On Tuesday night, running back
"Coach Staley told me he was going to throw me in the fire," Barner said. "We're looking for you to play."
Barner is in only his second NFL season, but he's already seen enough to know that life-altering moves like this are "the nature of the business." The former Oregon standout arrived in Philadelphia at around 8 AM on Wednesday and immediately immersed himself in the offensive and special teams playbooks. After earning All-America honors under head coach Chip Kelly in 2012, Barner thought he was going to be reacquainted with the same playbook from Oregon.
"Boy, was I wrong," Barner said.
"I'm constantly in my iPad going over this playbook. I'm constantly meeting with different coaches trying to get a feel for what's going on. I'm learning a completely new language because everything is so different from when I was with Chip," Barner said. "I've had to learn completely new terminology, new plays. It was tough, but Coach Staley, (special teams coordinator Dave) Fipp, they did a great job of getting me ready."
Barner was on the field for 18 total snaps (11 offense, seven special teams) in Thursday night's win over the Steelers. Barner touched the ball plenty gaining 32 yards rushing on seven carries and returning a kickoff 22 yards.
The timing of Barner's arrival was interesting as it is very late in the evaluation process with the first round of roster cuts due by Tuesday. Barner also joins a team with a talented group of running backs. The Eagles traded a conditional seventh-round pick in 2015, which is contingent upon Barner being on the active gameday roster four times this season, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter. The Eagles can cut ties with no cost whatsoever. However, Barner is looking to make the most of the opportunity.
"Life isn't fair. You take what you're given. You do with that what you can," Barner said. "My mindset is not looking for a fair shake, it's to come in here and work, show these coaches I can play and ultimately, God-willing, everything works out."