NFC Notes: Eagles, Giants, Washington

     

Eagles

The Eagles have explored adding a veteran back this offseason, but have seen their main targets sign elsewhere. While the market still has some other options, it appears Philadelphia is ready to roll with a backfield featuring 2019 second-round RB Miles Sanders with Boston Scott serving as the change-of-pace and 2017 UDFA Corey Clement the current elder statesman of the group. 

“It’s making us mature faster, growing up faster just knowing really that we’re the only two backs that played last year,” Sanders said via Martin Frank of the Delaware News Journal. “And now we have younger guys in the room, plus Corey . . . Just us knowing we’re together and we’re the older guys, so having to be more vocal. Just making sure we know what we’re doing, setting examples, and being those role models.”

  • The Athletic’s Sheil Kapadia outlines six possible trades that could still happen this year, including the Eagles dealing CB Sidney Jones to the Lions for LB Jalen Reeves-Maybin.
  • Kapadia says the Eagles have a lot of depth at corner, not so much at linebacker, so reallocating resources this way makes sense. 
  • Sanders notes former Eagles RB Darren Sproles has also still been helping out during camp with the running backs in addition to his role in football ops. (Mike Kaye)

Giants

2020 did not play out the way Giants LB Markus Golden expected. Entering unrestricted free agency after recording a 10-sack season, Golden was anticipating a much larger offer than the one-year deal worth a little more than $3 million. Instead, the offers never came and Golden had to return to New York with just a 10 percent raise. He admitted it was frustrating but he’s trying to worry instead about what he can control. 

“You put in a lot of work during the season,” Golden said via Zack Rosenblatt of NJ.com. “This is a game that they say if you put the work in, hard work is going to pay off, and the game is going to pay you back in different ways. Of course, [free agency] was frustrating, but you just have to work harder and use everything as motivation.”

The Giants were able to keep Golden by using the rare unrestricted free agent tender, which allowed them to keep his rights for just 110 percent of his prior year’s salary and prevented other teams from negotiating with him past a certain date. Golden said he was “surprised” the Giants used the tender but said he doesn’t have any hard feelings toward the team. 

“Business is business,” Golden said. “I know how this stuff goes. I’ve been having that really since college and so I got a business mindset. You’ve got to have that mindset because that’s exactly what is. Yeah, it’s football, a game we’ve been playing since we were kids. But when you get to this level . . . you start to realize it’s a business. That’s a mindset I keep so I’ll be ready when different stuff like that happens.”

  • The Athletic’s Sheil Kapadia outlines six possible trades that could still happen this year, including the Giants trading a fourth-round pick for Chargers CB Desmond King.
  • The Giants are in desperate need of help in the secondary, and King could start at slot corner while New York evaluates potentially signing him to an extension after the season. 
  • Giants TE Evan Engram says he “feels great” after rehabbing a Lisfranc injury this offseason and there was never any doubt he’d be ready for training camp. Engram also shrugged off the injury-prone label. (Jordan Raanan)

Washington

Washington QB Alex Smith has defied the odds by making it back to a place where he’s been cleared to do some football activities. The veteran has yet to be cleared for full practice, but it’s looking increasingly likely that it’s only a matter of time. Once he is, Washington HC Ron Rivera plans to factor him into the quarterback competition.  

“This could be a very interesting challenge for us because of Alex Smith,” Rivera said via Nicki Jhabvala of the Washington Post. “If Alex is healthy and continues to get healthy and we do activate him, he’s going to be in the throes of this competition. It’s going to unfold I think very nicely for us as a football team. This competition is only going to make you better, it’s going to push the young guys as well. So I just feel really good about what we’re going to be doing as we start going forward. It’ll be a very challenging situation to make sure everybody’s reps are equitable and their competition is the same.”

  • The Athletic’s Sheil Kapadia outlines six possible trades that could still happen this year, including the Patriots sending a sixth-round pick to Washington for LB Ryan Anderson.
  • Kapadia notes Anderson is somewhat miscast in Washington’s new 4-3 scheme, while New England needs linebacker help after opt-outs and departures in free agency. 
  • Rivera called the decision to release RB Derrius Guice following domestic violence charges, including strangulation, difficult but necessary: “We had a conversation with (Derrius) Friday morning and from what we learned, we made our decision.” (Kimberley Martin)
  • Washington filled Guice’s spot on the roster with LB Reuben Foster, who has his own history with domestic violence. Rivera said the two situations were different: “Rueben and I talked about some specific stuff… Rueben has show he is doing things the right way. I’m excited for the young man’s opportunity.” (Martin)
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