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The Smartest Guy in the Huddle?

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The Smartest Guy in the Huddle?

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Nate Lawrie is the newest, and possibly smartest, Bird.

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The Eagles possibly got a lot smarter when they made a small roster move Monday.

The Birds dropped practice-squad veteran tight end Martin Rucker and signed veteran tight end Nate Lawrie.

"I like to think I'm pretty balanced... that I have strength in both the run game and the pass game," Lawrie said after his first practice.

"But I take pride in my ability to run block... mixing it up on the line of scrimmage is something that I enjoy doing."

Lawrie brings something else to the table that Rucker couldn’t -- an Ivy League education. He graduated from Yale compared to Rucker’s Missouri education.

This is no knock on Rucker -- who spent most of last season stashed away on the Birds’ practice squad -- or his education, but most people would agree that Mizzou can’t match Yale when it comes to academic reputation.

On a roster boasting Michigan Men, Berkley Bears and a Northwestern Wildcat, Lawrie is the only Ivy Leaguer -- so does that make him the smartest?

We're not sure. And, being smart alone doesn't normally equal success on the football field. The 28-year-old former Yale Bulldog has recorded catches with the Saints, Bucs and Bengals over parts of three seasons but has yet to score a TD.

Don’t expect him to score this season. The move likely won’t have much game-day significance for the Birds with Brent Celek cemented in at tight end with young guns Cornelius Ingram or Clay Harbor battling it out for the second spot.

The Birds could even opt to carry both Harbor and Ingram once the season starts.

This isn't the first time the Eagles took a look at the Yale man. Lawrie was actually on the Birds' practice squad for a couple games during his rookie season in 2004.

Lawrie can't make the practice squad because he has played in too many NFL games. At least he likely won’t mind studying up on the playbook as he serves as an extra body at training camp.

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