Philadelphia Eagles

Eagles FA rumor tracker: Alshon Jeffery leaning toward Eagles

Eagles FA rumor tracker: Alshon Jeffery leaning toward Eagles

The NFL's legal tampering period began at noon on Tuesday, so we're in the thick of it now. (Even though plenty of illegal tampering has been going on for months.)

Free agency starts on Thursday at 4 p.m. and the Eagles have just around $6.19 million in cap space to work with (as of Thursday morning).

3:59 p.m. Thursday -- Top CB staying put

One of the top cornerbacks set to hit the market won't. Along with A.J. Bouye, Dre Kirkpatrick was the top guy on the free agent corner list. 

3:35 p.m. Thursday -- Vikings in on Jeffery 

The Eagles have some more competition to land Alshon Jeffery, who will become a free agent in less than a half hour. 

2:14 p.m. Thursday -- Leaning this way 

The Eagles have Torrey Smith, but a big receiver on the other side would be ideal. And Alshon Jeffery is a big receiver. 

This would take some fancy cap manuevering from Howie Roseman, but that's what he's good at. And Jeffery is the top target on the free agent market. The 27-year-old caught 52 passes for 821 yards and two touchdowns in 2016. He's two years removed from his last 1,000-yard season. 

1:46 p.m. Thursday -- Help on O-line

Stefen Wisniewski was with the Eagles on a one-year deal in 2016. He ended up playing in all 16 games and starting six. But he made it clear throughout the season that he wanted a full-time starting gig. 

So perhaps if Wisniewski can't find that starting job elsewhere, he could be back as a backup or possible replacement for Jason Kelce. 

11:44 a.m. Thursday -- Not done yet 

The Eagles already locked up Torrey Smith, but it looks like they're still looking for more help at receiver. Based on last season, they can use all the help they get. 

Wheaton is a former third-round pick who played just three games in 2016 before his season ended with a shoulder injury. Wheaton's best season came in 2015, when he caught 44 passes for 749 yards and five touchdowns. 

11:15 a.m. Thursday -- Eagles, Colts after Alshon Jeffery

Moments after the Eagles agreed to a three-year deal with speedy WR Torrey Smith, Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network reported that the Eagles and Colts are making a "strong push" for Alshon Jeffery.

Jeffery is the top wide receiver on the free-agent market and a much different player than Smith. They could complement each other nicely, with Jeffery offering size and red-zone effectiveness and Smith giving Wentz a much-needed deep threat.

10:13 a.m. Thursday -- Let's get weird 

It looks like things are really getting going now. The Eagles have reportedly been talking about a trade for Cooks, but a new suitor has emerged. The Patriots are bringing in Stephon Gilmore, so maybe Butler has become disposable. Either way, another team in the mix for Cooks can't help the Eagles. 

9:32 a.m. Thursday -- Britt to Browns

Remember when Kenny Britt was going to sign with the Eagles? Good times. 

The Browns came into Thursday with $98 million in cap space, so money isn't the problem with them. As of Wednesday, there were reports that Britt was going to be an Eagle. Heck, people even saw him in Atlantic City!

It looks like the Browns didn't have any trouble tossing some money around. 

8:57 a.m. Thursday -- Gilmore to Patriots

The New England Patriots are poised to add one of the top free-agent cornerbacks, Stephon Gilmore. ESPN's Adam Schefter reports the former Buffalo Bill is headed to New England, "barring any final snags."

Gilmore's connection to the Eagles would have been defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz. Gilmore was in Buffalo for Schwartz's only year as the Bills' DC. We've seen that connection bring in players like Nigel Bradham and Ron Brooks. Looks like it wasn't enough to bring in Gilmore. 

8:57 a.m. Thursday -- Bouye leaving Texans

A few years ago, A.J. Bouye was an undrafted free agent from UCF. Now, he's about to break the bank. Although it might not be with the Eagles. 

Staying in the AFC South makes sense for one reason: money. The Jaguars started the day with $73 million cap room. The Titans had $61M and the Colts had $54M. 

8:46 a.m. Thursday -- DeSean to Tampa

So much for the DeSean Jackson reunion. Looks like DeSean is forgoing the trip back to Philly and taking a big pay day in Tampa. 

Now Ian Rapoport of NFL.com and ESPN's Adam Schefter are both reporting that Jackson will sign with the Bucs. Tampa had $58 million in cap space. 

9:15 p.m. -- Britt expected to sign with Eagles; DeSean to Tampa Bay

After losing out on Kenny Stills, the Eagles may have found a different receiver for Carson Wentz. According to Mile High Sports Radio's Benjamin Allbright, Kenny Britt, 28, is expected to sign with the Eagles when free agency begins at 4 p.m. on Thursday. 

Britt, enduring subpar quarterback play with the Rams in 2016, had a career year with 68 catches for 1,002 yards and five touchdowns.

