Eagles Ship Dorenbos to Saints
PHILADELPHIA (973espn.com) - America's most famous long snapper is no longer a member of the Philadelphia Eagles.
The Eagles traded the popular Jon Dorenbos to the New Orleans Saints on Monday for a 2019 seventh-round draft pick.
The move means Rick Lovato, who filled the role last season when Dorenbos went down with an injury will be Philadelphia's full-time long snapper.
“This was one of the most difficult decisions we have had to make as an organization, not only because of his stellar performance on the field for so many years, but also because of the relationships he has within the organization and the connection he has with our fans and the Philadelphia community," Eagles executive vice president of football operations Howie Roseman said.
“These are always hard decisions to make," head coach Doug Pederson added, "especially with a player like Jon who has so much respect from the coaches, players and fans."
The longest tenured member of the Eagles, Dorenbos became a staple in the community despite the usual anonymity of the position he played. In many ways, he also transcended the NFL when he became a star on "America's Got Talent" for his work as a magician.
Now in his 15th season, Dorenbos spent his first three years of his career with Buffalo and Tennessee before finding a long-term home in Philadelphia signing with the Eagles late in 2006 season.
Dorenbos was originally brought in much like Lovato after an in-season injury to then-LS Mike Bartrum. He parlayed a seven-game tryout (which included two postseason games) into a decade-long run that included two Pro Bowl selections and a franchise-record 162 consecutive regular-season games – a mark he shares with legendary receiver Harold Carmichael.
Dorenbos’ 162 regular-season appearances with the Eagles also is the sixth-highest total in franchise history.
"We have the utmost respect for his consistency and his relentless commitment to winning over the last 11 seasons," Roseman said. "We all remember adding him to the team in 2006 and winning six straight games to win the division and a playoff game. He is a genuine class act who has positively influenced the lives of so many through his community work and his motivational speaking."
Football was secondary when it came to Dorenbos' popularity and local fame as the veteran created a brand around his magic and personality. He was also always front and center when representing the team in the community.
"During this time of the year there are many difficult decisions to be made." Roseman explained. "We are pleased that an opportunity presented itself to allow Jon to continue his career with the Saints, and we wish him all the best. Even though he won’t be on the field with us this year, we hope that he will one day return to retire as an Eagle, and rejoin our organization in some capacity.”
It's almost surreal that a long snapper would get that kind of commitment out the door and even owner Jeffrey Lurie issued a statement after the deal, further highlighting just want Dorenbos meant to the organization.
“Jon is one of the most inspiring people I have ever known," Lurie said. "He gave everything that he had to this organization for more than a decade, but his legacy in Philadelphia goes far beyond his performance on the field, his Pro Bowl selections or the consecutive games streak. His true impact is measured by the number of people in this city that he connected with, the lives he has been able to change and the courage he displays every day after battling such tremendous adversity as a child."
That was a nod to the awful tragedy Dorenbos overcame at age 12 when his father murdered his mother.
"Jon’s enthusiasm and positive outlook are contagious; he’s one of the most genuine, caring people you could ever meet." Lurie said.
-John McMullen covers the Eagles and the NFL for 973espn.com. You can reach him at email@example.com or on Twitter @JFMcMullen