Maclin Hurt

Posted: July 27th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 71 Comments »

We don’t know for sure, but it certainly sounds like Jeremy Maclin tore the ACL in his right knee.   *UPDATE* The Eagles have confirmed that it is a torn ACL.

You hate this for a couple of reasons. First, selfishly, as Eagles fans, you don’t want to lose good players to injury. Mac isn’t a dominant player, but he’s a darn good WR. I think playing for Chip Kelly was going to bring out the best in him.

The injury is also terrible because of how it affects Maclin’s career. He was set to be a free agent at the end of the year. Both he and the team had been slow to talk extension since no one knows exactly what to make of Mac. He’s not an upper echelon WR (Fitz, Calvin, etc.), but he’s not just an average starter either. 2013 was going to be huge for figuring out his value.

I don’t think this is a crushing blow to the Eagles. We know Chip Kelly wants to run the ball. We know that Kelly wants to use TEs quite a bit. This wasn’t going to be the Mac and DJax show that we’ve seen since 2009.

Honestly, I don’t know that the Eagles have to bring in a starting caliber WR. This becomes a huge opportunity for Riley Cooper, Damaris Johnson and Arrelious Benn. Cooper and Benn have the size Kelly loves. Johnson has the elusiveness and RAC ability.

Jimmy Bama and I did a WR preview for the H2H Show and I said on there that I didn’t consider any WR a lock to make the roster. The closest thing to a lock to me was Damaris Johnson. DJax had to show Kelly that they’re on the same page. So far, he’s done exactly that and is off to a great start. Mac had to show Kelly that he would block and be more of a physical player. Kelly has no use for 200-pound finesse WRs. He didn’t need Mac to turn into Earl Campbell, but Mac’s 2012 performance was about as un-Chip Kelly as a WR can play.

I hoped that with Chip’s prodding, Mac, being a high character guy, would embrace the new way of doing business and it would bring out the best in him. Now it sounds like that has been put on hold.

There is no denying that the Eagles are weaker at WR with Mac hurt, but this injury isn’t nearly as crippling as it would have been with Reid at the helm. If you want to throw the ball 40 times a game, you need the right WRs. The 2013 Eagles will run the ball and throw to TEs and WRs. As long as DeSean Jackson stays healthy, the team can overcome losing Mac.

* * * * *

I will be interested to see the type of player they use to fill Mac’s spot. More on that later.

_


  • bdbd20

    I’ll be interested to see how much time Shepard gets. His RAC ability seems to fit nicely with Chip’s philosophy.

    • Pennguino

      I think he has the closest skill set compared to Mac.

  • SteveH

    Sucks for Mac and the Eagles both, going to be real hard to gauge his value now going into next season. What kind of offer do we give him? I think some team will still throw a pretty nice contract his way though, he’s too good not to get a mid to high level deal from somebody, I think.

    From our roster perspective the first thing I thought was that Russell Shepperd and Momah are suddenly much more so in the mix than they were before to make the roster. Those fringe players suddenly are going to get much longer looks to make the squad.

    • BlindChow

      His next contract will be a one-year, probably.

  • P_P_K

    This really sucks. I was hoping this was going to be Mac’s year to shine under Chip. I read he went down without contact.

    • dropscience

      In light of his injury, I’ll resist the urge to make the obvious joke.

      • TheRogerPodacter

        OMG i can’t stop laughing.

      • Eagles_Fan_in_San_Fran

        What, that he went down without a contract (extension)?

        • planetx1971

          I think it was the dreaded “self tacklin Maclin” nickname. Seeing he went down without contact….

  • Daniel Norman Richwine

    Maybe this will help the team to gell.

  • Ark87

    Day 2 of practice, yeesh. I’ve always been a Mac defender/supporter, don’t know what this means for his career as an Eagle or football player in general. The kid has had some awful luck with injuries and maladies. Hope everything works out for him.

    This is a massive opportunity for some of the other receivers on this roster, though. I hope someone can step up.

  • Weapon Y

    I’m not going to press the panic button yet. If Shady, DeMeco, Peters, or Kelce went down, you would have Eagles fans clogging up the suicide hotline. Benn, Johnson, and Cooper need to step up. This is their chance of a lifetime. DJax needs to stay healthy and carry the receiving group on his back. He can’t be a diva like he was in 2011. So far, he seems to be doing well.

