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Eagles release Pro Bowl guard Evan Mathis (Shutdown Corner)
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Wednesday, 01 July 2015
The Evan Mathis saga in Philadelphia has come to an end. According to multiple outlets (and Mathis himself), the Eagles released the veteran offensive guard Thursday afternoon. Thanks for the memories Philly. — Evan Mathis (@EvanMathis69) June 11, 2015 Mathis, who had been with the Eagles since 2011 and earned trips to the Pro Bowl the past two seasons, has reportedly been in a contract stalemate with the team for quite some time. The five-year, $25 million deal Mathis, 33, signed in 2011 was set to expire after the 2016 season. [ Yahoo Sports Fantasy Football is back: Sign up for a league today! ] According to Pro Football Talk , the Eagles will take a $1 million salary cap hit with Mathis’ release, but will ultimately save $11.5 million in cap space. Mathis, who missed seven games last season with a knee injury, was absent from the team’s voluntary OTAs this month and his agent had reportedly been seeking a trade after the team declined to restructure his deal. Eagles head coach Chip Kelly said after the draft that the team received no offers for the 11-year veteran. Kelly also declined to comment on Mathis’ contract situation earlier in the week. According to the Philadelphia Inquirer , the Eagles offered Mathis a restructured deal that would have “increased his yearly salary $1 million” in 2014, but Mathis declined. That deal came when former general manager Howie Roseman was running the show, but was no longer on the table when Kelly assumed authority over personnel matters this offseason. With mandatory mini-camps set to begin Tuesday, Mathis was facing thousands of dollars in fines if he continued his hold out. He told CSN Philly's Geoff Mosher that he planned to attend. Just asked Evan Mahtis if he had planned to show up next week. Response via text: "Yep. Flight was scheduled for Monday." — Geoff Mosher (@GeoffMosherCSN) June 11, 2015 With Mathis out of the equation, the Eagles have several options to fill in at left guard. According to the Inquirer, Allen Barbre has been practicing with the first-team offense in Mathis’ place throughout OTAs while Matt Tobin, Andrew Gardner and Dennis Kelly saw time at right guard.  - - - - - - - Sam Cooper is a contributor for the Yahoo Sports blogs. Have a tip? Email him or follow him on Twitter! Follow @SamDCooper
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Eagles coach Chip Kelly: Evan Mathis asked for release (Shutdown Corner)
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Wednesday, 01 July 2015
In his first public comments since the release of Evan Mathis , Philadelphia Eagles coach Chip Kelly said the Pro Bowl guard and his representation asked for a release on multiple occasions. “We were asked by his agent for a release on multiple occasions,” Kelly said per the Philadelphia Inquirer . “We weren’t coming to a conclusion in terms of a contract extension – we weren’t going to extend any contract or adjust any contract, so we granted what his agent asked for.” [ Yahoo Sports Fantasy Football is back: Sign up for a league today! ] In an interview with CSNPhilly.com’s Geoff Mosher , Mathis didn’t exactly agree with Kelly’s summation of the situation. Mathis, speaking to CSNPhilly.com on Tuesday, said he asked the team in March to release him if it didn’t plan to rework his contract. A March release would have enabled him to find another job before the start of free agency, which could have helped Mathis attain the contract he sought. But Mathis said he hasn’t since asked to be cut and, to his knowledge, neither has his agent, Drew Rosenhaus. Kelly said Tuesday that he moved on after several requests from Mathis and his camp to be released. A source close to the situation said neither Mathis nor anyone in his camp has asked the team to release the 34-year-old guard since March. Mathis had been with the Eagles since 2011 and his five-year, $25 million deal was set to expire after the 2016 season. Mathis, who earned back-to-back Pro Bowl nods, also asked the team to restructure his contract last offseason. Nonetheless, he told Mosher he had a flight booked to report for mandatory mini camp Tuesday and play the 2015 season under the current contract. “Yes, I would have played under the contract and been fine — like last year,” Mathis told CSN Philly. “I can block stuff out and not let it be a distraction. I missed voluntary stuff, but I was still working hard. It doesn’t mean I was going to be a bad apple. I would never do that.”  