Sunday, July 31, 2005


Eagles notebook
Sunday, July 31, 2005
Simon update: Jim Johnson is keeping his plans flexible when it comes to what he intends to do in the matter of disgruntled defensive tackle Corey Simon.
Johnson, the Eagles' defensive coordinator, said Saturday he will put together the rotation for the defensive line on Monday, when it is known for sure whether Simon will sign his $5.1 franchise player tenure and report to training camp at Lehigh University.
"I'll know nothing until Monday," Johnson said. "As far as I know, he could be here. He might not be here . . . So we'll see what happens."
It would be considered a major surprise if Simon does show up Monday with the remainder of the veterans who are supposed to report at that time. Head coach Andy Reid all but conceded on Friday that he doesn't expect Simon to appear on time.
Even if Simon doesn't appear, Johnson believes he is well stocked at defensive tackle, a position the Eagles bolstered with the addition of No. 1 draft pick Mike Patterson from USC. He mentioned Sam Rayburn, Darwin Walker, Hollis Thomas and Keyonta Marshall as those who will vie for playing time this season.
"Right now we'll just wait until Monday," Johnson said. "Then we'll address that."
Considine impresses: Johnson spoke glowingly about safety Sean Considine, a fourth-round draft pick, who made the team at the University of Iowa as a walk-on.
"He showed us from the first minicamp that he has a knack for finding the football and he also has good football knowledge," Johnson said. "We knew coming out of college that he was a team leader and he's a really intelligent young man. We're going to teach him both safety positions, because we think he can handle it."
The Eagles are pretty well set in the strong safety position where Michael Lewis will be coming back for his fourth season after making the Pro Bowl last year. Free safety Brian Dawkins, however, may be coming to the end of his career with the Eagles at the end of this season. At some point soon, the team is going to have to search for a way to replace Dawkins.

Douglas returns: The Eagles are looking for a resurgent season out of defensive end Hugh Douglas, who looks trim and quick off the ball, following his return from offseason shoulder surgery. Douglas injured his shoulder early last season, and never lived up to expectations.
In 16 games, including three starts last season, he had only 19 tackles (13 unassisted) with three sacks. But Johnson said he believes the former All-Pro is about 90- to 95-percent healthy, and he thinks Douglas will contribute this season.
"I'm sure it was tough for him last year," Johnson said. "I'm sure people expected more out of him and he expected more out of himself. I think he's going to be a different player this year - I really do." - Don Benevento

Friday, July 29, 2005

Jerome McDougle in critical condition

The Eagles have released this statement regarding McDougle:

"We are aware of the reports regarding Jerome McDougle, who, according to the Miami-Dade Police Department, was shot in the abdomen during a robbery attempt in Southwest Miami late Thursday night.

"Our understanding, as reported by the MDPD, is that Jerome is in good condition after undergoing surgery. At this time, we are still in the process of gathering the facts of his situation. As soon as more information becomes available, we will keep the media and fans informed. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Jerome and his family."

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Good News: Tra is back in action

Very, very good news: Tra Thomas is back and ready for training camp. And according to Spadaro, he's "frisky". (I don't know if I would have used the word "frisky" to describe a 6'7" 350lbs offensive lineman, but hey, I'm not the wordsmith that Spads is).

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Simon says... I won't report either

From the Daily News:

Agent, Simon dig in their heels: DT won't sign offer, won't report

IT HAS BEEN MORE than 3 months since agent Roosevelt Barnes said Corey Simon wouldn't sign the Eagles' 1-year, $5.13 million franchise tender any time soon, and wouldn't attend minicamps or training camp.

Well, the minicamps are far behind us, the tender remains unsigned, and training camp starts for rookies on Friday, for veterans such as Simon on Monday. Barnes reiterated yesterday that fans shouldn't expect to see the Eagles' standout defensive tackle at Lehigh.

Monday, July 25, 2005

At least Jaws is positive...

July 24, 2005

"When I look at this Eagles team, I see one that has answers for just about every question. Starting at the very top all the way down, the Eagles are prepared to defend their NFC title and possibly take it a step beyond this season.

