The pads went on for the first time this year at Eagles Training Camp under the beating sun at the NovaCare Complex. In what was a far more physical practice than yesterday, here’s everything you need to know.
Cre’Von’s injury could be more serious than we thought
After his mysterious absence yesterday was described as ‘injury-related’ by Jim Schwartz, the Eagles would go on to sign UDFA CB Alex Brown who is regarded as a slot corner due to his size. Interestingly, the team worked out CB Orlando Scandrick today, one of the top remaining free agents at his position and someone who has been a slot corner for the majority of his career, coming off of a year where he started seven times for the Chiefs.
LeBlanc was then seen around the NovaCare Complex wearing a walking boot. We can disregard all trade speculation now, and instead, begin to wonder just how serious this injury is going to be. Signing an undrafted free agent is one thing, but working out Scandrick, who has been in the league since Dallas drafted him in 2008, is much more of a lunge. Until further details are revealed, we can just hope that LeBlanc is able to recover from the injury and that it isn’t something that could rip the rug from under him.
Meanwhile, small-school sleeper Jay Liggins, the tallest CB in the room, was taking second-team reps in relief of LeBlanc, which is huge for his own development.
Not the best day for Wentz
The franchise QB has been red-hot to start training camp, but troubles on deep balls headlined today’s action, with Wentz struggling to connect with DJax and Alshon. The same can be said for all quarterbacks today, who didn’t exactly light up the NovaCare Complex, but it’s day 3 in camp, the first in pads, it’s hardly the end of the world.
However, what’s really positive is that Carson Wentz stayed behind after practice with Alshon Jeffery, DeSean Jackson, Nelson Agholor, and Zach Ertz to get some extra work in. That says all you need to know.
Training Camp Crush
Every year I find myself rooting for an underdog to make the roster. Maybe I fell in love with their tape, their journey to the NFL, or simply just see bucket-loads of potential and want them to cause an upset. From Aaron Grymes and Paul Turner, this year’s preseason hero to be is off to a flyer.
I wrote extensively about why the Eagles are targeting the CFL in a recent article and focused heavily on Singleton. If you want an underdog to root for, 2017’s CFL defensive player of the year is making his case.
Goedert breaks out…again
We became used to this last offseason and it looks as though history will repeat itself. Dallas Goedert is already stealing the show, priming himself for an offensive breakout in 2019.
Now entering his second year, the Eagles look like they want to squeeze this very juicy orange as hard as they can, getting the most out of Goedert’s size, speed, and athleticism. Watch out red zone defenses.
Curry’s setting the tone
Well, Vinny Curry’s return to Philadelphia is already picking up where it left off, with the defensive end blowing up Boston Scott in the backfield and then….doing a Fortnite dance? We’ll take it.
Curry is set to be a key cog in the defensive end rotation in 2019 and in the first padded practice, this is a strong start.
Defensive tackle depth turns up the heat
NJ.Com’s Mike Kaye had his eyes focused on the defensive tackle position today and by the looks of things, the guys all battling for a firm spot in the rotation are already ramping up the intensity.
It’s encouraging to say the least considering how visible a lack of defensive tackle depth cost the team one year ago. There’s a strong chance that all three of these players will assert themselves into the rotation, with Hester even going as far as to work out with Aaron Donald this offseason. Could he be yet another underdog to watch?
Sidney Jones SZN
There is understandably plenty of attention being placed on Sidney Jones this offseason after his sophomore campaign was a mixed bag of elite flashes, inconsistencies, and injury setbacks. He’s easily been one of the early Summer standouts, which all things considered with Mills, Darby, and LeBlanc, is huge.
With Jones really thriving, it’s only going to add even more fuel to a fire at cornerback that’s already burning brightly.
It may be a ‘no-hitting’ environment, but that hasn’t stopped renowned thunder thudder Andrew Sendejo from making his mark. Again, with so much discussion about his future due to the fact that the team can cut him and coup a fourth-round compensatory pick, seeing this kind of early aggressiveness could make all the difference.
Breakin’ a Sweat
I wrote earlier today about just how high the Eagles coaching staff and players are on FSU product Josh Sweat, and his first real test today came against first-round pick Andre Dillard, a test the Left Tackle won to begin with.
But then ‘Sweaty J’ decided to shake things up and make sure he isn’t lost in the summer shuffle. He’s going to be one of my red-circle players when preseason begins.
Offensive line update
Eagles offensive coordinator Mike Groh spoke with reporters after today’s practice and opened up on the offensive line situation, claiming Big V has ‘earned’ right guard. This, in itself, is massive. Vaitai transitioned inside earlier this year and was snatching first-team reps from Stefen Wisniewski. What did the future hold for a lineman who has gone from a starting LG to being forced out of both spots?
Yeah. It looks as though Wisniewski, who has center experience on his resume, will be backing up Jason Kelce under center…but will he be able to prove enough to make the roster? It sounds silly, but he seems to have fallen out of favor rapidly and if there are younger players sniffing for spots IE Keegan Render, never say never.
Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports