Eagles' quarterback situation still unclear

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Eagles' quarterback situation still unclear

PHOENIX -- Asked Tuesday morning how many college prospects he would consider with the No. 1 overall pick in next month’s draft, Chiefs coach Andy Reid estimated anywhere between eight and 10.

Reid said he recently hit the road to work out two pass rushers -- Oregon’s Dion Jordan and Brigham Young’s Ziggy Ansah -- and would be keeping tabs in coming weeks on all the top offensive linemen prospects.

The natural assumption is that Reid wouldn’t pull the trigger on Geno Smith, the former West Virginia quarterback who will probably be picked in the top 10 despite mixed reviews from scouts and talking heads. The Chiefs addressed their quarterback deficiency by trading for Alex Smith.

But Reid, ever the salesman and bargain shopper, made sure to keep the clouds of smoke billowing out the Arizona Biltmore chimney during the owners meetings.

“That doesn’t mean Geno is out of the water,” said Reid, surrounded by a herd of Philadelphia reporters and, surprisingly, no representatives from the Kansas City media. “I’m going to keep my eyes open on everybody. I think Geno is a good quarterback. I’m going to keep this workout thing going.”

Hours later in the Biltmore lobby, Eagles general manager Howie Roseman likewise fanned the flames about his nebulous quarterback situation. Roseman reiterated his intent to keep Nick Foles on the roster and let competition decide the fate of his second-year quarterback.

Roseman also didn’t squash the idea of adding another arm -- he already has five -- in next month’s draft. He recently traveled with owner Jeffrey Lurie and new coach Chip Kelly to Morgantown for a bird’s-eye view of Smith during a private workout. That same day, Arizona quarterback Matt Scott arrived at the NovaCare Complex, presumably to interview with offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur and quarterbacks coach Bill Lazor.

Therein lies the confusion.

If the Eagles have already committed roughly $7 million this year to Michael Vick, and if they’re not averse to landing another passer in the draft, wouldn’t it be more logical to deal Foles now, when quarterback-needy teams still have time -- and picks -- to deal?

What is the benefit in having Foles sit every Sunday if he’s really not part of Chip Kelly’s vision?

“It’s the most important position in football,” Roseman said. “If you’re telling me that the worst thing we can have on our football team is we have a bunch of good players at the quarterback position, where do I sign up?”

That sounds all well and good. But this comes from the man who heads the same front office that twice dealt odd-man out quarterbacks for hefty draft compensation: Donovan McNabb after the 2009 season and Kevin Kolb after 2010.

Roseman was also quickly ascending the Eagles front office ladder in 2003 when the Eagles pilfered a second-round pick from the Dolphins in exchange for third-string quarterback A.J. Feeley.

This is different, Roseman promised. So long as Foles is in the hunt for the starting job, the Eagles don’t see value in moving in.

“I can’t sit here and tell you for a fact I know exactly what Nick is going to be,” Roseman added. “Because he hasn’t been our full-time player.”

Roseman admitted that his story is hard to believe, given the team’s reputation for sending quarterbacks packing. But an old ally backed Roseman’s claim. Reid was asked if he made any serious overtures about trading for Foles before he explored the Smith deal.

“They weren’t in a position where they were gonna let him go,” Reid said. “That was really never part of the discussion. We kind of had our sights set on Alex, and that’s the route we went.”

Roseman repeated what Kelly said in February at the NFL Scouting Combine, that Kelly has honest plans to have Foles compete for the starting job and looks forward to working with the former Arizona quarterback who once carved up Kelly’s defense at Oregon in 2011.

“You heard it from Andy, we have not tried to trade Nick,” Roseman said. “And to be totally honest, I understand that people don’t believe that. I get that. Chip came in, he watched him and he told you the truth. He wants to work with him. We want to see him at minicamp. We drafted him.

“He didn’t get a chance to play with his full complement of skill guys. He didn’t get a chance to play with his full offensive line. I think the worst thing you can do is trade a young quarterback before you at least think you know what he is and then go see him have a tremendous amount of success somewhere else.”

