Today was the first day of training camp where the Eagles "practiced." Mind you, there were no pads on and only rookies and selected veterans were in attendance. The practice lasted an hour long and here's what I noticed:
- QB update first, because that's what everyone cares about the most. Michael Vick didn't talk yesterday when players reported but did talk today after practice. When asked about the QB competition, he was humble and said all the right things. He said he will continue to support the team whether he wins the QB competition or not. When asked if he returned to the Eagles knowing there would be QB competition, Vick said: "I came back to Philadelphia to play [for] Chip Kelly".
- The QB to get the first rep today was... both Michael Vick and Nick Foles, simultaneously.
- I didn't see anything too noteworthy out of the QBs. Foles and Vick each made some nice throws. I noted on Twitter that Matt Barkley doesn't have that "oomph" in his throws yet. This was also noted by others in OTAs. It's not a major concern, it's just no surprise that he's a rookie.
- When I was watching the DB drills, I immediately noticed rookie Earl Wolff's impressive physique. Had you ever seen this video, you wouldn't find his athleticism surprising. Wolff had a nice interception off of GJ Kinne in 2-on-3 drills.
- I have a feeling Poyer is going to be a guy that stands out more once the pads go on. He doesn't get to display his physical, aggressive style of play in mere DB drills.
- Derek Carrier, my "player to watch" in training camp, made a few nice catches today in 2-on-3 drills. He moves well for a big TE, which makes sense because he played as a WR/TE/H-Back in college. Still has a long way to go to earn a spot on the roster.
- After practice ended, Chip Kelly took questions from the media. He was asked about P Brad Wing and RB Matthew Tucker being placed on the non-football injury list (NFI list) today. He stated that both Wing and Tucker will get a chance to re-try their conditioning test on Thursday when the rest of the roster reports for camp. He wasn't clear on what would happen should those players fail the test again, but I can't imagine it bodes well for their young careers. They are both fighting up-hill battles at their positions already: Donnie Jones is the favorite at P and Tucker has to compete against Bryce Brown, Chris Polk, and Felix Jones for a depth spot at RB.
- Chip noted that TE James Casey and C Jason Kelce were eager to attend practice early (before the rest of the team reports) after missing time in the spring at mini-camp/OTAs.
- According to Chip, the first time pads go on in practice will be this Sunday, the 28th. No tackling and hitting in practice until then. That's good news for fans who will be in attendance for Chip Kelly's first ever open training camp practice at Lincoln Financial Field.
- When asked about the team's depth chart right now, Kelly said it was "written in sand." Clearly there are jobs to be won. Nothing easy!
- Russell Shepard was doing some extra work with the JUGS machine after practice, just like he was in OTAs. Shepard was also the primary guy I saw practicing fielding punts. Poyer did a little bit of this too.
On a more personal note, I met Jimmy Kempski and Dan Klausner in person for the first time today. I can assure you that they are indeed real people and friendly ones at that.
Up tomorrow is another practice like today's: 1 hour of rookies and selected veterans. The rest of the team reports to NovaCare on Thursday.
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