all that smack till they picked up Johan Santana. Now he feels a little tougher to come out and start taking shots, which is fine, and time will tell who steps up to the plate this season. But we all remember the most historic collapse of the 2007 Mets. It was so great. Remember. Remember Paul Lo Dookie saying something about, we will see who wins in the end. Its about time someone in that clubhouse got a set of balls to speak up. Their biggest problem is that there is nobody in that clubhouse who will step up and be the leader. But if Beltran wants that role, good luck. And even with Beltran proclaiming, "We are the team to beat.", at least come up with something new. Its like when you call someone an idiot, and they go I'm not an idiot your an idiot. Hes got the come back skills of George Constanza. Seinfeld fans got it. "The jerk store called they're running out of you." Then to boot, his teammates aren't even backing him up. Third baseman David Wright said, "I've said all along, I have the utmost confidence in this team to win, But just personally, I don't feel the need to declare anything. Talk is cheap when you're talking about February." Basically he told Carlos Beltran to STF. So with that I was able to dig up every horrible NY newspaper cover I could, so we could rejoice again in last seasons epic COLLAPSE. We have about two more months to ride this out.

It makes me laugh. If you would like to see full pictures of these newspapers just do a quick Google Image Search for: METS COLLAPSE or METS NY POST.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

The Philadelphia Eagles Offseason - Part 2 -UPDATED

So as the Eagles go into Free Agency they have some area's that need some serious attention. But the only problem is that this is not a deep free agency class. There are a couple of big name guys, that will get huge contracts from teams with more money. But after that there isn't much. So I'm going to into this in the way I think the Eagles will go. Not really what I want them to do, but what I think they will do. The Eagles need some major retooling this offseason, an down the line they are going to need help at almost every position. Let's start on offense.

Quarterback - I really believe that Donovan McNabb will return to normal. He will be the starting QB next season barring someone offering the Eagles at least two first round picks, and/or him getting injured which is very much possible. The Eagles honestly think that they are a couple of players away from being a true contender. I'm not so much a believer of that. With that don't expect to see a Kevin Kolb appearence just yet.

Running Back - Brian Westbrook is the franchise right now. Bottom line. He goes out for a significant amount of time, and the Eagles are in trouble. I love Westbrook but he is fragile. The fact that he didn't practice at all last season says a lot. He's probably got about 2-3 years left in the tank. As far as his back-ups ago, we still have Buckhalter as the number 2 and then we have Tony Hunt, who had ten carries last season and did not smell the field in the last seven games. It's infuriating how little that they play their young players. Had they given Winston Justice some play his rookie season we might have been able to avoid that debacle vs. the Giants last season. Bottomline, the Eagles should think about shifting some of Westbrook's load towards Hunt this season.

Wide Recievers - Most people are in agreement, with the exception of the Eagles front office and Howard Eskin, that the Eagles need to upgrade at WR. Kevin Curtis is a good WR but not a number 1. Reggie Brown just is not a good wide out. He's okay at best. He doesn't do anything great, but everything average. Thats about it. Don't give me Hank Baskett. He was a nice story his rookie season but he struggled last year, and doesn't seem have as much upside any more. Then you have Greg Lewis. Don't get me started on Greg Lewis. I would be here all day. So as usual, the Eagles need a solid number 1 WR.

Tight End - They actually have some depth here for this season. But they need to think about the future this season. If healthy, LJ Smith will have a very good season but he is not the future anymore. With the Eagles signing Smith, they must not think to much of Brent Celek. Celek is a decent TE, but more of a back up. They need a big playmaking TE. Like a Shockey, Gates, or Olsen type. I think they may let Schobel go, and add another TE.

Offensive Line - The Eagles O-Line is getting old fast. Jon Runyan and William Thomas are on the downside of their careers and will be Free Agents in 2009. It is time to start getting ready for them to be gone. We saw last season after Winston Justice got man handled by the Giants that they really need to start planning for the future. Herrimans, and Jackson both had rough seasons, and we really need to see what Max-Jean Gilles has. Expect them to sign a solid guard and tackle.

So as much as they want you to think they are as good as any team that was in the playoffs this past season, they are far from it. They are getting old fast, and this is going to be the last run with this core of players. Now let's look at who they will target on Offense.