Roseman painted an incomplete picture of Foles, a third-round pick who replaced a concussed Vick as the Eagles spiraled downward to their worst season ever in Reid’s 14 seasons as head coach.

He won just one of his six starts and missed the season finale with a broken hand but also averaged nearly 247 passing yards per game and completed 61 percent of his passes. Mobility -- or lack thereof -- would seemingly be his disadvantage as Kelly prefers that his quarterbacks have some running ability to freeze the extra defender who comes down into the box.

Kelly has repeatedly said that his playbook will be built around the best quarterback instead of vice versa, but it’s telling that the two quarterbacks who have joined the roster since Kelly’s hiring -- Dennis Dixon and G.J. Kinnie -- are dual-threat quarterbacks with plus mobility.

Reid, who also looked for mobility in his quarterbacks to run his West Coast offense, said Foles “is mobile enough” to keep defenses honest and noted the 14-yard touchdown run against Tampa Bay, a game the Eagles thrillingly won, 23-21, on Foles’ 1-yard touchdown to Jeremy Maclin at the buzzer.

“Most of the quarterbacks in our offense have been mobile guys,” he said. “If you take the history of the West Coast offense most of the kids have run when needed, and you saw Nick do that against Tampa, when they played all the two-man they were playing. He took off and scored and had a couple of good plays. You just have to be able to do enough of it. He’s always been able to go when he needed to. I think that’s a plus.”

Phillies pitcher Matt Imhof loses eye in training accident

Phillies pitcher Matt Imhof loses eye in training accident

Phillies pitcher Matt Imhof, their second-round pick in 2014, lost his eye as a result of a freak training accident late last week.

A large piece of metal hit him during a postgame stretching routine, resulting in a fractured nose, two fractured orbital bones and loss of vision in Imhof's right eye.

Imhof, after multiple surgeries, explained what happened in an Instagram post Thursday.

As many of you know on Friday June 25th I had an accident. A large price of metal hit me in the head/eye resulting in a fractured nose, 2 fractured orbital bones, and most significantly, the loss of vision in my right eye. I was immediately taken to the ER and then transferred to Bascom Palmer Eye Institute, the #1 eye hospital in the world. That night, the doctors informed me that the damage to my eye was extreme and essentially that my eye had been crushed like a grape. The doctors told me they were going to do everything possible to reconstruct it but in all likelihood I would never regain sight in my right eye. The first surgery was somewhat a success but overall nothing had changed, so after discussions with my family and my doctors, it was decided that the best chance I had to live a normal life was to have my right eye removed and have a prosthetic one put in. This decision was not an easy one to make but to me it seemed like the right one so on Tuesday afternoon I went forward with the surgery. I'm currently still in Miami recovering from surgery but I'm doing well. This has been the hardest week of my life but I've had amazing support from my family and friends to help me get through it. For those who have been wishing me well, your support has not gone unnoticed and I appreciate everyone who has kept me in their thoughts and prayers. I had the best doctors in the world doing their best work on me and for that I am grateful as well. Although this injury has been tough it could have been much worse...I'm lucky to still have vision in my left eye...I'm lucky that i didn't have brain damage...and I'm lucky to be surrounded my the most loving and understanding people in the world. I just wanted to write this message to let everyone know that even though I suffered some bad luck, I'm not dead. I'm gonna be alright, I'm gonna persevere, and I'm gonna succeed. It takes more than this to bring me down. Again thanks to everyone for the support .

A photo posted by Matt Imhof (@matt_imhof48) on

It's a terrible misfortune for Imhof, who was in his second full season with the High A Clearwater Threshers. The Phils drafted the 6-foot-5 lefty 47th overall out of Cal Poly in 2014, a round after selecting Aaron Nola. The 22-year-old has a 3.69 ERA in 173 career innings.

Eagles mailbag: Biggest concern, roster battles, kicker fight!

Eagles mailbag: Biggest concern, roster battles, kicker fight!

