Eagles become 20th team to abandon in-person voluntary workouts

NFL: JAN 03 Washington Football Team at Eagles
PHILADELPHIA, PA – JANUARY 03: Philadelphia Eagles Quarterback Jalen Hurts (2) celebrates a touchdown in the first half during the game between the Washington Football Team and Philadelphia Eagles on January 03, 2021 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, PA. (Photo by Kyle Ross/Icon Sportswire)

While the chaos 2020 might feel like it’s firmly behind us, the aftermath is still very much present. The pandemic is still a factor in our day-to-day lives and when it comes to NFL teams, it’s something that will be at the center of every decision moving forward. Today, the Philadelphia Eagles became the 20th team to abandon their OTA program.

The team released a statement via the NFL Players Association:

This carries a lot of weight. The Eagles could have technically gained a significant advantage over their opposition by starting their offseason program two weeks before everyone else (April 5th) due to the arrival of a new Head Coach in Nick Sirianni.

Teams are allowed to host a single mandatory minicamp each offseason. The Eagles can technically be able to hold two because of their coaching change. That no longer appears to be the case, at least as far as in-person workouts go.

The full offseason program was set to start on April 19th and look like this:

Phase one (Two weeks): Strength and conditioning 
Phase two: (Three weeks): Individual on-field workouts. No live contact or ‘team’ drills. 
Phase three (four weeks): OTA’s and minicamp

It’s worth noting that last year, the majority of this offseason portion was conducted via ‘Microsoft Teams’ virtual meetings. 2020 presented a unique challenge to NFL teams and it looks as though 2021 will carry on in the same fashion, at least to begin with.

For now, all eyes remain on the NFL Draft. The Eagles were unable to really get the most out of their pool of rookie talent last year, but with a new coaching staff in place, the front office will be hoping that with a rough structure already in place form last year, that their fortunes will be different.

Photo by Kyle Ross/Icon Sportswire