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Eagles’ Mack Hollins and Bears’ Mitchell Trubisky are friends who have faced fans’ wrath | Early Birds

They played together at North Carolina but haven’t found the NFL success they sought.

Chicago Bears quarterback Mitch Trubisky walks off after a loss to the Saints on  Oct. 20.
Chicago Bears quarterback Mitch Trubisky walks off after a loss to the Saints on Oct. 20.Read moreBrian Cassella / Chicago Tribune

Eagles wide receiver Mack Hollins and Chicago Bears quarterback Mitchell Trubisky will see each other from opposing sidelines this weekend, but they were college teammates at North Carolina.

Neither Hollins nor Trubisky is having the NFL season either envisioned. Hollins, returning from a pair of groin surgeries that cost him all of 2018, has played in every game but has made just 10 catches for 125 yards, none in four October games, though he played 143 snaps. Eagles fans have noticed this, and many were hoping for an upgrade through the trade deadline.

Trubisky, the second player chosen in the 2017 draft, is averaging just 182 passing yards a game, with five touchdown passes and three interceptions in six games. The Bears, who felt they should have beaten the Eagles in the wild-card round of the playoffs last season, are 3-4, on a three-game losing streak, and criticism of the third-year QB has been intense.

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Friends, indeed

Hollins said he and Trubisky remain in touch.

“That’s my guy. I still talk to him a little bit,” Hollins said Thursday.

Hollins takes pride in ignoring media criticism — asked earlier this season if he’d seen something Peyton Manning said about him, that was available on the ESPN app, Hollins said he had neither the ESPN app or a TV. But he is aware that he has critics, as does Trubisky.

“People love hate,” Hollins said. “When you stand behind a computer screen, you can hate. … I don’t know how he’s responding to it or anything, but he’s a tough guy.”

Hollins said he and Trubisky don’t often discuss football.

“I just talk bad about him in general, you know how friends do,” Hollins said. “That he’s ugly, that he’s fat, stuff like that.”

What you need to know about the Eagles

  1. EJ Smith talked to some Eagles about the Bears’ feared pass rusher, Khalil Mack.

  2. Paul Domowitch prepares an in-depth scouting report each week, so you don’t have to.

  3. Our Jeff McLane, also known as the Irish Roger Ebert, gives us a film review of new Eagles edge rusher Genard Avery.

  4. Domo writes that the Eagles’ defense got back on track against Buffalo thanks to Brandon Graham and Fletcher Cox.

  5. Bob Ford compares how things have gone for the Eagles and Bears after they each traded up to get a quarterback with the second pick in a draft.

From the mailbag

Do you think the Eagles have interest in Josh Gordon? What is their position in the waiver order? — Jeff Gamber (@jeffgamber) via Twitter

The Eagles are 17th in the waiver pickin’s, Jeff, which isn’t real high. Would they put in a claim? I sure would, even though Josh Gordon’s transcendent 2013 season was a long time ago now. Since then, he’s missed two years for violating the league’s substance abuse policy, has been hurt a lot, and hasn’t caught more than 41 passes in a season. But he’s still 6-foot-3, 225, and he’s just 28 years old. The Eagles have one wide receiver they use a lot and never throw to (Mack Hollins) and another they don’t seem to want to use at all (J.J. Arcega-Whiteside), so, what’s the downside?

I guess the downside would be all that trade-deadline talk from Doug Pederson about culture fit and possible disruption, but really, Gordon is said to be the nicest guy in the world, he just has addiction issues. I don’t know how much Gordon could help, but I don’t see how he could hurt.