"There are many things to look for in training camp. While the defense is experienced and has 10 starters returning, that 11th starter is one to watch -- defensive end Jerome McDougle. After two season where he hasn't produced much, McDougle is being counted on to step up and be a factor.

"There are new players up and down the roster -- almost all of them rookies and only a handful, in my opinion, who will make this team. First-round draft pick Mike Patterson should impact the defensive tackle picture in a positive way. I think Corey Simon needs to get to training camp on time and in good shape to win a battle, because there is going to be competition at that position.

"Last year at this time, there were questions about the Eagles' cornerbacks, but Lito Sheppard and Sheldon Brown answered those last year. I want to see some of the Eagles' young defensive players show they are ready this season -- namely cornerback Matt Ware and some of those linebackers and McDougle and Jamaal Green.

"On offense, you can't talk about the group unless you begin by talking about Terrell Owens. That's a shame, really. I've traveled across the country in the last few months and that is all anybody asks me. They don't ask me about the Eagles, they ask me if T.O. is going to report to camp and what the Eagles are going to do about him.

"I think it's time that T.O. comes to camp, zips it up, start playing football and help the team get back to the Super Bowl and win. At this best, Owens can help this team win it all. He's an important part of a very powerful puzzle, but I am convinced that he is not above and beyond what the Eagles try to incorporate as a team.

"That's a key thing. The Eagles are a T-E-A-M. No one individual rises about the team concept. I am sure that Andy Reid will talk to T.O. and make sure they are both on the same page heading into training camp.

QB Donovan McNabb is in his prime as Eagles' leader "Otherwise, the Eagles should have an explosive, diverse and dynamic offense. Shawn Andrews looked great last year in the preseason. There is every reason to think he'll be back and on the road to stardom. The offensive line is solid -- I think Tra Thomas will be fine after missing the spring with a blood clot.

"I, like everyone else, can't wait to see Reggie Brown in uniform. All the reports I've received from the coaching staff from the spring were very, very positive. He's an exciting talent and the coaching staff loved the way he assimilated into the offense. Wearing pads is a whole new ballgame, so we'll see how the young man adjusts to his first real taste of the NFL.

"Donovan McNabb is a quarterback in his prime. This is his team. He is the leader. Do I worry about the relationship between Donovan and T.O.? I don't think Donovan likes what is going on, but when they are on the field there will be nothing but professionalism going on. They don't have to be best buddies. They just have to function together on the field and in practice.

"A really important part of this offense will be how the Eagles provide some depth at running back behind Brian Westbrook. Correll Buckhalter is healthy, but his track record is not a good one there. He has so much talent and it's a shame he's had to lose two seasons to injuries.

"You're going to like seeing Ryan Moats in action. The kid is lightning quick with his feet and he's explosive between the tackles. The Eagles have some options at that position.

"Overall, the Eagles are in good shape to repeat in the NFC and this time, win the Super Bowl. They need to stay healthy. They need some good luck. They need some bounces going their way.

"And they need everybody on the same page. It doesn't work if forces are pulling in different directions. Everybody needs to be in the same boat rowing for the same goal."

Friday, July 22, 2005

TO is Done-ski in Philly

Thursday on Comcast SportsNet, Terrell Owens declared that he is prepared to leave the Eagles.Owens said, ''They[Eagles] know how business is conducted. I’ve told them what I’m doing is for my family. If they can’t understand that – and if they feel like I’m a no-nonsense guy – he[team president Joe Banner] wants to talk about Drew and I – if we’re problems, then I feel like we can be adults about it. Trade me. Release me, and we can part ways like adults.'' It's mostly hot air, but makes it less likely T.O. will show up to camp on time. Jul. 21 - 10:47

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Looks like Matt McCoy will fit in just fine...

"Kirk [Morrison, college teammate drafted by Oakland] was out there for a week. We're real good friends and he's there, we'll workout together. We play him in our first home game. When I meet him on the field, he's going to get whooped up. I'll have to throw him around a couple of times and say some things that will hurt his feelings."


