‘Hard Feelings’ Has Eagles Looking to Trade Super Bowl Champion

Zach Ertz

Getty The Philadelphia Eagles will look to trade tight end Zach Ertz.

Count another hero from that fabled 2017 Super Bowl Philadelphia Eagles team out. Zach Ertz has some “hurt feelings,” according to Pro Football Network’s Tony Pauline, and the Eagles will try to trade him.

Ertz, who scored the go-ahead touchdown in Super Bowl LII, has been pretty transparent about the situation after contract negotiations stalled in September. The 30-year-old wanted to retire in midnight green with the same franchise that drafted him like his idol Kobe Bryant. However, the Eagles don’t have the money to bankroll the three-time Pro Bowl tight end.

There were reports they attempted to trade Ertz at the trade deadline but decided to keep him. Now those talks will resume, per Pauline, as the Eagles don’t want to cut him. Here is what Pauline heard at the Senior Bowl in Alabama, via Pro Football Network:

I was told unequivocally today that tight end Zach Ertz will not play for the Philadelphia Eagles next year. There appears to be some hard feelings how Ertz, a big contributor to the team during their Super Bowl run, was treated last season.

Rather than cut Ertz, expect the Eagles to try and trade him. Ertz has two years remaining on his contract.

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Eagles Hiring Colts Tight Ends Coach

Ertz won’t have the benefit of playing for new tight ends coach Jason Michael. The 42-year-old will take over for Justin Peelle who left for the same role with the Atlanta Falcons. NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero was the first to report Michael’s hiring in Philly.

Michael will be the oldest assistant coach on Nick Sirianni’s staff. He follows the former Colts offensive coordinator over from Indianapolis where he served as tight ends coach from 2019-20. He has been credited for developing Mo Alie-Cox (31 catches for 394 yards) from a college basketball standout at VCU to a starting-caliber tight end in the NFL. Prior to that, Michael coached the tight ends for the Arizona Cardinals.

He also has play-calling experience from his time as both a quarterbacks coach and offensive coordinator for the Tennessee Titans (2014-17). The former college quarterback began his NFL coaching career in 2005 as a quality control coordinator for the Oakland Raiders.

Interviewing Michael Clay for Special Teams

The Eagles lost special-teams coordinator Dave Fipp to the Detroit Lions and plan to interview Michael Clay for the vacant position. The Athletic’s Matt Barrows was the first to report the potential hire.

Clay has been assistant special teams coach for the San Francisco 49ers for four years where his units ranked second in average starting field position (32.1-yard line). The 29-year-old got his big break from the Eagles in 2014 when Chip Kelly hired him as a quality control coach.

Clay, who played linebacker under Kelly at Oregon, has also held the role of strength and conditioning coach in San Francisco. He went undrafted out of college (second-team All-Pac 12 in 2012) in 2013 before joining the Miami Dolphins’ practice squad.


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