Eagles

Does it make sense for the Eagles to pursue Colin Kaepernick?

Does it make sense for the Eagles to pursue Colin Kaepernick?

Every time a quarterback gets hurt, Colin Kaepernick is the first name that comes up.

Kaepernick once led the 49ers to the Super Bowl and nearly led them to another, and there aren't a lot of Super Bowl quarterbacks in their prime who aren't currently on NFL rosters.

And with Nate Sudfeld now out indefinitely with a broken wrist and Carson Wentz’s injury history, why not here?

Many reasons. Many, many reasons. Here's a few of them:

1. They don’t need him: The Eagles don’t need a starting quarterback. They just signed Wentz to a long-term deal worth over $25 million per year, and Kaepernick has been clear that he’s not going to sign anywhere without a chance to compete for a starting position. That just isn’t going to happen here. This is a short-term opening. Sudfeld should be back somewhere around Week 4 through Week 6. 

2. He’s too expensive: It’s been widely reported Kaepernick is looking for something around $10 million per year, and there’s no way the Eagles are going to invest anywhere close to that kind of money on a backup quarterback who would become the No. 3 quarterback in September or October. They like Sudfeld long term as a No. 2 and he showed why Thursday night before he got hurt.

3. He hasn’t played in 950 DAYS: Kaepernick hasn’t played one snap of football since the end of the 2016 season — Jan. 1, 2017, in a 49ers loss to the Seahawks. He hasn't even been in a camp since then. I’m sure he keeps himself in great shape, and the video he posted earlier this week shows him working out diligently. But no matter how fit you are, someone who hasn’t played football in three YEARS — hasn’t even practiced — is going to need a lot of time to get into football shape and teach their body to play football again. Think about how long it took Michael Vick to get into football shape when he signed here after a two-year layoff. Even if they signed Kaepernick today, by the time he learned the offense, got into football shape and developed familiarity with the Eagles’ receivers, Sudfeld would be back.

4. He’s six years removed from his last elite season: Kaepernick won just 11 of 35 starts his last three years in San Francisco, and his last winning season was in 2013, when he was 25. He wasn’t terrible his last three years with the 49ers, but his 85.9 passer rating ranked 26th of 35 QBs during that three-year span who threw at least 500 passes.

5. He doesn’t fit this offense: This is an offense predicated on a quarterback being accurate, having a high completion percentage, using all his weapons, going through his progressions and making the right read. Kaepernick’s career completion percentage is below 60 percent. Since he entered the league in 2011, he’s completed 59.8 percent of his passes, and among 25 quarterbacks who’ve thrown 1,500 passes since 2011 he ranks 22nd out of 25 in completion percentage. He’s always helped himself with his running ability — 2,300 yards and a 6.1 average in six seasons — but at 31 it’s not likely he’d be as effective as a runner. 

6. Malcolm Jenkins: Malcolm Jenkins is an unquestioned leader on this football team and has been since he got here. Kaepernick and his former teammate Eric Reid found themselves at odds with Jenkins on issues regarding the Players Coalition that negotiated with the NFL to try and resolve social justice concerns NFL players had with the league. Reid went as far as calling Jenkins a "sell-out" for negotiating a social justice partnership with the league, a characterization that Kaepernick supported. It's certainly possible Jenkins, Reid and Kaepernick have reconciled since, but would the Eagles risk creating a locker room schism involving one of their best and most popular players? I can't imagine.

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5-year-old Eagles impersonator gets Boston Scott's stamp of approval

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USA Today Sports Images/@SirRobin83/Twitter

5-year-old Eagles impersonator gets Boston Scott's stamp of approval

With professional sports on pause around the world, fans are looking for anything - video games, simulations, classic games - to satisfy that live sports itch.

We may have found the ultimate placeholder: a five-year-old imitating Boston Scott's infamous spin-o-rama.

On Saturday afternoon, Twitter user Robin Stanley tagged Scott in a quick video of his son, Beckett, pretending to be the Eagles running back:

I mean, c'mon: the likeness to Scott's spin move against the Giants is kind of uncanny.

In case you need to jog your memory, here is Scott's spin:

Scott, of course, made fun of himself for the move at the time, admitting that when he saw the clip after the game, it "looked pretty silly".

I'd say Beckett's spin had a little more swag.

Stanley's dad, a Philly native, told NBC Sports Philadelphia his son was expecting to play his first season of flag football this spring down in Nashville, but the league was postponed because of social distancing mandates, so he's making do.

On Saturday, Scott saw Stanley's video and gave the little man a nod of approval:

That's just good, clean fun. Thank you, Beckett, for the sports-related smile.

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Rodney McLeod explains biggest lessons learned from Malcolm Jenkins

Rodney McLeod explains biggest lessons learned from Malcolm Jenkins

Four years ago, when Rodney McLeod became a free agent for the first time in his NFL career, one of the reasons he wanted to join the Eagles was for the chance to play next to Malcolm Jenkins. 

And for the last four years, he did. The two formed a safety tandem that played 49 regular season games and four playoff games, including Super Bowl LII, together. 

But now Jenkins is back in New Orleans with the Saints and the Eagles are preparing to play without him for the first time since 2013. Meanwhile, McLeod signed a two-year deal to return to Philly. 

On a conference call with reporters on Thursday, McLeod said he learned a lot from Jenkins over the past four seasons. 

What were some of those lessons? 

Just as a competitor,” McLeod said. “And then the ability to get the most out of guys, whether it’s on the defensive side or from an entire team standpoint. I think as a leader, that’s your kind of job. How can you get guys to play at the highest level and get the most out of your players. I think he was one of the best at doing that and understanding everyone … I learned a lot from him. 

“Not just on the field but off the field, the way he handled himself and what he did in the community for the city. I’ll always admire him. It’s hard to match. But like I said, his legacy will live on. The Saints are getting a good guy. Now, us as Eagles, playing with a new group of guys and we’re ready to move forward.

There’s no question that the Eagles are going to miss Jenkins’ contributions on the field. They will use some combination of Jalen Mills and Will Parks to replace him at that position and that won’t be easy. 

But the Eagles will also miss the leadership Jenkins brought to the locker room. He wasn’t just the leader of the secondary or even just the defense; Jenkins was oftentimes the key leader for the entire team. That’s hard to replace too. 

It’s not that McLeod, 29, hasn’t been a leader during his first four years in Philly. But now that role might need to expand and will become more important with the absence of Jenkins. 

“I think it’s important for me to be myself and be who I’ve always been,” McLeod said. “And that’s a guy that leads by his actions and leads by example. I think if you ask a lot of guys on the team, that’s what they’ll tell you most. Actions sometimes speak louder than words. I think there will be times for me to speak up when needed. When my teammates need me most, I’ll be ready to do that.”

For the most part, McLeod has been the quieter of the two safeties and Jim Schwartz has previously called him the calming presence in the defensive backfield.

But McLeod can speak up too. 

It’s really just about finding a balance between his two sides and putting the lessons from Jenkins into practice in 2020. 

“Myself, being a leader on this team for some time, will of course be asked to step up as well as other guys from a defensive standpoint and on the team,” McLeod said. “I think we’re prepared for that. And guys will be willing to step up to the plate and accept the challenge. Myself first and foremost.”

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