Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports
With the second day of the Philadelphia Eagles training camp in the books already, it’s time to discuss the biggest takeaways from today’s practice. Before the team took the field however, Eagles defensive coordinator Billy Davis met with the media. As you can imagine, many of the questions were about Brandon Boykin but I won’t get into details about that considering Chip Kelly covered it yesterday.
Billy Davis did have some other interesting things to say though:
This is not surprising to me as it makes a lot of sense. The Eagles want to get DeMeco Ryans on the field but both Kiko Alonso and Mychal Kendricks are far too good to sit on the sideline. Connor Barwin played way too many snaps last year too so I expect Kiko and Kendricks to rotate with Barwin and Brandon Graham. By using Kiko and Kendricks at outside linebacker as well as inside linebacker, Davis can make sure they play a lot this season and give Barwin and Graham extra rest. Sounds like a win-win to me.
This isn’t a real surprise either but it’s a very good sign for JaCorey Shepherd who is surely now the front runner to replace Boykin’s role. I don’t expect Eric Rowe to beat out Nolan Carroll in training camp so it could be a quiet start to the season for Rowe. Billy Davis also admitted that he made a mistake last season by not playing Nolan Carroll:
Shame he didn’t admit that he made a mistake by not giving Boykin more opportunity on the outside either last year but oh well. Playing Bradley Fletcher and Cary Williams every week last year was a ridiculous decision and I’m glad Davis has owned up his stupid mistake. Whilst we can’t get into every point made by Davis, he made make some other noteworthy comments, such as confirming that Eric Rowe will only play cornerback and not safety this season.
After Davis’ press conference, practice began.
Everyone knows that the Eagles will only go as far as Sam Bradford will take them this season. Bradford had a rough practice yesterday but it was his first time fully participating. The good news is that it appears Bradford bounced back and had a good practice today, which is great to see. He also appeared to be moving a lot better which is really important.
On the other hand it appears Mark Sanchez had a rough day. Without being rude, I almost don’t care at this point, I know Sanchez is a decent backup and that’s it. The Eagles aren’t winning a Super Bowl with Sanchez, it all comes down to Bradford.
It’s also becoming obvious that Tebow runs a lot more than the other quarterbacks. Is that a good thing? In practice I’d like to see him stand and deliver throws and not leave the pocket so frequently. He had his best day as an Eagle so far according to most reporters although, which is good to see.
Enough about the quarterbacks anyway. Jordan Matthews is the Eagles best receiver and he’s showing that in practice. Matthews is primed for an absolutely massive year, he could go over 1200 yards and 10 touchdowns. I wouldn’t even be shocked if performed better than that, the sky is the limit for him this year.
Time to look at the defense. The secondary is clearly much improved this season and it seems that Nolan Carroll is primed for a big year. The Eagles players and coaches have been raving about him since OTAs and the reporters watching practice have also been impressed by him. JaCorey Shepherd had a rough day today unlike yesterday, in his defense covering Jordan Matthews in the slot is a tough task for any cornerback.
Something else that stood out to me. After yesterday’s practice, ESPN’s Louis Riddick tweeted this:
Then during today’s practice, Brandon Lee Gowton tweeted this:
Since Jeremy Maclin tore his ACL a couple of years ago, I have been even more worried about injuries. Travis Long did pick up a knock but hopefully it’s nothing serious. Tomorrow’s practice is open to the public, I sadly will be unable to attend due to the small fact that I live in London but I hope Bradford puts on a show for everyone.
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