Tuesday Roundup in Philly

Tuesday Roundup in Philly

Eagles:
We were all surprised by the lack of problems T.O. caused last year as an Eagle.  Fans across the country were just waiting and hoping for him to blow up in our faces.  All of this T.O. hoopla with his new agent and wanting a new contract has really tarnished all he did on the field last year.

ESPN's Len Pasquarelli gives some nice insight into all of the recent happenings.  The recent Freddie Mitchell comments are disheartening as well.  Something doesn't seem right in Eagle land.  Freddie seemed to take a couple shots at Donovan while on Howard Eskin's show on Saturday.. going as far as to call Donovan a "mother f%$@er."  Hey Freddie, enjoy playing for a loser next year.

Throw in Corey Simon who wants to be "un-tagged" and Brian Westbrook who isn't happy with the lack of a long term deal and things in Eagles land are discombobulated.

Sixers:
The Sixers are renewing an old rivalry of sorts tonight against the Boston Celtics.  The two teams are jockeying for playoff spots in a tight Eastern Conference.  When they last met a week ago in Boston, Allen Iverson led the way in a win with 38 points, but he may not be able to go tonight with thumb problems.

Phillies:
The Phillies made it three straight last night against the team which they seemingly couldn't beat a few years ago, the Florida Marlins.  Brett Myers had a real solid outing and the bullpen didn't blow it this time.  The Bomb which Burrell hit was one of the longest shots I have actually seen in a while.  The most exciting thing about the Phillies nice start this season has been the consistency of the starting rotation.  We all knew the bats would be good this year, but to see the starting five come out fast is great.  For a full game recap check out fellow blogger at BerksPhilliesFan.

Howie Kendrick (oblique) finally ready to begin rehab assignment tonight

Howie Kendrick (oblique) finally ready to begin rehab assignment tonight

Phillies corner outfielder/infielder Howie Kendrick is finally nearing a return. He'll begin a rehab assignment tonight with Triple A Lehigh Valley.

Kendrick has been out since April 15 with an oblique strain. He did defensive work during the Phillies' road trip and has been taking outdoor batting practice at home this week.

Kendrick was off to a hot start when the oblique injury sent him to the DL. In 10 games, he went 13 for 39 (.333) with four doubles, a triple and five RBIs. He batted second all 10 games.

The Phillies are in a bad offensive funk and could use Kendrick's bat over Michael Saunders' right now. The Phils' 1-2 hitters were among the most productive in the majors in April, hitting close to .350 for the month. They're down to .282 on the season as Cesar Hernandez and Odubel Herrera have slumped in May.

With Clay Buchholz likely out for the season and Saunders providing little offense so far, the Phillies' trio of offseason veteran additions has not panned out through two months.

Supplement-free Lane Johnson heaviest he's ever been, feels he has much to prove

Supplement-free Lane Johnson heaviest he's ever been, feels he has much to prove

It's only natural to have some reservations about Lane Johnson after he was suspended for 10 games last season for his second violation of the NFL's performance-enhancing drug policy. One more positive test and the Eagles will lose their starting right tackle for two full years.

Fortunately, Johnson seems determined to avoid any future run-ins with the league. The 27-year-old changed his entire approach this offseason, cutting out negative influences or any other voices at all while preparing for the 2017 season.

"I just trained by myself back in Oklahoma," Johnson said after the Eagles' first full-team practice of OTAs on Tuesday. "Trained by myself and everything went good. I came back, my body weight is about 325, so I'm heavier than I've ever been. I feel in good shape, and I have a lot to prove, so it's a big year for me.

"I did everything by myself. There wasn't going to be any mishaps."

Two suspensions totaling 14 games later, Johnson has gained a healthy fear of being unknowingly steered toward an illegal supplement.

Johnson tested positive for PEDs before the season last year after taking a banned substance known as peptides and was eventually slapped with the full 10-game penalty after a lengthy appeal process. The fifth-year veteran always maintained peptides were not listed on the label of the offending supplement.

Johnson filed a lawsuit against the NFL and the players' association in November after the suspension was upheld. Its status is ongoing.

Johnson also served a four-game suspension in 2014.

When he's not in trouble with the league office, Johnson is a vital cog in the Eagles' offense. They went 5-1 with him and 2-8 without him last season.

"I feel like whenever I'm playing, I try to be the best right tackle in the NFL," Johnson said. "My deal is to just stay on the field, play a complete season, and I think it will be a big year for me."

Johnson isn't concerned about losing a competitive edge, physically or mentally, after dropping supplements altogether.

"I've always been the athlete that I am," Johnson said. "That's what I'll continue to prove. I'm gonna go play and show people what I can do."

Signed in January 2016 to a five-year contract extension worth $56 million, Johnson has plenty to prove. He was working out in place of 35-year-old left tackle Jason Peters, who wasn't at the start of OTAs, on Tuesday and is expected to one day replace the nine-time Pro Bowl selection permanently.

Despite his checkered past, it sounds like Johnson knows exactly what's on the line, which is why he chose to go it alone this offseason. The only person you can trust is yourself.

Then again, Johnson still has his vices, which might raise some eyebrows with the news he's up to 325 pounds — eight more than his listed weight.

"My big deal is cutting out the ice cream, the Ben & Jerry's late at night — the stuff you want to indulge in," Johnson said. "If you get me on an ice cream binge, it's not good."

The Eagles can probably deal with a little extra ice cream, just as long as Johnson remains committed to keeping dodgy supplements out of his body.