The Eagles went through their penultimate practice of the Training Camp program today and were unable to do so without tempers flaring. Here’s everything you need to know.
The nature of the day
A 10-10-10 practice always brings plenty of intrigue to the table, but the Eagles have just one more training camp practice remaining after today and after three weeks of hitting, thudding, and colliding with each other, tensions started to boil.
On what was a veteran’s day off, it was a rookie who found himself at the center of it all.
Dillard got into a scuff with Derek Barnett and was grabbed by Jason Peters shortly after. Receiving words of wisdom from ‘the bodyguard’ is a luxury few in this league have access to and it’s invaluable in instances like this.
I’m surprised it’s taken this long for an actual fight to break out (not counting Shareef Miller’s RKO to Casey Tucker) but the aftermath involving pep-talks from Peters, Pederson, and even Roseman, speak volumes about the culture within the locker room and how the team are able to really diffuse the situation.
Don’t write him off just yet…
Dallas Goedert will be held out of preseason, Richard Rodgers has had his bumps this offseason and Zach Ertz, the bonafide TE1, is not going to be a prominent feature in the offense over the next few weeks. It’s opened the doors for Josh Perkins, who although was underwhelming last year in limited action, isn’t giving up.
This may be the biggest few weeks in his young career. If Perkins can keep pushing above and beyond the call of duty to stand out in preseason, there is a chance that the Eagles keep him on as a 4th tight end, just as they did with Trey Burton back in 2014, to develop him further. Perkins has potential, but if he can harness it and take advantage of a plate that’s been gifted to him, we may start to see more of the former UDFA.
No, not me, L.J Fort. After a brilliant preseason debut, Fort is insistent on turning more heads.
The former Steelers linebacker was a key special teams ace who went on to earn his share of defensive snaps last year and with Kamu Grugier-Hill sidelined, could be in line to do that again.
An interesting observation
With Nate Sudfeld injured, one would expect Cody Kessler to attack the position head-on to try and prove he’s worthy of a QB2 role. Instead, the inverse seems to be happening.
Completing 64% of passes in his career so far with 8 touchdowns and 5 picks, Kessler has become somewhat of a game manager, which is what maybe led him to Jacksonville last year.
It’s a smart move. There’s no point in being overly aggressive and risking turnovers when keeping the offense on the field and moving the chains consistently is of far more valuable as an emergency signal-caller. Smart decision.
Wentz putting on a show
It was a 10-10-10 practice so you can only take so much away, but Carson Wentz looked like he was back to his best on Monday, dropping dimes all over the place.
It remains to be seen whether we see Wentz in preseason action or not, but he’s carving up the NovaCare Complex as if it were a Steak right now, which can only mean good things.
Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports