Saturday, July 4, 2015

Haynesworth, Hixon and the NFC East

What recent event made me think of the Vet? Which NFC East team is relatively drama-free right now? Some links and thoughts to share.

Haynesworth, Hixon and the NFC East

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Redskins DT Albert Haynesworth is drawing criticism from across the country. (AP Photo / Nick Wass)
Redskins DT Albert Haynesworth is drawing criticism from across the country. (AP Photo / Nick Wass)

Better late than never today. Here are some NFC East links and thoughts:

* Let's start with the Giants. Wide receiver Domenik Hixon will miss the 2010 season after tearing his ACL on the FieldTurf at the New Meadowlands Stadium. When I hear "caught in the turf" I think one thing, probably like the rest of you: The Vet.

Accoring to Mike Garafolo of NJ.com, players said the turf seemed a bit soft and needed to be broken in.

I can only imagine what everyone would be saying if a similar incident played out in this city.

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Hixon had just 15 catches for 187 yards last year. But you might remember he had a 61-yard touchdown in the Eagles' 45-38 win over the Giants in Week 14. He was also New York's return man.

* Meanwhile, Osi Umenyiora was not practicing with the starters when minicamp opened this week.

"If I truly, truly was not the best player, then I’d be cool with that," Umenyiora told Garafolo when asked if he’d welcome a rotation of defensive ends with Mathias Kiwanuka, adding: "The minute in my mind I’m playing the way I’m capable of playing and I’m not on the field, then of course it’s going to be a problem. But you know, I don’t think that’s going to happen."

Amazing how quickly things can change in the NFL. New Jersey reporters are writing stories about whether Umenyiora will be a distraction and how much playing time he'll get. Philly reporters are writing about Winston Justice being one of the only dependable parts on the Eagles' offensive line.

* And then there's the Redskins and Albert Haynesworth. Normally in these situations, it's at least reasonable to see the player's perspective. But not in this case. Haynesworth was paid a $21M bonus in April, but did not show up to mandatory mini-camp this week because he's unhappy that the 'Skins are switching to a 3-4 defense.

Maybe one of the most important things the Eagles did this offseasonwas say no when the Redskins reportedly wanted to include Haynesworth in the Donovan McNabb trade.

* Could it be that the most drama-free team in the division is the Cowboys? It sure seems that way. Other than Miles Austin-Kim Kardashian rumors, there's not much there. NFL preview magazines will start popping up soon enough, and predictions will be made. Look for Dallas to be the consensus pick among the "experts" to win the NFC East. There's pressure locally for the Eagles, but for the first time in a decade, it'll be hard to find anyone picking them to win the NFC East, let alone get to the Super Bowl.


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Sheil Kapadia is in his fifth season writing about the Eagles and the NFL for philly.com. His earliest memories as a sports fan include several trips to Veterans Stadium with his Dad. He's not a beat writer or an Insider, but is here to discuss the NFL 365 days a year. E-mail him at skapadia@philly.com or by clicking here

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