A fight is brewing between the Eagles and one of their key defensive players.
As we reported earlier in the day, the Eagles have placed defensive tackle Mike Patterson on the non-football illness list, following his hospitalization for viral pneumonia. As we also reported, the Eagles have decided to reduce Patterson’s salary over the final three weeks of the season, which will cost him roughly $150,000.
Jeff McLane of the Philadelphia Inquirer reports that Patterson will file a grievance challenging the decision.
“This is not how you treat people if you’re a winning organization,” agent Peter Schaffer told McLane.
Schaeffer believes Patterson developed the illness due to work.
“I think it’s pretty clear that he got it at practice or at the NovaCare Complex,” Schaffer said. “That’s where he spends all his time. That’s all he’s doing is practicing and working out.”
Schaffer also said he addressed the decision directly with G.M. Howie Roseman.
“I told Howie this morning that if he could prove to be that Mike didn’t get pneumonia at practice I wouldn’t file a grievance,” Schaffer said. “He said he couldn’t. . . . I love Howie, but this is wrong and petty. To do this to one of your leaders and to a guy that fought back from brain surgery is just wrong.”
The Eagles addressed the situation generally. “Our number one priority is to get Mike Patterson well enough to get back on the football field,” the team said in a statement. “He has worked hard this year to get back and he has our full support as an organization.”
Patterson may have their full support, but he’s not getting his full pay.