As for former Eagles receivers, DeSean Jackson is reportedly expected to sign with the Bucs Thursday. 

7:02 p.m. -- Stills staying in Miami 

One of the biggest free-agent targets for the Eagles never even became a free agent. So much for getting him as the Eagles' deep threat. It looks like Stills is indeed staying with the Dolphins. 

If you're keeping track at home, Stills, Pierre Garcon, Brandon LaFell and Brandon Marshall are all already reportedly off the market well before the start of free agency. 

3:26 p.m. -- Stills off the market? 

Stills would have been a really good fit with the Eagles. He's still just 24 and is a serious deep threat, something the Eagles need desperately. Of all the receivers set to hit the market, Stills made more sense than most. If this report pans out, it will be interesting to see what kind of deal Stills signs with the Dolphins. Earlier reports talked about him getting over $10 million per season. 

But hold the phone. Stills isn't definitely staying in Miami just yet. 

At least one receiver really is off the market: 

2:11 p.m. -- You don't say

Yeah, this isn't much of a surprise. The Eagles have been trying to trade these guys for a while. Cutting Conor Barwin if he doesn't get traded seems like a realistic possibility. They'd save $7.75 million by cutting him and would have just $600,000 in dead money. 

Last week, Howie Roseman said there wasn't a deadline to make these decisions and the Eagles wouldn't just cut players to cut them. Still, cutting Barwin makes sense. As for Mychal Kendricks, cutting him would save $1.8 million in cap space. If they designate him as a post-June 1 cut, they would save $5 million, but would need to carry his full cap number until June 1. 

1:51 p.m. -- Romo on the move

Obviously, the Eagles aren't going to sign Tony Romo, but he is a huge domino to fall. He will change the free agent market. Suppose he goes to Houston, will they then have enough money to hold on to A.J. Bouye? 

11:17 a.m. -- Bennie's replacement?

Bennie Logan will become a free agent at 4 p.m. on Thursday and because of his price tag, it seems rather likely he won't return. So maybe the Eagles need a replacement. 

Domata Peko is already 32, but for a year or two, he would be a decent fill-in. The Eagles have also started to work on a new deal for Beau Allen, who has been Logan's backup. 

10:41 a.m. -- Eagles after Bouye

For all that talk about the Eagles not trying to sign Band-Aids to fix their cornerback position, it sure seems like they're going after pending Texans 25-year-old free agent Bouye. 

Bouye (pronounced boy-yay) would be just the latest Texans player to join the Eagles after Barwin, DeMeco Ryans, Brandon Brooks, Bryan Braman and others. Now, it looks like Bouye could join the group. 

But not so fast ... 

10:14 a.m. -- That's a lot of money

Like, really, a lot of money. But the 49ers do have $90 million in cap space. 

8:20 a.m. -- Washington in on Poe

This isn't necessarily an Eagles-related report, but it's worth noting. Washington clearly needs help on the D-line and it has seemed like a really strong landing place for Eagles pending free agent Logan. 

"We have some work to do there," Jay Gruden said at the combine about his defensive line. "Without a doubt."

If Washington grabs Dontari Poe, it means they're probably out for Logan. 

8:31 a.m. -- Giants get deeper

The Giants now have Odell Beckham Jr., Sterling Shepard and Brandon Marshall. 

The Eagles' corners right now are Jalen Mills, Ron Brooks and C.J. Smith. They're going to need some more help to deal with this division. Luckily, there are options in free agency and even more in the draft. 

Update: Marshall has signed. 

7:16 a.m. -- Still talks about Cooks 

It sounds like the Cooks trade isn't dead yet, but it's possible some other teams will put together better offers for the young receiver. 

Apparently, the Saints want some pass rush help. How would they feel about an aging Barwin with a cap hit of over $8 million in 2017? 

While Kendricks isn't a lineman, he is a linebacker who can blitz. Perhaps he'd be of intrigue to the Saints. 

Maybe the Eagles don't have the firepower to get this deal done, but they're not out of it yet. 

6:14 a.m. -- How much for DeSean? 

Well, it seems like Jackson is going to get paid. 

According to this report, Jackson is expected to have a salary of over $11 million per year. 

It lists the Cowboys, Eagles, Patriots and Bucs in the mix. It appears like Washington is preparing to move on from DeSean. 

Source: Paul Turner out for another three weeks with fractured scapula

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Source: Paul Turner out for another three weeks with fractured scapula

Eagles receiver Paul Turner, who has been missing from Eagles practice since Aug. 2 with a shoulder injury, will be out for another three weeks. 

Turner's injury is more serious than previously thought. He actually has a fractured scapula, a league source told CSNPhilly.com. 

