Asomugha tops list of Eagles who could be cut

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Asomugha tops list of Eagles who could be cut

They have about a million decisions to make. None bigger than what to do with Nnamdi Asomugha.
 
As the offseason heats up with the Combine this week in Indianapolis, free agency a few weeks away and the draft in two months, the Eagles must determine if Asomugha, the one-time dazzling All-Pro corner with the Raiders, is salvageable.
 
Asomugha was inconsistent in 2011 in his first year with the Eagles but downright awful this past season.

He’s due $15 million in base salary in 2013, and if the Eagles release him, they’ll owe him the $4 million guaranteed portion of his base salary.

Asomugha’s $15 million salary cap figure in 2013 is not just the highest on the team, it represents more than 10 percent of the Eagles’ total projected available cap space this coming season.

Combine his astronomical salary and cap figure with his woeful play on the field, and it’s impossible to imagine the Eagles keeping Asomugha, who is also due $12 million each in 2014 and 2015.
 
If they release him, they’ll eat only the $4 million guaranteed portion of his base salary and take a $4 million cap hit. It’s a lot of money but considering the Eagles’ vast amount of cap space, not prohibitive.
 
If Asomugha’s play was even adequate, the Eagles could ask Asomugha to cut his pay to return. But Asomugha really represents everything that went wrong with this team last year, and it’s tough to come up any realistic scenario in which he stays.

Eagles general manager Howie Roseman, asked Tuesday about Asomugha, hardly gave him a ringing endorsement.
 
The question: Was signing Asomugha a mistake?
 
Roseman: “We were 4-12 last year, so there were a lot of mistakes that were made, and we’re very disappointed about the results.
 
“We want to make sure that going forward that we have the right fits for our scheme and fitting into our culture for every player on the team.
 
“At the same, we want to make sure we communicate with all our players and talk to them about their role when it’s appropriate.”

Which sure seems to be a nicer way of saying: “He stinks, but we haven’t told him we’re cutting him yet.”

Asomugha isn’t the only veteran Eagle in danger of getting cut.

Veteran defensive tackle Cullen Jenkins is due a $1.5 million roster bonus on March 17. He’s due $4.5 million in base salary, with $1.5 million of it guaranteed. So if the Eagles release him, they’d spend $1.5 million to save another $1.5 million.

Evan Mathis is due a $1 million roster bonus on March 24, but he was the Eagles’ offensive MVP last year and it’s hard to imagine he doesn’t fit into new head coach Chip Kelly’s plans.
 
Nate Allen is an interesting name. He’s due a $709,000 roster bonus next month to go with a modest $642,000 base salary, $575,000 of which is guaranteed. Not much of a savings. Do the Eagles consider him salvageable? We’ll find out soon.

One other oddity regarding the Eagles’ 2013 payroll: 2011 Pro Bowl defensive end Jason Babin, released during the 2012 season, has a $900,000 cap figure thanks to an accelerated portion of his original signing bonus.
 
Babin, now with the Jaguars actually has the 18th-highest 2013 cap figure on the team.

Thanks to their $23,046,035 in unspent 2012 payroll, the Eagles have a projected adjusted salary cap of about $145 million, since the unadjusted cap figure is expected to be about $122 million.

The players they currently have under contract have a combined 2013 cap hit of $126,680,602, although that number is certain to come down as the Eagles trim the roster in the coming weeks.
 
The Eagles’ 10-richest 2013 contracts add up to $68,316,625 against the cap, or nearly half their available cap space.

The list below illustrates the gap between the haves and the relative have-nots in the NFL. The Eagles have 14 players with a cap figure of $2.3 million or higher but only three between $768,000 and $2.3 million.
 
Here’s a look at the 2013 cap figures of everybody currently on the Eagles’ roster (with the exception of Dennis Dixon and Ed Wang, whose contracts are not yet available. Also: If a player is listed twice, it’s because he signed two separate contracts last year with the Ealges):
 
