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Eagles training camp 2020 observations Day 1: Football is back!


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Eagles training camp 2020 observations Day 1: Football is back!

 Sure, there were some noticeable differences at the NovaCare Complex for the first padded practice of training camp today. 

For starters, as I got to the facility, I had to wear my own mask before getting my temperature checked (98.9) and then was given a surgical mask to watch practice. Reporters were required to socially distance on the sideline and in the bleachers. 



But who cares? It was football! 

Here are my first observations from Eagles practice this summer. 

1. OK, so some not-so-great injury news to start off today. Here’s the full injury report from the Eagles to start their padded portion of training camp: 

Not having Derek Barnett and Javon Hargrave right now is huge, especially because Hargrave is learning the new defense and he’s learning how to play next to Fletcher Cox. 

Another injury note is about Andre Dillard. Dillard was splitting first-team reps at left tackle with Jordan Mailata. I’m told Dillard is getting over a minor injury and the Eagles are simply easing him back in. Nothing to worry about there. 

2. Carson Wentz looks good. He looks visibly bigger after bulking up this offseason, but he also looks spry. He took the majority of the reps on the first day in pads. He threw some great balls and also looks quick on a few rollouts and on one play that looked like a designed QB keeper. 

3. A good first day for 1st-round pick Jalen Reagor. Aside from a couple muffed punts earlier in the day, Reagor looked solid as a returner and explosive on offense. His best catch came on a diving grab in the corner of the end zone from Wentz. 

4. It’s funny because normally by this time of the year, I would have already seen all of OTAs and the warmup training camp practices. So the first time watching these guys in pads is strange because it was a physical day. It was supposed to be a lighter day but it didn’t feel like it. Even Fletcher Cox agreed there was an added level of competitiveness today. 

The biggest hit came from rookie Shaun Bradley. Even though it was a thud sessions (and not tackle to the ground), Bradley lowered his shoulder and sent Dallas Goedert to the ground during an 11-on-11 period. 

5. But Goedert’s day got much better. A little later in practice, he made the grab of the day in the back of the end zone. He tipped the ball up to himself and caught it with one hand as he dove. It was a beauty. The Eagles were already in a bunch of 12 personnel on Monday. Goedert will be a big part of the offense in 2020. 

6. A few important depth chart notes: 

• Without J.J. Arcega-Whiteside and Alshon Jeffery, Reagor was working as the X receiver to start. So in 11 personnel, the Eagles had Reagor, DeSean Jackson and Greg Ward out there. Then other guys mixed in. 

• Without Jason Peters at right guard, Matt Pryor was in there. So the first-string OL was: Dillard, Isaac Seumalo, Jason Kelce, Pryor, Lane Johnson 

Second team OL: Mailata, Sua Opeta, Luke Juriga, Nate Herbig, Jack Driscoll

• Avonte Maddox got first crack at the CB2 spot opposite Darius Slay. It was Slay and Maddox outside and Nickell Robey-Coleman as the nickel corner. Sidney Jones, Rasul Douglas and Cre’Von LeBlanc were with the second team. 

• Without Hargrave, Malik Jackson was the first-team defensive tackle next to Fletcher Cox. Jackson and Cox played just part of one game together last year before Jackson went down with injury. Cox said he felt like him and Jackson picked up where they left off in Week 1 last year. Vinny Curry was with the first team for Derek Barnett. 

• The top linebackers today were Nathan Gerry, T.J. Edwards and Alex Singleton. Singleton is working with the starters right now with Riley (illness) out most likely because he has been here for a while and knows the defense better than the rookies. 

7. We got our first look at rookie quarterback Jalen Hurts, who looked solid. His best pass of the day was an absolute dime down the right sideline to fellow rookie John Hightower, who beat Rasul Douglas in coverage. It was a perfect ball for a big gainer. 

8. We saw more Quez Watkins than Hightower on Monday. That’s probably because DeSean wasn’t taking every rep (he doesn’t need to). Watkins caught two slants for touchdowns from Wentz in a red zone period. 

9. Linebacker Alex Singleton dropped a gimme interception from Wentz that bounced right off his hands. It looked like Wentz tried to thread the needle but this was a 10-10-10 practice so take that with a grain of salt. The Eagles use 10-10-10s to work out some stuff. Still, Singleton has to make that pick. He’s fighting for a roster spot. 

10. Alshon Jeffery is on the Active/PUP right now so he isn’t practicing but he did make an appearance. Wearing a bucket hat above his surgical mask, Alshon wandered the sideline, played catch and even chatted with Wentz and DeSean during one practice period. Doug Pederson said earlier on Monday that Jeffery was "doing extremely well” but wouldn’t give a timetable on Jeffery’s return from Lisfranc surgery last year. 

Stupid Observation of the Day: Sometimes numbers give me a flashback and talking to Roob that never ends. Today, I saw No. 33 Elijah Holyfield running pretty upright and I flashed back to Josh Adams. Adams hasn’t been here for a while.


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