By Peter Gleason
Everybody in town and the nation has an opinion on Eagles’ Supreme Leader Chip Kelly’s decision to cut guard Evan Mathis on Wednesday.
But no one speaks from more wisdom and experience than former Eagle guard Todd Herremans (above), whom Kelly also cut and is now a member of the Indianapolis Colts
Here’s Herremans’ take from an appearance yesterday on Anthony Gargano’s show on 97.5 The Fanatic:
I think it’s very unfortunate how it all went down,” he said. “I think it’s tough not to add any offensive linemen and then get rid of both of your starting guards in one offseason. But Chip’s got a plan — nobody knows what it is (chuckles) — but he’s got a plan and he’s putting it into action.
“I think it’s kind of unfortunate for Evan. I think he kind of brought it upon himself, though, by not showing up. We expect them to stick to the contract that they offer us, that they sign us to, and they expect us to do the same. If you’re going to violate some of the things that are expected out of you then you have to be able to deal with what comes next.”
Mathis didn’t technically violate anything contractually, though. The spring workouts that he decided to stay away from this offseason were voluntary. Mathis said that he planned on attending next week’s mandatory minicamp.
Chip Kelly’s] main goal is to get everybody on his roster that wants the same thing, and the way that he looks at it is if you’re not here during the voluntary stuff when all your teammates are trying to work together to win, then that means that you don’t want the same thing that everybody else does, that you don’t want to win. You want money, you don’t want to win,” said Herremans, now a member of the Colts. “Which isn’t true. I know that Evan wasn’t happy with his contract, but he also wants to win. And he’s a monster in the gym so I know he was working out keeping himself in shape.”
Herremans believes Mathis would have been a professional if he reported and wouldn’t have been a distraction.
He called replacing both guards “a difficult feat” but opined that the coaching staff likely feels better about the situation given that the depth got so much work last year because of injuries. “He knows that he’s got Al [Allen Barbre] that can play and [Matt] Tobin can play and [Andrew] Gardner can play. And given the chance to start, they can become starting guards in this league. But from the outside looking in, it is a tough move.”
Even so, Herremans believes everyone should allow all of this to play out before making full judgment on Kelly.
“I really, honestly, deep down think that the Eagles are going to have a good season. I think they’re going to have a winning season,” he said. “They may make the playoffs. I know there’s been a lot of changes and everybody’s questioning and stuff like that, but I really think you should just sit there and let Chip do what he’s going to do and then see what the final product is because there is no sense in judging it until it’s all done.”