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Are these Eagles attractive to coach candidates?

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Are these Eagles attractive to coach candidates?

PHILADELPHIA (AP) Playing for the Philadelphia Eagles was more appealing over the past decade than coaching them might be now.

With seven teams looking for a new coach, the Eagles might end up having to compete for a guy who will get multiple offers. Owner Jeffrey Lurie made quite a sales pitch after firing Andy Reid. He highlighted everything from the fans down to his hands-off approach.

``I'm very confident that this is the most attractive place for a head coach to work in the National Football League,'' Lurie said. ``We have an incredible fan base. This one's amazing. They want what we want and that's an obsession not just to be good, but to be great and that's big.''

There's no denying the Eagles have passionate fans who aren't afraid to express their opinion. They'll boo vociferously whenever they feel a player isn't giving his best effort and when the team plays poorly. They'll also demand the coach gets fired if he's not getting the job done. In Reid's case, they wanted him gone because he couldn't win a Super Bowl.

But Eagles fans also have a way of loving a guy unconditionally if he completely wins them over. Dick Vermeil led the Eagles to the Super Bowl in 1980 and also lost. Buddy Ryan never even won a playoff game in his five seasons as coach. Both men are still revered in this city, maybe more for their personalities than their accomplishments.

After lauding the fans, Lurie pointed to the fact Philadelphia is a ``huge'' media market.

``If you want to be at the forefront of NFL in America, this is a top-four, top-five media market. That's great,'' Lurie said.

Of course, he didn't mention the intense scrutiny that comes with coaching here.

Lurie called the team's practice site the ``best facilities'' in the league. The NovaCare complex certainly is top-notch, but Vermeil and Ryan worked successfully at the downtrodden offices at Veterans Stadium, and Reid started out there.

Perhaps Lurie's best selling point is that he stays out of the way and allows the coach and personnel department to make all the football decisions. He also is willing to spend the money it takes to get big-name players, though a few recently have underachieved.

``History of an owner-coach relationship, I think virtually unmatched,'' Lurie said. ``I think that the resources, any coach coming here knows there's no limitation on the resources in any direction, financial or otherwise, that's put towards the football program. Everyone knows that in the league.''

Lastly, Lurie talked about the winning culture Reid created. A new coach wouldn't have to infuse that into the franchise because it still exists, according to Lurie. Considering the last two seasons, that point can be argued.

``To come into an organization that is used to winning, used to winning big and it's part of the mantra and the culture in an organization, that's huge,'' Lurie said. ``When Andy came, we had to change the culture, turn it around and that's a much harder job. This job is taking a culture that exists. There's been some negative turns in the performance of the team, especially this season and last, and I think that it's ripe for a real smart, forward-thinking coach who wants to get his hand on a great situation.

``To me, this is the best situation for a coach to look at.''

Lurie builds a strong case to promote his team to candidates, but the one area where the Eagles lack most is talent. Everyone overevaluated the ``Dream Team'' that went 8-8 in 2011. The group that finished 4-12 this season was even worse.

On offense, there's no clear franchise quarterback. Veteran Michael Vick's days in Philadelphia are numbered. Rookie Nick Foles may be the answer, but he's still an unknown with potential.

The Eagles are set at running back with LeSean McCoy and Bryce Brown. That's about it. They must get a bigger, stronger wide receiver because DeSean Jackson and Jeremy Maclin can't handle the load. Their offensive line was a mess. Only Evan Mathis started every game and three starters are returning from season-ending injuries.

The defense has decent depth on the line, though it lacks a consistent pass-rusher. The secondary was awful and their linebackers were so-so. The Eagles forced just 13 turnovers, a sign they don't have playmakers on defense.

``I think we have a lot of good young players on the team,'' Lurie said. ``That doesn't mean we don't have significant holes as well.''

It's not just a matter of finding good players, either. The Eagles don't seem to have enough character guys. That was evidenced by the way Vick and McCoy criticized their teammates after the season.

``It's all about focus, dedication and commitment,'' Vick said. ``Until you get guys who are willing to better themselves week in and week out and want to win, you're not going to win. And I haven't played with guys like that. It's unfortunate for Coach things turned out the way they are. It could have been a lot better. This locker room could have dictated that.''