    It seems like all the other NFC East teams have superstars who come out of nowhere. The Giants have Victor Cruz. The Redskins have Alfred Morris. The Cowboys have….um….Tony Romo? When’s the last time an Eagles skill player started off as a complete unknown and dominated at his position? Wouldn’t it be nice if Benn, Johnson, or Cooper came out of nowhere, had a Victor Cruz-like season, and made us forget about J-Mac? At the very least, they need to be better than the trio of Thrash, Pinkston, and Mitchell. If they can block well and get open a decent amount of time, we’ll be ok.

    • CampDracula

      Or Momah.

      • Weapon Y

        Momah is a possibility, but I’m not on his bandwagon yet. He just looks so raw running routes that I can’t see him being a stud in the NFL. People overlooked Victor Cruz, so I can’t say it’s impossible for Momah to succeed. If there’s a true dark horse on this team (and I’m not sure there is), I’m betting it’s Russell Shepard. He seems to have great chemistry with both Vick and Foles already.

        • CampDracula

          I don’t know jack about either, so I’m not not on anyone’s bandwagon. Either Momah or Shepard would fit the bill as a guy coming out of nowhere. I would only caution not to judge any of them until the pads go on. Small, shifty, finesse guys do well this time of year (see Johnson, Booker, and others).

          Re: Cruz. He was overlooked as a 7th round pick. But he had a productive career at a small school that would have been more productive if he weren’t sent home for academic underperformance. That’s a different kind of profile from some of the guys we have.

      • GEagle

        Wonder what type of blocker he is

  • Eagles_Fan_in_San_Fran

    If only AR were still here, this could have been a positive, because AR surely would have had to run the ball more then, right?
    Oh, wait a minute, it’s AR we’re talking about – nix that, the injury would have just caused him to “dial up” a few more pass attempts!

    • BlindChow

      “Run the ball? That’s just what they’d EXPECT us to do!”

  • Nicholas Disilvestro

    Anyone think we might bring in a FA? Not sure what guys that are still out there that fit what Chip wants in a WR.

    • Dominik

      From Birds 24/7

      “The team announced after practice that they have signed 29-year-old receiver Dave Ball, who played for Kelly at the University of New Hampshire. Ball has bounced around since leaving UNH, most recently playing in Southern Indoor Football League. He was signed prior to Jeremy Maclin getting hurt.”

      What a strange signing. His last stations:

      Chicago Bears (2007)*
      New York Jets (2007-2008)
      Montreal Alouettes (2008)*
      Hamilton Tiger-Cats (2009–2010)
      Winnipeg Blue Bombers (2010)*
      Hamilton Tiger-Cats (2010)*
      Pittsburgh Power (2011)
      Erie Explosion (2011)
      Philadelphia Eagles (2013-present)

      • Nicholas Disilvestro

        Ball is interesting. I was thinking along the lines of a guy like austin collie or laurent robinson. big wrs that had some success in the nfl and wont cost much.

        • Dominik

          I don’t know the guy, but why is he playing at such a freaking low level (for NFL standards) if he’s “interesting”?

          He’s not a 22 year old UDFA. You can land a steal there. The guy is almost 30 years old.

          • Nicholas Disilvestro

            I’m not defending Ball by any means. I didn’t even know who he was until about 3 hours ago lol. I think he was just brought in as a favor to Chip. He played under him in New Hampshire

          • Neil

            I think the logic is to get a guy who will fit in with Kelly’s program and work hard in practice, not a guy who has upside or a legit chance of making the roster. I don’t think there are young players with upside left, just guys who are older or have big injury concerns.

          • Dominik

            Still would have liked to see the reps go to players who actually need the reps – like Momah and Shepard. Those two are very raw, but with good upside. Give them the extra reps, not a 29 year old player with no chance of being a NFL player ever.

          • Neil

            I’m fairly confident he won’t be eating into anyone’s reps. The Eagles are missing 3 wide receivers with Maclin now gone. Those guys you mentioned are young and not used to the NFL. Don’t want them getting worn down.

  • nickross23

    Lookin at you Benn.. get ur ass healthy and bust ur butt to take those reps and become the man. He has all the talent and prototype size you’d want in a WR, the man just cant stay on the field. I think he has the best chance of starting outside with DJack. As for Mac, I’m bummed for the dude. I really thought we where all about to see the best of what Mac had to offer like Missouri Mac whenhhe came out

  • nickross23

    Sammy Watkins and Marqise Lee where just pushed up our draft needs in 14

    • Media Mike

      They may have been anyway considering that Maclin was “aware” of contracts given to players far better than he, but on Maclin’s radar screen for some reason.

