It's an all too familiar scenario for the Eagles secondary coaches in recent years… a once-great but now injured veteran safety is signed on a low-risk high-reward contract …and it ends up going nowhere.
It's too early to throw Kenny Phillips under the bus… but it's not looking real good right now.
The former New York Giant did not practice for the Eagles on Thursday, according to multiple reports. While the rest of his team was practicing, Phillips was resting his left knee.
According to Geoff Mosher of Comcast Sports Net, a source close to Phillips said the sixth year safety was "fine." Phillips' sitting out is considered precautionary.
When healthy, he can be one of the best safeties in the league. There is a reason, however, that the deal he signed with the Eagles carried no guaranteed money. Yes, it is only OTAs- which aren't even mandatory- but it has to be a little concerning that Phillips isn't out there.
Hearing Phillips is on the sidleine likely only brings up bad memories for Eagles fans of players who were signed after a major injury, only to not pan out the way the organization hoped.
Phillips might be the starting safety on defense if healthy, but with his being sidelined, last year's starting tandem of Kurt Coleman and Nate Allen are getting a chance to show their new coaches what they can do. Allen and Coleman are also getting a chance to work in the new defense under Billy Davis.
Phillips is not expected to practice on Friday with the team, but could take the field in June when the team practices again in a mandatory camp. At least we (and Kenny's agent) can hope for that…
Nick Fierro of the Allentown Morning Call tried to get under the skin of head coach Chip Kelly concerning Kenny Phillips' playability…
"With Kelly, it's like bleeding blood from a stone.
"For example, Kelly would only say (after prompting) following Tuesday's practice that safety Kenny Phillips was not on the field because he was in the training room, presumably working on a cranky knee. Here's the complete cross-examination that followed:
Q. Was that a precaution because of the knee?
COACH KELLY: It's got nothing to do with the weather.
Q. You said Kenny is OK?
COACH KELLY: I said Kenny is here. He was in the training room. He wasn't on the field.
Q. Does he have an injury?
COACH KELLY: Yeah, he's had an injury for a couple of years now.
Q. Has he had a setback on that?
COACH KELLY: I don't ask questions. They just tell me who is going and who is not going.
Q. Can we ask trainer Chris Peduzzi about the knee?
COACH KELLY: I don't know. I don't know what the protocol is. But I'm not a doctor, they just tell me who is practicing and who is not practicing.
"Later, Phillips emerged to say that the weather did have something to do with his absence, that he didn't want to risk things on a wet field with a knee that's apparently not 100 percent sound yet, despite his insistence a week earlier that it was.
"Get used to the Belichick-style information flow, folks. It's glacial.
"So long as his team doesn't move (or learn) the same way, this shouldn't be a problem."