Philadelphia Eagles Rumors & News

NFL Practice Squad Updates: 12/2/16

Friday’s practice squad changes:

Green Bay Packers

  • Signed: QB Joe Callahan
  • Cut: WR Dez Stewart

Indianapolis Colts

New England Patriots

Philadelphia Eagles

Eagles Notes: Agholor, Barwin, Kendricks

  • The Eagles will enter the offseason with just $9.6MM in cap space, meaning that they will have to make some moves in the spring. Eliot Shorr-Parks of NJ.com runs down a handful of cap casualty candidates, but says that wide receiver Nelson Agholor is unlikely to get cut. That’s because cutting Agholor would leave $4.6MM in dead money on the cap versus $2.1MM in savings. The Eagles could theoretically trade him and absolve themselves of that dead money, but they’re not likely to find a strong market for him. High-priced players who could go include tackle Jason Peters, defensive lineman Connor Barwin, and linebacker Mychal Kendricks.
  • Eagles coach Doug Pederson says there is a good chance Agholor is active this week, Shorr-Parks of NJ.com tweets. Agholor was a healthy scratch against Green Bay on Monday and Pederson has declined to give specifics on that decision. In other Agholor news, he remains under NFL investigation for his involvement in an alleged rape over the summer.

Eagles’ Agholor Still Under NFL Investigaton

Eagles wide receiver Nelson Agholor was not charged in connection with a rape accusation that was made against him this summer, but he is not out of the woods in terms of potential league discipline. The NFL’s investigation is still ongoing, according to Mark Eckel of NJ.comNelson Agholor (vertical)

[RELATED: Eagles, Others Showing Interest In Rugby Stars]

A source close to the situation says the recently league sent its Director of Investigations, Kia Roberts, to the gentleman’s club where the alleged incident transpired. Roberts went fact finding there last week, at the same time Eagles head coach Doug Pederson decided to bench Agholor against the Packers. When asked about the reason for benching Agholor today, Pederson offered little in the way answers. He did imply that the decision was football-based, however (link):

I just think he … the biggest thing is just, seeing the way the offense kind of works. Seeing how the game kind of unfolds. How guys react in certain situations. And I wanted him to put himself in the game situations and see how he would react, see how he would play, see how he would run that route. And its a lot easier to do that from a removed position where you can kind of see it from a big picture with calmer eyes where the pressure and stress isn’t on you to perform. That is what I am hoping he takes away from this, and learns from this down the road.”

Agholor recently admitted he’s fighting a “mental battle” on the field and he has been seeing a sports psychologist as of late. The potential for a significant suspension could also be weighing on Agholor, who hasn’t really looked the part of a former first-round pick.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Brandon Brooks Released From Hospital

  • The Eagles announced that right guard Brandon Brooks has been released from the hospital. Brooks was placed in the hospital before last night’s game against the Packers and ended up missing the contest with a mystery ailment. As such, his availability for Week 13 against Cincinnati is unclear.

NFL Teams Showing Interest In Rugby Stars

Last year, rugby star Jarryd Hayne signed with the 49ers and tried his hand at the NFL. His stay in the league was short, but there are now a pair of rugby standouts that are hoping to follow his footsteps. Australian Rugby League players Valentine Holmes and Jason Taumalolo tried out for teams on Saturday, as Howard Balzer of BalzerFootball.com tweets.

The Bills, Bears, Browns, Packers, Colts, Jaguars, Chiefs, Rams, Jets, Eagles, Chargers, Seahawks, Cardinals, and the 49ers were all in attendance for the workout (Twitter link). Taumalolo, 23, and Holmes, 21, ran passing routes, underwent speed and agility tests, and ran the 40-yard dash, according to the Sydney Morning Herald. Taumalolo hears that he could project to fullback, tight end, or linebacker while Holmes was pegged as a wide receiver or safety.

At least four NFL teams expressed interest in taking a second look at the duo, the Australian Associated Press reports. Scouts from the Packers, Eagles, Jets, Chiefs and Cardinals appeared to be the most interested. The AAP writes that both players intend on fulfilling their NRL contracts for 2017, but one has to imagine that they could change their minds if presented with an NFL offer.