    • D3FB

      I’d rather have Jordan Matthews or Cody Hoffmann

    • GEagle

      doubt it….I feel a CB like Robey or Olomu coming to Philly…TE Colt Lyeria, is who we HAVE to draft…

      Of course a lot can happen since then….College football is going to be a lot of fun this season…

      really doubt Chip would draft a WR in rd 1

  • deg0ey

    Whilst this is a blow, from a team perspective it might be a blessing in disguise. Mac was gonna be gone next season regardless – if he played well this year some team would offer him a big deal in free agency that the Eagles almost certainly wouldn’t match. If he played badly then the Eagles would likely let him walk and try to replace him with someone that was a better fit. At least now we’ll get to see what else we’ve got and if it’s not enough we’ll be one year ahead on figuring out that we need to go shopping in the WR department.

    Part of me thinks it’s too soon after his injury to be wondering this, but is there any chance the Eagles try to offer him a team-friendly extension while he’s still in rehab? He’s obviously not gonna make as much on the open market coming off a torn ACL and Roseman et al might be able to get him signed if Mac is worried he might struggle to find a job.

    • GEagle

      While I don’t think we would offer him an extension while injured…I do like your premise. I think Maclin remaining here after the season was a long shot, but with this injury, we have a shot at getting him to sign a 1yr Prove your knee is ok deal, and keep Mac in Philly one extra year…

      Hopefully Jarius bYrd is paying attention to all these camp injuries in contract years and Never reports to Bills camp!!!

      Injuries happen. We are always going to lose someone for the season…It could have been a lot worse then Maclin. leave me the Oline, the RBs, Ertz and Casey, and I don’t care who gets injured on offense….Maclin Down? NEXT MAN IN!…we need to get that mentality anyway…

  • nickross23

    Howie will be keeping a keen eye on the 31 other teams.. a talented guy is going to be available but I’d hope a in house guy steps up

  • SoCalEaglesFan

    hmmm. I want to take this blog seriously and have been looking forward to checking in throughout the season. But to suggest that DJax is not a lock to make the team (let alone a lock to be one of THE featured players in Kelly’s offense) is a gigantic head scratcher! His contract alone guarantees he’s on the team this year.

    It makes me wonder how insightful this blog is going to be. Thoughts like that read more like the Negadelphian haters who post on the Eagles message board. Jackson is clearly one of the premier playmakers in the entire NFL. It was equally obvious that coach Reid had run out of ideas on how to use him. You can’t expect success by just running post and fly patterns all day like Andy did with him the last two seasons.

    By the way, Demaris Johnson’s top end speed is 4.52. That’s the same speed as Jason Avant and Riley Cooper. A little guy with big guy speed does not bode well for his chances. I think he’s the longest of long shots to make the roster when it’s all said and done. Momah at 6-7 runs a 4.46. Faster than the little guy Johnson. I realize that straight line speed isn’t the be all and end all, but it does say something about how difficult it is to cover one on one.

    I’m thinking that the coaches would love to see Benn and Momah step up. And the new kid Shepard is looking like a player, too.

    • TommyLawlor

      So when DJax was running with the 3rd team in spring for a day…that meant nothing? It was a sign from Chip that DeSean needed to get with the program.

      DeSean did. He’s off to a great start.

      My point is that if he had reported to camp and had the attitude that “I’m DeSean Jackson, star receiver” and not done what Kelly wanted, the Eagles might have shopped him.

      Good DeSean is a lock. We just didn’t know for sure that good DeSean was going to show up. Luckily he did.

      And if you don’t like what I write or have to say…feel free to go elsewhere.

      • Dominik

        “And if you don’t like what I write or have to say…feel free to go elsewhere.”

        While it is factually correct, isn’t it a little bit thin-skinned, Tommy? I’m a big fan of your work, but I was scretching my head, too. Of course there’s a possibility Jacksons shows up like a total diva, with a guy like Desean probably a higher chance than with other guys. But it wasn’t realistic that the Eagles let him go. He’s basically in a contract year, showing Kelly his bad side wasn’t a good idea from the get go.

        • TommyLawlor

          My point with DJax is that I don’t think we knew for 100 percent fact that he was going to be on the team.

          You can disagree. Jimmy did on the podcast. Sounds like SoCal fan would be in that group. That’s fine. This is all opinion.

