The Philadelphia Eagles parted ways with one of their veteran leaders Friday by releasing backup safety and special-teams standout Chris Maragos.

Maragos spent the previous five seasons with the team but did not play this past season after suffering a serious knee injury during the 2017 season. He spent the entire 2018 season on the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list.

“We are grateful for Chris Maragos’ contributions to the Philadelphia Eagles over the last five seasons,” the Eagles said in a statement. “A captain on our Super Bowl LII-winning team, Chris’ leadership on and off the field and his ability to connect with teammates, coaches and fans made him a valuable member of this organization and the community.

“Chris solidified himself as one of the best special-teams performers in the NFL and played a crucial role in the success of our team. We wish Chris and his family the best.”

The 32-year-old was hurt during a Week 6 game at Carolina in 2017. Maragos suffered damage to his left anterior cruciate and posterior cruciate ligaments and wound up undergoing two surgeries, including one last Dec. 18.

Before his injury, he was one of the best special-teams players in the league. He scored his only NFL touchdown against the then-St. Louis Rams in 2014 when James Casey blocked a punt and Maragos returned it 10 yards. The following season, he blocked a punt that Najee Goode returned 24 yards for a TD against New England.

Maragos also started two games at safety in 2015 and another in 2017. He had 29 tackles and a forced fumble in 53 games for the Eagles.

In other news, the Eagles signed place-kicker Jake Elliott and long snapper Rick Lovato to one-year contracts. Both were exclusive-rights free agents, meaning they could not entertain offers from other teams.

The Eagles also were awarded two compensatory picks in April’s draft. They received a fourth-rounder (No. 138 overall) and a sixth-rounder (No. 208).

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

Sportswriter/columnist

Member of The Press sports staff since 1986, starting my 27th season as The Press Eagles' beat writer. Also cover boxing, MMA, golf, high school sports and everything else.

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