Eagles Steal Bears Guard, Protect 4 Practice Squad Players

Jamon Brown

Getty Jamon Brown #68 of the Atlanta Falcons.

Drum roll, please … the Eagles added offensive line depth at the guard position.

Philadelphia signed veteran Jamon Brown off the Chicago Bears practice squad. He’ll fill the last active roster spot vacated earlier in the day after the team placed Craig James on injured reserve. Brown, a third-round pick in 2015, has seen action in 60 career games (47 starts) in stints for the Rams, Giants, and Falcons. He actually started in Week 2 last year versus the Eagles.

The 6-foot-4, 340-pounder is a versatile option having appeared at both left guard and right guard. His experience appears to be an immediate upgrade over Nate Herbig. Or, maybe the Eagles are being extra sneaky by adding Brown just in time to scout All-Pro Aaron Donald. (Any extra help is fine).

Brown was teammates with the dominating Rams defensive tackle for 3.5 years in St. Louis and Los Angeles. The 27-year-old was suspended for violating the NFL’s substance-abuse program for the first two weeks of the Rams’ 2018 Super Bowl campaign. He was replaced by interior lineman Austin Blythe and never won the job back.

Still, the five-year veteran provides a nice insurance policy for the Eagles. Remember, rookie tackle Jack Driscoll left Sunday’s game with an undisclosed injury and Jordan Mailata took over in his absence. With Lane Johnson reportedly set to return — “count me in” — in Week 2, Herbig will probably keep his spot at right guard. His 77.4 pass-blocking grade was the highest-rated mark of any player on the Eagles’ offensive line.

“I thought Nate did well,” head coach Doug Pederson said of Herbig. “Wasn’t perfect, but for his first start, he’s a smart guy, and he graded well. As of right now as we move forward, we’re going to continue to work him in there at right guard.”

One more note about Brown: he has legitimate experience playing left tackle and started nine games at left guard as a rookie. Here is a nice (brief) scouting report, via The Falcoholic:

Brown originally played left tackle in college and began his career with the Rams on the left side, starting in 9 games during his rookie season before ending up on IR with a leg fracture. He switched to right guard for the Rams in 2016, playing in 11 games and starting 6. Brown finally got a chance to be the full-time starter again in 2017, playing and starting in all 16 games for Los Angeles. He achieved one of the highest PFF grades of his career that season, with a 64.5 (average starter).

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Brown Planning to Honor Breonna Taylor

In July, Brown told ESPN that he planned to honor Breonna Taylor by wearing her name on his helmet as a way to bring more awareness to social injustice. But the Falcons released him after training camp so he never had the opportunity. He spent the last few weeks on the Bears’ practice squad before the Eagles scooped him up on Tuesday.

Brown grew up in Taylor’s hometown of Louisville and played college football at the University of Louisville. Taylor was gunned down by police officers in March after they allegedly executed a search warrant of the wrong home. Her family recently received a $12 million settlement, per ABC News. Brown was inspired to do something in her memory.

“Yes, sir, I will put Breonna Taylor’s name on my helmet,” Brown told ESPN. “To me, the God I serve says we’re all brothers and sisters in His eyes. Losing Breonna Taylor was like losing a sister, even though I didn’t know her. Being able to carry her name and represent what she stood for alive, I’m for that.”

It’s unclear if Brown will even suit up this Sunday for the Eagles, let alone get to fulfill his promise. Keep an eye on the back of his helmet should the team keep him active.

Eagles Protect 4 Practice Squad Players

The Eagles also protected the following practice squad players for Week 2: DE Joe Ostman, WR Deontay Burnett, CB Trevor Williams, DT T.Y. McGill. Teams have until 4 p.m. on Tuesday to choose four players they wish to keep away from their rivals.

It seems like a good bet the team will call up Ostman and McGill, with Vinny Curry out and question marks surrounding Derek Barnett, Brandon Graham and Javon Hargrave. The Eagles can elevate two guys from their practice squad to bring the roster to 55.

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