          We can certainly discuss/debate the topic and I realize my statement can catch you off guard, but I don’t think it was completely unreasonable.

          I’m not anti-DeSean. I absolutely recognize his talent. I think people at times get too caught up with talent. When a new coach comes on board, he’s going to want to do things his way.

          I didn’t expect Randall Cunningham to get benched by Ray Rhodes. I didn’t expect Bill Johnson to get cut by Andy Reid. I’ve learned that when new coaches take over, things take on a different look. You can’t go by what you knew under Andy Reid. This is Chip Kelly’s world.

          Kelly wants DeSean to be a key player for him, but he had to have DeSean doing things Kelly’s way. It appears that has happened, but we didn’t know that it would. It wasn’t a lock to happen.

        • Neil

          It definitely wasn’t likely, but Desean’s play got significantly worse when he was unhappy about his contract. Going into a new regime with a big deemphasis on Desean’s specialty, you can’t write off the possibility that Desean was going to make problems for himself when he has done it before.

      • SoCalEaglesFan

        Thanks for your response. I will. You’re a negadelphian and not worth the time.

        • TommyLawlor

          I’m a Negadelphian?

          Somebody please remember this for the other times when I’m being accused of being too positive.

          • D3FB

            I’m sure jimmy will have a 1500 word feature article up on how much of a Negladelphian you are first thing in the morning

          • GEagle

            No worries Tom…I get it all the time…Half the time Im an Evil Pessamist, the other half the time I’m a Rosey optimist…people can’t make up their minds lol

        • Neil

          I’m amazed at how one point of disagreement can so tinge the perception of someone. I think it’s a mistake here, though, man.

          • TommyLawlor

            Normally I don’t snap at people but saying…

            “I want to take this blog seriously”

            and

            “It makes me wonder how insightful this blog is going to be. Thoughts like that read more like the Negadelphian haters who post on the Eagles message board.”

            That just bugged me. Disagree with me all you want. Question my thinking. I’ve got no issue with that. His phrasing just got the best of me.

          • Neil

            I feel you. Life’s tests would be no fun if you passed every time 8^)

        • Corry

          I’m kind of surprised by this response. I’ve been reading Tommy’s blogs/posts/articles for years and he’s about as even keel as they come when it comes to tone.

          And honestly, the articles are great, but the comments really make this blog. The amount of knowledge in the comments sections is incredible.

        • planetx1971

          SOCALLEDsocaleagles fan, your opinions are about as useful & make as much sense as a 3 legged ballerina ….

          • TommyLawlor

            Nah, don’t rip him. Might be a nice guy. Just came on too strong and brought out the worst in me.

          • planetx1971

            Sorry Tommy. I KNEW when I wrote that you’d hate it. Guess I haven’t been back from Crapghanistan long enough. My social graces were left wanting. That said, I’m just protective of my favorite blogger……

          • Dominik

            “Just came on too strong and brought out the worst in me.”

            Now I like this reaction. Thumbs up for that. You didn’t pull a *Freeman*, not at all, and it’s fine to defend your opinion, but I thought your first reaction was a little bit thin-skinned.

            Just reflecting about it shows that you are a thoughtful and reasonable person. And that’s basically why I check your blog every day multiple times to see if there is a new post. :)

        • P_P_K

          SoCal, if you are still around and interested in the Eagles, I encourage you to read Tommy for a couple weeks. Dollars to donughts says you come away thinking the guy knows his stuff. My personal opinion is this is easily the best source for Eagles info and discusion. In fact, I’ve found it to be one of the best blogs in all of sports. Leave it up to you to decide for yourself.

          There’s plenty of good arguement that goes on here, as well as the occassional smack talk. I’d say stay away from personal and uninformed comments, though, most guys here know their football, and we all respect the way Tommy pours his heart into this blog. Stick around and I think you’ll end up respecting the man as much as the rest of us. Go Eagles.

      • planetx1971

        What he said…..

      • deshawnbentley

        To be fair TL, you would say that DeSean running with the third team was more of getting acquainted with his teammates than a demotion so to speak. You also claimed you cant make much of it because it was OTAs and running with said team had no depth behind it.

        • TommyLawlor

          DeSean admitted that he wasn’t fully embracing things at that point. He and Kelly met and talked after that and Kelly let him know what was expected. DeSean had to learn all the receiver positions. He had to do things Kelly’s way. DeSean listened and is off to a great start in camp.