Brandon Brooks Hospitalized, To Miss Game

Brandon Brooks has enjoyed a bounce-back season for the Eagles, but the guard won’t have a chance to play in a nationally televised spot for his team tonight.

The mammoth lineman was hospitalized with an illness earlier today and will be out, leaving Philadelphia shorthanded up front.

Rated as Pro Football Focus’ No. 5 overall guard, Brooks has been one of the team’s best players this season after signing a lucrative free agent deal to come over from the Texans. The 343-pound right guard started all 10 of the Eagles’ games this season and has suited up for at least 14 contests during his time as a starter, which has consisted of the past three campaigns.

Philadelphia is already down Lane Johnson and replacement Halapoulivaati Vaitai, so the Eagles will go with a makeshift offensive line against the Packers. Stefen Wisniewski will start at left guard, Isaac Seumalo will go to right guard, per Tim McManus of ESPN.com (on Twitter) and Allen Barbre will play right tackle for Philly tonight.

Josh Andrews will be active for the first time this season, serving as the backup guard, with Matt Tobin suiting up as the backup tackle after being a healthy scratch last week, Zach Berman of the Philadelphia Inquirer tweets.

The Eagles are already without starting running back Ryan Mathews, so this rearranged blocking quintet will likely make ground advancement more difficult on the fourth-place team fighting to remain in the wild-card race.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Ryan Mathews Out Against Packers

Thanks to Kelly’s “life-changing” investment in Maxwell during the coach’s one year of NFL personnel control, the sixth-year corner is in Year 2 of a six-year, $63MM deal as his former coach’s team comes to Miami. Maxwell does not doubt Kelly’s football acumen like some of the jettisoned Eagles have, but Kelly’s obviously ventured back into embattled territory thanks to the 49ers’ nine-game losing streak.

  • Ryan Mathews won’t suit up for the Eagles on Monday night, Tim McManus of ESPN.com reports. Mathews left last weekend’s Eagles-Seahawks game due to what turned out to be an MCL sprain. This will give the running back at least one missed game in six of his seven NFL seasons. Philadelphia’s starter missed three games last season and 10 in 2014. Darren Sproles will play, however, for an Eagles team trying to stay in wild-card contention.

Details On Lane Johnson's Case

  • Eagles lineman Lane Johnson is fighting his 10-game suspension and Breer has the specifics on his argument. For starters, the performance-enhancing substance policy calls for a panel of 3-5 arbitrators, and Johnson’s reps note that there were only two assigned to his case. One of those arbitrators, James Carter, handled the Ray Rice investigation for the NFL and his cozy relationship with the league could be a conflict of interest, one that was not disclosed to Johnson. Johnson is also going after the NFLPA, in part because he says their Aegis Shield app for checking supplements did not flag what he was taking.

Eagles Notes: Agholor, Jones, Maragos

  • Eagles receiver Nelson Agholor admitted he’s fighting a “mental battle,” and head coach Doug Pederson won’t commit to playing him Monday against Green Bay, writes Tim McManus of ESPN.com. A reduced role for Agholor is a “real possibility,” Pederson said Wednesday, adding that Agholor has seen a sports psychologist recently. “Every team has them and I think it’s good, whether they’re going through stuff or not, to keep talking through some issues,” stated Pederson. Agholor hasn’t lived up to his first-round draft status on the field since going 20th overall in the 2015 draft. Plus, as of late October, he was under league investigation for an offseason rape accusation that didn’t lead to charges.
  • The Eagles signed special teamers Donnie Jones (punter), Chris Maragos (safety) and Jon Dorenbos (long snapper) to contract extensions last week. Details on the deals Jones and Maragos inked are now out, via Adam Caplan of ESPN (Twitter links): Jones’ three-year pact is worth $5.5MM ($1MM fully guaranteed) and maxes out at $5.8MM with Pro Bowl incentives. Maragos’ extension, also for three years, is worth $6MM ($2.25MM fully guaranteed) and carries a $6.3MM max with Pro Bowl incentives.

NFL Practice Squad Updates: 11/23/16

Wednesday’s practice squad changes:

Los Angeles Rams

Philadelphia Eagles

San Diego Chargers

Seattle Seahawks