Running Diary: Eagles Practice Observations
Here’s what we saw during the second day of training camp.
11:55 – During an early drill, the defensive backs focus on press technique against wide receivers. There’s no pass or actual football involved. They just line up across from each other, and both sides try to win at the line of scrimmage.
On one rep, Jordan Matthews tosses Walter Thurmond aside and scoots past him. Later, Nolan Carroll draws praise from defensive backs coach Cory Undlin. The early “Coach’s Pet” award goes to Carroll. Everyone in the building has been raving about him nonstop since the spring.
12:07 – I believe this is a new running back drill:
If you’re wondering about whether the three guys randomly decide which way they’re going with the tackling dummies, they do not. The middle man offers up instruction before the snap.
12:11 – During 7-on-7s, Sam Bradford is on the money to Matthews on a crossing route. One thing I’ve noticed in some of the team drills with Bradford is that he seems to do a really good job with his ball placement on crossers and other routes that are supposed to lead to yards after the catch.
“Like everybody said, he places the ball where it has to be,” Matthews said afterwards. “It’s extremely noticeable. You can’t miss it when you come out here and watch him practice. He’s gonna come out here, he’s gonna put the ball where it has to be.”
DeMarco Murray participated fully today, but had some strange responses when asked why he was limited on Sunday.
12:21 – Depth chart note: Andrew Gardner played right guard with the first team today. It was Matt Tobin on Sunday. We’ll see if anyone else rotates in at that spot in the coming days or if it’s primarily a two-person competition.
In case you’re wondering about John Moffitt, he’s been lining up with the third team so far. Chip Kelly made it clear that Moffitt is going to have to earn a role here. He’s on a non-guaranteed contract so nothing will be handed to him, and the Eagles can cut their losses at any time.
Catch of the day goes to undrafted free agent tight end Eric Tomlinson, who hauls in a one-hander on a crossing route from Matt Barkley.
During this period, Mark Sanchez gets a chance to direct the first team, but it was otherwise Bradford with the starters during practice.
12:41 – Bradford opens up 7-on-7s with a good ball to Matthews on another crossing route. Those two hooked up all day long. Then Bradford delivered a dime to Ryan Mathews on a wheel route down the right sideline, but Mathews couldn’t hang on. Kiko Alonso ran with him step for step.
Bradford later hit Zach Ertz in stride, as the tight end had Malcolm Jenkins on his back. Overall, I thought it was a very good day for Bradford. He was accurate and took some shots downfield. It appears he knocked some of the rust off from Sunday.
And most importantly, Bradford participated fully.
1:05 – More Bradford to Matthews as the pair connect for a couple completions. Matthews had a nice day and did most of his damage from the slot. That’s primarily where he’s been lining up during the first two days of camp.
Undrafted free agent CB Denzel Rice makes one of the better defensive plays of the day, timing his leap nicely and breaking up a deep post to Quron Pratt from Matt Barkley.
Bradford and Matthews connect once again. This time, it’s a deep ball down the seam for a touchdown. The entire first-team offense gathers in the end zone, the players put their hands in, break and call it a day.
We’ll be back with more observations tomorrow from the Linc.