Brian Dawkins

Brian Dawkins gives Eagles fans a pep talk on Twitter after Wentz injury

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Brian Dawkins gives Eagles fans a pep talk on Twitter after Wentz injury

Sunday was tough for football fans in the city of Philadelphia. Carson Wentz exited the game, walked off the field and into the locker room, and the mood was somber.

It didn't take long for reports to swirl that the Eagles feared the worst, that their MVP-caliber quarterback could be lost for the season.

The Birds went on to win the game but it was bittersweet without the prospect of Wentz leading them to the Super Bowl.

Star athletes from all of sports shared messages of support. From fellow star quarterbacks lost for the season like DeShaun Watson to brothers in the city who have dealt with injuries of their own like Joel Embiid, everybody hated to see Wentz go down.

You could feel the negativity oozing through the city.

Monday came and Doug Pederson confirmed what we already believed. Wentz was gone for the year and Nick Foles takes the job of leading the Birds to the promise land. Hope was dim but not extinguished.

Then Eagles Nation got the pep talk (tweeted) it needed from the one person who would never lie to them and only inspire them, Brian Dawkins.


Birdgang, Take Heart! Don’t bye into the neg emotions. @JordanHicks @DarrenSproles @ChrisMaragos Jason Peters & now @cj_wentz r leaders that continue 2 help us win by giving of themselves. WE will rally behind a confident #9 Do me a huge favor.. Rally & BELIEVE!!#FlyEaglesFly

I'm still bummed but Weapon X has me feeling a little better. The Eagles season isn't over just yet. It's time for Nick Foles to write a storybook ending.

*

Former Eagles Dawkins, Owens named Hall of Fame semifinalists

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Former Eagles Dawkins, Owens named Hall of Fame semifinalists

Brian Dawkins and Terrell Owens are again one step closer to making it to the Hall of Fame.

Both former Eagles were named as two of 27 semifinalists for the Pro Football Hall of Fame's 2018 class.

Their inclusion on the list Tuesday is not a surprise at all. Both were on the list of finalists last year, but did not make the 2017 class to the dismay of Eagles fans.

The 15 finalists will be announced during January and Hall of Fame voters will cast their votes for the inductees on Super Bowl Saturday.

This is Dawkins' second year of eligibility and Owens' third. Traditionally it has been difficult for safeties to make it into the Hall of Fame, which might have hurt Dawkins. Owens has likely been hurt by his abrasive personality. Both are very worthy candidates and have a shot to be inducted this year.

Joining them on the list of semifinalists are six who made it on their first years of eligibility: DB Ronde Barber, OG Steve Hutchinson, LB Ray Lewis, LB Brian Urlacher, WR Randy Moss and DL Richard Seymour.

The original list of 108 nominees was cut down to 27 semifinalists instead of 25 because of ties.

Here is the full list of semifinalists:

S Steve Atwater
CB/S Ronde Barber
OT Tony Boselli
WR Isaac Bruce
S LeRoy Butler
Coach Don Coryell
RB Roger Craig
S Brian Dawkins
G Alan Faneca
WR Torry Holt
OG Steve Hutchinson
OT Joe Jacoby
RB Edgerrin James
Coach Jimmy Johnson
CB Ty Law
LB Ray Lewis
FS John Lynch
C/G Kevin Mawae
LB Karl Mecklenburg
WR Randy Moss
DE Leslie O'Neal
WR Terrell Owens
DE Simeon Rice
DE/DT Richard Seymour
LB Brian Urlacher
CB Everson Walls
WR Hines Ward

Sixers notes, quotes and tidbits: Embiid, Saric out for preseason opener

Sixers notes, quotes and tidbits: Embiid, Saric out for preseason opener

CAMDEN, N.J. — The Sixers open their preseason Wednesday night against the Grizzlies at the Wells Fargo Center.

As expected, Joel Embiid will not play then or Friday against the Celtics while he recovers from left knee surgery. He is targeting opening night as a return date and has been going through half-court 5-on-5 in practice. 

“We are trying to cater the structure to slowly groom Joel back into the mix and let everybody get used to playing with him and him playing with us,” Sixers head coach Brett Brown said Tuesday.

Embiid isn’t the only one sidelined, either.

Dario Saric will be held out Wednesday for rest following a long summer of international competition for Croatia. Saric, who did not practice Tuesday, wants to play. Last season, he was upset he fell one game short of competing in all 82. 

“He hates it. He can’t stand it,” Brown said. “He doesn’t want to let people down. He wants to fight through things. He’s everything that this city would want in their athletes. It’s a fistfight trying to get him to buy in. I’m going to try to do it more with him.”

Amir Johnson left practice Tuesday with a sprained right ankle. The Sixers will evaluate him before the game to determine his availability. He is listed as questionable. Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot (right knee patellar tendinitis) also will sit out Wednesday and Friday. 

Who will guard Simmons?
The Grizzlies will be the first team to strategize for Ben Simmons. Brown is looking to gain insight into how their opponents defend the 6-foot-10 point guard. Simmons is prepared for different matchups in his first preseason game following a season-long foot injury. 

“It depends what height they are, how big they are,” Simmons said. “If it’s a smaller guy, usually take them down to the post. If it’s a bigger guy, you can usually go by them. We’ll see once I get into the game and see how the flow goes.”

Inspiring NFL visit
The Sixers received a visit from former Eagles great Brian Dawkins. The nine-time Pro Bowler addressed the team before practice Tuesday.

“He’s obviously one of the best to do it,” T.J. McConnell said. “I was kind of in awe to see how humble and how hard he worked. It makes you open your eyes and shows how hard you have to work to be great.” 

Dawkins is the latest on the team’s list of guest speakers. NBA Hall of Famer and former Sixer Charles Barkley attended a team gathering at Brown’s house last week.