Eagles

Eagles WRs coach Gunter Brewer making impact with energy, crazy sayings

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Eagles WRs coach Gunter Brewer making impact with energy, crazy sayings

Gunter Brewer left the South. The South didn’t leave him. 

That much was undeniable as the Eagles took the field with their new energetic wide receivers coach this spring. 

Brewer, who took the place of new offensive coordinator Mike Groh, has already made an immediate impact on the Eagles’ group of wide receivers with his energy, his attention to detail, his southern drawl (he’s from Columbus, Mississippi) and … his sayings. 

Especially his sayings. 

“He’s just a country guy,” said Mack Hollins, who was also coached by Brewer at North Carolina. “That’s who he is, through and through. He has sayings. Crazy sayings that nobody understands.”

Crazy sayings that nobody understands? 

Go on. 

Hollins picked his favorite: “When something’s like, from way back in the day or you haven’t done something in a while, he’ll say, ‘You haven’t done that since Moby Dick was a minnow.’”

OK, that’s pretty good. For Hollins, he’s heard most of these before, so he doesn’t get much out of them. But he does enjoy seeing his teammates react the first time a good one pops out. 

“He says some crazy stuff, man,” undrafted rookie Tim Wilson said. 

Bryce Treggs didn’t have to think about his favorite for very long. Brewer has a special name for a top-down read. 

“He calls it a Mardi Gras. Mardi Gras read … top down,” Treggs said mimicking someone removing their top. It takes a second … got it? Good. Moving on. 

“He’ll say some stuff like that to get our attention.”

For Shelton Gibson, he likes the image Coach Brew elicits when a player sort of tiptoes on a bubble screen. Brewer calls it crawfish. 

Wilson really enjoys the way the receivers break down their group. 

“We always break it down on freak time,” Wilson said. “He says, ‘Freak time,’ we say, ‘Showtime.’ ‘Freak time!’ ‘Showtime!’ ‘Freak time!’ ‘Showtime!’ ‘Freeeeaak time! Shoooowtime!’”

That seems to be a favorite for a lot of receivers. Hollins even had little yellow caution signs around his locker last week warning of freaks in the area. 

“I don’t know [what it means],” veteran newcomer Mike Wallace said. “We just roll with it. We freaks of nature. And it’s our time. Showtime, baby. So when we out there, it’s always showtime.”

It was obviously pretty important for the Eagles to find the right replacement for Groh, who became the team’s offensive coordinator. Remember, Groh did a masterful job in 2017 after one year of Greg Lewis. Brewer has coached at the collegiate level for over 30 years, most recently as the receivers coach/co-offensive coordinator at UNC. 

It has been pretty clear Brewer, at the very least, has brought a new energy to the practice field. Here he is assaulting his players (just kidding). 

Just last week when asked about Brewer, Doug Pederson marveled at how the receivers have already begun to gravitate to him. It’s not hard to figure out why. 

Sometimes it is hard to pick a favorite saying though. Greg Ward couldn’t pick just one — “There’s so many,” he said, calling over Wilson to brainstorm before giving up — but he enjoys them all. 

“He has great high energy,” Treggs said. “It’s hard to come in and be dragging around, not be in a good mood as soon as you come into the meeting room, he has the most energy in the room and he’s the oldest dude in the room. So for him to have that energy, we all kind of feed off of that.”

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Jets ask for permission to interview Eagles VP of player personnel Joe Douglas

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Philadelphia Eagles

Jets ask for permission to interview Eagles VP of player personnel Joe Douglas

It looks like familiarity with Jets head coach Adam Gase is a prerequisite for the GM job in New York.

For a while, we’ve heard reports that Eagles VP of player personnel Joe Douglas is a favorite to replace Mike Maccagnan, but now we know his competition.

Douglas and Gase worked together briefly in Chicago for a season. Gase and Kelly worked together in Chicago and Denver.

Kelly is the Bears’ assistant director of player personnel. He just finished his second season in that role with Chicago. Kelly and Douglas also worked together in 2015, when Douglas was the Bears’ director of college scouting and Kelly was the Bears’ director of pro scouting.

It has been previously reported that Douglas is Gase’s pick for the job, so we’ll see how much power the head coach wields in this process.

