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As expected, Eagles release WR Mitchell

PHILADELPHIA (May 6, 2005) -- Freddie Mitchell has talked his way out of Philadelphia.

In a move that was no surprise, the Eagles released Mitchell, cutting ties with the wide receiver after four seasons where he never lived up to his promise as a first-round pick.

"We appreciate everything Freddie has contributed to the Eagles organization over the last four years," coach Andy Reid said. "By releasing him now, it gives him the opportunity for a new start with another team in the NFL."

Mitchell, picked in the first round out of UCLA in 2001, made more news off the field than on it, labeling himself with a seemingly endless list of self-promoting nicknames like "The People's Champ," "FredEx," and "First-Down Freddie." Before the Super Bowl, Mitchell offended some Patriots when he dissed their secondary in a television interview.

Mitchell said he just knew the numbers -- not the names -- of New England's cornerbacks. He singled out Rodney Harrison, saying he "has something" for the veteran strong safety. Mitchell also called out New England coach Bill Belichick.

Unhappy over his role as the slot receiver and overshadowed by Terrell Owens, Mitchell criticized his teammates for not backing him up when he trashed talked the Patriots and blasted Donovan McNabb for lacking confidence in him as a go-to receiver.

Mitchell was told not to come to Philadelphia's first mandatory minicamp last week.

"I told him I did not want him here," Reid said.

Mitchell played in 63 career games and had 90 catches for 1,263 yards and five touchdowns. On the field, he was best known for his catch on a fourth-and-26 play that kept Philadelphia's season alive in the NFC divisional playoff game against Green Bay in January 2004.

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