HomeDa Birds NewsShaq Chooses to Weigh Cowboys-Related Decision Despite Eagles' Pitch

Shaq Chooses to Weigh Cowboys-Related Decision Despite Eagles’ Pitch

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PHILADELPHIA – Shaq Leonard has left the building. Presumably, he has left town altogether.

The free-agent linebacker is off to ponder his next steps. Maybe Aaron Rodgers’ Darkness Retreat is available.

Leonard visited with the Dallas Cowboys on Tuesday. On Wednesday he heard the recruiting pitch of the Philadelphia Eagles.

Leonard will, as we understand it, decide at some point this weekend between the Eagles and Cowboys.

The interesting part is that the Eagles and Cowboys will play each other next week, so whichever team Leonard spurns he will get to see them in just a matter of days.

“We’ve got a pretty attractive situation for any player, because of not only the way we’re playing but just the awe of the Cowboys and our fanbase and this area,” said Cowboys owner Jerry Jones on Dallas-based radio station 105.3 The Fan.

The Eagles like their chances, too, especially with Nick Sirianni, who knows Leonard well from their years together with the Indianapolis Colts.

Shaq Leonard is expected to take the weekend to decide if he wants to play with the Philadelphia Eagles or the Dallas Cowboys/

USA Today

If it’s a ring Leonard wants, well, both teams seem equipped to possibly deliver on that.

If it’s money, well, the Eagles are not known for making bank-vault-style financial commitments at the position.

This time, though, general manager Howie Roseman may find himself in a desperate situation.

Linebacker Zach Cunningham, the team’s leading tackler, is expected to miss Sunday’s game against the San Francisco 49ers with a hamstring injury.

That leaves the linebacker room terribly thin, with only Nick Morrow, Christian Elliss, and undrafted free agent Ben VanSumeren. Not ideal.

VanSumeren isn’t even on the roster and has used up all three of his practice squad elevations. In the three games he played, however, he was used only on special teams. He didn’t play any defensive snaps.

The Eagles have a roster opening after cutting defensive back Josiah Scott on Tuesday, so they could activate VanSumeren to have him available in case something was to happen in-game to Morrow or Elliss.

“I don’t know where (Cunningham) will be at the end of the week,” said Sirianni. “I’m hopeful with these guys, and so I got a lot of faith in the guys that we have in that room, and we’ll see how their rehab continues throughout the week.”

That’s why Leonard’s decision feels so important for the Eagles. They are thin at that spot, and they seem to know it.

Sirianni readjusted his schedule on Wednesday in order to spend some one-on-one time with Leonard when he was in the building taking his physical and meeting with assistant coaches.

“Any guy that comes in here, I want to spend time with them and talk to them,” said the coach. “Obviously, there is a prior relationship there. I was close with him when we were in Indy. I just thought you can learn so much from good players. Just think about how he went about how he attacked the day, and also how he saw the game as an offensive coach. 

“That was always a good perspective talking to him and I just had so much respect for him. It was good to be able to catch up with him and relive some memories, but also talk a little bit about what this building is like.”

Related: Eagles’ James Bradberry Takes High Road on Deebo’s ‘Trash’ Comment

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