The Philadelphia Eagles held their final day of mandatory minicamp practice on Thursday. The 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, so take these observations for what they're worth. Read my practice notes below.
• Today's notes will be brief because the team's practice session was short in comparison to the last two days.
• You can watch some video of the Eagles' practice below. For future reference, you can watch these videos LIVE if you like on the Bleeding Green Nation Facebook page (CLICK HERE).
• Injury update: Josh Huff returned to practice. He left the facility early yesterday due to illness. Doug Pederson revealed that rookie UDFA defensive tackle Connor Wujciak suffered a broken thumb but should be ready for training camp.
• The Eagles did a lot of red zone work today. Here's how Kansas City ranked in red zone efficiency while Pederson was the Chiefs' offensive coordinator.
2013 - 5th
2014 - 9th
2015 - 12th
• Sam Bradford had a nice 20-yard touchdown throw to Nelson Agholor. The second-year receiver ran a nice route to find a weak spot in the coverage. Prior to the snap on that play, the Eagles had Darren Sproles lined up out wide before motioning him into the backfield.
• Speaking of splitting non-receivers out wide, tight end Trey Burton has gotten a lot of looks on the outside. He's spent more time playing like a receiver than he has playing as a fullback. The Chiefs ran a number of three tight end sets in Kansas City so I wonder how involved Burton will be on offense.
• Bradford overthrew Jordan Matthews in the end zone on a fade route. Then he threw a ball that Ertz tried to reel in with one hand but the tight end couldn't make the play. Malcolm Jenkins had tight coverage on Ertz.
• Chase Daniel hit Josh Huff deep on a post route for a touchdown. Good catch by Huff. Jalen Mills was close in coverage but ultimately allowed the completion. Vince Papale was at practice today and he loved the catch by Huff. He started yelling and clapping in celebration.
Daniel had another good play where he looked off the defensive back covering Jordan Matthews, who ran a double move, and threw to the receiver in the back of the end zone for a touchdown. The ball was a little wobbly but Matthews was ultimately able to snag it and keep both feet in. I already said it earlier but JMatt's hands have looked good this spring. Especially compared to Huff and Agholor.
• I can't say I've noticed Eric Rowe stand out in a great way this spring. Take that for what it's worth considering press coverage isn't allowed and there's no real pass rush on the quarterbacks. Rowe had a chance to break up a short pass intended for Hunter Sharp in the red zone but he failed to make the play. He was pretty frustrated with himself afterwards. I'm still high on Rowe and I'm interested to see how he looks when the pads go on.
• Nolan Carroll continued to take first team reps with the cornerbacks. If Rowe doesn't seize the starting job, it could be Carroll and Leodis McKelvin as Philadelphia's outside starters in 2016. Mills is in the mix for playing time too if he continues to excel. Ron Brooks is primed to start in the slot.
• Carson Wentz struggled with some erratic throws. On one play he threw a jump ball into the end zone after avoiding "pressure" and throwing on the run. The ball was just a little too short of tight end M.J. MacFarland. Rookie linebacker Myke Tavarres got jumped and got his hands on the ball but couldn't hold on for the interception.
Wentz's worst throw came on the last play of practice. After seeing no one was open, he clutched the ball three times in hesitation before finally throwing a short pass into the end zone. Jordan Hicks jumped in front of the target and came up with the pick. Secondary coach Cory Undlin really enjoyed the interception. "OH S***!"
• Rookie safety Blake Countess knocked down one of Wentz's passes.
• Chris Pantale continues to look solid.
Up next: Minicamp is over! Rookies, quarterbacks, and select veterans report for training camp on Monday, July 25. That's 46 days away. The rest of the team is set to report on Wednesday, July 27. Then the first full-team practice is scheduled to begin at 3:30 PM ET on Thursday, July 28.
Stay tuned here to Bleeding Green Nation for daily Eagles content to pass the time until late July.