|The Eagles decided to release Cullen Jenkins -- one of many moves expected to come. (USATSI)|
Jenkins signed with the Eagles as a free agent in 2011, while Patterson was the longest-tenured player on the roster.
“I had a chance to speak with Cullen today and let him know of our decision,” general manager Howie Roseman said. “It's one of the most difficult parts of the job. He has been a very productive player in this league for a long time, but we felt it in our team's best interests that we go in a different direction. By releasing him at this point, it gives he and his agent more time to sign on with another team."
Roseman called Patterson "one of the toughest players I have ever been around. ... He has overcome many obstacles throughout his career and I have the upmost respect for him because of it. Coach (Chip) Kelly and I each had great conversations today with him. He is a class act."
Jenkins, 32, started every game the last two seasons and was due $5.5 million in 2013. In two years in Philly, Jenkins had 9.5 sacks and a forced fumble. He spent the first six years of his career in Green Bay, winning Super Bowl XLV with the Packers.
Patterson, a first-round pick out of USC in 2005, played in five games last season. He had six tackles and a sack. Patterson was due $2.9 million in base salary and his release saves $3 million against the cap.
The Eagles are embarking on a season of change with a new coaching staff and front office. Jenkins and Patterson were the first to be let go.
Reportedly, the team will ask corner Nnamdi Asomugha to restructure his contract or he'll be released too.
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