Saturday, September 20, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Jordan instead of Fokou at SAM LB

The Eagles brought back veteran linebacker Tracy White and let go of running back Martell Mallett. White had a more significant role in 2009 than you might think.

Jordan instead of Fokou at SAM LB

Stewart Bradley did not participate in this morning´s practice. (Yong Kim / Staff Photographer)
Stewart Bradley did not participate in this morning's practice. (Yong Kim / Staff Photographer)

UPDATE:

The Eagles' linebacking situation looked different this morning than it has in previous practices here.

Middle linebacker Stewart Bradley is missing. The team said it would have an update after practice. Bradley was spelled by Omar Gaither on the first team Saturday afternoon. Andy Reid said previously in camp that he would monitor guys like Bradley who are coming back from injuries.

When Bradley came out yesterday, it looked like he took himself out, but then he would go back in. When he was sidelined, it appeared he was just stretching, and I didn't notice him having any discussions with trainers.

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As for who's on the field today, we have a development also. Akeem Jordan is seeing time at the strong-side linebacker position in place of Moise Fokou. The first-team LBs are Gaither in the middle, Jordan at the strong side and Ernie Sims at the weak side.

The second team has rookie Jamar Chaney in the middle, Fokou at the strong side and returning veteran Tracy White at the weak side.

Before today, it had been Fokou getting all the reps with the first team at SAM. Behind him had been rookie Keenan Clayton with the second team.

It appears, however, that Jordan will get a shot to win that job - for now. Or it could be that he's just being tried out there for a practice. Jordan had previously been practicing as the second-team weakside linebacker.

Like everything else, we should know more after practice when the players and coaches talk.

From earlier:

The Eagles are apparently trying to set some kind of record for roster moves here during the first week of practices at Lehigh.

Yesterday, the team brought back linebacker Tracy White and released running back Martell Mallett.

If you were a frequent reader of Man Up last season, you know I thought White had some real bright moments during the '09 season. White is 29, a seven-year veteran, whose primary role in the league has been special teams.

But he did more than that for the Eagles last year.

White saw the field during many nickel situations, primarily teaming up with Will Witherspoon when the defense put in an extra defensive back. He was forced into having a more significant role with all the injuries the Eagles suffered. Stewart Bradley, Omar Gaither and Akeem Jordan are all guys who would usually be capable of playing in those nickel situations.

In the playoff loss to the Cowboys, White was on the field for 20 snaps. And he was called on to blitz 10 times. In Week 17, he played nine snaps. Earlier against the Giants, 20. And 10 and 12 against the 49ers and Broncos, respectively.

He surprised me at times with his ability to chase down receivers and running backs.

The Eagles lack veterans, so I like the decision to bring back White, even though he's probably not a lock to make the team.

And he almost certainly won't have as significant a role if he does make the roster, now that Bradley, Gaither and Jordan are healthy.

As for Mallett, I'll admit I was a bit surprised the Eagles released him. I thought that he was a guy they would at least want to take a look at in the preseason, but I guess the backfield became just a bit too crowded with the addition of J.J. Arrington.

OK, out to the practice field. Much more coming later.


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Sheil Kapadia Philly.com
About this blog
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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