Ladies and gentlemen, he’s back. The Philadelphia Eagles and Darren Sproles agreed to terms one a one-year deal on Friday, July 19th.
We’re a little less than five days before things crank up at the Novacare Complex, but that doesn’t mean the Philadelphia Eagles aren’t working. The quest for a second Super Bowl title in three seasons is well underway, and on Friday, shortly before most of us sat down for dinner, the ‘Birds’ came to terms on a one-year deal that will bring veteran running back Darren Sproles back into the nest.
This victory lap is going to happen one way or another. This is the third-straight season that we enter training camp with the idea that this may be Sproles’ final season in the NFL. Everyone should understand though. Sproles has earned the right to go out on his own terms, and he wants to retire as a member of the Philadelphia Eagles.
Here’s the thing though. He just turned 36 years young on June 20th. He’s still young by the standards of most, but by NFL standards, that’s ancient for a running back. Sproles may be the exception to the rule though. We’ve long learned that he’s a freak of nature.
Still, for the past two seasons, most of the talk surrounding him has nothing to do with whether or not he has the legs for another NFL season. It’s about his recent history with injuries. He broke an arm and tore an ACL on the same play in 2017, and he dealt with a hamstring injury a season ago.
He’s played in nine games over the past two seasons with two starts, racking up 181 rushing yards, 233 receiving yards, and three total touchdowns.
That gives him 1,265 rushing yards, 1,435 receiving yards and 1,328 yards on both kickoff and punt returns to go along with 21 total touchdowns during his time in an Eagles jersey. He’s also tied with DeSean Jackson for the most touchdowns by punt return in team history.
In 2019, we may finally get to see what the offense looks like with both of these two playmakers on the field. Remember, the Eagles trade with the New Orleans Saints on March 13th of 2014 that brought Sproles on board came 15 days before Philly released Jackson. Some fans, at that time, were hoping to see both of these playmakers on the field at the same time, but that isn’t how things worked out.
They’ll get that chance now, albeit five years later. If Sproles makes the team, there will be some interesting conversations about who will trot out on special teams to take punts, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves. We haven’t even got a roster put together yet.