Malcolm Jenkins: Eagles players not surprised by McCoy trade
While most folks were shocked when the news broke in early March the
Safety Malcolm Jenkins told NFL Network on Wednesday it was not surprising when it was announced McCoy was being traded for linebacker Kiko Alonso.
"In the locker room a lot of guys weren't surprised by the trade, what we were more surprised of was that it was just a player-for-player trade," Jenkins said. "I think everybody thought we would have gotten more -- Kiko, plus a couple draft picks, you know, somebody else...
"You look at the style of runner that Chip wants in his offense and even though Shady is one of the best backs in the league, he's not necessarily what Chip is looking for all the time. Chip thinks he's a great running back, he knows his talent is there, but our (system) is really predicated on downhill, somebody who is going to hit the hole every time. It's about getting up in the defenders face as fast as you can and that's not necessarily Shady's running style."
The Eagles replaced McCoy's absence in the backfield by signing former Cowboys running back DeMarco Murray, who rushed for 1,845 yards in 2014, and former Chargers running back Ryan Mathews.
"When you talk about what you can get for -- if you are looking to acquire more talent -- I just think Shady's cap number and what we were able to get in return for Shady, I think made sense," Jenkins said. "And some guys in the locker room who kind of know what's going on weren't surprised by it."
Joe Lombardi: Lions excited to see what Broyles does in offseason
“I think he’s a guy you have a lot of respect for because he’s had three major injuries and fought his way back,’’ Lions offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi said Tuesday, per The Oakland Press. “When he’s been in there he’s been productive. We’re excited to see where he is now after a full season of not coming back from an injury. He’s had a full year to be healthy we’re excited to see what he does in the offseasaon.’’
Michael Thomas signs tender with Dolphins
Report: Rolando McClain agrees to one-year, $3M deal with Cowboys
McClain made his return to the NFL in 2014 after twice retiring. The former first-round pick thrived in his first season with Dallas, totaling 81 tackles (65 solo), one sack and two interceptions in 13 games.
Although, he did have some injury issues last season. Knee and groin injuries, as well as an illness forced McClain to miss three regular season games. He was then limited in the playoffs due to a concussion.
McClain remained a sought-after free agent this offseason despite reports he is facing a four-game fine for violating the league’s substance abuse policy. Also, an arson investigation into a fire that destroyed his Alabama home in December remains open but inactive.
Texans' O'Brien: WR DeAndre Hopkins can 'be one of the best'
"He had a really productive year," Texans coach Bill O'Brien said. "The thing that we really like about Hop and that we want him to continue to do is his work ethic. He’s a hungry player. He works every single day. He came into the spring a year ago and he was learning the offense and thinking out there, then all of a sudden you could see all the work he put in and learning, he just took off."
Due to the departure of wide receiver Andre Johnson, the progression of Hopkins will be under the microscope as he is now the focal point of the passing offense.
"We just want to see him continue and progress," O'Brien said. "We think he can be one of the best, we think he is one of the best. We have a lot of confidence in him and we’re looking forward to seeing him progress when the offseason program starts."
In two years with the Texans, Hopkins has reeled in 128 receptions for 2012 yards and eight touchdowns.
Giants won't rush WR Victor Cruz back to the field
"I shouldn't say this, because medically I really don't have a definite answer, but by training camp hopefully, even if it's just to bring him," Coughlin said. "We're not going to just throw him to the wind. He'll work his way through. But I hope that would be the target."
Cruz tore his patellar tendon in week six of the 2014 season, causing him to miss the rest of the year. Coughlin is hopeful that he'll return to be the player that he was before the injury.
"I think he'll be the player that he was, and hopefully better," Coughlin said of Cruz. "But as far as when, I would be careful of what I would say there. Hopefully it's the first game. But if it isn't, you know we've done that one before. We just went through it. But I'm hoping it would be."
The former undrafted free agent has tallied 264 receptions for 3,963 yards and 24 touchdowns.
Lions QB Matthew Stafford to take more chances through the air
“In his second year (in the offense) he’s going to be that much more comfortable,” Lombardi said.
“We’ll be able to tailor the offense a little bit more to what he likes and what he’s good at. I thought he played smart football and sometimes to a fault. We’ll look for him to maybe take a few more chances this year with the football.”
Although Stafford didn't take many shots down the field, he did throw a career-low 12 interceptions in 2014.
The former first overall draft pick has thrown for 21,714 yards with 131 touchdowns and 85 interceptions during his six-year career.
Colts OLB Robert Mathis plans to be ready for training camp
“It’s not going as fast as I would like to, but we are getting well and we should be clicking in camp,” Mathis told Sirius.
Mathis was suspended for the first four games of last season due to violating the league's substance abuse policy. He then suffered a torn achilles, forcing him to miss all 16 games of the 2014 season.
During his 11-year career with the Colts, Mathis has collected 487 total tackles, 111.0 sacks, 15 passes defensed and 48 forced fumbles.
Lions TE Eric Ebron has been working out with Matthew Stafford
Ebron, 21, finished his rookie season with 25 catches for 248 yards and one touchdown.
"Listen, there's a big learning curve, obviously, for any rookie. And the tight end position is one that requires a lot," Lombardi said, per MLive.com. "As you look back, if you're self critical, maybe we asked a little too much from him from that perspective. I think there was just a volume that he struggled with early.
"But, listen, he was productive, and for anybody the second year is always where you see the biggest jump."
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