Eagles training camp: 5 important takeaways from Thursday’s practice

Eagles
Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts (1) and teammates warm up during practice at the NFL football teams training facility in Philadelphia, Thursday, June 8, 2023. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

The Philadelphia Eagles are preparing for their opening preseason game next week with a series of intense practices down at the NovaCare Complex. Here’s everything you need to know from Thursday’s workout.

Kelee Ringo turning heads at Eagles Training Camp

If there’s one rookie I’m personally really excited by, it’s Kelee Ringo. The former Bulldog has all the makings of a defensive cornerstone who can chip in wherever needed on this Eagles unit and he’s wasted no time in garnering attention this Summer.

I noted earlier in the offseason how I could see Ringo taking on a STAR role (no pun intended) in this defense early on in order to get his talent on the field. We’re a week away from potentially seeing if that’s the case, but it’s encouraging to see him performing well in camp. It’s early days, but the Eagles have a year or two to develop an heir to Darius Slay’s throne and there may be no better fit than Kelee Ringo.

Nakobe Dean injury?

Nobody’s really sure what happened with Nakobe Dean earlier. The Eagles linebacker was seen on the sidelines during the early stages of practice without a helmet on before heading into the medical tent.

Perhaps it was a minor injury, but Dean appears to be alright and that’s the main thing at this point. Under Nick Sirianni, the Eagles have been able to keep a fairly clean bill of health during Training Camp and that will still be the priority. The good news is that Nakobe Dean hasn’t been listed on the injury report. Hopefully we see him back in pads at the next practice.

Eagles
PHILADELPHIA, PA – AUGUST 02: Philadelphia Eagles linebacker Nakobe Dean (17) enters the field during training camp on August 2, 2022 at the Novacare Complex in Philadelphia, PA (Photo by John Jones/Icon Sportswire)

D’Andre Swift stealing the spotlight

The Eagles have plenty of chefs in the Kitchen when it comes to the RB spot, but the Head Chef is clearly D’Andre Swift at this point. The former Lions running back has been consistently impressive to start the Summer and flexed his versatility earlier today.

This shouldn’t come as a surprise. Swift was a menace during his time with the Lions, with health being the only thing stopping him from becoming one of the most renowned backs in the entire league. The Eagles have a stunning backfield including the likes of Rashaad Penny, who finds himself in a similar spot to Swift.

We assumed it would be a real committee effort this season, but Swift might well be the man leading the charge at this point, potentially displacing Kenny Gainwell as RB1.

Jalen Hurts still balling

Shock: Jalen Hurts is good at Football.

I don’t think much more needs to be said. Hurts has been surgical throughout camp and is yet to throw an interception. Eliot Shorr-Parks tweeted earlier today that it’s gotten to the point where an incompletion is surprising. That should tell you all you need to know about the young signal-caller’s progress in 2023.

There’s more than one linebacker thriving in Philadelphia

The Eagles have become renowned for skimping on the linebacker position in recent years. Ever since they let Jordan Hicks go, the team has very much money-balled its way into coherent units. The likes of Kanu Grugier-Hill, Alex Singleton, and T.J Edwards, are all graduates from the special teams unit who became important assets to the defense.

Eagles
GREENVILLE, NC – NOVEMBER 07: Tulane Green Wave Defensive End Patrick Johnson (7) rushes during the first half of the College Football game between the Tulane Green Wave and the East Carolina Pirates on November 7, 2020, at Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium in Greenville, NC.(Photo by Gregory Fisher/Icon Sportswire)

While Christian Elliss is the man drawing the most praise in camp thus far, Patrick Johnson stood out to reporters today.

It’s nice to see the former 7th-rounder shine. He was an athletic monster at Tulane and could be a valuable asset to a revamped special teams group in 2023. He’s versatile a can play both the EDGE and off-ball LB spots, which means there’s plenty for him to learn from the likes of Nolan Smith and Haason Reddick. So far, so good. It will be interesting to see how high up the depth chart Johnson can push in 20223.

AP Photo/Matt Rourke