Aug 212010

Former Eagles G Shawn Andrews is now a Giant

August 21 Philadelphia Inquirer

Shawn Andrews became the second former Pro Bowl Eagle in five months to move on to a team within the division when the offensive lineman signed a six-year contract with the New York Giants early Friday morning.

This time, however, the move was not of the Eagles‘ doing – or at least not directly.

In April, the Eagles traded away franchise quarterback Donovan McNabb to the NFC East-rival Redskins. A month earlier, they released the chronically injured Andrews, who had hardly played any football in the previous two seasons.

At the time, the Eagles wished Andrews the best, and Andrews thanked the Eagles and coach Andy Reid for their commitment during his 2008 bout with depression and through his back-injury woes.

Andrews had a different spin on the release when he spoke to New York reporters Friday after his introduction at Giants training camp.

“It was very interesting,” Andrews said. “I don’t really want to get into that, and I don’t want to make it a battle. But the time of my release, it was very untimely. I’m a Giant now. That’s all I can say.”

Friday night, Reid wished Andrews luck. “He’s as fine an offensive lineman as I’ve ever coached when he was healthy,” Reid said.

When the Eagles cut Andrews in March, team sources indicated that Andrews had failed to pass a physical when the Eagles went to Southern California to check up on the rehabilitation of their former first-round draft pick.

Andrews said Friday that he didn’t fail the physical.

His agent, Rich Moran, said that with the Eagles beginning their off-season conditioning program at the time that Andrews could “understand their side.”

“I’m sure, like any player, that he would have liked to get better for his original team and especially for Coach Reid after all he had done for him,” Moran said.

Eagles president Joe Banner said he was surprised by the Andrews signing when he was asked about the transaction on ComcastSportsnet before Friday night’s preseason Bengals game. He declined to comment further when reached.

The team released a statement on behalf of general manager Howie Roseman.

“We wish Shawn nothing but the best in his return to the NFL,” the statement read. “We’re happy that he’s back in the position to play football again.”

There was serious doubt that Andrews would ever play football again after he underwent his second back surgery in two years last November. Robert Watkins performed both surgeries, and Andrews remained in California to rehab with Heather Milligan, an athletic therapist originally recommended by Eagles head trainer Rick Burkhalter.

Reid gave the occasional vagueon Andrews’ progress, but the lineman would often provide glimpses into his recovery – along with thousands of other musings – on Twitter.

In the end, the Eagles decided to cut ties with Andrews. Winston Justice performed well in Andrews‘ absence at right tackle and ultimately they said, “It was just time.”

Andrews continued to work out, and, according to Moran, the

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