It won't take long for safety Quintin Mikell to see his former team, with the Eagles visiting the Rams in the season opener, Sept. 11.
After spending his entire career with the Eagles, Mikell agreed to a 4-year, $27 million deal with St. Louis on the first day of free agency. The first two years, at $14 million, are guaranteed.
Mikell was an undrafted rookie free agent out of Boise State when he signed the Eagles and then waited for his opportunity, which came largely after Brian Dawkins' departure.
"Me and my wife had talked about it," Mikell told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. "It was very emotional, because it was a long, hard road. It's not over yet. But it definitely was a lot of heartache, a lot of ups and downs, going down that road.
"Feeling like you should be playing, and dealing with a whole bunch of different things. To finally feel appreciated was probably the biggest thing. I'm not saying I wasn't appreciated in Philly, but to feel like I was wanted once I hit the open market, it was just perfect."
Mikell said the first call he got when teams were allowed to contact players was from Rams coach Steve Spagnuolo, a former Eagles assistant coach.
"Once Spags called me, I was like, 'Yeah, let's go,' " Mikell said. "I was very excited. Because I know the defense, I know what he brings to the table, I love the way that he coaches. It'd be nice to help a program, an organization like the Rams, kinda get back to where they used to be."
While the defense has evolved, Mikell says it fits him just right.
"I felt like I was molded for this defense," he said. "I can move around. I can cover. I can let the corners play. I can play man-to-man. I can coach. So I can do a lot of different things. I think I'm just a rounded player for it."
Nice read on Eagles defensive coordinator Juan Castillo, written by a columnist for the San Antonio Express-News who covered Texas A&I when Castillo was a player there.
Castillo talks in the piece about the influence of his college coach nad his high school coach in Port Isabel, Texas.
“I don't look at it as pressure,” Castillo said when asked about the scrutiny he is under. “I have two sons in college and I worry about them all the time. That's pressure. This is an opportunity. I want to succeed because I want to take care of my family and do a good job of representing my people back home.”