Miles Sanders has drawn many comparisons dating back to his high school days. Guess what? He’s sick and tired of it. This is his moment now. And Sanders is ready to take the NFL by storm.
In a heartfelt letter titled “What’s Up, Philly” posted on The Players Tribune, Sanders delved deep into his football journey. He’ll be making his professional debut Sunday when the Eagles play the Redskins — how many snaps he’ll see is anyone’s guess — and the rookie wanted to set the record straight on a few things.
For starters, the Pennsylvania native — Sanders grew up in Steelers country, in Swissvale, PA — is done with all the comparisons. He respects all those that came before him and feels humbled by them, but enough is enough. Sanders was supposed to be the next LeSean McCoy, a Harrisburg native, coming out of high school. Then, he went to Penn State and backed up Saquon Barley for a spell. When Barkley left for the NFL, everyone expected a clone.
Sanders confided that Barkley pulled him aside and told him: “Just go out there and be you. Don’t try to be anybody else.”
The rookie took those words to heart while at Penn State. Now he’s taking it to the next level. No more comparisons. Ever.
“But there’s gonna be no more comparisons. No more “next this,” or “next that.” Because the Eagles didn’t draft me to be the next anything,” Sanders wrote. “They drafted me to be Miles Sanders.”
Eagles Deny Melvin Gordon Trade Report
The trade rumors were running rampant earlier this week after Sports Illustrated‘s Albert Breer reported the Eagles had made an offer for Melvin Gordon. In fact, the specific offer named Jordan Howard and a mid-round pick. According to Breer, it was a “conceptual conversation” and the Chargers never took it seriously.
On Friday, Eagles head coach Doug Pederson denied an offer was even made and talked to Howard about the erroneous report. The team feels very confident with Howard as their starting running back and wanted to make sure he knew that.
“We feel great about Jordan [Howard]; that’s why we brought him here,” Pederson told reporters. “We actually went to Jordan when the report game out, right to him, and said, ‘Listen, you’re here. The report is false. It’s not coming from us.’ Just wanted to reassure him that this is the reason why you’re here, to help us win games.”
Pederson wouldn’t divulge how they will split the carries in the backfield between Howard and rookie Miles Sanders. It will be a backfield-by-committee to start the season, but the rookie appears to have an opportunity to steal the job. Sanders was the breakout star of training camp and learned now to diagnose blitzes quicker than advertised.
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