Eagles McCown Football

In this Dec. 31, 2018, file photo, New York Jets quarterback Josh McCown, a Jacksonville native, talks to reporters in the locker room in Florham Park, N.J. McCown’s retirement lasted two months.

Quarterback Josh McCown, who announced he was retiring in June before signing with ESPN, is back in the NFL.

After two months of retirement, the Philadelphia Eagles came calling.

The Eagles signed the 40-year-old Jacksonville native to a one-year deal on Saturday. He is coming out of retirement to join his 11th team and play his 17th season.

McCown provides insurance behind starter Carson Wentz, who has finished the past two seasons on the sideline because of injuries. The Eagles already lost two quarterbacks in the first two preseason games. Nate Sudfeld broke his left wrist and is expected to return in September. Cody Kessler left Thursday night’s game against the Jacksonville Jaguars with a head injury.

Rookie Clayton Thorson was the only healthy quarterback on the roster behind Wentz before McCown ended his brief retirement. Former John Tyler standout Greg Ward Jr., who played QB at JT and the University of Houston, was prepared to play on Thursday for the Eagles. Ward now plays wide receiver and caught a 38-yard TD pass against the Jags.

McCown was 23-53 as a starter, including 5-11 with the Jets over the past two seasons. He’s completed 60.2 percent of his passes, has thrown 98 touchdowns, 82 interceptions and has a 79.7 passer rating.

Nick Foles backed up Wentz the past two years and led the Eagles to four playoff wins, including the franchise’s first Super Bowl title following the 2017 season. But the 2018 Super Bowl MVP left for Jacksonville in free agency.

ESPN hired McCown to be an NFL analyst on the day he announced he was calling it quits. Now he will put his broadcast career on hold for one more year.

McCown was a third-round draft pick by Arizona in 2002 out of Sam Houston State. McCown played three years at SMU before going to SHSU. He started 13 games in a season twice, for the Cardinals in 2004 and the Jets in 2017. McCown’s best season came in 2013 with Chicago. He was 3-2 as a starter and completed 66.5 percent of his passes for 1,829 yards, 13 TDs and only one pick with a passer rating of 109.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Sports Editor

I am a native Tylerite and I grew up reading the Tyler Morning Telegraph and The Tyler Courier-Times. My parents took both the morning and afternoon papers. I came to work here 35 years ago at the age of 23, right after college.

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