Leonard Weaver spent two seasons in Philadelphia, following a four-year stint with the Seattle Seahawks. As an Eagle, he raised his game to a Pro Bowl-caliber, making it to Hawaii after his first season in Philly. Eagles fans have held Weaver in high regard since he joined the team, and even after his career was cut short in the first game of the 2010 season. Weaver loved his time with the team and the city so much, that he signed a one-day contract to retire with the Eagles earlier this year.
Weaver has been around Philadelphia since his career-ending injury, providing commentary on local radio and television, while still keeping in touch with his former teammates. That's why, when the former fullback made comments yesterday on Twitter, fans took notice:
As far as the Eagles, I'm not sure. There is alot of speculation about players being disgruntled it does not look promising.— Leonard Weaver (@LeonardWeaver) June 10, 2013
As much as I want to cheer for Chip Kelly and the squad, I'm a bit worried about the unity of the Team.— Leonard Weaver (@LeonardWeaver) June 10, 2013
At the end of the day the players have to believe in what the Coaches are doing as well as the Coaches believing in how ayers are performing— Leonard Weaver (@LeonardWeaver) June 10, 2013
Weaver's comments seem to imply that there are a few members of the team that are not down with Chip Kelly's coaching, despite the fact that several Eagles veterans have mentioned publicly that the majority of the team has really embraced the new coach's philosophies. Understandably, Weaver's comments started a waive of confusion on Twitter that carried over to Tuesday morning.
Weaver then went on the defensive:
I've received some tweets concerning me being a mouthpiece for a disgruntled QB, meaning Michael Vick.— Leonard Weaver (@LeonardWeaver) June 11, 2013
Here are my facts concerning the situation. ...lol— Leonard Weaver (@LeonardWeaver) June 11, 2013
Identity and rhythm are key components for the success of any team heading into training camp. Fact; my Experience.— Leonard Weaver (@LeonardWeaver) June 11, 2013
Its not that Im speaking up for MV, even though I consider him a great player and friend.— Leonard Weaver (@LeonardWeaver) June 11, 2013
However I speaking about tge overall team. Trust me M.Vick is not the only player who feels that way. Usually if one player.— Leonard Weaver (@LeonardWeaver) June 11, 2013
Says it, you will have others who feel the same way as well. With that being said, this is why is all the more important in my experience...— Leonard Weaver (@LeonardWeaver) June 11, 2013
Weaver went on to talk about overall team chemistry. He believes that there is reluctance on the part of some members of the team to take on Kelly's brand of football.
There are a few things to consider with these comments. For one, we have no idea how ingrained Weaver is in the locker room these days. He could simply be guessing or may have just misinterpreted a comment from a friend. Also, Weaver is used to the Andy Reid way and is likely a loyalist, so it could be that he is projecting his own views.
On the flip side, like in any coaching change, there are veterans who have become collateral damage of the new schemes on offense and defense. Trusted veterans who once flourished during Reid's tenure, like Trent Cole, Jason Avant and Brandon Graham, are seemingly out of place and could be frustrated with their roles. There is also the fact that Michael Vick is in the first "real" quarterback competition of his career. His comments last week, depending on interpretation, could have sparked Weaver's tweets. It is also worth noting that the former Pro Bowler seems to take Vick's frustration as a fact and not as an assumption.
Right now, all seems to be well at the NovaCare Complex, but there are obviously things that the fanbase and media are not aware of. Whether Weaver's comments are true to the feeling of the locker room or not, the public now will be watching closely to see what transpires over the next few months. The Eagles can only hope that the "alleged bad apples" will not impact the team's mission.