Tuesday, July 19, 2005

TO's Latest Tude-o-meter Reading

TO is just more out of hand than ever...have you heard the latest outrage? I was watching some ESPN Muscle Car show (or something like that) this weekend, and they featured TO as the celeb with the pimped out rides. So, the host switched to football and asked how TO's situation with the Eagles was progressing...he asked TO "who is your favorite QBs in the game?", trying to get TO to say something controversial and TO listed Pennington, Trent Green and a couple others but failed to list Dmac...then, the host asked one of TO's football buds (didn't recognize the guy) who was at his house who in sports he'd like to "go to War with" and he said AI, TO, and a couple other guys in football...the host then said "what, no Donovan McNabb?" and the guy and TO made a face and said "You asked who I'd like to go to War with, not who I'd like to play hopscotch with?", then they showed a graphic of McNabb being thrown under a school bus. Ridiculous. Then, they had the ESPY awards and Dmac and TO were there - on the carpet, they separately asked both of them about the situation and of course McNabb took the high road, but TO ripped into Donovan and the Eagles in general. I don't want TO back anymore; i hope we're out shopping for a #1 receiver right now.

Merrill Reese on training camp

ANOTHER VIEW by Merrill Reese, Radio play-by-play man:

"I love training camp and the reason I love training camp is that, No. 1, there is a certain feeling I get the second I go there that the football season is really upon us. It's right around the corner. Training camp signifies that football has started.

"Second, it's the first opportunity any of us have to see the rookies and free agents in contact drills. I don't care if you go to mini-camp every single day, you really can't get a feel for what those young players can do until you see them under live conditions.

"Having all of the Eagles fans crowding around the fields, chanting and cheering, it creates so much excitement. Hearing the fans roar after a player makes a big play is tremendously invigorating to me. The roar almost echoes off the mountains at Lehigh. You suddenly have that feeling that it's Monday night and everything counts. It feels like the real season.

"On the field, there are so many things to watch with this team. It should be an outstanding team, one that has the capability of winning the Super Bowl. There are going to be surprises. There are surprises at every training camp. Unfortunately, there are also some negative surprises where players get hurt. That is unavoidable. It is something a team has to overcome, so depth is of the utmost importance on this roster.

"I love the heat and the noise and the frantic nature of training camp. I love the intensity. If you've never made it to training camp, go. Enjoy it. It's the best time to be close to the team -- and I mean close. You are right on top of the action and it's fantastic."

Monday, July 18, 2005

Eagles Podcast Network

I just found out there's a weekly Eagles podcast. It's not affiliated with the NFL or the Eagles, but it's available on iTunes (and it's completely free -- and you don't need an iPod to hear it, Paulomon).

The guy who does it seems pretty knowledgeable and like a young Sparado, but somewhat more objective (as if it's a distinction to be more objective than Spads). I think it will probably get better once more people start to email him and contribute.

Check out:

Friday, July 15, 2005

poor pinky...

Even a digital Clinton Portis drops Pinky...

Thursday, July 14, 2005

WR Preview

This was the preview I've been waiting for. The crack reporting staff for the Birds' website finally addressed the WR situation: unfortunately it's not written by Spadaro; fortunately it's still laden with hyperbole about "depth" of talent in our WR squad. Depth? Bill McMullen? Carlos Perez and Robert Redd from NFL Europe? Jason Peebler? who the hell is that? As Poplar would say: "Um..." and just leave it at that. Boys, if we don't get TO back, or another #1 receiver in a trade, we'll be back to square one and will not advance past the playoffs. Much to Waala's annoyance, I've been complaining for 5 seasons now about this horrific receiving corps - any stats these losers have generated has been because McNabb is a magician....We all saw how McNabb's statistics blew up last year when he finally had some talent to throw to, and without TO (or a reasonable substitute), McNabb will be back to scrambling around taking coverage sacks. It's taken Big Red 5 years, but he finally got rid of Thrash and Mitchell - that leaves just one bag of trash to take to the dumpster....I think I'll get my wish next year. I am optimistic about Reggie Brown, and Greg Lewis with his speed will be a great #3 receiver. But to win, you need WRs to get a lot of YAC (yards after the catch). None of these guys can do that - we have 12 possession receivers. As for McMullen - I don't see what talent he had to justify drafting him. Someone on the Birds knows better than me, but I'm just basing that on watching football for the last 28 years. Maybe he took roids on the offseason and will benefit from that.

