We were inside today, which would typically mean far less action, but it was a surprisingly active session today. Lots of good notes:
- No Fletcher Cox today. His cousin passed away in a car crash, so he was excused.
- Alex Henery had a good day. They moved back in succession from about 35 yards out to 50, and Henery drilled about 5-7 kicks in a row. Only one kick was close, with the rest being right down the middle. The Eagles then ran sort of a hurry up emergency FG situation, in which the offense runs a play and the kicking team hurries out onto the field sans a timeout and tries to beat the clock for the winning kick. Henery hit a 50 yarder in that drill, and then had the crap smacked out of him by Evan Mathis and Derek Landri. We may need Mike Florio to investigate the Eagles for kicker abuse. The Eagles may lose a few practice sessions.
- Quick screen to DeSean Jackson today went the distance. If Jackson wasn’t so willing to be tackled, that’s a play that would be an absolute nightmare for defenses to cover. It’s a cheap way to get the ball in DeSean’s hands and in space. There was a young kid here from the Make-a-Wish foundation today, and DeSean, along with Mike Vick, spent a lot of time after practice playing football with him. They were still hanging with the kid when I left to type this up. DeSean has been great with those kinds of things. Last year, he appeared on The View to meet a bullying victim. Huge ESPN crew was here covering DeSean today – I heard that it’ll likely air in July.
- Brandon Graham is getting a ton of reps. He’s working with the 1’s, 2’s, and 3’s. There isn’t much defensive linemen can do in these drills, so it’ll be more interesting to see if the high number of reps continue when contact is allowed up at Lehigh. Antonio Dixon also seems to be getting an abnormal number of reps.
- Speaking of Lehigh, Andy Reid gave the reason for moving the contact portion of practice to the afternoon. Trainer Rich Burkholder advised the move because players will be properly hydrated and will have two meals in them.
- A lot of Eagles fans ooh’d and ahh’d over this sick highlight by Elvis Akpla when the Eagles signed him as an undrafted free agent. Unfortunately, here in Philly he hasn’t made the catches that have hit him square in the hands. Chance of making the team somewhere near 0%. Ronald Johnson also had a few drops today.
More after the jump…
- No reps for Trent Edwards today in 7 on 7’s or 11 on 11’s.
- Mychal Kendricks had a decent day. Stood out a few times. Had a nice PBU on Celek. Also had a clear P.I. on Clay Harbor. On that play, by the way, Harbor beat Kendricks to the inside on a nice shake, and Kendricks made contact early, causing Harbor to drop the ball. While he was definitely interfered with, that’s a catch I want Harbor to make, and he hasn’t made the tough ones so far during these practices.
- I thought I saw Mike Kafka show off some arm strength I’d never seen from him on a 25 yard square in to Damaris Johnson. Had to double-check to make sure it was him. It wasn’t. It was Foles. Kid has a gun.
- Marvin McNutt made a nice catch today. He had a safety draped all over him (I think it was Bonner), and was able to out-muscle him for the catch. Good hands.
- Interesting alignment for the Eagles secondary when facing 4 WR sets. DRC stayed on the outside on the left and Hanson played his normal slot position. But on the other side, Nnamdi moved inside to play the slot, and Curtis Marsh came in and played on the outside. An alternative to that might be to keep Nnamdi on the outside and bring in Brandon Boykin to play the slot on that side. It’s way too early to say that’s what they’ll do when the season begins, as there are lots of possibilities, but it was interesting to see one of the many.
- Liked what I saw from Trevard Lindley today. He was on Mardy Gilyard on a go route, and Lindley did a great job of “looking and leaning.” By “looking and leaning” I mean that he was running down the field with the receiver, he located the ball, kept his eyes on it, all while simultaneously leaning back into the receiver and maintaining a full sprint. Not easy to do, but it was well done. Got an atta boy from secondary coach Todd Bowles.
- Another secondary player that really stood out today was D.J. Johnson. This is Johnson’s 5th team in the NFL, and he’s only 26. He has played with the Giants, Bucs, Vikings, and Redskins. Broke up two long ball and almost had a pick on one. Juan Castillo sought him out after the 11 on 11’s an had a short, positive talk with him.
- Howard Mudd stood and answered questions for a good 15 minutes today. Very, very smart dude. I’d write something up on him, but there are going to be plenty of other articles from the other beat guys on him, so keep an eye out for them.
I’ll be at the Timex tomorrow watching the Giants.