The Philadelphia Eagles resumed OTAs on Tuesday. The practice session was open to media and I was there to watch it. Remember that these are still non-contact drills at this point. Players aren't allowed to wear pads yet. There's only so much to be gleaned from players running around in shorts, but here's what I noticed on Tuesday.
• Attendance update: Still no Fletcher Cox and still no Darren Sproles. Isaac Seumalo and Byron Marshall are still absent due to on-going classes. Rookie receiver Marcus Johnson returned to practice after missing last week's session.
• Injury update: Ryan Mathews (illness) and Rueben Randle (gallbladder surgery) missed practice entirely. The Eagles only had three active running backs for today's practice: Kenjon Barner, Wendell Smallwood, and Cedric O'Neal. Cornerback Nolan Carroll still isn't doing team drills yet.
• Jordan Hicks returned to practice in team drills after sitting out last week. He lined up with the first team defense at MLB, as expected.
• Media had a nice view of practice today (see videos at the bottom of this post) because the Eagles let us stand on the sideline now. We weren't really allowed to do that during the Chip era.
• Nelson Agholor has looked good this spring. He's been plucking the ball right out of the air. Haven't seen many drops from him, if any at all. Then again, this is exactly what I saw from him last spring.
• Still weird seeing the Eagles actually huddle between reps.
• Doug Pederson is way more "hands on" with his players than Chip Kelly was. Pederson is not shy about walking up to players and coaching them one on one right before a rep. Chip doesn't do that because he doesn't want to slow the practice down. One can argue how much this matters, but some players I've talked to prefer the new approach.
• Carson Wentz doesn't always throw the tightest spiral. He struggled with some accuracy issues on Tuesday in the form of overthrows on deep passes and throwing just slightly behind his receivers at time. BUST! Kidding. He had some good plays, too. His best throw of the day came when he hit Chris Givens on a go route deep along the sideline. The ball was right on the receiver's hands. Perfect. Another Wentz highlight came when he got an accurate pass off despite being tripped up and falling to the ground. It reminded me of a pass Brett Favre once threw during a game against the Eagles where it looked like he was sacked but he somehow got rid of it in time. It's easy to see the potential with Wentz. It's also easy to see why the Eagles aren't rushing him into starting Week 1.
• Eagles special teams coordinator Dave Fipp always looks like he's having fun at work because he runs around with the coverage team. He "shoved" Agholor out of bounds on a return. Beast.
• Speaking of special teams, the Eagles' kick returners include: Josh Huff, Agholor, T.J. Graham, Marcus Johnson. Punt return: Agholor, Jordan Matthews.
• The Eagles mixed and match some of their secondary personnel. Jaylen Watkins got some first team reps at safety while Malcolm Jenkins ran with the second team. At cornerback, Eric Rowe ran with the second unit while Ron Brooks and rookie Jalen Mills got looks on the outside with the first team.
• Mixed day for Sam Bradford. He had a sequence where he overthrow Agholor on a corner route, proceeded to throw checkdowns for the next five plays or so, and then overthrew a wide open Zach Ertz on a corner route again. Bradford's best work of the day came near the end of practice during red zone drills. Surprise: Bradford excelled throwing short.
• The Eagles' first OTA practice was sloppy because there were a lot of drops. The good news is that the drops weren't so much of an issue today. The bad news is that the practice was still sloppy. There were a lot of false starts and/or offsides penalties during team drills.
• Not really impressed with Josh Huff. Again, it's early, but he's dealt with some drop issues and just hasn't stood out in a good way very often.
• Chris Givens has stood out in a good way. The 26-year-old pass catcher has no problem getting open deep down the field. Not only did he have that Wentz play I mentioned earlier, but he also hauled in another over the shoulder catch from Chase Daniel. He had a nice jumping grab near the end of practice on a Wentz throw that may have been a little high.
• Chase Daniel has looked about what you'd expect Chase Daniel to look. Solid, not flashy, doesn't make too many big mistakes, doesn't make too many incredible throws. He did have one really great seam pass that he threaded up the middle in a tight window to Brent Celek. Daniel doesn't have any reluctance when it comes to airing the ball out deep, either.
• Mills did a nice job of keeping tight coverage on Matthews. Daniel threw it up and gave Matthews a chance to make a play along the sideline but Mills batted it down. Impressive effort from the rookie cornerback.
• One Eagles assistant coach asked Najee Goode if he was "good" after taking a water break. The pun wasn't intended, but I enjoyed it anyway.
• Another fun sideline moment: Eagles defensive backs playfully yelling at Agholor after a defender got the best of him. "Just because it’s your birthday don’t mean you get no gifts!"
• Kicker battle: Caleb Sturgis beat Cody Parkey (who returned to practice) today. Parkey missed wide left from 43 but was good on 43, 42, and 32. Sturgis, meanwhile, was good from 32, 43 twice, and 48.
• I pointed out last week that Greg Lewis is very loud during practice. You can hear that for yourself in the video below.
Eagles QBs throwing and WRs working on routes (ft. Greg Lewis yelling). pic.twitter.com/1zKVYLM0Im— Brandon Lee Gowton (@BrandonGowton) May 24, 2016
• Here's a boring video of Eagles quarterbacks warming up.
Up next: The Eagles practice again this week on Wednesday and Thursday but those sessions aren't open to the media. The next open practice is next week on Tuesday, May 31.
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 31, June 3, and June 7-9.