Eagles Notes

As

Montae Reagor

talked about returning to the football field yesterday,

Sam Rayburn

discovered that he would have to find another field to play on.

Reagor, a defensive tackle signed as a free agent in March, will join his Eagles teammates today as the team begins its post-draft minicamp at the NovaCare Complex. He hasn't practiced since October, when his 2006 season with the Super Bowl champion Indianapolis Colts was cut short by a serious car accident that left him with a fractured bone in his left eye and a broken nose.

"It has been a while," Reagor said as the Eagles checked in for the three-day camp. "I can't say enough about how excited I am for a chance to be back on the field, doing something that was almost taken from me permanently. It's going to be an exciting time."

Reagor said he might be limited in what he could do during the minicamp. He underwent minor cosmetic surgery to repair his eye injury in March and is rehabilitating from arthroscopic knee surgery.

Rayburn, meanwhile, learned that his time in Philadelphia had expired. The veteran defensive tackle was released after spending four seasons with the Eagles. Rayburn, who made the roster as an undrafted free agent out of Tulsa in 2003, became expendable when the Eagles signed free agent Ian Scott, a starter for the NFC champion Chicago Bears last season.

The news of Rayburn's release ended what started as a promising NFL career. After surprisingly making the team in 2003, Rayburn registered six sacks and became a big part of coach Jim Johnson's defensive-line rotation during the Eagles' 2004 run to the Super Bowl.

Midway through the 2004 season, the Eagles gave Rayburn a five-year contract extension that included a $1.3 million signing bonus. After signing the deal, however, Rayburn registered just two sacks for the remainder of his Eagles career, and his playing time diminished significantly a year ago.

The back-to-back use of first-round picks on defensive tackles Mike Patterson and Brodrick Bunkley in 2005 and 2006, combined with the free-agent additions of Reagor and Scott this spring, made Rayburn expendable.

Rendell criticizes pick

The last time

Ed Rendell

was this critical of an Eagles draft pick, he was only the mayor of Philadelphia. Now he's the governor of Pennsylvania, but no less outspoken when it comes to his favorite football team.

"It boggles the entire mind," Rendell told Bloomberg Television when asked about the Eagles' decision to use their top draft pick on University of Houston quarterback Kevin Kolb. "It was stunning to all of us."

Rendell said the Eagles should have used their top draft choice on Southern Cal wide receiver Dwayne Jarrett, who was taken nine picks after Kolb by the Carolina Panthers.

"I think we are going to rue the day we didn't pick him," Rendell said.

Of course, this is the same man who objected when the Eagles took Syracuse quarterback Donovan McNabb with the second overall pick in the 1999 draft instead of taking Texas running back Ricky Williams. McNabb, of course, has led the Eagles to four NFC championship games and a Super Bowl, while Williams has led the league in failed drug tests without ever having participated in a playoff game.

As for Kolb, he said he was excited about getting his NFL career started today.

"The biggest thing for me is meeting the guys," Kolb said. "That's what I'm most anxious about."

As of late yesterday afternoon, Kolb still had not met McNabb, but said he looked forward to the meeting.

"Obviously, there has been a lot of stuff floating around," Kolb said. "I'm ready to meet him man-to-man so I can get to know him and . . . build a relationship. I want to talk to him about football. That's what we're here for. I want to ask him about his injury and how it's coming along, and I just want to pick his brain and be a sponge."

Extra points

Safety

Brian Dawkins

has been excused from attending this camp for personal reasons. . . . University of Hawaii running back

Nate Ilaoa

, the Eagles' seventh-round selection, had the longest trip to get to the minicamp. He left Hawaii at 9 p.m. Thursday and had a morning layover in Los Angeles before arriving in Philadelphia yesterday afternoon. Ilaoa said he is 5-foot-9 and 250 pounds, up 60 pounds from his playing weight as a freshman. . . . The Eagles will have morning and afternoon practices today and tomorrow and will close out camp with a morning practice Monday.

- Bob Brookover