Detroit Lions

LeGarrette Blount has found a new home

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LeGarrette Blount has found a new home

A big piece of the Eagles’ 2017 Super Bowl season is moving on. 

Running Back LeGarrette Blount has signed with the Detroit Lions. Blount's deal will be for one-year, $4.5 million, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport

Blount, 31, was scheduled to visit the Lions on Friday and he didn’t leave without a new deal. He’ll reunite with Lions head coach Matt Patricia, who was the defensive coordinator in New England when Blount was there; the familiarity probably helped. 

Last offseason, Blount took his time deciding where he’d land. He didn’t sign with the Eagles until May and his contract was worth around $1 million. He apparently showed enough during 2017 to get a bigger deal this time around. 

After beginning the season as the Eagles’ primary runner, he eventually saw his role diminish after the Birds added Jay Ajayi through a trade. Still, Blount played in all 16 games and rushed for 766 yards during the regular season. More importantly, he had 14 carries for 90 yards and a touchdown in Super Bowl LII. Blount had a rushing touchdown in all three playoff games after having just two during the regular season. 

Perhaps more important than his contributions on the field, it was Blount’s unselfish nature that seemed to rub off on his teammates. When he and Alshon Jeffery were on board with that unselfish mindset, it seemed like the rest of the team followed. 

As recently as late February, Blount indicated he wanted to return to Philadelphia, where he really seemed to fit in the locker room and under running backs coach Duce Staley, whom Blount clearly respects. 

"Obviously I like it a lot there,” Blount said in February on NFL Network. “They like me a lot there. It's a mutual respect and a mutual agreement thing about how we feel about each other. Obviously, you guys know how I feel about the team, the guys; I love those guys.”

While Blount said he wanted to return to Philly, it was unlikely the Eagles could have (or would have) offered him the type of contract he’s getting from the Lions. 

Meanwhile, the Eagles still have Ajayi and Corey Clement under contract from last season. Kenjon Barner is a free agent. The running back position still seems up in the air, but the Eagles have a few months and a draft to figure it out. 

LeGarrette Blount starting to make his rounds

LeGarrette Blount starting to make his rounds

It doesn’t necessarily mean he’s gone, but LeGarrette Blount is at least exploring his options in free agency. 

The 31-year-old free-agent running back is scheduled to visit with the Lions on Friday, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

Blount is one of several veteran running backs the Lions have shown interest in. According to Schefter, the Lions already had DeMarco Murray and Jonathan Stewart as visitors. Frank Gore is scheduled for a Thursday visit, before Blount on Friday. 

Earlier on Wednesday night, USA Today’s Mike Jones reported the Lions were close to reaching a deal with Gore, so it’s possible the meeting with Blount never even happens. 

Last offseason, Blount didn’t have a team until the Eagles signed him to a one-year deal worth just over $1 million in May. He ended up playing in all 16 games for the Birds and rushed for 766 yards. More importantly, Blount carried the ball 14 times for 90 yards and a touchdown in Super Bowl LII, helping bring a championship to Philadelphia. 

While Blount began the season as the Eagles’ starter, the midseason trade for Jay Ajayi took away some of his carries. Ajayi will return in 2018 on the final season of his rookie contract and the team will also have second-year player Corey Clement back. After that, the running back position seems up in the air. 

Blount, Darren Sproles and Kenjon Barner are all free agents, while Wendell Smallwood and Donnell Pumphrey are far from locks to make the 2018 roster. 

When he signed with the Eagles last May, Blount said there were other teams interested in him but he chose his new team strategically. At the time, he said he thought the Eagles were the best fit for him. We’ll find out soon enough if that still holds true for him and the BIrds. 

Vegas odds of Eagles losing assistant coaches

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Vegas odds of Eagles losing assistant coaches

The Eagles could lose a pair of assistant coaches who have been crucial to their success. That's the cost of going 13-3.

Losing defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz or quarterbacks coach John DeFilippo would hurt the Eagles, and Vegas seems to think both have a good chance of finding a promotion (which could occur only once the Eagles' season ends).

Schwartz is 3/1 to be the next head coach of the Giants, according to odds released by Bovada on Wednesday. The favorite for the job is Patriots OC Josh McDaniels at 3/2, followed by Patriots DC Matt Patricia at 2/1 and then Schwartz.

DeFilippo made the list of two different teams with head coaching vacancies: the Bears and Lions.

DeFilippo is 9/2 to be named the Bears' next head coach. That ties him with McDaniels for second on Bovada's list, behind only former Eagles offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur (3/1). The Bears would make a lot of sense for DeFilippo. They have a ton invested in the future of young QB Mitchell Trubisky, who they traded up to 2 to draft last year.

DeFilippo is also 8/1 to get the Lions job. Patricia, Teryl Austin, McDaniels and Mike Vrabel all have better odds. 

The NFL trend in recent years is to go with an offensive-minded head coach. Sean McDermott's hiring with the Bills last offseason was an exception. Schwartz, too, could be an exception because of his previous head coaching experience and fiery personality. Don't sleep on the Cardinals when it comes to Schwartz — he could step in to help replace the retired Bruce Arians' gusto.