Cry Pinkston cry,
On the road to misery.
Cry Pinkston cry,
Drop a touchdown, one two three.
Hit him low, hit him high,
And watch that Pinkston cry.
Cry Pinkston cry,
On the road to misery.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

walking wounded

So what's the prediction on our returning wounded? Which ones will come back better than ever, just vanilla, or permanently scarred?

The most important ones who I'm thinking of are:
  1. N.D. Kalu
  2. Correll Buckhalter
  3. Shawn Andrews
  4. John Ritchie
  5. Jerome McDougal
  6. Hugh Douglass
  7. L.J. Smith
  8. Jason Short
  9. Tre Thomas

Anyone else I forgot? I failed to mention Mark Simineau, but that was intentional. I also didn't mention J.R. Reed, since his career is likely over. Hope he caught the dog he was chasing. Yeah, hope it was worth it.

McNabb vs some of the Greats (as of '04)

QBs after 4 yrs. in the league

QB record as starter playoffs completion % yds TDs Ints Best pass rtg Rush yds/TDs
mcnabb 31-17 (64.6%) 4-3 56.9 9835 71 38 86 1884/14
elway 38-18 (67.9%) 2-2 (SB loss) 54 11637 66 65 79 893/3
favre 26-19 (57.8%) 2-2 62.2 10412 70 53 90.7 616/4
aikman 27-27 (50%) 4-1 (SB win) 60.2 10527 54 60 89.5 -/-
montana 18-15 (54.5%) ? (SB win yr3) 63.1 8069 52 32 ? 312/5

* Marino's passing #s & record are off the scale.

Hmm, so let's break this down. Higher winning % than all but elway, better playoff records than favre and elway, higher completion % than elway (note, the other 3 are tops in nfl history in completion %, aikman i know is 3rd all-time), more TDs than all 3, fewer picks than all except montana (who, along with mcnabb and young, are 3 of the 4 in nfl history w/fewest picks thrown %), much better passer rating than elway, and when you get to rushing, he crushes all of them, w/991 more yds than the next best (elway), and almost 3 times as many rushing TDs as the next best (montana).

Now, let's look at what help they had:
McNabb- pro bowl TE (1 good year in 2000), subpar receivers (all yrs), subpar running game (until 03) - great defense (except 03), OK line
Aikman - pro bowl RB, WR, TE, & 2 OL (93/94), great defense
Elway - i don't think he had any weapons on offense until late 80s, good defense
Favre- pro bowl TEs/WRs, good line, ok RBs, great defense
Montana - come on, Rice, Taylor, Rathman, Brent Jones, great defense

