Extra Time: New Jerseys, Number 9, Nicknames, and Keon Rides Again

Extra Time: New Jerseys, Number 9, Nicknames, and Keon Rides Again

quick look at some minor Philadelphia Union stories: A peek at the new
jerseys in the wild, Jack McInerney's new number, a nickname idea, and a
site for sore eyes in Orlando.

Pro League Athletic has tweeted the following pictures of the Union's new replica jerseys:
See the home version below, plus a few more Union stories in brief.

As we've seen before, the first one is certainly a different look
from both the gold-dominated and all-white kits from the previous two
seasons, while the second looks fairly similar to their existing primary
gear, although with obvious updates. Still interesting to see that the
kits on sale at the Union's site
appear slightly different
than this version and the one on
WorldSoccerShop.com. Probably just a photo file difference and not a
material one. Thoughts on the new look? Parts you like, elements you

Now to the players who'll be wearing them, although this next story is still uniform-heavy…

Sebastien Le Toux already seeing preseason friendly action wearing a
Vancouver Whitecaps crest, his number 9 was open on the Philadelphia
Union. Not for long though, as Jack McInerney took to twitter today to
announce he'd be wearing it in 2012.
Fear not, fans who bought his previous number 19 version. Jack Mac says
not to worry, he will let you know how it can be taken care of soon.
Doubtful there is a Le Toux jersey contingency plan though, though
you'll never catch any flack at PPL Park for wearing dated gear. Le Toux
jerseys will be timeless.

Now, a bit of slightly old news, but great news nonetheless. The
Union began the week by announcing that Danny Mwanga and Keon Daniel
would join the team for training in Orlando. We knew Mwanga would be
back, as he was just off visiting with Aston Villa for 10 days of
training. Keon… we weren't sure what would happen. After he left the
club to play with his Trinidad and Tobago national team, he never
returned, with various rumors swirling as to why (apparently a visa
issue was the culprit
This is great news to us, as Daniel is a Level favorite. We'd love to
see him get more minutes in 2012, but for now we're just happy he's with
the club at all. Hopefully he'll be an even bigger contributor after
gaining experience with his national team.

Philly Soccer Page wonders about a nickname for the Union, proposing
"the Snakes." Even after a particularly Premiership-heavy weekend, it
hadn't dawned on me that the Union didn't have a separate nickname. I
guess, as the post suggests, "the Union" and "the U" were enough. Zolos
is also pretty solid, rooted in the team's history forever. But I like
PSP's idea for a light offseason day post, so feel free to shout any you
might have, either here or there. [Philly Soccer Page

And finally, Kerith Gabriel says we can expect the Union to make the signing of Lionard Pajoy official sometime today.

Hat tip to Steve Moore for the jersey pics.

Union emotional after Maurice Edu's season-ending injury

USA Today Images

Union emotional after Maurice Edu's season-ending injury

CHESTER, Pa. — On the eve of his comeback after missing nearly 13 months with a left tibia stress fracture and other related injuries, Union midfielder Maurice Edu fractured his left fibula on Saturday, keeping him out for the 2016 playoffs and beyond.

“I was trying to take the shot on goal and my foot got stuck in the turf,” Edu said Sunday, in his blue Union-issued suit and supported by crutches. “My ankle rolled and twisted and it kind of snapped a little bit. I heard it crack, and a lot of pain from there. I got a scan afterward, and there was a break.”

There's no timetable his return.

Edu, 30, has spent over a calendar year fighting various injuries that have kept him out of game action. His trouble began on Sept. 30, 2015, when he played through the U.S. Open Cup final with a partially torn groin and sports hernia. It was during Edu’s recovery from those injuries that he developed a stress fracture.

"A little bit frustration. A lot of frustration, to be honest," he said. "But all I can do now is get back to work, focus on the positives and make sure that my situation isn’t a distraction from the team."

Edu’s teammates were equally devastated by the news. Edu, the Union captain when healthy, is popular and well-respected in the locker room.

"I feel so bad for him," said Alejandro Bedoya, who wore a dedication to Edu under his jersey on Sunday. "He’s one of my good friends, so I was looking forward to playing alongside him. I know how hard he’s worked to get back, and to see him go out like that, it’s heartbreaking. I’m sad for his loss and I hope he stays strong."

