The Eagles are back.
Michael Vick and LeSean McCoy were among the first Eagles players to return to the NovaCare Complex this morning as the NFL lockout lifted, at least in part.
The NFL Network asked Vick about his contract: “It’s a back burner issue” Vick said. The Eagles have until Sept. 20 to sign Vick to a long-term extension. If they don’t have a deal by then, they have to wait do get one after the season, or use the franchise tag again after the season.
Other players sounded eager to be back, as you might expect.
“We’ve been waiting for this. This is what we do,” said tanned and bulked up tight end Clay Harbor.
“We can’t help what happened, missing mini-camps, we’ve just got to get ready for the season,” said linebacker Jamar Chaney. Chaney said he expects to play either in the middle or at weakside linebacker this year. People inside the team see him on the weakside.
Harbor said he added about 10 pounds of muscle in the offseason so he could be more physical in the blocking game. Harbor is athletic with soft hands, but had to work much of last season to improve as a blocker.
McCoy was asked about the new rules limiting hitting and two-a-days at training camp. Will he miss them?
“Yeah, I’m going to miss it, I’m going to miss it,” he said, full of sarcasm.
Owen Schmitt – his long hair cut short, after donating to Locks of Love – said he’s ready for competition at fullback after the Eagles drafted Stanley Havili in April.
“Obviously I’m probably not in football shape. I don’t think any of us are. We haven’t really practiced or been in that environment for awhile, so it’ll just take a couple days to acclimate,” Schmitt said.
The Eagles also announced that they agreed to terms with a number of undrafted free agents:
WR Perry Baker, WR DeAndre Brown, RB Graig Cooper, P Chas Henry, QB Jerrod Johnson, DT Ced Thornton, WR Terrance Turner and TE Martell Webb.
Perhaps there’s a gem in there, but undrafted free agents face a tough road to the roster this year. They’ll arrive at training camp with just one day to prepare and no familiarity with the system. Most summers they would at least have mini-camps to get acclimated.