Former offensive tackle Tra Thomas was a member of the Eagles coaching staff this past season, but the 40-year-old wasn’t retained for 2015. Thomas spent time as a full-time assistant on both offense and defense, and he felt like he was actually making an impact on the players.
As a result, it was a surprise when he learned he wouldn’t be back with the organization next season.
“I was a little bit surprised just because when I switched over to the outside linebackers, they improved last year,” Thomas said on 97.5 The Fanatic in Philly (via Sheil Kapadia of PhillyMag.com). “The last season, they put up 16 sacks, and then you switch me over to the other side, I start working with ’em, and then this past season we put up 26.5 sacks. Connor Barwin went from five sacks to 14.5 sacks. So I was a little bit surprised just because you can look at the numbers and see that there was improvement in that group. But it’s just the way it goes.
“I went in and asked Coach [Kelly] what my situation was gonna be, and what I was told was that position I had was just kind of something they made up for me to get me some experience on this side of the game, and that it’s not gonna exist next year.”
More from the Eagles amid notes from the NFC…
- Looking ahead towards the Eagles‘ tight end depth in 2015, Kapadia believes the team will ultimately keep Brent Celek and Zach Ertz. Due to James Casey‘s contract, Kapadia believes the team will part ways with the veteran if they think Trey Burton can adequately replace him.
- It isn’t a guarantee that running back Marshawn Lynch will play in the NFL next season, writes Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk.com. With only one year remaining on his contract, Florio believes the threat of Lynch not playing could be enough to force the Seahawks to pay the running back. According to the writer, there’s also a chance that the 28-year-old has simply decided he’s “had enough.”
- Following news yesterday that the Lions informed a free agent defensive tackle that they expect Ndamukong Suh to be back in Detroit next season, Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press says the two sides have not resumed negotiations.
- As the Panthers seek help on the offensive line, Jonathan Jones of the Charlotte Observer suggests the team checks out former Ravens and Titans lineman Michael Oher. The former first-rounder was released by Tennessee earlier this week.