Mychal Kendricks could have pouted more. He probably wanted to. He could have stayed away from the team and tried to force its hand. He could have caused a giant fuss.
He didn't. Instead, he has done nothing but be the best player on the field during the preseason.
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If Kendricks doesn't get traded, it's not for lack of trying.
"Every game is an audition in the league and that's just how it goes," Kendricks said after Thursday night's game. "Coaches, players, we all go so fast. It's a cycle, it's crazy and it's not like any other job occupation I know. Like I said, it's just about taking the opportunities given. It's simple and people try to make it so complicated but it's just simple."
On Thursday night against the Dolphins, Kendricks picked off a tipped ball in the second quarter and returned it 31 yards for a touchdown, diving into the end zone. He has an interception in each of the three games this preseason. He has just three interceptions in his entire five-year career.
On top of the interceptions, Kendricks also has four tackles and a sack and very nearly had another sack against the Dolphins.
If there was a Preseason MVP Award, Kendricks would win it easily.
A week ago, head coach Doug Pederson called Kendricks a "pro's pro" for the way he's handled things over the last few months. It's clear Kendricks would rather be with a team that would make him a true starter and not just play limited snaps in a base package, but that opportunity hasn't come.
The Eagles will probably be a better football team this season with Kendricks on the roster, but if another team likes what it sees and wants to throw out a great offer for him, Howie Roseman is going to listen. To get back good value while also shedding some salary cap space would be enticing.
But as well as Kendricks has played this preseason, nothing has really changed. Against the Dolphins, even with Jordan Hicks (quad) out, Kendricks was off the field for the nickel package. Najee Goode and Nigel Bradham stayed on.
Kendricks' biggest strength is blitzing from the linebacker position, which is problematic considering how infrequently Jim Schwartz likes to do that. Maybe it's time for Schwartz to find ways to get something more out of Kendricks, who will make more money this season that the other two starters combined.
"I am really liking the defense," Kendricks said. "I think that we're coming together really nice. It's the second year for everyone in this defense and I think that we are really able to focus on the details of our techniques and then our play, so it's nice to see people out there doing their thing. We need to work on a couple things but I think we are coming together."