Mathis, who made a combined $14 million over the last three seasons, said he hoped the Eagles would agree to a restructured deal with incentives for reaching certain milestones. From CSNPhilly.com: As for his dispute, Mathis said he was seeking only an incentive-laden restructure that would have boosted his salary to among the highest paid at his position if he reached those marks. Mathis’ base salary this year would have been $5.5 million, and in 2016 boosted to $6 million, but veterans rarely see the back ends of their contracts. Mathis said he just wanted the opportunity to boost his contract to fair-market value through creative contract maneuvering. “Why not have a couple of years where I could at least have the opportunity to achieve it?” he said. “That’s what I was proposing … that I had to be absolutely elite to earn it. One hundred percent that’s all we were trying to do the last few months.” Now a free agent, the 34-year-old Mathis said several teams have expressed interest in his services.  - - - - - - - Sam Cooper is a contributor for the Yahoo Sports blogs. Have a tip? Email him or follow him on Twitter! Follow @SamDCooper
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Colts' LB Mathis eager for quick return, being cautious (The Associated Press)
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Wednesday, 01 July 2015
Colts linebacker Robert Mathis has learned a few things being in NFL locker rooms for the past 12 years. Less than 24 hours after team owner Jim Irsay tried to tamp down the early-season expectations for the 2013 NFL sacks champion, Mathis reluctantly acknowledged that he would accept the third part of the lesson while maintaining his goal of lining up for the Colts' regular-season opener Sept. 13 at Buffalo. ''I want to be out there with my guys, I want to be out there and be part of it,'' Mathis said after the Colts completed the last of their offseason workouts Thursday.
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Eagles will have at least five new starters on offense (The Associated Press)
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Wednesday, 01 July 2015
While Sam Bradford and DeMarco Murray headline a new-look offense for the Philadelphia Eagles, their success depends on the performance of the blockers in front of them. The Eagles have two new starters on an offensive line that was dominant in 2013 but was depleted by injury in 2014. The team opened minicamp Tuesday without two-time Pro Bowl guard Evan Mathis, who was released last week following a contract disagreement.
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Rams to give Foles the benefit of the doubt? (Shutdown Corner)
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Wednesday, 01 July 2015
According to NFL.com , even though Nick Foles hasn't played in an NFL game since the beginning of November, the St. Louis Rams desperately want to sign him to a long-term extension – before he gets a chance to improve his value during the season. Why? Foles is on the last year of his rookie contract, due to make $1.5 million this year. If he does well this season, something Rams fans are praying for, given their years of suffering with Marc Bulger and a largely-absent Sam Bradford, he'll be in line for a big payday. The Rams traded for Foles because they wanted him and they also needed to get rid of Sam Bradford, who they picked No. 1 and never panned out due to chronic injuries. It'd be a shame to see him, but signing Foles to a long-term deal would no doubt be risky. He's coming off an injury and his performance last year prior to that injury was up-and-down, to say the least. But the Rams don't have much else to go with at quarterback, so they're hoping Foles can play the way he did after replacing Michael Vick in 2013 with the Philadelphia Eagles. Scratch that. At this point, they're just hoping that he doesn't get injured again.
