Sunday, March 1, 2015

Westy Passed Rams Physical; Birds sign free agents

Your Eagletarian is hearing via a St. Louis media source that Brian Westbrook passed that physical over the weekend and might very well end up joining the Rams.

Westy Passed Rams Physical; Birds sign free agents

Brian Westbrook has said he wants to continue to play. (Yong Kim/Staff file photo)
Brian Westbrook has said he wants to continue to play. (Yong Kim/Staff file photo)

Your Eagletarian is hearing via a St. Louis media source that Brian Westbrook passed that physical over the weekend and might very well end up joining the Rams.

The sense is that it might be up to BWest, whether he wants to take an incentive-based deal to back up Steven Jackson as the Rams rebuild in earnest behind former Eagles assistant Steve Spagnuolo. The Rams'offensive coordinator is Pat Shurmur, longtime Eagles quarterbacks coach, who also knows Westbrook well.

The biggest negative, beyond the fact that Westbrook won't be winning the Super Bowl in St. Louis anytime soon, might be that the Rams play and practice on artificial turf. The Eagles tried to keep Westbrook's turf exposure to a minimum the past few years; he often sat out indoor practices to keep his left knee from swelling up. When Westbrook was released by the Eagles, a source close to the situation expressed the opinion that if he were to continue his career, it would have to be with a natural grass team.

Westbrook's agent, Todd France, did not respond to a request for comment. Westbrook has said he wants to continue to play.

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EAGLES SIGN FREE AGENTS

The Eagles announced they have agreed to terms with the following 11 rookie free agents:

DT Charles Alexander (6-4, 300), LSU

WR Blue Cooper (6-2, 185), Tennessee-Chattanooga

G Zipp Duncan (6-5, 297), Kentucky

QB Joey Elliott (6-3, 215), Purdue

T Austin Howard (6-7, 333), Northern Iowa

WR Kevin Jurovich (6-0, 188), San Jose State

T Jeraill McCuller (6-6, 328), North Carolina State

CB Josh Morris (5-11, 186), Weber State

CB David Pender (6-0, 180), Purdue

WR Pat Simonds (6-5, 229) Colgate

FB Chris Zardas (6-0, 238) Massachusetts

Most of the signings were reported in various media outlets, beginning Saturday night.

Alexander appeared in 43 career games (29 starts) for LSU, totaling 89 tackles and 4.5 sacks. He started in all 13 games as a senior in 2009, recording 29 tackles, two tackles for a loss and one sack.

Cooper finished his collegiate career with 152 catches for 1,790 yards and 14 touchdowns. His reception and touchdown totals rank fourth and fifth, respectively, on the school’s all-time lists. A second-team All-Southern Conference selection as a senior in 2009, set career highs in receptions (84), yards (824) and touchdowns (7).

After spending most of his sophomore and junior year at left guard, Duncan successfully made the move to left tackle as a senior in 2009, garnering second-team All-SEC honors. He made a string of 39 consecutive starts in 51 career games. Duncan began his college career as a tight end before transitioning to offensive line in 2007.

A team co-captain as a senior in 2009 in his first year as the starting quarterback, Elliott completed 267 of 433 passes (61.7 percent) for 3,026 yards and 22 touchdowns. Also ran for 268 yards and four touchdowns. He was a three-time Academic All-Big 10 selection.

Originally a tight end at Northern Iowa, Howard made the switch to left tackle in 2008 and started 25 games, earning second-team All-Missouri Valley Football Conference honors following his junior and senior seasons. He also played basketball at UNI during the 2005-06 season.

Jurovich amassed a school-record 160 receptions for 2,143 yards and 11 touchdowns in his career at San Jose State after making the switch from safety to wide receiver following his sophomore season. He earned second-team All-Western Athletic Conference honors in 2007, setting a school record with 85 receptions for 1,183 yards and nine touchdowns.

A three-year starter at tackle for NC State, McCuller was named the recipient of the 2009 Governor’s Award, given to the member of the team who is the most valuable player based on ability, contribution, leadership and intangibles.

A two-year starter at Weber State, Morris registered seven career interceptions and was awarded first-team All-Conference honors following his junior and senior seasons, in addition to being named an FCS first-team All-American in 2009.

A three-year starting cornerback at Purdue, Pender concluded his Boilermaker career with 129 total tackles and three interceptions. An Honorable Mention All-Big Ten selection as a junior in 2008, he ranks second all-time in program history with 33 pass breakups. Pender started the final 31 games of his career after moving into the starting lineup as a sophomore.

Simonds recorded 171 receptions for 2,797 yards and 29 touchdowns in his four-year career at Colgate. He broke the program’s single-season touchdown record after hauling in 14 touchdowns in 2009. As a junior in 2008, Simonds finished second in the Patriot League in yards per game (94.7) and third in receptions per game (5.42).

Zardas started in 17 of 34 games, finishing his career with 351 rushing yards and seven touchdowns. A two-year starter at fullback, he was the key blocker for a team that tallied seven 100-yard rushing games in 2009.

HUNT TRIES COMEBACK

Former Eagles running back Tony Hunt will take a step toward returning to the NFL when he takes part in the Giants’ rookie minicamp this weekend.

Hunt is among 23 players invited on a tryout basis to the 54-player camp that includes the Giants’ draft picks and undrafted free agents.

Hunt was an Eagles’ third-round pick in 2007 out of Penn State and was released midway through the 2008 season after a failed attempt at moving to fullback. He was out of football last season.
 

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