Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Justice earned extension; Eagles sign CB Pope

When training camp began even the most forgiving observers wondered how long it would be until Eagles offensive lineman Winston Justice was released.
Even Justice was surprised Tuesday when he signed a four-year contract extension with the Eagles.
 "I don't think anybody could have realized it," Justice said. "I think I came a long way. One of the things my offensive line coach always told me was hard work pays off. And I took that mindset. Even when times were really bad I still always believed and had faith in that - hard work pays off. And I think it's paying off now. This is a blessing."
Justice took advantage of the back injury sustained by Shawn Andrews to take over the job at right tackle. Judging by the investment, the Eagles expect Justice to be there four more years.
With starters Sheldon Brown and Asante Samuel fighting through injuries, and nickel back Joselio Hanson out two more weeks due to his league-suspension, the Eagles signed cornerback Geoffrey Pope, who appeared in the divisional and NFC title games for the 2007 Super Bowl champion Giants. Pope was on the Bengals' practice squad.
The Eagles cut cornerback Jack Ikegwuonu, a fourth-round pick who got on the field for just one special teams play this past week. The Eagles rolled the dice selecting Ikegwuonu, as he was coming off major knee surgery two years ago.
"Winston is a guy we really liked coming out in the draft," Eagles general manager Tom Heckert said. "And I think through a lot of hard work he's steadily improved and is playing as well as anybody we have on the offensive line."
More on this story as it develops.


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