Ben Utecht, TE - I know that I said they have good depth there but I think that Schobel could be cut, and Utecht would be nice 2nd or 3rd TE.

Ernest Wilford, WR - He is a poorman's Plaxico Burress. Big, Physical, good hands, but lacks big play ability. Also seems to disappear at times. That could be cause he played for the run happy Jaguars though. Has upside, if he isn't asking for much I would not be surprised to see the Eagles go after him.

Marty Booker, WR - Just got cut by the Dolphins. Veteran WR that has big play ability, good size, and is physical. I think they could get him on the cheap, which is what the Eagles love to do. Probably not the Eagles first choice but could be an option.

Randy Moss, WR - I don't really need to explain why they would target Randy Moss. ESPN's Chris Mortenson reported that if Moss hits the market the Eagles will offer him a $40M deal on the first day. The Patriots have 7 days from today to designate their franchise player, most likely it will be Moss.

Alan Faneca, G - Faneca is finally getting his wish to hit the free agent market. I think the Eagles might go down this road. Faneca is 31, but should have another good 5 years left and he is one of the top guards in the NFL.
Mushin Muhammad, WR - Mushin Muhammad was released on Monday, and I could see the Eagles being interested. Veteran guy. Big Physical. Could be an option.

Phillies sign Anna Benson, and Spring Training has started.

I know everyone was hoping this would happen and finally, it happened. The Phillies signed pitcher Kris Benson to a minor league deal, and asked him to join the team in Clearwater. Now the signing is all fine and good but the best part about Benson is his semi-famous wife, Anna Benson. She's graced the cover of FHM and Sporting News, and also was on the Howard Stern show. While on the Howard Stern Show she told Howard that if Kris ever cheated her, she would sleep with all his teammates. Damn. In the words of Eric B. and Rakim, she ain't no joke. She's super hot and maybe she'll up our standing as the US's ugliest city. I was listening to the Morning Show on 610, and Keith Jones had a great line. He said, " I'm pulling for Kris Benson to make the team, and I'll be pulling for Anna Benson also." I thought it was funny.

Pitchers and Catchers reported to Clearwater today along with some other players who have already been working out in Clearwater. Pat Burrell and Chase Utley were already in Clearwater training today when Pitchers and Catchers reported, but there was bigger surprise when Ryan Howard showed up. It really shows his class when he shows up a week early even though is in a battle with the front office. It's good to see that the core players are serious about another run this season.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

The Philadelphia Eagles Offseason - Part 1.

The NFL Offseason has officially begun with teams franchising players and teams cutting dead weight. The Eagles have started by tagging TE L.J. Smith for what looks to be a 1 year/$4.5M a year contract. When the free agency period begins on Feb. 29th the Eagles will be about $17.17M under the cap. The cap in 2008 will be raised to $116M, up from $109M in 2007. The Eagles don't have a lot of money to play with this offseason which isn't all that bad cause there really isn't much out there. Asante Samuel, Lance Briggs, Randy Moss head the list of big name free agents. Randy Moss almost surely will be hit with the franchise tag so you can stop wishing for him right now. As far as the Eagles go, they really don't have a lot of players hitting the free agent market. And most the guys that they are losing, will still be on the free agent market come September. Most notable free agents, Reno Mahe, JR Reed, Jasello Hanson, and William James. Are you losing sleep over losing any of those guys. Didn't think so. Below is a list of important dates for the offseason.

February 7 - Commencement of 15-day designation period for Franchise and Transition Players

February 20-26 - NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, Indiana

February 21 - Deadline for teams to designate Franchise and Transition Players

February 28 - Deadline for submission of Qualifying Offers by teams to their Restricted Free Agents whose contracts have expired and to whom they desire to retain a Right of First Refulsal/Compensation

February 29 - Start of Free Agency and Trading period

March 17 - Begin Offseason Workout Programs

April 18 - Deadline for signing of Offer Sheets by Restricted Free Agents

April 25 - Deadline for old team to exercise Right of First Refusal to Restricted Free Agents

April 26-27 - NFL Draft in New York City

May 19-21 - NFL Spring Meeting in Atlanta, Georgia

July - All teams begin Training Camp

Coming next, Part 2:

Looking at the Eagles needs, and who they might target in free agency.

