BETHLEHEM -- Veteran tight end Visanthe Shiancoe "had a good workout," Eagles general manager Howie Roseman said Tuesday, but Roseman said no TE signing is imminent, and late Tuesday afternoon, a source close to the situation said Shiancoe will not be signing with the team.
Why are the Eagles, who seem reasonably well set with Brent Celek and Clay Harbor, suddenly being rumored to be in discussions with every veteran tight end this side of Mike Ditka?
"Competition," Roseman said. "We did the same thing last year. We had five tight ends in camp, including Donald Lee" who was just off playing a solid role for a Super Bowl-winning Green Bay team. Lee was eventually cut.
Roseman would not confirm a CBSSports.com report that said the Eagles will give Jeremy Shockey a physical.
So far, all this seems to mean is that we should probably hold off on the stirring profiles of guys like former Penn State TE Brett Brackett. Obviously, there is something the Eagles would like to see in their TE mix that they aren't seeing.
Defensive line coach Jim Washburn says he talks to Albert Haynesworth now and then, Haynesworth telling him, "Hey, Wash, it's your big black son." Haynesworth was a star defensive tackle for Washburn in Tennessee. But Washburn said he feels Haynesworth is done, with a degenerative back condition.
"He helped me pave my driveway," Washburn said. As reporters envisioned Haynesworth ladling tar, Washburn explained he wasn't speaking literally. "We won a bunch of games, I got a raise and was able to pave my driveway. We took the clothesline down, got a dryer and everything."
Asked about the loss of defensive tackle Mike Patterson, held back from training camp as his skull heals from brain surgery to untangle blood vessels, Washburn said Patterson's consistency is hard to replace.
"He's a constant. Every time I turn on the film on Monday, I know he's going to play good," Washburn said. "He's a constant guy. Might not make a million plays, but he's always where he's supposed to be and always doing the right thing." Amidst last year's early defensive chaos, "that was a wonderful feeling, to have a guy in there you knew was going to play the same every week.
"It's hard to stomach a loss like that. Hopefully, he'll be back sooner than later."
Washburn likes 2011 practice squadder Cedric Thornton, and good spring work started to revise his opinion of vet Antonio Dixon, who Washburn said showed up way out of shape aftrer the lockout and eventually went down for the season with a triceps tear.
"Nobody ever talks about [Thornton]," said Washburn, who clearly wanted to remedy that. "He's big, strong, tough, just raw, doesn't know he doesn't know. Wants to be a football player ... He's another great kids. That room's just full of great kids."
Thornton, 6-4, 309, played at Southern Arkansas. He was promoted to the roster for the final three games of the 2011 season, for safekeeping during the time when teams start poaching other teams' practice squad guys for future use.