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Kelce, Mathis Defend Their Sign Language

Evan Mathis and Jason Kelce say they understand and support their fans' right to express themselves about the team's 1-4 start.

Kelce, Mathis Defend Their Sign Language

Evan Mathis said he did not want see a negative sign at the Eagles´ "front door." (Charles Fox/Staff Photographer)
Evan Mathis said he did not want see a negative sign at the Eagles' "front door." (Charles Fox/Staff Photographer)

Evan Mathis and Jason Kelce say they understand and support their fans' right to express themselves about the team's 1-4 start.

But when they were leaving NovaCare Monday afternoon and saw a sign advocating the firing of Eagles coach Andy Reid, they stopped and asked the fans who'd hung it to take it down.

"We don't need that kind of division on the team right now," said Kelce, the Eagles' center, a sixth-round rookie from Cincinnati. "They have the right to do that, just as much as I have the right to tell 'em -- ask 'em -- to take the sign down. I support their freedom of speech, their right to say anything they want to, but what I want them to do is do that on a blog, do that in media, keep it away from here. Right now we're trying to come together as a team and get this thing fixed, and we don't need people calling for (the firing of) our head coach right on our front door, when we're trying to get better and come together."

Kelce said he doesn't regret stopping.

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"There was nothing ever physical mentioned, there was no harm in it," Kelce said. "We asked them to take the sign down. They took the sign down."

Mathis, the starting left guard, said: "Before a lot of people were going to see the sign, I didn't want anything negative out there that could have any kind of potential to create a divide on this team. So we asked 'em to take it down."

Mathis, a first-year Eagle who previously played for struggling teams in Carolina and Cincinnati, said he told the fans with the sign they "don't know what they're talking about ... don't know how good they have it around here, having Andy as the coach."

"I said it's not his fault that we're turning the ball over, that he's not the one out there making mistakes, it's us," Mathis said. 

"Those are all valid points," Mathis said, when a questioner brought up the fans' right to express their unhappiness, after investing money and time into the team. "But to bring something so negative and put it in our front yard, at our front door, I didn't want to see that, and I didn't want anybody else on my team having to come out and see that. Everybody driving out and seeing that every day, that's not going to do anything for us.

"I didn't jump out of the car, rip it down and beat 'em up, or anything ... This isn't the World Wrestling Federation."

**

To read our earlier post with the Eagles' coordinators, click here.

Les Bowen Daily News Staff Writer
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