As the Eagles' long-snapper, Jon Dorenbos said yesterday he was happy just to have kicker David Akers going to the Pro Bowl, Dorenbos taking pride in his part of the field-goal operation that helped Akers tie for the NFL lead, with 32, this past season.
Dorenbos was "shocked," he said yesterday, to be added to the NFC team as the long-snapper. "There's a lot of good snappers," he said, "a lot of deserving snappers, too."
Long-snapping is one of the most anonymous yet crucial jobs in the NFL, one that doesn't translate easily into statistics.
"There is a stat in long-snapping," Dorenbos said in a conference call with reporters, "you either have a job or you don't."
Dorenbos noted that his framed photo will hang in the NovaCare corridor the players walk through to get from the locker room to the auditorium or the cafeteria, alongside those of all the Eagles greats, where he can take his children and perhaps even grandchildren to see validation of his career.
"This is something I'll have forever, to stick on my resume," he said.
For Dorenbos, 29, an Eagle since 2006, the Pro Bowl is the culmination of a remarkable journey. Dorenbos was the Eagles' 2008 Ed Block Courage Award, and his selection was not at all controversial, unlike the 2009 tapping of quarterback Michael Vick. Dorenbos testified against his father in the 1992 beating death of his mother, which occurred when Jon was 12 years old.
Dorenbos said he cried Tuesday night, then called his grandfather, Roy "Poppy" Surprenant, with the Pro Bowl news.
"When I first signed with UTEP, the first person I called was my grandpa . . . my grandpa and [me] are buddies. For us to look back on the road that our whole family's had to this point is unbelievable, man," Dorenbos said. "A lot of people did a lot for me to be here, so it's a very proud moment, that they can look at me and be proud of the things they did for me."
Getting his Andy Reid on
Long-idled offensive lineman Shawn Andrews gave a radio interview recently with ESPN 97.3-FM in South Jersey. As he has often done, Andrews professed his gratitude to Eagles coach Andy Reid. Andrews has essentially missed the past two seasons with back surgeries.
"When I came out to LA after my [most recent] back issue, I had to look coach Reid in the eye and tell him I owe him," Andrews said. "It's bigger than football with me right now. If nothing else, I just wish that I could get just one more season just so I can pay coach Reid and just prove to the fans that I still have it, I still want to be a part of this organization. And for coach Reid sticking by me with my situation in 2008, and I definitely owe the city of Philadelphia so hopefully, Lord willing, I can get back to 100 percent and get to mashing people again."
Andrews, who had a second back surgery about 5 weeks ago, has not been cleared for rehab. He said it would be a 6-month process once he is cleared, but said he hopes to be back for training camp.
Andrews said he recognizes that people might question his interest in returning to football.
"I think a lot of people are upset, and I guess rightfully so, but everybody has high points and low points in life, and everybody makes mistakes," Andrews said. "And it just so happens at an unfortunate time that I went through my debacle [with depression], and I'm over that now. I have a newfound love and respect for the game. I'll say 110 percent if there's such a thing. I really look forward to getting back to football."
He also threw his support behind quarterback Donovan McNabb.
"If you look at Donovan's track record, he's obviously one of the best, if not the best, quarterback in Eagles history," Andrews said. "And the guy is a leader. And he has this personality that if you're not around him, you won't get that feel. But he leads by example, and I think he should be with the Eagles for as long as he wants to play, or he's able to play."
Personnel staff moves
As expected, new Browns general manager Tom Heckert is bringing members of his staff with the Eagles to Cleveland. Heckert hired Jon Sandusky as director of player personnel and John Spytek as personnel executive. Sandusky spent nine seasons with the Eagles, the last two as the pro personnel director. Spytek was with the Eagles for five seasons, the last three as a pro/college scout.
For more Eagles coverage and opinion, read the Daily News' Eagles blog, Eagletarian, at www.eagletarian.com.