For all the Rush lovers who want to beleive that McNaab is a product of the media and his defense take a look at these facts:
1. With at least 45 starts, he ranks third with a .646 winning percentage. Defense may have helped him with that, but the media couldn't help Eagles win.
2. Ranks 4th on the NFL's ALL TIME list in TD:Int ratio (1.87) and 3rd in INT percentage (2.31). Defense or media can't touch this.
3. He has more playoff wins than any other QB in Eagle history with 4. I know that is a sad commentary on Eagle history, but the point is McNaab has only started five years and he surely will win more playoff games in his career. Do you know how he rates against Montana, Elway, Favre and Simms in playoff win in first five years starting? Wanna guess? #1. This is not a media hype - it's statistical fact.
4. Holds NFL Playoff rushing record for a QB, (107) VS. Green Bay, where he rallied his team from 14 down to win. The 4th and 26 (perfect pass, soft defense sure, but still a perfect pass) and his escape from TWO GB defenders on a critical goal line play in which he hit Pinkston in end zone will define that game. The Eagle defense was actually softer in 2003 than at any time in McNaab's history with the team. He still went 12-4.
5. In 2000, his first year of leading them to 11-5 - he accounted for 74.6% of the Eagles offense. That's third ALL TIME for a season. In addition to passing for more than 3,000 yards, he also rushed for more than 600 and rushed for 6 td's.
6. He had a comeback win VS Pittsburgh when he brought the team back from 10 points down with 2:00 to play. And the defense never took the feild and the media never threw a TD.
7. Later that yr, he rushed for 125 yards vs Wash. That was the most by a QB since Bobby Douglas in1972. 1972!!!
8. With 2000 being his first year as a starter, and in leading a 5-11 team to an 11-5 record, and for accounting for 74% of the offense, and his 4 fourth Quater comebacks - and all this with no offensive help, (Duce was injured that year) he was runner up in the NFL MVP voting. And was named CBS NFL Player Of The Year.
9. He's been named NFL's player of the week 4 times.
10. NFL's player of the month once.
11. Is only fourth Eagle QB to pass for 3,000 yards in back to back seasons Sonny Jurgenson, Ron Jaworski and Randall Cunningham are the other 3 and good QB's. Not Hall Of Fame, but good pro QB's. But McNaab is over rated?
12. Isn't an accurate passer? While he isn't the most accurate passer, he is streaky and he does hold the club record for most completions in a row.
13. He broke Randall Cunningham's records for most attempts and completions in a season.
14. Is regarded as the teams hardest working player and was named by his TEAMMATES as the teams MVP in 2000 and 2001.
15. He demonstrated his heart when he played an entire game on a broken leg and completed 80% of his passes for 255 yards and 4 td's. This was the only game in his career he didn't have a rushing attempt.
16. But most importantly, he did all this - which many of you will say isn't that impressive in just a five year period - with this offensive talent. a list of McNaab's recepient on his TD passes.
A. Chad Lewis 14, James Thrash 13, Charles Johnson 7, Todd pinkston 7, Jeff Thomason 7, Duce Staley 4, Torrence Small 4, Luther Broughton 2, Antonio Freeman 2, Cecil Martin 2, Darnell Autry, Mike Bartrum, Na Brown, Dameane Douglas, Dorsey Levens, Brian Mitchell, Brian Westbrook, Freddie Mitchell all 1. Westbrook and FredX just got going and should catch alot of TD's in their career from Mac. Pinkston should thrive as the #2, but other than that Donovan might as well have been throwing to me and my drunk buddies in the parking lot.
Nobody is saying put him in Canton, but for Rush to say he's over rated and for you guys to say yea, he is, is ludicrous. He's has carried that offense to 3 straight NFC CG's, that's never been done before - win or lose. And he's only started 5 years! Over rated? You guys must be smokin what Rush was.

Philadelphia Cheerleaders brought to you by...

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

T is gone

Too many changes this offseason, including the cheerleaders. Have you guys checked them out? Not as hot as the last few years...also, my girl Teresa or "T" as I call her is gone, and replaced by a "Teressa", a poor substitute. Check it out when you can.

Ahhh, Philly

"Philadelphia is the only city, where you can experience the thrill of victory and the agony of reading about it the next day."

-- Mike Schmidt

What follows is an article from The Washington Times (a total rag) and isn't all that accurrate, but aside from being written by a complete hater, I think it sort of captures the general atmosphere:

Good Riddance

December 12, 2002

They call it the Nest of DeathIt is Section 700 at Veterans Stadium in Philadelphia, a haven for rabid Eagles fans. It is a place with a Dawg Pound-caliber reputation for toughness that can match any other in the NFL.

One could argue that the Vet is one huge nest of death, a place where civilization has died and been replaced by green-and-silver-shaded anarchy.

"We like to put the fear of God in most teams and the fans that come into the stadium," said Bill Deery, a season ticket holder who sits in Section 700. Deery also likes to spread that fear via the Internet. He operates a Web site called that is devoted to all things Eagles: news, forums, stats, cheerleaders, face painters, celebrities, records and "old school" players — plus the sale of Nest of Death T-shirts, sweatshirts, tank tops and hats.

The Eagles are on the verge of leaving the nest, though. The stadium, loved by fans and cursed by opponents, is in its final days. The Eagles' game Sunday against the Washington Redskins is the final regular-season contest at the Vet. A more modern facility, Lincoln Financial Field, is scheduled to open next year.

