The Cardinals released Zach Ertz. Does returning to the Eagles make sense? – NBC Sports Philadelphia

Zach Ertz asked for and received his release by the Cards and hopes to sign with a contender, according to former teammate JJ Watt.

Watt, a five-time Pro Bowl rusher, tweeted the news Thursday about Ertz, who spent his first eight seasons with the Eagles and caught 579 passes – 2Second abbreviation– The most Eagles ever, only 10 fewer than Hall of Famer Harold Carmichael.

The Eagles traded Ertz to the Cards for cornerback Tai Guan and 5y– Pick six games into the 2021 season, but while Arizona was 5-0 when Ertz got there, they went 6-6 the rest of that year and 4-13 last year, and are 2-10 this year under 1streetCoach Jonathan Gannon, the Eagles’ defensive coordinator the past two seasons.

Ertz caught 130 passes for 1,167 yards and eight TDs in 28 games for the Cards. He has not played since Week 7 due to a quad injury. He had just 27 catches for 187 yards and one TD in seven games this year before getting hurt.

With the Eagles, Ertz was a record-setting tight end and a Super Bowl champion.

He caught 579 passes for 6,267 yards and 38 TDs in an Eagles uniform and made the Pro Bowl after the 2017, 2018 and 2019 seasons. In 2018, he set an NFL record for tight ends with 116 receptions.

In Super Bowl LII in Minneapolis following the 2017 season, Ertz made two of the biggest catches in Eagles history. After the Patriots went up 33-32, the Eagles faced 4y-and-1 shy of midfield with 5:39 remaining, Ertz caught a short pass from Nick Foles to extend the possession. Later in that drive, with 2:25 remaining, he caught an 11-yard TD pass from Foles to give the Eagles the lead for good on their way to the franchise’s first championship in 57 years.

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When Ertz was traded to the Cards, he said he would like to return to the Eagles one day and take another run at Carmichael’s record.

Is this possible?

The Eagles are thin at tight end. Dallas Goedert is still recovering from a broken arm and did not practice Wednesday, Grant Calcaterra missed practice with an ankle injury Wednesday, and Calcaterra and Stoll have a combined four catches for 27 yards this year.

Ertz turned 33 last week, and assuming he clears waivers, his current contract with the Cards — a three-year, $31.65 million deal he signed in March 2022 — will expire. Ertz is due about $4.4 million for the rest of this year and carries a base salary of $7.96 million in 2024. Ertz has 709 career receptions, 8y-The most in NFL history by a tight end and only five behind Jimmy Graham for seventh place.

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