INDIANAPOLIS -- If it weren't for the Steak and Shake sightings, there might not be any proof that
Andy Reid was here for the NFL scouting combine.
The Eagles coach has been an apparition this week -- at least for the media that covers the NFL, and in particular, the reporters that write about the Eagles. The whole organization, in fact, has been in cognito. Of 32 NFL teams, the Eagles were one of only nine teams that weren't represented by a coach or genereal manager on the media room podium.
Eagles GM Howie Roseman met with a handful of reporters for a 45-minute pre-combine chat last week rather than have his week of scouting interrupted. It was an understandable move by the new GM, although he might have benefited from a podium appearance and used it as an opportunity to introduce himself to the rest of the national media.
Reid avoids the spotlight like he does the ellipitcal machine in his office. In light of all the rumors surrounding his quarterback situation, there was no way he was standing before 400 media members to answer another question about Donovan McNabb. Who could blame him? Although it would have been nice to at least seen Big Red once aaaaaaaannnnndd ... asked him if McNabb was his starting quarterback for next season.
Former Eagles and current Browns GM Tom Heckert said yesterday that he had seen Reid "numerous times." The Eagles and the Browns have suites next to each other inside Lucas Oil Stadium. In fact, Browns president Mike Holmgren was caught by an NFL Network camera chatting with Eagles offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg. The two worked together in Green Bay.
The rest of the Eagles contingent have been spotted in various locales througout the week. On Friday, Roseman and Eagles president Joe Banner ran into several Eagles reporters inside the lobby at the Westin Hotel where they were staying. The two were heading to lunch with agents J.R. Rickert and Peter Schaffer, representatives for Eagles center Jamaal Jackson and defensive tackle Mike Patterson. Rickert said it was just an annual ritual and not much of a business meeting.
Offensive line coach Juan Castillo whisked through the Indiana Convention Center just outside the large conference room where hundreds of NFL agents were involved in a seminar. Castillo is one of the coaches actually involved in the combine. So, too, was wide receivers coach David Culley. There may have been more Eagles coaches giving instruction to prospects, but only a handful of reporters are actually allowed to watch the combine in person.
The rest of the staff spent its week huddled inside the cavernous dome watching various players they'll never draft, walking through the artic blast in between the Westin and Lucas Oil Stadium and eating in Indianapolis' esteemed collection of chain restaurants.
Reid, apparently, could be found at the Steak and Shake munching on its fine cuisine. Mmmmm, Steak and Shake. Sounds like dinner tonight. Maybe Reid will be there aaaaaannnnnnnd ... be able to answer who his starting quarterback is for next season.