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Eagles Practice Notes from OTAs: 19 things we learned

Here's what we learned from today's Eagles practice.

Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

The Philadelphia Eagles began their 2016 OTA practices on Tuesday. The practice session was open to media and I was there to soak it all in. (I literally got soaked because it was raining.) Keep in mind that these are all non-contact drills at this point. Players aren't allowed to wear shells yet. There's only so much to be gleaned from players running around in shorts, but here's what I noticed on Tuesday.

• Housekeeping stuff first. Notable veterans not in attendance: Fletcher Cox and Darren Sproles. Cox's absence is presumably contract related. Sproles has been skipping practice but Doug Pederson denied rumors that he wants a trade or the team wants to trade him. Rookies who weren't able to attend practice due to the fact they still have classes going on: OG Isaac Seumalo, RB Byron Marshall, and WR Marcus Johnson.

• Injury updates: Kicker Cody Parkey is still doing rehab. Pederson suggested he won't be ready until closer towards training camp. Linebacker Jordan Hicks didn't participate in team drills as a precaution. He has tightness in his legs. Cornerbacks and Nolan Carroll and JaCorey Shepherd aren't ready for team drills yet either.

• I've only ever attended Eagles practice when Chip Kelly has been coach so today's practice was weird to me. It was a lot more quiet and a lot more slow-paced than what I've been used to in the past. Not saying that's good or bad, just pointing out how different things are now with Chip gone.

• The Eagles had some players fielding returns while the rest of the team was doing warmups. The group was mostly compromised of wide receivers and some running backs but cornerbacks Leodis McKelvin and Jalen Mills were in the mix as well.

• Pederson was keeping a close eye on Carson Wentz early during some offensive drills. He was really hands on with the rookie.

• Speaking of that offensive drill, there were a lot of drops. The fact that it was raining didn't help. Players were slipping on the grass. Rueben Randle even managed to make a catch despite falling and laying on the ground. Sloppy start of OTAs by the wide receivers, though.

• Eagles wide receivers coach Greg Lewis is one of the most vocal assistants during practice. He's constantly barking at his guys. The Eagles have a lot of youth at receiver so the extra guidance can't hurt.

• Wentz struggled with accuracy a few times during a drill where there was no defense covering his receivers. He was mostly fine but there were two notable overthrows on deep attempts.

• The Eagles' first string offensive line looked like this from left to right: Jason Peters, Allen Barbre, Jason Kelce, Brandon Brooks, Lane Johnson. No surprises there. Though there's expected to be a competition at left guard, Pederson said Barbre is his guy for now.

Second team offensive line: Matt Tobin, Malcolm Bunche, Stefen Wisniewski, Barrett Jones, Dennis Kelly.

Third team offensive line: Andrew Gardner, Josh Andrews, Bruce Johnson, Darrell Greene, Big V.

• Other offensive lineup notes: Sam Bradford was obviously the first QB up. Chase Daniel was with the second team and Wentz was third. Kenjon Barner got the first first team rep at running back but Ryan Mathews and Wendell Smallwood also got mixed in as well. Jordan Matthews, Nelson Agholor, and Josh Huff were the starting receivers. Matthews got some looks as an outside receiver but he was mostly in the slot still. Zach Ertz was the main tight end.

• Defensive line up notes: Leodis McKelvin and Eric Rowe were the starting cornerbacks on the outside. Ron Brooks got the first look in the nickel. Malcolm Jenkins and Rodney McLeod were the safeties. Connor Barwin and Vinny Curry were the starting defensive ends. Bennie Logan and Taylor Hart, who is filling in for Cox, were the tackles. Nigel Bradham and Mychal Kendricks were the outside linebacker while Najee Goode filled in for Hicks in the middle of the defense.

• There was SOME music during practice ... including the uncensored version of "Killing In The Name" by Rage Against The Machine.

• Not an awesome day for Bradford. He was almost picked off by Jenkins after rolling right and throwing into coverage on one play. He threw a pass to a receiver along the sideline and it was batted down. Bradford threw a pass deep intended for Huff but McKelvin batted it down again. Bradford's worst throw came when he stared down his slot receiver and Rodney McLeod jumped the route for an easy pick six. Great play by the safety. Bradford's best throw of the day came when he hit Matthews down the sideline. In true Sam Bradford fashion, the quarterback started slow and saved his best for last.

• I thought Wentz definitely looked like a rookie during his first day of full practice. He got picked off by Denzel Rice at one point after throwing a ball into traffic. After throwing the pick, Wentz looked like he wanted to chase Rice down, but then he remembered this is only practice and it's non-contact anyway. Wentz did have some nice moments. He hit Trey Burton up the middle thanks to a well-thrown seam pass. I was impressed by Wentz's pocket presence when he felt "pressure" and stepped up in the pocket to throw a strike to T.J. Graham. Unfortunately, the receiver dropped it.

• Daniel may have been the best of any quarterback. Jalen Mills had really tight coverage on Xavier Rush but somehow the ball got right where it needed to be for the completion. Daniel didn't do anything overly flashy. Outside of one underthrown ball that was broken up by Eric Rowe, he was mostly solid.

• McKelvin was very impressive. Along with his pass breakups he also stripped Huff and recovered the fumble. He was very active and aggressive.

• Randle almost got his head ripped off by Deontae Skinner at one point after making a catch. Thankfully no one was injured. These are supposed to be non-contact drills, but roughness like this is inevitable.

• Eagles 7th round pick Joe Walker lined up as the backup middle linebacker. He broke up a pass intended for Brent Celek.

• I didn't see Trey Burton lined up at fullback very often, if at all. I did see him split out in the slot a few times, including some reps with the first team. He looked good.

Up next: The Eagles practice again on Wednesday and Thursday but those sessions aren't open to the media. The next open practice is next week on Tuesday, May 24.

Remaining offseason workout schedule:

OTA Offseason Workouts: May 17-19, May 24-26, May 31, June 1-3.

Mandatory Minicamp: June 7-9.

BGN Coverage: The following remaining practices are open to the media: May 24, May 31, June 3, and June 7-9.

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