McCoy was equally critical.

``I think guys made a lot of excuses,'' he said. ``Guys maybe weren't playing up to par. Guys weren't focusing enough. Guys making money and not putting out. Guys were looking for excuses.''

Excuses won't cut it. The new coach has to make sure of that.

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Follow Rob Maaddi on Twitter:https://twitter.com/RobMaaddi

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Capitals place Taylor Chorney on waivers, which could signal something, or nothing

Capitals place Taylor Chorney on waivers, which could signal something, or nothing

When the Capitals acquired defenseman Michal Kempny on Monday, that put the team at the maximum of 23 players on the roster including eight defenseman.

Another move seemed likely and the Caps made it on Tuesday by placing veteran blueliner Taylor Chorney on waivers.

Teams now will have 24 hours to potentially claim Chorney. Should he clear at 12 p.m. on Wednesday, it is expected that he will be sent to the Hershey Bears of the AHL. Whether he is claimed or sent to Hershey, his entire $800,000 cap hit will no longer count against the Capitals' salary.

One important thing to note, however, is that placing Chorney on waivers was not required in order for Washington to remain under the salary cap.

Having eight defensemen would mean scratching two every game — assuming the team does not dress seven and after that failed experiment in last year's playoffs, why would they — which means it would be a struggle to make sure everyone gets consistent playing time in the final weeks of the season.

Perhaps placing Chorney on waivers is the team trying to get him more playing time to keep him sharp in case the team suffers injuries on the blue line and he is called upon in the playoffs.

Or perhaps it could mean something else.

RELATED: RANKING THE CAPITALS' TOP PROSPECTS

Chorney played on Feb. 15, but that was during the mentor's trip. Barry Trotz's policy for those trips is to get everyone in at least one of those two games. Before that, Chorney had not played since Jan. 2. It certainly seems like the team was comfortable with him being the designated No. 7 and was not all that concerned about getting him regular playing time before now.

When asked if the Kempny trade would mean any roster moves, Trotz said Monday that he was not sure and hinted that perhaps more moves could be coming from general manager Brian MacLellan. Moving Chorney's salary off the books does not clear much cap room, but it does clear some.

Perhaps MacLellan has another move up his sleeve before Monday's trade deadline.

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New free agent Doug Martin unlikely fix to Redskins' woeful run game

New free agent Doug Martin unlikely fix to Redskins' woeful run game

News broke Tuesday that the Tampa Bay Bucaneers released former Pro Bowl running back Doug Martin, and while the name certainly triggers value, his play of the last two seasons should calm the excitement. 

Since a 2015 season where Martin rushed for 1,400 yards and averaged nearly 5 yards-per-carry in 16 games, Martin has been suspended, undergone substance abuse rehab and missed games due to injury.

In the last two seasons, Martin has played in 16 of 32 games, rushed for 827 yards and averaged less than 3 yards-per-carry.

Over his six year NFL career with the Bucs, Martin has only played two full seasons. Those two seasons were great, in 2012 and 2015, but the other four have been largely disappointing. 

RELATED: WHAT SHOULD THE REDSKINS DO AT RUNNING BACK?

The Redskins averaged just 3.6 yards-per-carry last season, and could definitely use a boost in the run game. It's entirely possible Washington might look to upgrade their offensive backfield this offseason, either in free agency or in the 2018 NFL Draft, but Martin does not look like the player to help. 

Early in the 2017 season, it appeared the Redskins run game might be a strength for the offense. After a disappointing effort on the ground to open the year in a loss to the Eagles, the Redskins rushed for at least 111 yards in their next three contests, including nearly 230 yards on the ground in a Week 2 win over the Rams. 

Injuries undid the run game, however, as Rob Kelley got hurt and the offensive line lost players, too. Over the course of the season, rookie Samaje Perine sustained minor injuries and Chris Thompson was lost for the year with a broken leg. 

Going into 2018, Kelley, Perine, Thompson and Kapri Bibbs are all on the roster and expected for now to stay with the team. That's yet another reason why the Redskins are likely to stay away from Doug Martin.

RELATED: 2018 NFL MOCK DRAFT 5.0

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