Training camp isn't that far away. Really — it isn't. 

In fact, the Eagles kick off this year's camp in less than a month, so before you know it, football will be back in Philadelphia. 

Earlier this week, I took another shot at a 53-man roster projection, knowing full well it's way too early to try. But I had some fun. 

And I asked for questions and you good people, even in the middle of summer, came through. So I'll try my best to answer them: 

There are plenty of roster questions about this Eagles football team. To put it bluntly, they're just not very talented at some positions and they lack playmakers. But really, the biggest question is about the head coach. Doug Pederson might end up being a great coach. He might end up being Andy Reid 2.0 and take the team to multiple championships and a Super Bowl. Heck, maybe he'll even win the big game. 

But for now, it's fair to wonder if Pederson will even be a decent coach. It's not that he can't be, it's that we don't have a ton of evidence to support the idea that he will be. The Eagles scoffed at the question during his introductory press conference, but it sure seemed like Pederson wasn't their first choice and there weren't exactly many teams lining up to interview him. He's an offensive coach who has been in the shadow of another offensive coach during all of his years coaching in the NFL -- that's another worry. 

I actually think Pederson is off to a pretty good start. He had some unique situations -- Fletcher Cox, Sam Bradford, Darren Sproles -- this offseaon, and he handled all of them well. Players seem to like him. Heck, everyone seems to like him. He's a nice guy, which helps because players want to play for him. But how will he handle game situations, when -- as he says -- the bullets are flying? We'll have to see. For now, though, it's a serious concern. 

As far as starter positions go, I think the wide receivers are going to be fun to watch in training camp. There are several guys who could end up being starters. And it might sound boring, but the kicker battle will probably be pretty close. Right now, I think Caleb Sturgis might have a slight (very slight) edge. 

But the biggest logjam of players is probably at cornerback. No, the team doesn't have top-flight guys, but it does have plenty of young talent there. Guys like JaCorey Shepherd, Jaylen Watkins, Jalen Mills, Aaron Grymes, Randall Evans and Denzel Rice will all be trying to stick at the bottom of the roster. 

Hmmm, a literal kicker battle. Well, let's look at the tale of the tape: 

Caleb Sturgis: 5-9, 192 pounds, 26 years old, has five siblings

Cody Parkey: 6-0, 193 pounds, 24 years old, played LB and OL growing up

Sturgis had five siblings and his brother is an MLS soccer player, so there's a good chance he got in some fights as a youngin. But Parkey, in the media guide, said he played LB and OL and was actually a chubby kid. 

Verdict: I have no idea who would win, but if a kicker fight broke out at training camp, I'd smile a mile wide. 

Carson Wentz's dog has its own Twitter account

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Carson Wentz's dog's Instagram

Carson Wentz's dog has its own Twitter account

Fans of both the Disney Channel's hit show "Dog with a Blog" and the Philadelphia Eagles football team will be extra excited to hear this one: Carson Wentz's dog has its own Twitter account.

Now, it's unclear who exactly is behind the @QB11_Henley Twitter account but the bio says, "Official account of Eagles QB, Carson Wentz's dog Henley." And the account is followed by Wentz's official account, so this could actually be his (very intelligent) dog tweeting.

The account details the journey of the pup from Fargo to Philly and even uses the hashtag #FargotoPhilly.

Let's see what Henley is up to:

Once a Bison, Always a Bison #fargotophilly

A photo posted by Henley (@qb11_henley) on

Checking out the Minneapolis skyline #fargotophilly

A photo posted by Henley (@qb11_henley) on

Went for a walk around the stadium to stretch out #fargotophilly

A photo posted by Henley (@qb11_henley) on

Driving through downtown #fargotophilly

A photo posted by Henley (@qb11_henley) on

Thinking about running for office in my new home state! #fargotophilly

A photo posted by Henley (@qb11_henley) on

Finally made it home to dad, @cj_wentz11!!! #philly

A photo posted by Henley (@qb11_henley) on

The end.