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The Sports Daily > Eagles Eye Blog
Jaws says Peyton Manning was never in the Eagles’ plan…so concentrate on the back seven on D…

I have to admit, it was exciting to play the “guess where Peyton will land?” game… but now it’s over, and I’m glad for that. What a colossal distraction!

I managed to catch up with Ron Jaworski (“Jaws”), and he affirmed my belief that the Peyton Maning signing by the Broncos has little or no effect upon the Eagles’ 2012 plans… and according to Jaws, there will be no Tim Tebow sighting in Philly either.

There’s actually an alarming loss of body mass evident in Peyton’s upper trunk, biceps and triceps in this photo taken yesterday… I listened to a lecture by Dr. Bob Howard (of Union Memorial Hospital and the Arnold Palmer Sports Injury Clinic) last night, who explained in great detail the nature of Peyton’s C-6 cervical neck injury repair… Manning underwent two disc operations and another procedure involving the injection of stem cells in Europe before finally having a “titanium collar” operation last summer which solidified a bone impant fusion to replace the old disc in his spinal column… So according to Dr. Howard, Peyton is ready to play… and the neck is technically stronger than ever. However, the real problem with cervical spine neck injuries is that they inevitably cause loss of triceps and biceps muscle tissue…the stuff you need to really throw a fastball or a football. This muscular degeneration is a bigger problem than the “nerve regeneration” issue we hear so much about.  It’s why young men with C-3 or C-4 traumatic injuries often look like like old men after diagnosis and surgery.

Jaws said he never considered Peyton Manning even close to a blip on the Eagles radar. The real prize, according to Jaws, was Mario Williams, the super-talented DE/OLB pass rusher formerly of Houston, now safely locked away in a multimillion dollar cocoon by the Buffalo Bills.

Jaworski shares the view that the Eagles’ most pressing need entering free agency is the back seven of the defense. Don’t be fooled by the silence, he warned.

“It’s been very, very quiet – eerily quiet – but that doesn’t mean nothing is going on,” he said. “We know the Eagles operate that way. When you look at the needs, I think it’s clear that if you’re going to play the type of defense they play, they need inside linebacker help. Safety is very important, too; you need a defender entering the box with the style – the wide-9 – that they play. People might not like the wide-9, but it’s a very good defense. You’ve got to have some stud inside linebackers and, as I looked at them last year, that was the problem, the inconsistent play at the middle linebacker spot.”

Jaworski had dinner with Peyton Manning in Indianapolis before the Super Bowl. Last week, he spent time with Archie Manning at the Maxwell Club. Surely, Jaws had the inside scoop on where the future Hall of Famer was going to land?

“Not really,” Jaws told me. “I just knew it wasn’t going to be in Philadelphia. The Eagles are committed to Vick for a run in 2012. I don’t understand all the speculation among fans that Peyton would come here…it was never in the Eagles game plan nor their wildest dreams…”

Meanwhile, more signings and releases:

-Denver re-signed LB Wesley Woodward to a 2-year contract…
-Miami signed QB David Garrard (Jaguars) to a 1-year contract…
-Raiders cut FB James McCluskey
-San Diego signed TE Dante Rosario to a 1-year contract…
-Miami released Strong Safety Yeremiah Bell (age 34)…
-Raiders resigned aging OG Cooper Carlisle at the league vet minimum….
-New York Jets signed S LaRon Landry (Redskins) on a 1-year, $4 million deal…
-Patriots signed WR Donte’ Stallworth on a 1-year contract…
Eagles signed G/C Steve Vallos (Browns), a backup and former 7th round pick (Seattle) out of Wake Forest (2007)…
-Seattle waived OT Jarriel King due to King’s constant run-in’s with the law…

More updates to follow…
TUESDAY AFTERNOON MARCH 20 UPDATE: more notables…
-Denver signed QB Peyton Manning to a 5-year, $96 million contract… $19 million guaranteed through 1st year, $47 million guaranteed pending successful physical exam entering second year of contract…
-Detroit signed DT Andre Fluellen to a 1-year contract, terms undisclosed…
-Detroit signed CB Jacob Lacey to a 1-year deal, terms undisclosed…
-Jaguars waived S Terrell Whitehead
-Jaguars signed CB Aaron Ross to a 3-year, $15 million contract…
-Tennessee signed OLB/DE Kamerion Wimbley (Raiders) to 5 years, $35 million, $10 milz guaranteed…
-Buffalo re-signed WR Derek Hagan…-Carolina signed RB MikeTolbert to a 4-year contract, terms undisclosed…
-Denver re-signed G Manuel Ramirez
-Denver re-signed OLB Wesley Woodward to a 2-year contract, terms undisclosed…