When the Eagles signed Jason Peters and Jason Kelce to contract extensions last month, it was a point of pride that the entire offensive line was locked up through 2016. But the one player whose future is most in question beyond 2014 is Todd Herremans, one of the two longest-tenured Eagles who is a respected veteran in the locker room and has maintained a strong presence in Philadelphia.
"I'd like to say I’d be at the starting level until I retire, which is four-to-five years from now,” Herremans said by phone recently while promoting his Herremans Hoops for Help charity function. “But to be realistic, I think I can be a starter and produce for another three years, which is what I’m signed through. I want to go out there this year and show I’m worth what they’re giving me.”
Herremans’ function is on Thursday at Vie on 600 N. Broad Street, and will benefit six local charities. Some of Herremans’ teammates will be attendance, including Connor Barwin, Jeremy Maclin, and Brent Celek.
It will be the second year Herremans is holding the event, and he will be noticeably healthier for this one. Herremans was recovering from foot and ankle injuries. Herremans was still recovering during the offseason, and he struggled early in 2013.
“It’s no secret I had a rough start,” Herremans said. “But I feel like I finished strong the second half of the season, getting better, more and more comfortable.”
Herremans said a full offseason will be key for him in 2014. There is a better understanding of coach Chip Kelly’s system, and he has had a full year back at guard.
At 31 and entering his 10th NFL season, Herremans knows the clock is ticking on his career. He admitted that some of the older veterans on the team “only have so many years left,” and they don’t take satisfaction from an early playoff exit.
“A lot of fans and people around the city were happy and excited how last year went, and almost content with making the playoffs,” Herremans said. “But I don’t think anyone on the roster was really satisfied with that. I think everyone on the roster was like, what’s the point of making the playoffs if you’re out in the first round.”
The Eagles focused on their offseason on re-signing their own players. The biggest acquisitions were Malcolm Jenkins and Darren Sproles, who were not top-of-the-market players. Herremans applauded this approach.
“I think we’ve learned from the past that we don’t need the marquee names, we just need guys who can fit a little better,” Herremans said.
Of course, the story of the offseason could be what happens with DeSean Jackson. Herremans has played with Jackson throughout Jackson’s entire career and said he had no issue with Jackson in the locker room last season.
“I think DeSean was a great teammate this year,” Herremans said. “Seemed very focused, very dialed into everything we were doing, and trying to help out as much as we could.”