Just another day of Eagles training camp practice at the NovaCare facility. Let's get to today's notes:
• QB UPDATE: Michael Vick had another good day. He threw a lot of nice balls. When he makes the decision to throw, his release is quicker than any of the other Eagles QBs. The ball got where it needed to be and it got there fast. Vick wasn't without errors. He threw two passes into the human flyswatters (designed to simulate DL batting down a pass).
Nick Foles didn't have his best day. His lowlight was a ball thrown into traffic that was picked off by Mychael Kendricks. He almost threw another interception when Colt Anderson got his hands on a deep ball intended for Damaris Johnson.
There's nothing Matt Barkley loves more than the short to intermediate passing game. He generally makes good decisions and accurate throws. Barkley was intercepted by Brandon Hughes when aiming for Will Murphy down the sideline on one rep. Credit to the coverage and an impressive diving interception by Hughes, but Barkley may have been forcing it there.
• Brandon Boykin's amazing camp continues. Got physical with Salas (within 5 yards of LoS) on one rep and broke up the pass. Boykin also excels in the punt coverage gunner drill. Despite the double team from the two punt protectors, Boykin finds a way to get downfield in coverage in a hurry. Curtis Marsh performed well in this drill too.
• Earl Wolff showed great focus to intercept a tipped pass along the sideline. Not sure who threw it or who tipped it.
• OLB Chris McCoy excelled in coverage yet again. He was in perfect position to intercept a Dixon throw inteded for Emil Igwegnagu but the ball went through his hands. Still, it's been a good camp for McCoy. Pencil him on the final roster for a (backup) OLB spot.
• I mentioned earlier in my notes that Mychael Kendricks picked off a Foles pass. Kendricks displayed great coverage skills and athleticism on the play. He really leaped up to make the play. Chip Kelly talked about Kendricks skill set after practice. More on that in the quotes section later in the post.
• WR depth: Ifeanyi Momah has looked better the last two practices (Friday and today) after a slow start to camp. He snagged a ball thrown high over Jordan Poyer in coverage. Greg Salas still catches everything. Derek Carrier had a few short catches. Arrelious Benn (back at practice!) had a few catches as well.
• Peter King and Andrew Brandt were at Eagles practice. So was Neil Hornsby of Pro Football Focus (surprise - he was talking to Evan Mathis after practice). Peter King tweeted in response to a question that he "wouldn't be shocked" if the Eagles won 10 games this year, and he liked what he had to see out of Vick today.
• Some members of the Atlanta Braves were at Eagles practice. Chip Kelly pulled one of them aside and displayed proper punt catch form.
HC Chip Kelly
• Chip was encouraged to see Arrelious Benn practicing and said he liked what he saw out of him.
• Chip indicated that if Jason Peters isn't able to play for some reason in the future, Lane Johnston would be the starter at LT . Dennis Kelly is more likely to be at RT than LT.
• Chip lauded Mychael Kendricks and said he's the team's "best cover linebacker".
• On how the QB snaps in Friday's preseason game against the Patriots will be split: he hasn't decided yet.
ILB DeMeco Ryans
• "[Mychael] Kendricks is doing really well. He's picking up the defense well. Smart, athletic guy. You see the plays he's making out here. It's fun playing with a young guy like that who's flying around and making a lot of plays. He's starting to learn the game a lot better this year and I think it's going to be a great year for him."
• DeMeco said Connor Barwin was a great addition for the Eagles and it's "nice to see a familiar face."
OLB Chris McCoy
• On how he feels in coverage: "I'll tell you what, [we do it] a lot. I really don't know what [the percentage of dropping into coverage is], but it's a lot more than what I ever did. I feel comfortable [in coverage]. Now that we do it so much, I feel a lot more comfortable doing it."
• On who's the hardest player to cover: "I gotta give him his props. It's Damaris. It's Damaris Johnson."
OLB Connor Barwin
• "It helps Trent and Brandon that I can talk [to them] about the change I went through going from 4-3 defensive end to a 3-4."
• Barwin feels the defense will be "formed around the players". Downplays the idea of a rigid scheme.
WR Damaris Johnson
• I told Damaris that Chris McCoy said he was the toughest guy to cover, and asked about if other players thought the same about him. Johnson's response: "Yeah, teammates say that, but it's different because of my size and my speed. Guys are better at different things. I think I'm quick off the ball sometimes. I try to give [my teammates] problems each and every day."
• Damaris said he feels he can play slot and the outside. He said he's never played slot until this year.
• On how he feels about his deep speed: "I feel good. I feel I have enough speed to stretch the field. Maybe not as much as DeSean, but who does?"
WR Arrelious Benn - (Video)
• Benn feels like he needs to show the Eagles that he's durable. "I gotta stay healthy. If I prove them to them I can stay healthy I'll be alright."
• Benn said he felt good and doesn't feel behind since he had time to practice in OTAs and mini-camp.
• WR Arrelious Benn practiced today after not practicing since July 26. CB Bradley Fletcher was back at practice. Peters returned after missing time but had to leave early, as I just mentioned. TE Derek Carrier and CB Brandon Hughes also returned from injury.
Up next: The Eagles have an open practice at The Linc tomorrow. I'll be there to cover it.
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