Eagles

Eagles NFL draft options at No. 25: WR Marquise Brown

Eagles NFL draft options at No. 25: WR Marquise Brown

Marquise “Hollywood” Brown is one of the most electrifying players in this draft class. There’s no question about that. 

It has just been hard to figure out exactly where Hollywood (his hometown in Florida) will get drafted. 

Thanks to a lisfranc injury/surgery, we haven’t been able to see Brown do anything during this pre-draft process. At the combine, Brown said he’ll be back running in the spring, but wouldn’t be a full-go until training camp time. That shouldn’t scare off teams. 

The only thing Brown could do at the combine was talk to teams and weigh in. He weighed in at 166 pounds, which is crazy light. But DeSean Jackson weighed in at 169 pounds in 2008 and that is Brown’s obvious comparison. Brown is small but lightning fast and his ceiling in the NFL is to become a great deep threat like DeSean. 

He was a tremendous deep threat during his two seasons at Oklahoma. He caught 132 passes for 2,413 yards (18.3 yards per reception) and 17 touchdowns. 

Current roster at WR: The Eagles have Alshon Jeffery, Jackson and Nelson Agholor as their starters. After that, they have Mack Hollins, Shelton Gibson and a bunch of even more unproven players at the position. They lack depth. 

How he would fit: On its face, this move might not make sense. After all, why would you need Marquise Brown when you have DeSean Jackson? But Jackson is 32 now and the Eagles don’t have much in the way of depth. Receiver is a sneaky need for the Eagles right now and I wouldn’t be surprised to use one of their earlier picks on one. Do they have more pressing needs? Sure, but Jackson is 32, Jeffery is 29 and Agholor is under contract for one more season. 

Eagles history at WR in draft: The Eagles have used a first-round pick on a receiver five times in their history: Nelson Agholor (2015), Jeremy Maclin (2009), Freddie Mitchell (2001), Kenny Jackson (1984) and Mike Quick (1982). Since the new regime came (back) into power in 2016, the Eagles have drafted two receivers, both in 2017: Hollins in the fourth round and Gibson in the fifth. 

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Other options at 25 

Eagles get open roster spot for training camp after Tyreek Durwell's surprise retirement

Eagles get open roster spot for training camp after Tyreek Durwell's surprise retirement

Less than two weeks before the start of training camp, the Eagles suddenly find themselves with an open 90-man roster spot. 

On Monday, offensive tackle Tyreek Burwell announced his retirement from the NFL, via his official Instagram account. 

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Man it’s hard for me to sit here and put this into words but after careful consideration I’ve made the decision to retire from the NFL. This journey has been unbelievable! I’ve been blessed to have been able to play this game since I was 7 years old. Playing in the NFL has been a dream come true and this game has taught and given me so much. I want to thank GOD especially for without you none of this would be possible. I want to thank my fiancé and my family for being my number 1 supporters and my motivation. I also want to thank my friends, teammates, my agency (@mbk_sports ) and everyone that I’ve crossed paths with that has helped me along this journey. Thank you to the Chargers, Colts and Eagles for giving me the opportunity to continue to play the game that I love. I’m excited to see what the rest of this journey brings! ✌🏾 #retired #NFL #thankyouGOD

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For some of you, this begs the question: Who is Tyreek Burwell? 

Well, the Eagles signed him to a futures deal in January and he was with the team this spring, when he wore No. 66. Burwell, 27, previously spent time with the Chargers and Colts and played in 15 NFL games dating back to 2015 when he went undrafted out of Cincinnati. 

Even with that experience, there was very little chance Burwell was going to make the Eagles’ 53-man roster in 2019. 

But Burwell’s decision before training camp will give someone else a chance to prove himself and possibly make the Eagles’ roster this spring. While most roster spots are spoken for, there’s alway a chance for players buried on the depth chart. Just think back to last year when receiver DeAndre Carter joined camp late and still made the Eagles’ 53-man roster. Even player No. 90 has a chance if they play the right position and show up during practices and in the meeting room. 

The Eagles won’t have very long to get a new player signed. The team is scheduled to report in a little over a week on July 24 and the first full practice will be on July 25. 

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Possible trouble brewing in Cowboys land with reports about RB Ezekiel Elliott possibly holding out

Possible trouble brewing in Cowboys land with reports about RB Ezekiel Elliott possibly holding out

Off the field issues aside, Ezekiel Elliott is clearly one of the top running backs in the NFL. The problem for the Cowboys is that he wants to get paid like it.

According to PFT’s Mike Florio, Elliott has “privately said that he will hold out of training camp unless he gets a new contract.”

Since the Cowboys report to training camp on July 25, this could be a problem very soon.

Meanwhile, Yahoo! reporter Charles Robinson says Elliott hasn’t made a decision about a holdout yet.

But it’s clearly on Zeke’s mind. And he clearly wants a contract extension.

For a team that still has to pay Dak Prescott and Amari Cooper — both more pressing since they’ll be free agents after the 2019 season — this could be tricky. It’s hard to imagine the Cowboys giving Zeke a big contract before figuring out Dak’s new deal.

Elliott, 23, might have a problem staying out of trouble off the field, but he creates a whole lot of trouble for opposing teams on it. There’s really no denying his talent. In his first three NFL seasons, he has rushed for over 4,000 yards and has over 5,000 in all-purpose yards. Just 11 players in NFL history have more all-purpose yards in their first three seasons.

And because of that success and because he knows the Cowboys will rely heavily on him this season and next, Elliott is trying to maximize his value. He’s trying to get some coin in his pocket now before that value potentially plummets because usage or injury. That part makes sense.

The problem for Elliott is that the Cowboys probably don’t feel highly motivated to pay him just yet. With his fourth contract year in 2019 and his fifth-year option year in 2020, the Cowboys hold his rights for the next two seasons at cap numbers of $7.9 million and $9 million over the next two seasons. Based on his rookie contract AVY, Elliott is the 10th highest-paid running back in football. That’s a steal and based on recent history, no team should be rushing to pay top-tier money for a running back.

Elliott won’t become a free agent until after the 2020 season, so I definitely get why he’s trying to secure his financial future before the Boys run him into the ground over the next two seasons. He doesn’t seem to have a ton of leverage because of how far he is from free agency — he’s not going to sit for two years — but we saw how his suspension sort of wrecked the Cowboys’ entire 2017 season. Now, the Cowboys are coming off a division title and have serious championship hopes this year; if they’re going to be a great team, they’re going to need Zeke to do it.

The Eagles don’t play the Cowboys until Oct. 20 and it would be pretty shocking if Elliott isn’t playing by then. The Birds obviously don’t have a running back as good as Elliott, but they have cost controlled options and they already figured out how to pay their franchise quarterback.

The messier this gets for Zeke and the Cowboys, the better it is for the Eagles and the rest of the NFC East.

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