Nnamdi Asomugha        $15,000,000    
Jason Peters                   $11,042,000    
DeSean Jackson             $9,000,000      
Cullen Jenkins               $5,600,000      
Trent Cole                     $5,350,000      
LeSean McCoy               $4,940,625      
Jeremy Maclin                $4,553,000      
Brent Celek                    $4,531,000      
Todd Herremans            $4,300,000      
Evan Mathis                   $4,000,000      
Mike Patterson               $3,000,000      
Brandon Graham             $2,957,500      
Jason Avant                    $2,710,000      
Fletcher Cox                   $2,327,545
Nate Allen                      $1,242,000      
Mychal Kendricks           $1,010,101      
Mat McBriar                    $920,000         
*Jason Babin                   $900,000
Vinny Curry                    $768,598
Curtis Marsh                  $760,880         
Clay Harbor                    $743,225
Antonio Dixon                $735,000
Allen Barbre                    $720,000
Trent Edwards                 $715,000
Evan Moore                      $715,000
Riley Cooper                    $672,871
Casey Matthews               $663,716
Alex Henery                     $660,027         
Nick Foles                        $655,880         
Jamar Chaney                   $645,064         
Kurt Coleman                   $640,842         
Everette Brown                  $630,000         
Brandon Hughes               $630,000         
Nick Miller                        $630,000         
Dion Lewis                        $602,220         
Matt Kopa                          $588,333
Brandon Boykin                  $581,367
Jason Kelce                        $579,358         
*Jaiquawn Jarrett                $558,636
Dennis Kelly                       $527,220         
Phillip Hunt                        $511,668         
Bryce Brown                        $492,720         
Damaris Johnson                $485,000
Chris Polk                           $483,333         
Ronnie Cameron                 $480,000
Marcus Dowtin                   $480,000         
Stanley Havili                     $480,000         
Chris Hawkins                    $480,000         
Uchechukwu Igwenagu       $480,000
Trevard Lindley                   $480,000         
Marvin McNutt                    $480,000         
Nate Menkin                       $480,000         
Ryan Rau                             $480,000
Dallas Reynolds                  $480,000         
Chris McCoy                        $412,500         
Derek Carrier                       $405,000         
B.J. Cunningham                  $405,000         
Ron Johnson                        $405,000         
Matt Reynolds                      $405,000
*Keenan Clayton                  $116,698
*Mike Kafka                          $116,698         
*Marvin McNutt                    $74,172           
*Jordan Ford                         $8,334
*Uchechukwu Igwenagu       $7,334
*Charles Henry                     $5,834
*Brett Brackett                      $3,334
*Cliff Harris                          $3,334
*Tevita Finau                        $1,334
*Matt Camilli                        $667    
*Alfred McCullough              $667    
 
* -- Player Released

NHL Notes: Panthers flip Dave Bolland's contract, prospect Lawson Crouse to Coyotes for picks

NHL Notes: Panthers flip Dave Bolland's contract, prospect Lawson Crouse to Coyotes for picks

GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) -- The Arizona Coyotes have acquired prospect Lawson Crouse and veteran Dave Bolland's contract from the Florida Panthers for two draft picks.

Arizona sent a 2017 third-round pick and a conditional 2018 second-rounder that could become another 2017 third to Florida. The Coyotes are taking on the final three years of the injured Bolland's deal to pick up Crouse, the 11th pick in the 2015 draft.

Nagging injuries limited Bolland to 25 games last season, and the 30-year-old forward has three years left on his deal at a salary-cap hit of $5.5 million. But Arizona general manager John Chayka said Bolland isn't expected to play for the foreseeable future and could be placed on long-term injured reserve.

Crouse, 19, is a 6-foot-4 left winger who could make his NHL debut this fall.

Avalanche name Jack Bednar head coach
DENVER -- The Colorado Avalanche have hired Jared Bednar as their new head coach.

Bednar replaces Patrick Roy, who abruptly stepped down as coach and vice president of hockey operations earlier this month.

The 44-year-old Bednar won the American Hockey League's Calder Cup championship as coach of the Lake Erie Monsters last season. He also won the ECHL's Kelly Cup in 2009 with the South Carolina Stingrays.

President of hockey operations and general manager Joe Sakic said upon Roy's sudden resignation that he'd look outside the organization for Colorado's next coach. He did just that with Bednar, who had been in the Columbus system.

Sidney Crosby named Canada's captain for World Cup of Hockey
Canada has chosen Sidney Crosby as its captain for the upcoming World Cup of Hockey.

Crosby returns as Canada's captain after wearing the "C" for the 2014 Sochi Olympics. He's coming off his second Stanley Cup as captain of the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Chicago Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews and Montreal Canadiens defenseman Shea Weber will serve as the alternates.

Crosby scored one of Canada's biggest goals in international history when he beat U.S. goaltender Ryan Miller to win the gold medal on home ice at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics. Now 29, he has two gold medals, two Cup rings and a Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP.

Canada begins training camp Sept. 5 in Ottawa. The World Cup begins Sept. 17 in Toronto (see full story).

Coyotes hire NHL's first female coach
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- The Arizona Coyotes have hired Dawn Braid as skating coach and say she is believed to be the first full-time female coach in NHL history.