Opposing players will shed few tears for the passing of the Vet, the place where Philadelphia fans earned their reputation as some of the toughest in sports.Consider:

  • In 1999, fans jeered Dallas Cowboys receiver Michael Irvin as he lay on the field for 20 minutes, suffering from a neck injury that ended his career.
  • That same year, fans threw D batteries at St. Louis Cardinals outfielder J.D. Drew, who held out for a year after the Phillies drafted him and eventually signed with the Cards instead.
  • Matthew Scott, the only person in the United States to have received a hand transplant, was asked by the Phillies to throw out the ceremonial first pitch at the team's home opener in 1999. The pitch, from his transplanted hand, dribbled over the plate. The fans booed.
  • Eagles fans famously blasted Santa Claus with a shower of snowballs at halftime of a game as St. Nick circled helplessly around the field before stadium officials rescued him.

The place was considered so rough that the city opened up a jail — complete with a court and a judge — inside the stadium after a particularly nasty bout of drunkenness and fighting at a Monday night game between the Eagles and 49ers in 1997.

And the nightmares weren't limited to the stands.The artificial playing surface for years had a notorious reputation as a career killer for NFL players, routinely wrecking knees and ankles. It finally was replaced, but the new surface was declared so bad that a preseason game between the Eagles and Baltimore Ravens was called off last year. Lincoln Field, at least, will have grass.The Redskins, fierce NFC East rival of the Eagles, have had ugly moments at Veterans Stadium — and so have their fans.

The Redskins mascot and the Hogettes once were attacked in the stands. For players, one particular nightmare stands out: the Body Bag Game. In a brutally physical, injury-filled Monday night contest in 1990, the battered, beaten and bruised Redskins were forced to finish the game with running back Brian Mitchell at quarterback.

Former Redskins kicker Mark Moseley, who had the first kickoff ever at the stadium while he was playing for the Eagles, didn't look forward to playing there. "It was always a tough place to play," he said. "The crowd was always rowdy and nasty, some very rough people. One time I got hit in the head with a bottle. It was a good thing I had my helmet on."
Of course, Eagles fans will tell you they are portrayed unfairly. "The media kills us," Deery said.

"We get a bad rap, but we go with it and play into people's fears."Not that those fears are unwarranted.

"One time during a Redskins game, there was some guy wearing a [John] Riggins jersey and a pigskin mask," Deery said. "The Redskins were beating the Eagles bad, and this guy would just not sit down and shut up. The next thing you knew, four Eagles fans were giving the guy an early exit."

Still, according to Brian Lyons, a season-ticket holder for 14 seasons who got his start in the 700 level — "a good place to get your baptism at the Vet" — Redskins fans often hold their own.
"The craziest games were always against the Redskins," he said. "I have to give them credit — they would show up wearing their colors. But it was always crazy."

That craziness often added up to double-digit arrests at games for fighting, urinating in public, public drunkenness and all sorts of other infractions — such as reporting.During a Monday night game in October this season, reporters one from the Atlantic City (N.J.) Press and KYW radio in Philadelphia were removed from Section 700, where they were interviewing fans. Their tape recorders were confiscated. The Press reporter was held in the stadium's police station, and the KYW reporter was escorted from the stadium.

The week before, a tabloid television crew had secretly followed Veterans Stadium security guards trying to keep order in 700. Club officials said the removal of the reporters was a mistake.

The Vet did not create rabid Eagles fans. The stadium actually inherited them from Franklin Field, where the Eagles built a rowdy following after winning the 1960 NFL championship. They moved to the $52million, multi-purpose Vet , along with the Phillies, when it opened in 1971.
Since then, Section 700 has developed into the worst of the worst — or the best of the best — depending on your point of view.

"The 700 level is very unique," Deery said. "It's a place where some people fear and others are proud to sit in it. The sad thing is that the Vet is coming to an end just as [coach Andy] Reid and [quarterback Donovan] McNabb are beginning. But we hope to keep the same mentality in the new stadium, though we know they will try to corral it as much as possible."

Not necessarily.When plans for Lincoln Financial Field were first revealed, Eagles CEO Joe Banner said the facility "will bring the fans so much closer to the field. The entire building is designed from a fan's perspective and with a fan's day-of-game experience in mind."
But a Philadelphia fan's "day of game" experience is not like many others in the NFL."You can knock the Vet down, but it's the people that make the place," Lyons said.