There has also been a thought that Douglas to the Jets is a done deal. While that might be unsubstantiated, if the Jets do want to hire Douglas, they wouldn’t have to interview any more candidates than these two because Kelly would fulfill the Rooney Rule requirement. The Rooney Rule requires teams to interview minority candidates for head coaching and GM jobs.

While losing Douglas would be a blow, the Eagles have likely been preparing for that possibility for a while.

"At some point, we are going to lose executives," Eagles owner Jeff Lurie said in March. "When you’re winning, you’re going to lose executives. I think we’re in a great position to be able to deal with that. We don’t want to put a cap on how many good executives we have in football operations. That would be a competitive mistake."

Douglas could theoretically wait for a more stable offer to appear, but there are just 32 of these jobs available. And if the Jets do give Douglas final say, it would probably be pretty hard for him to turn it down.

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Eagles backup quarterback spot appears to be Nate Sudfeld's to lose

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Eagles backup quarterback spot appears to be Nate Sudfeld's to lose

The Eagles aren’t saying it. Nate Sudfeld isn’t saying it. But Sudfeld is the Eagles’ backup quarterback.

Who an organization brings in this time of year to compete with its backup typically speaks volumes about how they feel about said backup. When executive vice president of football operations Howie Roseman proclaimed in February the Eagles were looking at veteran signal callers, people thought Teddy Bridgewater, Ryan Fitzpatrick, maybe Tyrod Taylor.

The Eagles used a fifth-round draft pick on Clayton Thorson and signed free agent Cody Kessler a couple weeks ago.

Meanwhile, Sudfeld received a second-round tender from the club as a restricted free agent this offseason — the second-largest qualifying offer — signing for over $3 million in April.

“It was really exciting,” Sudfeld said after Tuesday’s practice. “That really kind of gave me a vote of confidence and just was really exciting because again I wanted to be here and I have another year to keep getting better and developing here.”

Sudfeld’s contract isn’t guaranteed or anything, so in theory, Kessler — a former third-round pick with 12 not-awful starts under his belt — could steal the job. Yet, even listening to the language Eagles coach Doug Pederson used, it’s clear what the expectation is.

“Nate has an opportunity to really compete and solidify the No. 2 spot,” Pederson said on Tuesday. “He gets an opportunity and it’s a great opportunity for him to do that.

“Depth brings a lot of competition. At that spot, there is no exemption. Looking forward to that.”

Some might think it a gamble for the Eagles to hitch their wagon to a backup who’s thrown just 25 passes in NFL regular season games. Then again, the club’s trust in Sudfeld has never waned, going back to his rookie year in 2017 when he served as Nick Foles’ backup throughout the playoffs and Super Bowl.

Clearly, the Eagles see something in the 25-year-old the rest of us simply haven’t yet had the chance to experience. They stashed him on the 53-man roster for the better part of two seasons. They’ve watched him grow as an athlete and quarterback.

“I feel like I’ve improved in a lot of ways since Washington,” Sudfeld said, referring to where he got his start as a sixth-round pick out of Indiana in 2016. “I think physically I’ve developed a lot. I think I was kind of a late bloomer, so I feel like I’ve gotten a lot stronger in the weight room, faster on the field. I just feel like physical development’s been huge. And then just being in the NFL a couple years, some great systems and great coaches, just understanding ball a lot more and seeing situations and being able to apply it.

“I think arm strength has improved, velocity, weight room just in general, core, everything. I just feel a lot better.”

That doesn’t mean the Eagles will simply give Sudfeld his spot. Kessler is an intriguing prospect — he was reasonably accurate and took care of the football (64.2 completion percentage and 5 interceptions in 17 career games) as a member of bad Browns and Jaguars squads. Thorson, too, while likely more of a project, could take a surprise leap at the next level.

Whether because he’s confident in his ability or simply understands the situation, Sudfeld doesn’t seem to be sweating the competition.

“Nothing’s ever going to be handed to you, and you don’t want it that way,” Sudfeld said. “There’s no sense of entitlement. Everything’s earned. I’m just trying to improve myself as much as possible, try to be the best version of myself, work on my craft. I know if I can keep improving and become a better player, it’ll all take care of itself.”

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