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Does an extension make sense for Sam Bradford and the Eagles? (NBC on Yahoo Sports)
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Wednesday, 01 July 2015
The latest on Sam Bradford’s contract situation is about the same as it was when the Philadelphia Eagles traded for the sixth-year quarterback in March. That is to say there isn’t much of a latest at all.  Albert Breer for the NFL Network  reported that while the two sides are talking, no real progress has been made toward an extension. Some may find it troubling that Chip Kelly traded Nick Foles and draft picks for a signal-caller who’s not only still recovering from knee surgery, but is also entering the final year of his deal. Among those critical of the head coach’s inaction on cementing Bradford’s future with the franchise is  Andrew Brandt for The MMQB , who writes the ball is now squarely in the player’s court. The lack of an extension accompanying the trade has given Bradford some leverage going forward, assuming he stays healthy. While I have agreed with most of the moves made by the Eagles, an extension for Bradford could have been negotiated as a trade contingency. The Eagles could have given themselves leverage, but that opportunity was lost. From Brandt’s viewpoint, the primary reason the Eagles would be hesitant to extend Bradford at this stage is because they are still considering a trade, which sounds like pure poppycock. We’re six weeks away from training camp, and Kelly is going to shop his hopeful starter to go with Mark Sanchez, Matt Barkley or Tim Tebow under center instead? The reality here is likely far more simple. Do the Eagles—or Bradford for that matter—really know the player’s true value in this case? Keep in mind, part of the reason the St. Louis Rams were willing to dump Bradford in the first place was his unwillingness to take a pay cut. Bradford is set to earn nearly $13 million in 2015, the sixth-highest base salary of any quarterback in the league, according to  Spotrac . Many would say that is a steep price to pay for a player with his body of work. Is Bradford worth more or less than that? It’s difficult to say. Obviously, he thinks the same or more. The Eagles don’t necessarily think less, but committing vast sums of money to a player that carries the number and type of questions Bradford does is a dicey proposition. In the NFL, you can pay anybody anything for one year—it’s the future you have to budget for under the salary cap. Mainly, it’s Bradford’s health everybody is so worried about. How do you hand any player an expensive, long-term contract when he’s played just seven games over the past two seasons? When his twice-repaired ACL still doesn’t even allow him to be a full participant in practice? Heck, at this point, there’s still discussion of Sanchez breaking the huddle for Philadelphia in Week 1. Once Bradford does get back on the field, he has plenty to prove. Granted, much of his struggles as a member of the St. Louis Rams can be traced to the lack of a decent supporting cast, whether that’s in the way of weapons, protection or stability in the coaching staff. That being said, no matter how we look at it, Bradford is showing an 18-30-1 record as a starter and career 79.3 passer rating. And Bradford is supposed to be the one with the leverage here? He’s probably fortunate to be making that $13 million. If the Eagles were going to make Bradford an offer, it would likely be for less than he believes he’s worth. And if you’re in Bradford’s shoes, why wouldn’t you gamble that a year in Philadelphia’s prolific offense will increase your value? Virtually every offensive player who’s worked under Kelly has enjoyed a career year. Even just proving he can play 16 games would provide a boost in negotiations. Naturally, there’s risk in that approach for Bradford, although there’s risk in signing a lowball offer and outplaying a new contract in Year 1, too. If he wasn’t willing to come down from $13 million a few months ago, there’s no reason to believe he’ll accept substandard money now. Either way, there’s little risk in waiting from the Eagles’ end. If Bradford goes on to stay healthy and have the type of season many feel he’s capable of, it’s not as if the team would allow him to simply become a free agent. They would slap him with the franchise tag, limiting Bradford’s movement or preventing his departure altogether. As Brandt writes, the franchise tag could pay Bradford as much as $20 million in 2016. Then again, he wouldn’t necessarily sign for that if the Eagles were willing to give him the security of a long-term extension at that point, which presumably they would, at market value. And if Bradford isn’t healthy or struggles, the Eagles aren’t on the hook for anything next year. That doesn’t preclude the team from reaching a new deal with Bradford, either, it simply means they’re not stuck paying a guy a ton of money after he didn’t pan out. The surprise isn’t that Bradford and the Eagles aren’t close on a deal. The surprise is there’s any hand-wringing over a contract situation in the first place. Bradford, the former No. 1 overall draft pick and Rookie of the Year, isn’t going to accept any offer right this moment that doesn’t pay him among the upper-echelon of quarterbacks in the NFL—we’re talking multi-year deals that total in the hundreds of millions. The Eagles aren’t going to award a guy a blockbuster contract when he isn’t healthy and hasn’t played particularly stellar when he was on the field. The good news is Bradford and the Eagles are talking, which means there’s legitimate interest in getting something done down the road, provided the partnership works out. However, it only makes sense for both sides to test the waters before taking the plunge. - Andrew Kulp, 700 Level, CSN Philly
