Member of The Press sports staff since 1986, starting my 25th season as The Press Eagles' beat writer. Also cover boxing, MMA, golf, high school sports and everything else.

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Philadelphia Eagles' Howie Roseman walks the field before an NFL football game against the Arizona Cardinals, Sunday, Oct. 8, 2017, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Michael Perez)

Michael Perez

The Philadelphia Eagles made an unofficial entry in The Press Fishing Contest on Tuesday.

Angler/Eagles Vice President of Football Operations Howie Roseman and first mate/head coach Doug Pederson were cruising aboard “Trade Bait” off the coast of Miami when they hooked a 220-pound Dolphin.

Running back Jay Ajayi was just the latest catch for Roseman, who has been to the Eagles this season what Cape May/Jupiter, Florida-based angler Keith Greenberg is to the local fishing community.

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Greenberg, who lives in Dolphins country but is an avid Eagles fan, is known for his ability to catch trophy fish as captain of Dave Anderson’s boat, Krazy Salt’s. Greenberg, first mate Luke Hickey and the crew are usually top competitors in the annual Mid-Atlantic billfish tournament.

Roseman is gaining the same sort of reputation in the NFL for his ability to find keepers where many teams are stuck with throwbacks.

He is a major reason why the Eagles (7-1) own the best record in the league.

Unlike fishing in South Jersey, there is no boat limit for football players. Roseman has had an impressive haul this year, adding players such as running backs LeGarrette Blount and rookie Corey Clement, wide receivers Alshon Jeffery and Torrey Smith, and cornerbacks Ronald Darby and Patrick Robinson.

His most valuable pickup was acquired in September. When place-kicker Caleb Sturgis was sidelined with a hip injury in the opening game, Roseman and Vice President of Player Personnel Joe Douglas found Jake Elliott on Cincinnati’s practice squad.

When Tuesday’s trade deadline approached, Roseman and Douglas stuck their lines in the water again. No one was willing to trade an offensive tackle or linebacker. When they thought about possibly adding a running back, they remembered how impressed they were with Ajayi during the Eagles-Dolphins joint practices in August.

“When we came back after those practices, we said, ‘That’s our kind of guy,’” Roseman said Tuesday in a live-streamed news conference. “He’s got the mentality that we’re looking for. He brings the kind of presence and he plays the kind of way that we want to play.”

There is a potential problem, however.

Ajayi developed a reputation in Miami as a selfish player who would pout and complain if he didn’t get enough carries. He is going to share the football with Blount in Philadelphia.

Of course, Blount had the same reputation prior to his arrival with the Eagles. He had the opportunity to spout off after getting no carries at Kansas City early this season, but his refusal to complain showed a sense of maturity and leadership that was not lost on the locker room.

One of the major reasons the Eagles have been so successful is the chemistry and culture that’s been developed amongst the players.

It will be interesting to see if quarterback Carson Wentz, safety Malcolm Jenkins and others can keep the locker room together if things start to go awry.

The last thing the Eagles need at this point is someone rocking the boat.

(David Weinberg’s Extra Points column appears Wednesday and Sunday in The Press.)

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Contact: 609-272-7201 DWeinberg@pressofac.com

Twitter @PressACWeinberg

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