At least two of the Eagles starting linebackers should have great chemistry on and off the field – they live next to each other, after all. When Ernie Sims was acquired from Detroit by the Eagles in a three-way trade in April, fellow linebacker Stewart Bradley was one of the first Eagles to welcome him. “He stepped up to me on the first day I walked in,” Sims said.
The two became friends quickly, and Sims happened to find an apartment right next to Bradley’s. In the months since, the middle and weakside linebackers have been eager to get onto the field next to each other and wreak some havoc. “We’ve been talking a lot about getting out there and flying around together,” said Bradley.
Sims said that his new neighbor helped him get up to speed quickly on what it would be like to play in Philadelphia. But the former Lion knew one thing right away: he was happy to be out of Detroit. When asked about it after a practice, Sims got straight to the point, “Yeah, I’m tired of losing. Let’s just put it that way.”
The ninth overall pick in 2006 said the tough times in Detroit wore on him as well as his teammates. Sims says he’s thrilled to have a fresh start and it doesn’t hurt to be playing next to Bradley, “It’s good to have somebody beside me who’s that talented, who can push me.”
So far in training camp, Sims hasn’t needed much pushing. He’s got a firm grip on the WILL linebacker position, and if anything, head coach Andy Reid has had to pull him back a bit. On the first full day of training camp, the newest Eagles linebacker was trying to hit his offensive teammates during drills that were “thud” or only partial contact. “Ernie Sims is a physical football player, and then he’s just got to learn in the certain drills, I’m going to give you plenty of time to get after each other, there are just certain drills you can’t do that in,” Reid explained.
Don’t think Reid’s holding it against Sims though – he likes the tenacity, “I would rather have it that way where he’s very aggressive, much rather have it that way, it’s hard to turn them up. So I’d rather have him aggressive and have to teach him to calm down in certain drills.”
Right guard Stacy Andrews sat out today’s morning practice with a shoulder strain. Defensive tackle Antonio Dixon has a concussion. Safety Macho Harris has a hamstring strain, which Andy Reid called the most serious of the Eagles’ four hamstring injuries. Running back Mike Bell remains out with a hamstring strain, which Reid says should only keep him out a couple more days. Wide receiver DeSean Jackson has a low back strain that is improving and Reid expects him to be back within the next few days. Tight end Martin Rucker and cornerback Asante Samuel have hamstring spasms. A.Q. Shipley has a high ankle sprain. Defensive end Victor Abiamiri, guard Todd Herermans and center Jamaal Jackson remain on the PUP list.
Quote of the Day
When asked how often he plans to run the ball this season, Andy Reid responded in a joking manner, “I think we’re going to run the ball 80% of the time.”
Training Camp Coverage
Visit InsideTheIggles.com for training camp coverage, including practice recaps and scouting reports from Lehigh Valley. ITI’s Ryan Messick will be reporting from camp again August 5th through 8th. Check back often for updates and follow along on Twitter at www.twitter.com/Ryan_Messick and www.twitter.com/InsideTheIggles.