Eagles

Eagles 2019 breakout candidate: Kamu Grugier-Hill is ready for next step

Eagles 2019 breakout candidate: Kamu Grugier-Hill is ready for next step

This week, I’m taking a closer look at five young Eagles who have a chance to enjoy a “breakout season” in 2019. We have already looked at Derek Barnett, Dallas Goedert and Avonte Maddox.

Up today: Kamu Grugier-Hill

Age: 25

How acquired: Claimed at final cuts in 2016 after cut by Patriots (sixth-round pick) 

Entering: Year 4

Just before Doug Pederson’s first year as head coach, the Eagles claimed three players off waivers from other teams. One of them was Grugier-Hill, who was released by the Patriots after they took him in the sixth round of the draft. 

The other two? Safety Terrence Brooks and wide receiver Bryce Treggs. 

When the Eagles claimed KGH, even they probably didn’t know what they were getting. At the time, they were adding a player who could potentially thrive on special teams, but to think the college box safety could become a true starting linebacker back then would have been completely premature. That’s not the case anymore. 

In 2018, Grugier-Hill started the first 10 games of his career and his role grew when Jordan Hicks went down with a calf injury. At linebacker, he flashed the same athleticism that has made him a great special teams player. 

No, Grugier-Hill wouldn’t have been able to play linebacker in the league 15 years ago. He’s still just 6-foot-2 and even after putting on a bunch of weight from his college days is still listed at 230 pounds. But he’s a perfect hybrid-type player in today’s NFL. He’s a linebacker with coverage ability and lateral quickness. But he’s also shown me he’s tough enough to run stuff when needed. 

We all know Nigel Bradham will be the Eagles’ linebacker that won’t leave the field in 2019. But after that, there’s some competition for the other spots. If I had to guess, it’ll be Grugier-Hill and Zach Brown starting next to Bradham. But if KGH continues to progress, I think he can make Brown a part-time player in Philly. 

With three years of experience in the NFL and one year with significant defensive experience, it seems like Grugier-Hill might be ready for a big year in what also happens to be a contract season for him. Even if Grugier-Hill doesn’t have a breakout season, he’ll still be a special teams standout and situational linebacker, which isn’t a bad spot either.

 

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Eagle Eye podcast: Finding a role for Darren Sproles

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Eagle Eye podcast: Finding a role for Darren Sproles

On this edition of Eagle Eye, Reuben Frank and Dave Zangaro give their opinions about the Eagles’ bringing back Darren Sproles. 

They also take a look at current and former Eagles’ chances of making it to the Hall of Fame. Remembering training camp heroes from the past. 

Also, if they could add one all-time Eagle to this team, who would it be? 

2:30: Sproles is back
12:00: Which Eagles are HOF worthy? 
26:00: Remembering training camp heroes
38:00: This year’s nominees 
42:30: If you could add a former player to roster
45:00: Roob was a band/beer judge 

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Apple Podcasts / Google Play / Stitcher / Spotify / Art19

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Alshon Jeffery over how last Eagles season ended, expecting big things in 2019

Alshon Jeffery over how last Eagles season ended, expecting big things in 2019

Alshon Jeffery was all smiles at the Hyundai Youth Football Camp at the NovaCare Complex on Saturday. Aside from providing a bunch of youngsters with lifelong memories, Jeffery was looking forward to the upcoming season. 

He’s not looking back to how last season ended. 

The lasting image of Jeffery’s 2018 season will be the ball that went through his hands with just over two minutes left in the divisional round game against the Saints at the Superdome. That ball was picked off by Marshon Lattimore to end the drive in the Eagles’ loss. 

As he took blame for the drop — his first in 35 career playoff targets — Jeffery admitted the play would stay with him for the entire offseason. 

Now, he’s done dwelling on it. 

I’m human. Things like that happen, man,” Jeffery said to reporters on Saturday. “We all human, man. I don’t gotta be on a sports field; it could be a regular job, working. We’re all human. We just have to pick up the pieces and keep moving. I’m past that. I’m good.

Shortly after the drop and the loss, Jeffery received a touching letter from a second-grade girl and then he visited her classroom. And then he got big cheers at a Sixers game as Eagles fans showed their support for him again. 

On Saturday, he said that support meant a lot to him and his family. 

“At the same time, I’m human, I’ve moved on from it,” he said. “There’s always next year and you can get better. This year, hopefully, we’re holding up another trophy.” 

Aside from the motivation of how last year ended, Jeffery is also excited about being ready for the start of this season. After shoulder surgery in the short offseason after the Super Bowl, Jeffery missed the first three games of 2018. 

Jeffery is entering his third season with the Eagles and the front office has put together what could be a dynamic offense, adding DeSean Jackson, Jordan Howard, Miles Sanders and JJ Arcega-Whiteside this offseason. Jeffery agreed that this is “definitely” one of the most talented groups he’s played with, but noted they still have to play the games. 

Under his current contract, Jeffery has three more seasons with the Eagles. When he finishes the 2021 season, he’ll be almost 32. On Saturday, he said he hopes he can finish his career in Philly. 

“I definitely want another Super Bowl this year, for sure,” Jeffery said. “It’s been awesome. Just having fun. Enjoying it.”

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