Saturday, August 29, 2015

Cooper Down; No Move Right Away, GM Says

BETHLEHEM -- It didn't seem to have much to do with hitting, but the Eagles lost a player, probably for several weeks, in their first practice in pads this year at Lehigh.

Cooper Down; No Move Right Away, GM Says

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Eagles wide receiver Riley Cooper left Saturday´s practice with a collarbone fracture. (Yong Kim/Staff Photographer)
Eagles wide receiver Riley Cooper left Saturday's practice with a collarbone fracture. (Yong Kim/Staff Photographer)

BETHLEHEM -- It didn't seem to have much to do with hitting, but the Eagles lost a player, probably for several weeks, in their first practice in pads this year at Lehigh.

Third-year wideout Riley Cooper went down awkwardly on an attempted long catch and defender Curtis Marsh fell on him. Cooper stayed down, then left practice. Afterward the Eagles announced he had suffered a broken left collarbone.

Eagles general manager Howie Roseman noted the team has 13 WRs on the roster and said no move would be made right away. But he also said he hoped to have a better idea of the severity of the injury after the daily "medical meeting" tonight.

It's hard to say how long Cooper will be sidelined; we don't know details of the fracture. But it's rare for a football player to return from a broken collarbone in less than a month. Six or eight weeks is more typical.

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Former Giants receiver Plaxico Burress has been tirelessly campaigning for a job with the Eagles (or any other team). Nobody in the NFL has showed much interest, certainly not the Birds.

But even though Burress turns 35 Aug. 12, he remains as tall as he was in his prime -- 6-5. And he is an old Tidewater Virginia friend of Michael Vick. The Eagles have what looks like a talented group of wideouts in camp this summer, but they don't have great size. Iowa rookie Marvin McNutt, 6-2, 216, expected to battle Cooper for a roster spot, looked slow in the spring, though McNutt had a very good day Saturday scrimmaging, and could be one of those guys who plays faster than he practices. It could also be that he was hesitant early, beign new to the offense.

Cooper, 6-3, 222, had a very good spring. He is a 2010 fifth-round pick who caught 16 passes last season for 315 yards and one touchdown.

"He'll recover from it. He's had a very good offseason," Roseman said of Cooper.

***

An NFL source said former Eagles president Joe Banner is indeed part of a group led by Tennessee businessman Jimmy Haslam, which is negotiating to buy the Cleveland Browns. Banner set forth a goal along those lines when he announced he was moving into an advisory role with the Eagles last month.

The sale could be complete by the time the Eagles visit the Browns in the 2012 opener.

***

Saturday's other injuries were a right calf strain for DE Jason Babin and cramps for DT Antonio Dixon.

***

Among the standouts Saturday was corner Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, who used his closing speed to good effect several times when he seemed beaten. Defensive end Brandon Graham also looked good. There was a lot of energy.

Daily News Staff Writer
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