It took five summers, but there is finally some potentially serious discord in Camp Reid.
Feature back Duce Staley did not arrive at the Philadelphia Eagles' training camp at Lehigh University by the 5 p.m. Monday deadline for veterans.
Staley, a veteran of six seasons, is in the final year of his contract and is seeking the kind of long-term extension the Eagles have granted to other veterans players during Andy Reid's five years as head coach.
Cornerback Bobby Taylor, who had joined Staley in sitting out the Eagles' final round of minicamp workouts last month, arrived at Lehigh a couple of hours before the reporting deadline. Staley is due to make $2.2 million this season, and Taylor $4.1 million.
Staley officially became a holdout at about 5:15 p.m. Monday, when Eagles media relations director Derek Boyko reported that rookie first-round draft pick Jerome McDougle and Staley were the only players not in camp.
There was no other immediate comment from the Eagles.
Staley's absence was a mild surprise because Reid and other club officials had expressed confidence in the last month that Staley would report on time for training camp.
''I have talked to Bobby , but I have not talked with Duce,'' Reid said Thursday in previewing training camp. ''I will talk to Duce. I am expecting both to be here.''
As late as 11:45 a.m. Monday, offensive coordinator Brad Childress sounded as if he anticipated seeing Staley at Monday's mandatory 7 p.m. team meeting.
''Andy will, I'm sure, speak with him when he comes in, and then it'll be done,'' Childress said. ''Then we'll go through training camp and see where we're at.''
Unless the sides find common ground in the next 24 hours, the Eagles will take the field Wednesday morning for the start of two-a-day workouts without the feature back who is coming off a season in which he rushed for 1,069 yards and caught 51 passes for 541 yards and appeared to dispel concerns about his being brittle.
Staley's absence leaves the Eagles with Correll Buckhalter, who missed all of last season because of a knee injury, and second-year all-purpose back Brian Westbrook as experienced tailbacks in camp.
The Eagles parted ways with Dorsey Levens during the offseason. Levens signed as a free agent with the New York Giants after he served one season as Staley's backup while Buckhalter was sidelined.
Staley is the first veteran Eagle to stage a holdout since 1992. That was when tight end Keith Jackson missed time on the way to gaining free agency thanks to a court ruling, and cornerback Eric Allen also was briefly absent before rejoining the Birds for three seasons.
In 1998, wide receiver Irving Fryar, seeking a contract extension, did not arrive at Lehigh until 6:58 p.m. two minutes before then-coach Ray Rhodes' deadline on reporting day.
Taylor, who is the current longest-serving Eagle with eight seasons in Philly, avoided that kind of dramatic entrance by reporting Monday.
''I think it was kind of distorted a bit,'' Taylor said of his minicamp absence. ''It wasn't about getting the Eagles to sign me to an extension. I had my representative contact them about if they had any plans for me in the future. There wasn't any response.''
Taylor's response was to skip the minicamp, which he noted was ''voluntary.''
''Not being here was rough on both sides,'' Taylor said. ''It ate me up. But I'm here for training camp and that's the main thing.''
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