John Moffitt

Eagles Reduce Roster To 52 Players

Their decision to cut Tim Tebow will make the biggest headlines today, but the Eagles have made many more roster moves, and have not only reduced their roster to the maximum 53 — they’ve gone one further, getting down to 52 players.

As Les Bowen of the Philadelphia Inquirer tweets, there’s a good chance that 53rd spot will be filled in the coming days with a quarterback. After having cut Tebow and traded Matt Barkley, the club is carrying just two signal-callers, and wouldn’t mind adding some insurance for the oft-injured Sam Bradford.

Here are the rest of the Eagles’ cuts, per a press release:

  • WR Rasheed Bailey
  • G Brett Boyko
  • G Malcolm Bunche
  • CB Randall Evans
  • TE Andrew Gleichert
  • LB Najee Goode
  • WR Jeff Maehl
  • WR Freddie Martino
  • DE Brian Mihalik
  • G John Moffitt
  • RB Raheem Mostert
  • WR Quron Pratt
  • S Chris Prosinski
  • DE Travis Raciti
  • S Ed Reynolds
  • LB Deontae Skinner
  • P Kip Smith
  • TE Eric Tomlinson
  • C/G Julian Vandervelde
  • LB Diaheem Watkins
  • CB Jaylen Watkins

Extra Points: Eagles, Raiders, 49ers, Colts

Eagles defensive coordinator Bill Davis spoke Sunday on the statuses of two of the team’s injured linebackers, Kiko Alonso and DeMeco Ryans.

Regarding Alonso, who suffered a concussion Tuesday and has missed four practices: “Kiko’s fine,” said Davis, according to Zach Berman of the Philadelphia Inquirer. “I’ve been coaching linebackers my whole career. It’s just part of that position, when it sneaks up on you nowadays, we have great protocol. It’s not an issue. Kiko’s doing great. He won’t miss a beat.”

Davis was more guarded when discussing Ryans, who is recovering from a ruptured right Achilles tendon for the second time in his nine-year career.

 “DeMeco is a pro all the way through and is taking strides ahead of where most people would be, but he still has a little ways to go,” Davis said.
Ryans has participated in all seven of the Eagles’ training camp practices, but next Sunday’s preseason opener against the Colts will be a much bigger litmus test.
“Any time you’re coming back from injury, you have to get in the game to see where you are,” said Ryans, who got hurt last November. “Go to the ground, tackle somebody, stand up, make sure everything is still intact. And mentally, I think that’s the last hurdle, going out and getting back in a game.”
More on Philly and the rest of the NFL:
  • The Eagles’ right guard situation could take some time to sort out, writes Jeff McLane of the Inquirer. The team has a vacancy there after cutting three-time Pro Bowl left guard Evan Mathis and replacing him with former RG Allen Barbre. John Moffitt, Matt Tobin, Andrew Gardner and Julian Vandervelde are competing for the job.
  • 49ers defensive coordinator Eric Mangini is using his linebackers’ flexibility to his advantage as he tries to find a way to fill the void left by Aldon Smith, whom the team cut earlier this week because of off-field issues. “A guy like Aldon is not a guy that you just can replace,” Mangini said, per ESPN’s Paul Gutierrez. “He’s got a unique skill set. But one of the things that we focused on defensively is building flexibility, in terms of what we can play, and then building flexibility with who’s going to play there.” The lion’s share of reps at Smith’s former spot have gone to Corey Lemonier and Eli Harold, writes Gutierrez.
  • The Raiders could have the biggest interior defensive line in the NFL when Dan Williams and Justin Ellis, who combine to weigh 665 pounds, line up side by side. The two have been paired together often in camp, writes Jerry McDonald of “To be able to have those guys in the front, we feel like you shouldn’t run the ball on us,” safety Charles Woodson said. “If they put those guys up there, we should be a very stout defense. That’s what we’re counting on.”
  • Colts head coach Chuck Pagano is bullish about the team’s secondary, which helped the defense finish a respectable 12th overall against the pass in 2014. “I think we have an excellent group. We got playmakers and smart guys that communicate well and play well together. I’m excited for that group,” Pagano said, according to USA Today.

Eagles Notes: Boykin, Kelly, Shepherd

Brandon Boykin, who was traded from the Eagles to the Steelers late last week, made some comments on Sunday that seemed to echo criticism of other ex-Eagles players, who have said that Chip Kelly harbors some type of racial bias. Boykin later clarified those, comments, however, telling Judy Battista of (Twitter links) that Kelly just has a hard time relating to players overall.

Of course, Boykin’s comments quickly became the focus for Eagles beat writers. Quarterback Mark Sanchez made it clear that he’s tired of answering the same old questions, as Tucker Bagley of Philadelphia Magazine writes.

[During stretching today], guys were like, ‘Sanchez, ain’t you Mexican? And [Sam] Bradford aren’t you Native American?‘” Sanchez said. “And Kiko [Alonso] is Colombian. We’ve got black guys, white guys, Polynesian guys. Come on, that’s crazy,” Sanchez said.

