Eagles

Darren Sproles waiting until May to make decision about 2019

Darren Sproles waiting until May to make decision about 2019

Darren Sproles is taking his time to decide whether or not he has another year in him. 

Sproles will be 36 by the start of the 2019 season, but the Eagles have publicly expressed interest in having him back. And, apparently, Sproles hasn’t made his decision yet. 

Sproles was recently at an autograph signing in Ocean City, where Dave Weinberg from The Press of Atlantic City caught up with him.

Here’s what Sproles told him: 

We’ve had some talks. I’m going to wait until May before I make my decision. We’ll have to see.

After he broke his arm and tore his ACL on the same play in 2017, Sproles rehabbed back from that ACL injury to make last season his final one in the NFL. But a serious hamstring injury kept him out for months and limited him to just six games. When he returned, he started to waver with his decision. Sproles didn’t want to go out with an injury in 2017 and it’s possible he won’t want to go out with a shortened season in 2018. 

The difference here is that Sproles actually got back on the field in 2018 and was a contributor to the Eagles as they made their way down the stretch. Even though he’s 35, he was still quite a mismatch for linebackers and would likely still be a mismatch in 2019. And he could also fill the role of punt returner; the Eagles don’t really have one on the roster right now. 

But the Eagles did just trade for Jordan Howard and there’s a good chance they will draft another running back in late April. Perhaps that’s why Sproles is waiting until May to make his decision. I still think it’s somewhat unlikely Sproles returns, but it seems like both sides are keeping open the possibility. At 36, Sproles wouldn’t even be the oldest guy on the roster — Jason Peters is 37. 

Last year, Sproles didn’t sign up for another year with the Eagles until April 28. And he’s one of those guys who doesn’t really need to be around the team during OTAs. The 13-year veteran will probably keep himself in shape on his own in San Diego. 

Just last week at the owners meetings, head coach Doug Pederson was asked about Sproles and said he’d still like to have Sproles back. 

I haven’t talked to him. You know, this is Darren’s decision, obviously we’d love to have him. I can’t speak for Howie (Roseman) or any of the other guys in the building. But we’d love to have him, we’d love to have all of our players back. But listen, this is their time. I get it. I was there once. But I respect his decision.

Sproles isn’t the only player who might retire. Chris Long is also pondering his future, but Long is under contract, while Sproles is technically a free agent. Sproles would need to sign another deal to return in 2019. 

We’ll know in a couple months. 

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Good injury news! Eagles to get Kamu Grugier-Hill back

Good injury news! Eagles to get Kamu Grugier-Hill back

Eagles linebacker Kamu Grugier-Hill has been cleared through concussion protocol and is expected to return to practice on Thursday and will be able to play against the Redskins Sunday.

The circumstances around Grugier-Hill’s injury are a little mysterious, since he played the entire Dolphins game and didn’t appear on the Eagles’ injury report Thursday, four days after the game.

The Eagles didn’t practice Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday after the Dolphins game because they had a long week leading up to the Monday Night Football game against the Giants this past Monday.

Grugier-Hill missed the Giants game, the fourth game he’s missed this year. He missed the first three games of the season with a knee injury that he suffered the first week of training camp. Thursday’s practice will be the Eagles’ first since the Giants game.

Head coach Doug Pederson said Grugier-Hill first reported concussion symptoms last Thursday morning when he reported to the Nova-Care Complex.

Grugier-Hill has averaged 33 snaps per game in the nine games he’s played, third-most among Eagles linebackers, behind Nigel Bradham (60) and Zach Brown (46), who’s no longer with the team.

The Eagles were required to issue an injury report on Wednesday even though they didn’t practice because of the Monday night game.

That report lists players’ status as projections based on whether they would have participated if the Eagles did have a practice Wednesday.

According to that report, Nelson Agholor (knee), Derek Barnett (ankle) and Lane Johnson (ankle) would have missed practice.

Alshon Jeffery (ankle) is also listed on the injury report as “did not practice” since he is technically still on the 53-man roster, although his season is over and he’s expected to be placed on Injured Reserve later this week.

Agholor said on Wednesday that his knee injury has been an issue much longer than he had let on.

The Eagles also listed Jalen Mills (elbow) and Jordan Howard as limited, which means they would have participated in parts of practice if there were one.

Howard has missed four games but has been listed as limited throughout his shoulder injury since he’s cleared for non-contact drills but not contact.

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Doug Pederson highlights 6 young players in postgame speech

Doug Pederson highlights 6 young players in postgame speech

The Eagles snapped their three-game losing streak on Monday night with a gutty 23-17 overtime win over the Giants. 

They were down 14 nothing and lost a few key players during the game, which was a big part of Doug Pederson’s postgame message. 

“I’ve been around a long time in this league as a player and a coach and I can’t tell you that I’ve seen a team hang together like we did all night long,” Pederson said in the video above. “The way you guys battled. Offensively through adversity. We lost a couple more guys tonight. Through adversity, you hang tough. Our young guys stepped up!”

Then Pederson mentioned six younger Eagles by name. Here they are in the order he said them:  

Greg Ward: A practice squad call-up earlier in the year, Ward caught four passes for 34 yards. 

J.J. Arcega-Whiteside: The second-round pick caught two passes for 29 yards, including what might have been the best catch of the season. 

Josh Perkins: Playing tight end and receiver, lining up all over the field, Perkins caught five passes for 37 yards. 

Boston Scott: The 5-6 running back had 128 yards from scrimmage and was the star of the night. 

Sidney Jones: He played just one snap but he made it count on a crucial third-down PBU. 

Halapoulivaati Vaitai: After Lane Johnson went down, Big V stepped in at right tackle. 

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