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CFL GM talks Michael Sam's departure, said he almost signed Tim Tebow (Shutdown Corner)
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Tuesday, 30 June 2015
To think, we were this close to having Michael Sam and Tim Tebow on the same Canadian Football League team. That's what Montreal Alouettes general manager Jim Popp said in an interview with Les Carpenter of The Guardian . Popp said he almost signed Tebow last August. He met Tebow at an undisclosed location in the United States, and Tebow " had packed his bags for Montreal and brought the luggage with him," Popp said. But the story says the deal fell apart because Tebow decided to work for ESPN as an SEC analyst. Tebow signed with the Philadelphia Eagles this offseason. It would have been interesting to see Tebow play in Canada, but he has maintained a desire to be a quarterback in the NFL. [ Yahoo Sports Fantasy Football is back: Sign up for a league today! ] Sam's story is different, although like Tebow he draws a ton of attention from even the most casual of football fans. Sam, who became the first openly gay player to be drafted by the NFL when the St. Louis Rams took him in 2014, signed with the Alouettes. But amid reports that he was struggling in camp, he left the team on June 12 to go back home right before the Alouettes' exhibition opener. He hasn't returned, but Popp said he has been in contact with Sam and he would be "surprised" if Sam doesn't come back. Popp said he believes that Sam was overwhelmed a bit by the fame he got after announcing he was gay, before last year's NFL draft. “I think he needed a break,” Popp told The Guardian. “That’s my personal belief. I think it was just overwhelming to some degree, and he needs to clear his mind, clear his head. Do I think he wants to play? Do I think he wants to be on the field? Do I think he wants to be Michael Sam the football player? I, 100 percent, believe that. Yes.” Popp told The Guardian he thought Sam was a great CFL prospect because even though he was undersized to be an NFL defensive end and not quick enough to be a linebacker, the Alouettes liked his pass-rush ability. When Sam left the Alouettes, Popp said many NFL teams called to ask what happened, which he took as a sign that an NFL team might be interested in signing him down the road. “They wouldn’t be calling if they weren’t interested,” he said. “They were monitoring him to see how he did here. There’s a lot of people who want to see Michael Sam play, and they are going to tune in to see him play.” Tebow and Sam arguably could have helped themselves with CFL exposure. Tebow might get that exposure during the NFL preseason with the Eagles, but Sam didn't have that option. If Sam wants to get a foot in the door of the NFL again, he probably needs to show some things in the CFL. His chances of getting another NFL chance won't improve if he never returns to the Alouettes after leaving the team before the exhibition season started. But, with just a little bit different turn of events here and there, the Montreal Alouettes could have become one of the most-watched football teams around. - - - - - - - Frank Schwab is the editor of Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it or follow him on Twitter! Follow @YahooSchwab
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Mad Dash: Former BYU hoops players show off dance skills at wedding (NBC on Yahoo Sports)
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Tuesday, 30 June 2015
The BYU Cougars know how to get down at a wedding. Jimmer Fredette and his ex-teammates put together a series of dances for Brandon Davies' wedding reception, and while the choreography for the group dances was nothing to sneeze at, it was Fredette, of course, who drew the biggest reaction when he broke things down . Let the record show that no one was better than Davies, whose moves were truly great. It's just that Fredette is the star attraction when it comes to all things BYU, with a legend that precedes him. So naturally, we're left wondering if "Teach Me How to Dougie" is going to be replaced at summer weddings by "Teach Me How to Jimmer." OK, probably not.  Giants punter Steve Weatherford gave an honest assessment of the three Philadelphia Eagles vying for the team's starting quarterback spot, and that didn't sit too well with Eagles lineman Jason Kelce . The two then engaged in a brief Twitter spat which saw Kelce ripping a punter for having the nerve to speak, and Weatherford backpedaling a bit in order to keep the peace. And football season is sadly still months away.  We were not in attendance for the 2015 Maple Hill Open, but we wish we had been on Hole No. 3 when Dave Feldberg's frisbee golf shot travelled a remarkable 365 yards (with one skip) for a hole-in-one . The gallery couldn't believe it, Feldberg was extremely amped, and it's the most exciting frisbee golf has ever looked.  - - - - - - - The Yahoo Sports Mad Dash is a roundup of the morning's trending stories from across the sports landscape. Check it out every day to see what's buzzing.
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NFL-National Football League roundup (Reuters)
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Monday, 29 June 2015
Seattle Seahawks defensive end Michael Bennett is seeking an upgraded contract and says he might hold out of training camp in an effort to get it. - - The Philadelphia Eagles announced the signing of unretired guard John Moffitt to a one-year contract. Moffitt, who abruptly retired from the NFL in 2013 at age 27, recently said he is planning to make a comeback after battling drug issues.