Edu, who has been with the Union since 2014, returned to training in July and played three conditioning appearances with the Union’s USL team, Bethlehem Steel FC. He was on the bench for the Union’s last three games and was set to make his first appearance in over a year against the New York Red Bulls on Sunday, a game the Union eventually lost, 2-0 (see game story).

"We’re gutted for Mo," Union manager Jim Curtin said. "He was slated to start today. It’s real upsetting because he’s worked so hard to get back on the field. It’s been a tough 2016 for him, but I know he’ll come back stronger."

While he was visibly shaken by recent injury, Edu is driven to return.

"What happened, happened," Edu said. "I have no control over that. The only thing I do have control over is my next steps from here, how I prepare myself mentally and emotionally and how I continue to support this group."

Snap counts: Connor Barwin's snaps decrease; filling in for Bennie Logan


Snap counts: Connor Barwin's snaps decrease; filling in for Bennie Logan

During the week, Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz said he thought defensive end Connor Barwin could benefit from fewer snaps during games. 

That's exactly what happened on Sunday. 

Barwin, who came into the game with the most snaps by an Eagles defensive end, played 49 (64 percent) against the Vikings. He came into the game playing 79 percent of the Eagles' defensive snaps. On Sunday, he had a huge strip sack of Sam Bradford. 

Taking away some of Barwin's snaps on Sunday was even more impressive considering Vinny Curry played quite a few snaps inside as a defensive tackle with the absence of Bennie Logan (groin). 

Curry played 41 snaps (54 percent) against the Vikings after playing just 40 percent of the team's defensive snaps before this weekend. 

Beau Allen, who started in place of Logan, played 51 snaps (67 percent), while rookie Destiny Vaeao chipped in a career-high 30. Vaeao has had 58 snaps in the last two weeks. 

Ron Brooks played just seven snaps before going down with a serious leg injury. That meant Jalen Mills played 27 snaps and safety Jaylen Watkins played 46 snaps. 

Malcolm Jenkins continued his impressive streak. He played all 76 snaps on Sunday and the only defensive snap he's missed was that weird fake punt in the opener against Cleveland. 

On offense, Josh Huff saw his role increase some on Sunday and he made the most of it. Huff, who had just nine snaps last week, got 20 against the Vikings and caught four balls for 39 yards. Perhaps Huff's production is why Dorial Green-Beckham's snaps dropped to 28 (48 percent). 

Matt Tobin got some extended playing time (20 snaps) at left tackle thanks to Jason Peters' bicep injury. Peters said that had the game been close, he would have been fine to go back in. 

Zach Ertz got 48 snaps (83 percent) but walked away with one catch for 14 yards. He's been on the field, but can't seem to become a part of the passing offense. 

Ryan Mathews and Darren Sproles each got 26 snaps on Sunday. Wendell Smallwood got five and Kenjon Barner 3. On the season, Smallwood has 28 carries on 42 snaps. 

Here's a full look at snap counts from Sunday: 

Allen Barbre, 58 snaps, 100 percent
Halapoulivaati Vaitai, 58, 100
Jason Kelce, 58, 100
Carson Wentz, 58, 100
Brandon Brooks, 53, 91
Zach Ertz, 48, 83
Jordan Matthews, 45, 78
Jason Peters, 43, 74
Nelson Agholor 43, 74
Brent Celek, 28, 48
Dorial Green-Beckham, 28, 48
Darren Sproles, 26, 45
Ryan Mathews, 26, 45
Josh Huff, 20, 34
Matt Tobin, 20, 34
Trey Burton, 13, 22
Wendell Smallwood, 5, 9
Stefen Wisniewski, 5, 9
Kenjon Barner, 3, 5

Malcolm Jenkins, 76 snaps, 100 percent
Nigel Bradham, 76, 100
Jordan Hicks, 76, 100
Nolan Carroll, 75, 99
Rodney McLeod, 75, 99
Brandon Graham, 57, 75
Fletcher Cox, 54, 71
Beau Allen, 51, 67
Connor Barwin, 49, 64
Jaylen Watkins, 46, 61
Leodis McKelvin, 44, 58
Vinny Curry, 41, 54
Destiny Vaeao, 30, 39
Jalen Mills, 27, 36
Mychal Kendricks, 24, 32
Marcus Smith, 18, 24
Ron Brooks, 7, 9
Steven Means, 5, 7
Stephen Tulloch, 5, 7