Braid has a long association with the NHL.

She worked part-time for the Coyotes last year and has served as a skating consultant with the Toronto Maple Leafs, Anaheim Ducks, Buffalo Sabres and Calgary Flames.

Braid also spent seven years with the Athletes Training Center as director of skating development. Among the skaters she worked with while there is New York Islanders center John Tavares (see full story).

Big night in Columbus as rookies star for Union and Jim Curtin quotes Rasheed Wallace

Big night in Columbus as rookies star for Union and Jim Curtin quotes Rasheed Wallace

What’s the best way to respond to a controversial game-tying goal on the road?

If you said score the game-winner 62 seconds later, celebrate by shushing the crowd, and then quote Rasheed Wallace after the game, the Union agree with you. 

That’s what happened Wednesday night in Columbus as Crew SC were credited with scoring a second-half equalizer even though it looked like the ball may have been cleared off the line before it crossed (where’s goal-line technology when you really need it?). But before the cameras could even get back to the game, the Union charged down the field off the ensuing kickoff with Keegan Rosenberry scoring a very pretty goal to lift Philly to a 2-1 victory — and then put his finger to his mouth to quiet the crowd.

Watch the whole chaotic sequence here:

Remarkably, the goal was the second of the night for a Union rookie as Fabian Herbers scored the opener. Herbers got the start on the right wing in place of Ilsinho and another rookie, Joshua Yaro, started at center back instead of Ken Tribbett.

If you’re scoring at home, that’s three of the team’s top six picks from this year’s draft all starting together (for just the second time ever) and two of of them scoring.

That was certainly an exciting development for Curtin, who praised the rookie trio for growing up in a hurry before touting Rosenberry as an MLS Rookie of the Year frontrunner.

But none of those comments were as good as when Curtin quoted fellow Philadelphian Rasheed Wallace for the karmic retribution that happened after Crew SC’s controversial goal.

“It’s a true Philadelphia-type team — blue-collar, tough, doesn’t let adversity get in the way,” Curtin said. “And I guess in words of Rasheed Wallace, the ball doesn’t lie.

Then, after completing the season sweep of Crew SC, the Union coach added a little insult to injury.

“You guys won’t get that in Columbus but the ball does not lie.”

Hear that, Columbus? ’Sheed is ours.

MLB Notes: Miami Marlins acquire Jeff Francoeur from Atlanta Braves

MLB Notes: Miami Marlins acquire Jeff Francoeur from Atlanta Braves

MIAMI -- A person familiar with the deal says the Miami Marlins have acquired outfielder Jeff Francoeur from Atlanta in a three-team trade.

The person spoke to The Associated Press under condition of anonymity Wednesday night because the trade hadn't been announced.

The Texas Rangers also were part of the trade. Francoeur was the only major leaguer involved.

Miami is contending for an NL wild-card spot and isn't sure whether star outfielder Giancarlo Stanton will return this season from a severe groin strain.

Francoeur was hitting .249 with seven home runs and 33 RBIs in 99 games for the Braves. The 32-year-old plays left field and right field and is known for a strong arm.

Nationals acquire lefty reliever Marc Rzepczynski from Athletics
WASHINGTON -- The Washington Nationals have acquired left-handed reliever Marc Rzepczynski from the Oakland Athletics for minor league infielder Max Schrock.

The A's also sent cash to Washington as part of the trade announced Thursday.

Rzepczynski gives the Nationals another lefty out of the bullpen since trading Felipe Rivero and putting Sammy Solis on the disabled list. He is 1-0 with a 3.00 ERA in 56 appearances this season for Oakland.

The 32-year-old joins the sixth team of his major league career. It was not clear if he'd be available for Washington's game Thursday night against the Baltimore Orioles.

The 21-year-old Schrock was a 13th-round pick in 2015.

Red Sox place rookie Benintendi on 15-day DL with knee sprain
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla.  -- The Boston Red Sox have placed rookie left fielder Andrew Benintendi on the 15-day disabled list with a left knee sprain.

Benintendi was hurt in the seventh inning of a 4-3 loss in 11 innings to Tampa Bay on Wednesday night. He tried to avoid a tag while running toward second base, but was tagged out on a double play.

Red Sox manager John Farrell says team doctors are evaluating the results of an MRI exam on Thursday. He says the severity of the injury isn't clear and will be "determined after the review."

Farrell is hopeful Benintendi, a first-round draft pick in 2015, will return before the season ends.

Chris Young will be the primary left fielder with Benintendi sidelined. Infielder Marco Hernandez was recalled from Triple-A Pawtucket.