It’s Grymes’ job be­cause some­body has to do it

Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - SPORTS - By Bob Grotz bgrotz @21st-cen­tu­ry­ @BobGrotz on Twit­ter

PHILADEL­PHIA >> An in­jury cost Aaron Grymes his job with the Ea­gles.

An­other door opened, fit­tingly, through a flurry of in­juries.

If the for­mer Cana­dian Football League star can stay healthy into Sun­day, he’ll make his long awaited NFL de­but when the Ea­gles op­pose the At­lanta Fal­cons at Lin­coln Fi­nan­cial Field.

“Ev­ery­thing hap­pens for a rea­son,” said Grymes, re­leased by the Ea­gles with an in­jury set­tle­ment late last Au­gust. “Even though I didn’t want to think about that while I was hurt, I had to re­mind my­self that if some­thing hap­pens, it hap­pens for a rea­son.”

With mount­ing ca­su­al­ties in the sec­ondary and on spe­cial teams, head coach Doug Ped­er­son de­cided to pro­mote Grymes, a prod­uct of Idaho and the CFL, to the 53-man ros­ter Fri­day.

“He came back ex­tremely healthy and in shape,” Ped­er­son said by way of ex­pla­na­tion. “And then just the way he jumped in on all the spe­cial teams reps that he was get­ting, the ser­vice team reps de­fen­sively against our of­fense and the way he was mov­ing. He’s a smart kid and he re­ally picked up where he left off there in train­ing camp. We’re very com­fort­able in mak­ing this de­ci­sion.”

Grymes, 25, joined the prac­tice squad a cou­ple of weeks ago af­ter the Ea­gles be­came in­creas­ingly thin at corner­back.

It be­gan when vet­eran nickel back Ron Brooks was lost for the sea­son with a rup­tured quadri­ceps. Start­ing corner­back Leodis McKelvin al­ready was nurs­ing an ail­ing ham­string that side­lined him a few games and more re­cently, has lim­ited him in prac­tice to the point that he’s ques­tion­able for the Fal­cons game.

The Ea­gles lost more depth last week in safety Ter­rence Brooks (ham­string), a fierce spe­cial teams com­peti­tor who’s out this week.

Add the ham­string in­jury to line­backer Kamu Grugier-Hill, who’s doubt­ful, and the Ea­gles were dan­ger­ously short of phys­i­cal bod­ies to play spe­cial teams and help out in cov­er­age against a vast ar­ray of Fal­cons re­ceiv­ing tar­gets, in­clud­ing all-world per­former Julio Jones.

Grymes (5-11, 185) isn’t the fastest de­fen­sive back but he plays tough and with pur­pose. He’s com­ing off an all-star CFL sea­son in which he reg­is­tered 43 tack­les, four in­ter­cep­tions and one sack in 15 games for the Ed­mon­ton Eski­mos, who won their first Grey Cup since 2005.

Grymes was any­thing but an easy cut when the Ea­gles re­duced their ros­ter to 53. They waived him af­ter he sprained his shoul­der mak­ing a div­ing, pic­turesque in­ter­cep­tion in a pre­sea­son game.

Af­ter his re­lease by the Ea­gles, Grymes thought about re­turn­ing to the CFL but went back to Idaho, where he worked out and re­habbed.

“It crossed my mind,” Grymes said. “I didn’t re­ally en­ter­tain any of­fers. My agent felt like we had a pretty good shot of get­ting on some­body’s ros­ter down here. I thought about it. I talked to my old team­mates up there but that’s as far as it went.”

The way it is now, the CFL play­offs start soon … and Grymes starts his long-an­tic­i­pated NFL ca­reer.

“There’s a rea­son,” Grymes said, “I’m here now.”

Ea­gles guard Allen Bar­bre (ham­string) is out Sun­day in ad­di­tion to Brooks. Listed as ques­tion­able are tight ends Brent Celek (rib) and Trey Burton (ham­string) and de­fen­sive ends Tay­lor Hart (an­kle) and Ben­nie Lo­gan (groin). Celek and Lo­gan ex­pect to play. ... The lin­ger­ing ham­string in­jury to McKelvin has be­come a con­cern. The Ea­gles have rea­son­ably healthy and rel­a­tively ex­pe­ri­enced cor­ners in Nolan Car­roll and Jalen Mills, the rookie thrown into the fire. “He felt the hammy again a lit­tle bit yes­ter­day,” Ped­er­son said of McKelvin. “He’s get­ting his treat­ment and ev­ery­thing but he’s bat­tling through it like all these guys are this time of year. So we just want to be pre­cau­tion­ary with him, as well.”

NOTES >> Jor­dan Hicks is the first NFL line­backer with eight more take­aways in his first 16 ca­reer games since Al Richard­son (At­lanta) in 1980, ac­cord­ing to Elias Sports. Hicks has four in­ter­cep­tions and four fum­ble re­cov­er­ies in those games.

... Vet­eran de­fen­sive end Bran­don Gra­ham is third in the league with 43½ quar­ter­back dis­rup­tions, which are com­bined sacks, knock­downs and hur­ries. Only Pro Bowl tal­ents Von Miller (49) and Aaron Donald (48) have more dis­rup­tions than Gra­ham.


Ea­gles de­fen­sive back Aaron Grymes (38) in­ter­cepts a pass in front of Pitts­burgh wide re­ceiver Sam­mie Coates in a pre­sea­son game last Au­gust. Grymes will likely get his first taste of real-sea­son action Sun­day against the Fal­cons.

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