Eagles

Jalen Hurts joins DeSean Jackson for workouts in Florida 

Jalen Hurts joins DeSean Jackson for workouts in Florida 

Eagles rookie quarterback Jalen Hurts has joined DeSean Jackson for workouts in Tampa Bay, Florida, according to Hurts’ Instagram account. 

Hurts posted photos of the two with the caption, “Locked In.” 

Jackson has spent most of his time this offseason working out in Florida. Hurts was previously working out in Houston, Texas. It’s possible this is the first time the two have worked together. 

While Hurts was a second-round pick, the rookie quarterback is expected to begin the 2020 season as the third-stringer behind Carson Wentz and Nate Sudfeld. 

Earlier this offseason, Wentz got a group of receivers together in Houston and Fletcher Cox gathered most of the Eagles’ defensive line down on his ranch in Texas. 

This workout in Florida comes nine days after the NFLPA’s medical director, Dr. Thom Mayer, issued a statement advising players to cease working out with teammates to prevent the spread of coronavirus. Since then, Tom Brady has very publicly continued to work out with teammates, which did not make NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith very happy. 

There’s a fine line here, I suppose. Players are trying to stay ready for the season and hopefully they’re taking as many precautions as possible during these workouts. But, at least at some level, they’re also holding these workouts against the medical advice from the medical director of their own players association. 

Earlier this offseason, before the advice from Dr. Mayer, Doug Pederson praised Wentz and Cox for hosting workouts for their teammates. 

“I think it's important,” Pederson said on June 16. “I love the fact that our veteran players, guys like Fletch and Carson, Carson has done it in the past obviously but now in this time where we are trying to protect not only our players but our staff, as well. But at the same time, I think it's important that they get together and they build team chemistry as a position group, whether it's D-Line or receivers and get together like they are doing. I commend the guys for doing that and taking time.

“One of the things, it's been small groups, so they have been protected and that's our goal, first and foremost, but it doesn't go without saying that that's a great way to start building chemistry, especially with the amount of young receivers that we have working with Carson.”

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Eagle Eye podcast: There goes half of the NFL preseason

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Eagle Eye podcast: There goes half of the NFL preseason

On the latest Eagle Eye podcast presented by Mercedes Benz of Fort Washington, West Chester and Atlantic City, Reuben Frank and Dave Zangaro react to reports about the NFL’s cutting the preseason in half. 

If rosters are reduced before training camp because of COVID-19, which players will be the first to go? The guys try to figure it out. 

And, would Doug Pederson really quarantine a quarterback in 2020, just in case? 

Recapping Nos. 10-5 on our list of most important Eagles. And Roob highlights some of the best and worst running back performances in team history. 

  • (2:03) — The NFL will shorten the preseason from four games to two.
  • (10:06) — Report of the NFL cutting down the size of rosters.
  • (22:22) — The idea of quarantining a quarterback to keep them healthy and available
  • (30:31) — Most important Eagles of 2020, 10-5.
  • (42:17) — The top 10 worst performances ever by Eagles running backs.
     

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NFL Rumors: George Kittle's rumored extension price is good news for Eagles

NFL Rumors: George Kittle's rumored extension price is good news for Eagles

Football's tight end position has changed considerably in the last decade. In 2020 we have a ton of game-changing pass catchers at the position.

Which means it's time for tight ends to start getting paid more, and soon.

One of the players leading the tight end revolution has been the Eagles' Zach Ertz, who is under contract through 2021 but will likely want an extension sooner. His next contract (in Philly, or elsewhere) will be influenced by contracts for 49ers tight end George Kittle and Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce. 

And now, we have some idea of what those deals could look like. 

Kittle has been looking for a huge contract, given his clear value in the passing game, but according to a report this week, it looks like the number will be a bit lower than some estimations.

Per The Athletic:

I recently spoke with someone in the know who said he thought Kittle ultimately would land a contract worth $13 million a year. That’s not the spectacular deal some were envisioning for the 49ers’ indispensable man, but it would still set the pace for all tight ends.

It's not mind-blowing money, but it would mark the richest contract for a tight end in NFL history. Right now, 14 wide receivers have a higher average annual salary higher than $13 million.

Does that mean an Ertz extension will land around the same place? And can the Eagles afford that? Let's investigate.

Here's a quick look at their respective numbers from last season:

Kittle: 85 receptions, 1053 yards, 5 TD

Ertz: 88 receptions, 916 yards, 6 TD

Ertz, who turns 30 this season, has reached three straight Pro Bowls and has been the Eagles' most relaible target during the Carson Wentz era. He's not getting younger, but he's still an elite tight end.

Kittle, who turns 27 this season, has reached two straight Pro Bowls, was named First Team All-Pro in 2019, and was the best receiving threat on a 49ers team that reached the Super Bowl.

The numbers put Ertz right around Kittle's neighborhood, but being three years older - and a potentially reduced role in the Eagles' offense with better wide receivers - could make it hard to argue he deserves an equal deal. 

I'd imagine, if the Eagles want to keep him around, he'll land a little lower than Kittle, but higher than Austin Hooper, who landed a four-year deal averaging $10.5 million earlier this year.

(Considering what Dallas Goedert has shown in his first two seasons, I wouldn't extend Ertz, but that's a conversation for another day.)

In any case, Ertz is still one of the most important members of the 2020 Eagles team, as NBC Sports Philadelphia's Dave Zangaro explained Thursday:

One main reason Ertz has been so important to the Eagles is because they haven’t had consistent play at the receiver position. He’s been the offense’s best and most consistent weapon in the last several seasons. In fact, he’s led the team in receiving for each of the last four years. 

While the Eagles have added some new receivers this offseason, my best guess is that as long as Ertz stays healthy, he’ll lead the team in receptions again in 2020.

And then we'll see what happens.

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