Turner, 24, initially made the Eagles' roster out of training camp last year but was cut when the team claimed Bryce Treggs off waivers. He then spent the first 10 games on the practice squad before being signed to the 53-man roster. He ended up catching nine passes for 126 yards in four games as a rookie. 

During last year's training camp, Turner instantly became a fan favorite as a rookie out of Louisiana Tech. He shined in practices and then was the NFL's leading receiver last preseason with 17 catches that went for 165 yards. And he also had a tremendous one-handed grab. 

With another three weeks added to his recovery time, making this year's roster will be incredibly hard for Turner, who is buried on the depth chart. Three weeks will bring us right to the start of the regular season. 

Other players have been making a push for the final roster spot at receiver. Marcus Johnson, in particular, has shined this summer. 

The rise of Steven Means and his sack celebration of many names

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The rise of Steven Means and his sack celebration of many names

Some of Steven Means' teammates call his sack celebration The Hammer. Some say it's The Nail In the Coffin. Assistant defensive line coach Phillip Daniels calls it The Undertaker.

Means says he likes them all. 

"The Atomic Bomb," interjected fellow defensive lineman Destiny Vaeao, who was listening in from the next locker. "Because when it hits …" 

That might be the new leader in the clubhouse. 

Whatever it's called though, Means has been doing the emphatic celebration much more often in recent weeks. That's a good sign for the 27-year-old and his chances to make the Eagles' 53-man roster. 

In the Eagles' preseason opener, Means had a half sack. Last Thursday against his hometown Buffalo Bills, Means picked up two more.

And after each sack in games and in practice (yes, he does it in non-contact practices too), Means celebrates with what has become his hallmark. He first points both fingers toward the sky, "giving God the glory," before it looks like a surge of pure energy flows through his body, starting with his toes until he releases it with a leg kick and one swift downward chopping motion with his hands. 

Means started doing the celebration during OTAs last season. It wasn't something he planned — "It just happened," he said. But he liked it and has continued it since, including last season in the fourth quarter against the Vikings, when he picked up his first-career regular season sack. 

"I don't know," Means said smiling. "I'm just out there having fun, just trying to make plays. And keep doing [the celebration]. If I'm doing it, I know I'm doing the right thing." 

This training camp, Means is a part of an extremely deep group of defensive ends. Brandon Graham and Vinny Curry are the starters. Chris Long and Derek Barnett and next up. And then there's Means and last year's seventh-round pick Alex McCalister. There seems to be a chance that just one between Means and McCalister will make this year's team. 

Even though they're competing for a roster spot, Means doesn't really think about his fellow defensive ends as competition. His brain just doesn't work like that anymore. His only competition is the offensive linemen he faces during games. 

So when McCalister picked up a sack of his own Thursday night, Means looked even more pumped about it than he did. 

"Seeing us come from where we come from and being successful at this level, I'm ecstatic for anybody when they're out there making plays," Means said. "And if I'm out there with them, I'm probably going to be more excited than them every single time."

When the time comes for the coaching staff to decide on the 53-man roster, Means will have at least one advantage. During this training camp, he's worked at defensive end and has also taken some reps at defensive tackle. DT is a new position for Means but he's excited about adding some versatility to his résumé.  

"One of the big things we've done with Steven, obviously, he's gotten a few more opportunities," defensive line coach Chris Wilson said. "And he's taking full advantage of it. That's one thing he does consistently. He's physical, he's smart, he plays with a great motor. He's always in position to make plays and when he's had opportunities in the game."

Since entering the league as a fifth round draft pick of the Buccaneers in 2013, Means has become somewhat of a journeyman in the NFL. He was with the Bucs, Ravens and Texans before joining the Eagles in December 2015. 

When he signed with the Eagles, he joined a coaching staff with Chip Kelly and Billy Davis that was on its last legs. Kelly was fired three weeks after Means got to Philadelphia and Davis was let go after the season. 

Then something great happened for Means. New head coach Doug Pederson brought on Jim Schwartz as his defensive coordinator and Means got a chance to play in an incredibly aggressive defense that allows defensive linemen to attack quarterbacks. 

"I'm just going to be 100 percent honest with you," Means said, "I wouldn't rather be anywhere else. Wherever Schwartz is, that's where I want to be."

Now entering his fifth NFL season, Means laughs thinking about how far he's come and about "how bad [he] probably was" as a rookie. Means finally looks like he's found a good spot in Philly. 

He's taken over the fourth quarters of both preseason games. In these two games, he has 2 1/2 sacks, 4 quarterback hits, 2 passes defensed, 2 tackles for loss and 4 combined tackles. 

Means has been filling up the stat sheet and turning heads along the way. 

"Letting God just play through me instead of trying to make something happen myself," said Means, who is vocal about his faith. "I'm a lot more comfortable and confident."

It shows every time he gets a sack and The Atomic Bomb hits.