    • Mitchell

      Damaris is quick. We already know he is not fast. He makes up for his lack of size/top end speed with his ability to cute, make people miss, and get RAC. He was actually more productive last year, with a fraction of the snaps, than Cooper. Also, this is probably one of the best sites for Eagles information out there. You should read a couple more articles and then post your “opinions.”

  • BobSmith77

    Jackson is going to be see even more double-teams now and I have to wonder how long before he pouts about not getting enough touches especially if he doesn’t get used on some hand-offs.

    • xlGmanlx

      Hopefully the run game forces the back end of the defense out of those schemes, or increased roles for the TE’s to open up the middle and threaten the safeties.

    • Media Mike

      At no point with Maclin in the #2 role did Jackson see less than double teams, so I don’t see a change.

      • GvilleEagleFan

        I don’t know if you meant it this way, but I thought this was a good opportunity to make the point that just because Mac didn’t draw double teams away from Jackson doesn’t mean he’s not a quality starter. Antonio Brown isn’t a guy that DCs are going to game-plan for (or at least hasn’t yet, sound similar?) but he was a key part of the Steelers offense while Wallace drew double teams. I’ve had my issues with Mac, but just because we’re excited to learn about the players behind him in what should be a year where evaluation and scheme fit are the top priority let’s not deny his skills. He was drafted in the first round for a reason, and his lack of physicality and injury problems were by no means guaranteed to be permanent problems.

        That being said, with Kelly designing the offense I think we’ll have plenty of ways to take advantage of the double teams DJax draws by involving our TEs and running backs or slot guys on screens. As Tommy said, losing a guy of Mac’s skills in AR’s offense that relies on the WR2 spot to create plays when Jackson isn’t open would be significant problem for this team. Kelly’s ability to replace his production stems more from his ability to use other positions to exploit the same advantages Mac did and not from the other options at outside WR being equally talented.

  • Corry

    It’s a shame for Maclin (and for me as a fan. I was really looking forward to seeing what he could do in this offense), but I guess the silver lining here is that it comes at a position where we already had a lot of competition. Note: I’m not saying the position is “deep”. Deep would mean “talented”, but we just have a lot of question marks behind Jackson and Maclin. Hopefully the competition for the limited spots brings out the best in everyone.

    I’m personally looking for Cooper to step up. He doesn’t have anywhere near the natural talent that Mac has, but I think he’s a tougher, more a physical player. I also think Shepard is going to be the beneficiary of the open spot on the final roster. Momah intrigues me, but I wonder if he’ll have any use on special teams.

    • Dominik

      “Momah intrigues me, but I wonder if he’ll have any use on special teams.”

      Block some kicks or punts, maybe? ;) ;)

      • BlindChow

        I’d love for them to stick in all their bigs for kick defense. We have, like, 5 guys over 6’6…

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  • xlGmanlx

    Hope Mac is able to recover and get another shot with the igg’s or someone else for that matter, classy guy. That said, I hope this opens up spots for folks that might not make it like
    Shep
    Momah
    Benn
    Avant
    I hope against all odds that doesn’t open up the roster for cooper for another year on this team.

    • GvilleEagleFan

      I’d love to see if Shepard could play outside, or if Kelly shows some looks with Ertz lined up as the flanker the way Hernandez did for the Patriots. Brutal timing for Mac though, I always respected his professional manner.

  • Pennguino

    Feel bad for Mac. He has lived with bad events his whole life but keeps plugging away. Getting drafted in the first round was a bright moment for him. Earning your second big contract was going to be the next shinning moment for him. Heart goes out to those that have their dreams jeopardized.

    As a phan I am going to miss his play. I was routing for him to have a huge year.

  • Chalkzilla

    Am I the only one who read “Chip Kelly’s pudding” in “I hoped that with Chip’s prodding, Mac, being a high character guy, would embrace the new way of doing business and it would bring out the best in him.” yum, pudding.

    • Dominik

      Maybe time to have some dinner at the household “chalkzilla”? I don’t know you, but you seem hungry, pal. ;)

  • livingonapear

    I really just feel bad for Mac. I wanted a good ending for him this year, and I wanted things to work out, but it’s not like Jason Peters last year where I actually felt robbed of the pleasure of watching him play. I hope his career continues after this, and I hope he comes back stronger, but mainly for his benefit, and not really for mine. I didn’t think of him as a must have for this year and would have been ok if he had been traded.

  • Kristopher Cebula

    ok Howie, there is only 1 solution here….call T.O.