As a rookie in 2011, Watkins started 12 games. Last year he started six games and ended up being benched for the rest of the season. During Watkins' benching, Dennis Kelly, who is currently still on the team as Lane Johnson's backup, and Jake Scott played at the position for the rest of the season. Even Kelly and Scott had issues when playing, but the entire Eagles offensive line had issues as well. With injuries affecting the offensive line, it was hard for them to develop any kind of chemistry. With backups who have barely played at the NFL level filling in for veterans, mistakes were going to be made and no one could prevent that.
Kelly outperformed Watkins both last year and in the preseason this year which is exactly why he is still on the team. With Johnson starting, Kelly as the backup and the other offensive line positions set, the release of Watkins could be seen coming from far away.
Watkins, a former firefighter in Canada, starting playing football when he was 22. He played at Baylor University for two years before declaring for the NFL Draft. Watkins' salary for this season is guaranteed so the Eagles have to pay him just under $1.1 million.
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