Malcolm Jenkins, meanwhile, told reporters that Kelly just “likes uniformity, and that’s not necessarily a bad thing.” That quest for uniformity, he says, has been misinterpreted by some as something different. Here’s more on the Eagles..

  • Boykin was stunned by the trade, a source close to the player told Charles Robinson of Yahoo Sports. Boykin loved being with the Eagles, but he also wanted a shot at the outside cornerback spot. The 5’9″ corner felt that Kelly never gave him that opportunity and Kelly never took the time to explain to him why he wouldn’t be getting it.
  • Jesse Dougherty of the Philadelphia Inquirer looked at the Eagles’ internal options for replacing Boykin, including rookie JaCorey Shepherd.
  • Eagles coach Chip Kelly says that he’s optimistic that guard John Moffit can turn his life around, on and off the field, as Zach Berman of the Philadelphia Inquirer writes. “We spent a lot of time figuring out what he’s all about. We felt comfortable, and we are hopeful that he has turned the corner and he’s got an opportunity. Really, the ball is in his court,” Kelly said. The 28-year-old abruptly left the Broncos in 2013 after losing interest in the game and had legal and drug problems during his time away from football.

East Notes: Bradford, Dez, Hunter, Moffitt

Nearly four months after the Eagles acquired Sam Bradford from the Rams, some executives are still shaking their heads about the move, according to Mark Eckel of Eckel spoke to one top personnel exec who acknowledged that perhaps the former first overall pick would have more success under Chip Kelly, but isn’t totally sold.

“I understand they gave up on [Nick] Foles,” the executive said. “But I don’t know why they’re building up Bradford so much. I’m still confused about that whole deal. You can only talk about him being the first pick of the draft for so long. What has he done since then?”

As we wait to see how Bradford looks on a new team under a new head coach, let’s check in on a few more Monday morning items from around the league’s two East divisions….

  • In a Q&A with Mike Ramczyk of, Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo was asked about Dez Bryant‘s contract situation and replied, “I think it will work out with Dez.” The star wideout and the Cowboys have until next Wednesday to strike a long-term deal — if that doesn’t happen, Bryant can only play the 2015 season on his one-year franchise-tag tender.
  • Adam Caplan of (Twitter links) passes along the details on a pair of contracts signed recently by offensive linemen, reporting that Wayne Hunter‘s deal with the Bills and John Moffitt‘s pact with the Eagles are both for one year at the minimum salary, with no guaranteed money.
  • Earlier this morning, our Rob DiRe provided a recap and analysis of the Dolphins‘ 2015 offseason, which included the league’s biggest free agent signing.

Eagles Sign John Moffitt

MONDAY, 3:05pm: The Eagles have officially announced the signing of Moffitt, in a team release. To make room for the unretired guard on the roster, the club has parted ways with another lineman, Cole Manhart, who will have to pass through waivers before becoming a free agent.

THURSDAY, 6:03pm: The Eagles will sign recently unretired guard John Moffitt to a one-year deal, according to Ross Jones of Fox Sports (on Twitter).

A 28-year-old guard who announced his intention to return to the league June 17, Moffitt started 15 games in 2011-12 with the Seahawks before serving as a depth piece briefly with the Broncos in 2013 and ultimately retiring in November 2013.

After the releases of Todd Herremans and All-Pro Evan Mathis this offseason, the Eagles had potentially glaring guard issues that Moffitt would have the chance to help cover up. Although in Moffitt’s last two seasons of active duty, 2011 and 2012, he rated as a below-average guard, per Pro Football Focus’ advanced metrics.

Guard’s the only place on the Eagles’ line with performance questions, with Jason PetersLane Johnson and Jason Kelce residing at the tackle spots and center, respectively. Journeymen Allen Barbre and Andrew Gardner were the Eagles’ frontrunners at guard going into training camp. Moffitt will have the chance to compete with Dennis Kelly and Kevin Graf to take Mathis’ left guard spot, writes Chris Wesseling of

The Broncos, who waived Moffitt before he went unclaimed, traded for the former third-round pick from Wisconsin in 2013 after a deal with the Browns fell through. Midway through the Broncos’ AFC championship campaign, Moffitt walked away due to a lack of passion for the sport, he said at the time. But lingering drug issues came to light as well. Per Jay Glazer of Fox Sports, Moffitt’s recovered from the drug problems that plagued him previously.



East Notes: Eli, Washington, Dolphins

After a year in Ben McAdoo‘s offense, Eli Manning ditched the indecisiveness that plagued him at last June’s minicamp, writes the New York Post’s Paul Schwartz.

The 34-year-old Manning worked with baseball-based mechanics this offseason and has a more confident aura after a 2014 offseason — and some of the regular season — mired by inconsistency.

It is lively, very lively,’’ Giants coach Tom Coughlin noted to reporters on Manning’s throwing arm. “He has worked hard at that. You know Eli is feeling good about himself when he says ‘I feel like I got good juice on it.'”

Here are some other notes from the Eastern divisions on Saturday morning.

