Eagles head coach Doug Pederson, in his first public comments since disgruntled quarterback Sam Bradford went AWOL, insisted that the veteran quarterback is still "a part of the Philadelphia Eagles," and added, "He's our guy."
Bradford, the Eagles' incumbent quarterback, stopped attending and participating in the team's voluntary offseason workouts this past week to protest the Eagles trading up to the No. 2 spot in the draft to select a quarterback. Through his agent, he requested a trade.
Pederson addressed Bradford's absence Thursday afternoon in an interview on NBC10 with Comcast SportsNet's Derrick Gunn.
"Well, right now we're still in April, we're beginning phases of our OTAs coming up in May," Pederson said.
"I've said all along Sam's our guy, he's my guy, and he's a part of the Philadelphia Eagles, and it's just unfortunate where we are right now.
"But the thing is once he's here, he's our guy. Because it's a voluntary offseason program there's not a whole lot we can do. But at the same time we just know we want him to be a part of the Philadelphia Eagles this year."
Bradford, 28, has a 25-37-1 career record. He's never been to a Pro Bowl or had a winning season or reached the postseason.
Last year, he was the only quarterback of 15 in the NFL to throw 500 passes who didn't throw at least 20 touchdowns.
The Eagles are expected to select North Dakota State quarterback Carson Wentz with the second pick later Thursday night.
Pederson said he hasn't spoken to Bradford since his disappearance from the NovaCare Complex.
"I have not," he said. "Not right now. I had a chance to sit down with him just and visit with him 1-on-1 prior to our minicamp a week ago. Other than that, I haven't had a chance to visit with him."
ESPN's Adam Schefter reported earlier Thursday that the quarterback-needy Broncos don't expect the Eagles to trade Bradford to them or any other team (see story).