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Cary Williams: Chip Kelly was 'outcoached' late last season (Shutdown Corner)
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Monday, 29 June 2015
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Chip Kelly reportedly forced to pay $99K in lease dispute (Shutdown Corner)
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Monday, 29 June 2015
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Eagles coach Chip Kelly hit with $99K tab for penthouse rent (The Associated Press)
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Monday, 29 June 2015
Philadelphia Eagles coach Chip Kelly has been hit with a $99,000 tab in a lease dispute over an $11,000-a-month penthouse. A city judge sided with landlord Tempa Berish and found that Kelly failed to give notice he was moving out after a year. Kelly's lawyer argued that the leasing agent knew Kelly hoped to buy a home and needed a flexible lease on the Old City apartment.
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We have a Twitter feud between the Giants punter and Eagles center (Shutdown Corner)
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Monday, 29 June 2015
One NFL player criticizing another team's quarterbacks is usually something worth noting ... unless the player saying those things is a punter. New York Giants Steve Weatherford is legit, he's probably in better shape than a lot of NFL players , but he's still a punter. So it certainly seemed odd when comments came to light that were critical of  Philadelphia Eagles quarterbacks, Sam Bradford, Mark Sanchez and Tim Tebow. "I'm gonna give you a Ferrari [Bradford] that maybe won't be running all the time, or I'm giving you a nice Cadillac sedan [Sanchez]," Weatherford said on WFAN's "Boomer and Carton Show," via ESPN. "It's not the fastest but you know what you're going to get out of it. Bradford can go from zero to 60 in three seconds, but you don't know if he's gonna start up some days." Oh, don't worry, he discussed Tebow too. "I'm the biggest Tim Tebow fan in the world," Weatherford said. "I mean, who wouldn't want their daughter to date a guy like that? I'll tell you what, I don't want him taking snaps for my team." Weatherford also said Eagles coach Chip Kelly " will get himself in serious trouble " if he signed Bradford to an extension, given Bradford's injury history. Weatherford took to Twitter to say that his comments were taken out of context and that he was complimentary of all three quarterbacks, and we'll get to that in a moment. [ Yahoo Sports Fantasy Football is back: Sign up for a league today! ] Now, it should be said that all of Weatherford's comments are fundamentally true and none are  outrageous. Nobody knows what to expect of Bradford because of the injuries, Sanchez is (at best) a Cadillac sedan of quarterbacks and yeah, you probably don't want Tebow taking snaps at quarterback. But, again, Weatherford is a punter. Eagles center Jason Kelce took exception to him speaking about his teammates. Kelce tweeted, " Of course a player who is literally not allowed to be touched is talking [expletive]... Is interviewing punters a thing now? " Eagles defensive back Malcolm Jenkins joined in, retweeted Kelce's words while adding the comment "#puntersgetnolove." So we have a June feud, I guess. Weatherford tried calming down things by saying that he didn't have anything bad to say about the Eagles players. Did u even read the my quotes? Or did u generate ur opinion based upon the headline? (Continued) @Jkelce — Steve Weatherford (@Weatherford5) June 29, 2015 Ur smarter than that don't let some1 tell u your opinion. I was complimentary of all 3 QBs. Nothing but respect. @Jkelce @Jkelce — Steve Weatherford (@Weatherford5) June 29, 2015 @Jkelce to you, your team & fans:My apologies if it was taken offensively. I was not my intention or goal. Nothing but respect. — Steve Weatherford (@Weatherford5) June 29, 2015 Weatherford's comments might have been taken out of context, and might not have been that inflammatory to begin with, but they drew the attention of at least one prominent Eagles player. Usually nobody pays attention to punters, so that's something new. - - - - - - - Frank Schwab is the editor of Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it or follow him on Twitter! Follow @YahooSchwab
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Cam Cashes In (Rotoworld)
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Monday, 29 June 2015
Jesse Pantuosco discusses Cam Newton's new contract and the return of Adrian Peterson in this week's Bump and Run.
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