  • Planning on an extended absence from Will Beatty after the left tackle’s recent pectoral injury, the Giants may be in better shape on their interior. According to Schwartz, Big Blue has prized 2014 acquisition Geoff Schwartz back healthy after an injury-marred season and Weston Richburg at his natural center spot following a rookie slate playing guard alongside the woeful J.D. Walton. The Giants now have former first-round right tackle Justin Pugh at guard despite Beatty’s setback. At tackle, however, the team remains thin. With newly signed Ereck Flowers now on the left side with little room for a learning curve, sub-optimal swing man Marshall Newhouse is slotting at right tackle for the time being.
  • Rich Tandler of expects Jeron Johnson to supplant Duke Ihenacho as Washington‘s starting strong safety despite Ihenacho’s frequent work with the first team during minicamp. While anticipating the fifth-year ex-Seahawks reserve to garner his first significant role after signing a two-year, $4MM deal in March, Tandler expects Washington’s incumbent at the position, Ihenacho, to safely make the team after previously envisioning the former undrafted Ssan Jose State cog on the roster bubble.
  • The Dolphins remain interested in Evan Mathis, but they haven’t made a push for the now-unretired John Moffitt, Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald reports. With solid performers at tackle and center but issues at guard, the Fins have yet to make an offer for Mathis. Although they figure to be on the front line in this rare June pursuit of an All-Pro talent.

Extra Points: Moffitt, Irvin, Wilson, Bills

Free agent offensive guard John Moffitt could have suitors in the Eagles, Dolphins, Buccaneers, Jets and Texans, tweets Ross Jones of Moffitt announced earlier this week that he was coming out of a two-year retirement. The Broncos subsequently cut the 28-year-old and he cleared waivers on Thursday, per Jones (Twitter link), making him available to sign anywhere.

Let’s round up a few more odds and ends from around the NFL….

  • Talking to the media on Thursday, Seahawks linebacker Bruce Irvin insisted that he wants to remain in Seattle and that his comments about wanting to go to Atlanta were “misinterpreted,” tweets Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times. According to Condotta (Twitter links), Irvin added that he’ll be extra motivated in 2015 after the team chose not to exercise his 2016 option, and that his contract situation will take care of itself.
  • Speaking of Seahawks players entering contract years, the team’s most notable extension candidate, Russell Wilson, was fairly noncommittal when addressing his situation on Thursday, indicating that he remains optimistic about getting something done. Gregg Bell of the Tacoma News Tribune has the details and the quotes.
  • The Bills formally announced a number of changes within their player personnel department, most notably promoting Rob Hanrahan to director of pro peronnel and Kevin Meganck to director of football operations.
  • Browns rookie Cameron Erving will likely begin his career at right guard and compete with John Greco for the starting job, offensive coordinator John DeFilippo told Tom Reed of the Cleveland Plain-Dealer. Erving, the 19th pick in this year’s draft, played offensive tackle and center during his career at Florida State. He’s expected to be a long-term option at center for Cleveland, which could lose starter Alex Mack to free agency next offseason.
  • Second-year Jaguars receiver Allen Robinson is looking to build on a rookie campaign that saw him total an impressive 48 receptions in 10 games. So far, so good, says Jags quarterback Blake Bortles. “He’s been unbelievable,” Bortles said of Robinson’s showing at minicamp, according to Mark Long of the Associated Press. “He’s definitely a threat now in the red zone. … He’s physical. He can run and do everything out in the open field, so he’s been fun to throw to.

Luke Adams contributed to this post.

John Moffitt Comes Out Of Retirement

3:58pm: The Broncos have officially cut Moffitt, who is subject to waivers, tweets Mike Garafolo of Fox Sports. As Garafolo observes, Moffitt will have to go unclaimed before he becomes a free agent.

11:04am: Back in November 2013, offensive lineman John Moffitt announced that he was moving on from football after spending parts of three seasons with the Seahawks and Broncos. Almost two years later, he’s ready to return to the NFL, according to Jay Glazer of FOX Sports, who reports that Moffitt officially came out of retirement today (TwitLonger link).

A third-round pick by the Seahawks in the 2011 draft, Moffitt appeared in 17 regular season contests for the club in his first two NFL seasons, starting 15 of those games. However, the former Wisconsin Badger was traded to the Broncos after a deal with the Browns fell through, and ended his career shortly thereafter. According to Glazer, Moffitt had drug issues, but has since gone through rehab and “cleaned up his life.”

While the Broncos still hold Moffitt’s rights, the team is releasing him, tweets Glazer. Once the 28-year-old becomes a free agent, he’ll have the opportunity to sign with any team, and he’ll certainly be a younger, cheaper alternative – albeit one with less upside – to fellow free agent guard Evan Mathis.

With Moffitt spending a year and a half away from the NFL, it’s worth noting that recently-retired 49ers offensive lineman Anthony Davis could take a similar path. When Davis announced that he was stepping away from the NFL, he suggested it may just be for a year or two, rather than permanently.