Friday, February 8, 2008

The Benchwarmers: The Story of the Eagles 2007 Class.

With the draft being about 78 days away, I think its time to reflect on last years draft picks, and in the coming weeks look into the future. With the Giants having their rookies making big contributions during the playoffs and a lot of rookies getting major playing time this past season there has been a lot of talk about the Eagles philosophy to not play rookies a whole lot. There are a lot of people that are acting like this is something new from the Eagles, but this has been a common theme in the Reid era since the beginning. They are stubborn in their ways from top to bottom. From not negoiating with players who want to redo contracts to there inability to admit a mistake. From the same boring press conferences where Reid reveals nothing about anything to them signing medoicre unproven players to 7 year deals. Do I need to go any further?

Its the same song and dance every friggin year, and this is coming from someone who actually likes Andy Reid. He just needs to be a little less selfish and maybe rely on some outside help sometimes. Maybe shake things up a little bit every now and then. Maybe lets say, let your rookies get some playing time so you can determine whether you A) have somebody who could be a starter or B) be a bust. Like right now, the Eagles as usual, need another DE. For a team who preaches every year that games are won on the line, they sure do a horrible job of making a good line. So, Jevon Kearse's career is pretty much over. Darren Howard has been average at best. We know that Trent Cole is solid but after that, there is a clear question mark. Now last season they draft Victor Abiamiri in the 2nd round. Now you would think with the question marks that you have in that area, and the fact that you are not going to the playoffs, which they knew in about week 13 or 14, wouldn't you give the kid a shot for at least 1 game or more, just to see what you have. Abiamiri ended the season with 3 tackles and did not play a full quarter worth of time the entire season. What is the logic behind this? If you can tell me please do? What would it hurt to let the guy play. You could have the next Clyde Simmions, but you'll never know cause the coach does not give his player the oppourtunity to prove himself. I don't want to hear that the playbook is difficult or any other lame excuse that Reid brings to the table. Thats bull. Your team was not going to the playoffs and DE is not the hardest position in that defense. Its not MLB. I can name at least 5 guys who had the same level of talent as Abiamiri, that started games, played in playoff games, and had huge impact's in games this season. Did they make mistakes, sure, but their good plays out weighed their bad plays. And now those teams know what they have.

The Giants, just for example. They know that they have found a back to compilment Jacobs with Ahmed Bradshaw. They have a new solid possession reciever in Steve Smith. They now know that Jeremy Shockey is espendable. They now know they have a solid shut down CB in Aaron Ross, and a decent Safety in Michael Johnson. Do you see where I'm getting at. Going into this years draft, and free agency, the Giants have a lot questions answered for them by playing young players. Back to the Eagles. Next up to bat, Tony Hunt. I'm sure you were as happy as I was when I heard that the Eagles drafted a big back who can pound the rock. But we won't know if he can pound the rock in the big league cause Reid refused to let Hunt play. Hunt had 10 carries for 16 yards on the season. 10 carries. 4 carries came late in that blow out game vs. the Lions. I mean are you serious. Brian Westbrook is the Eagles offense but I think I've seen enough of Correll Buckhalter. We know what he brings to the table, and no offence to Buck, its not much. He has heart and a good motor.

But again how are you going to know what you have if you don't give guys the oppurtunity to play. Hunt did not even get one carry in the last 7 games of the season. Hunt, we thought, was going to be the big back we've waiting for, false. Again if I hear that the playbook is complex I'm going to smack somebody. YOU ARE NOT GOING TO THE PLAYOFFS. Here's the play. McNabb calls hike, he hands Hunt the ball, the O-Line blocks, Hunt runs. Wow, hard. Next up, Stewart Bradley. We saw at the end of the season that it looks like he could be a good player. If it wasn't for the lack of depth at LB we would not even be talking about Bradley. I don't have much to say about him, except he should be competing for a starting job next season. Next, Brent Celek. Celek got a lot of playing time but did not get many looks from McNabb. He has potential, but with the franchise tagging of L.J. Smith, that tells me that Reid doesn't love what he sees. I'm not going to go into the Kolb situation cause thats a whole different topic. So as excited as I am about this years draft, I always get sucked into thinking that this year will be different and that the Eagles rookies will actually get some playing time. And every year I'm sadly disappointed.