[BLG Note: Check out today’s detailed practice notes via BGN Radio’s own John Barchard.]
Injuries: At his press conference this afternoon, Doug Pederson said that Jordan Hicks was dealing with a lower body injury and Brandon Graham was dealing with an elbow issue. Les Bowen reported last night that Hicks has a mild groin strain, while Graham was dealing with a tricep strain. They will be ready to go for Week 1. Vinny Curry came off the field today but was just dealing with cramps.
Fun things: Former Eagle AKA ol’ reliable Jason Avant was at practice this afternoon. Sixers CEO Scott O’Neil was also in attendance today.
They started with 7 vs. 7 drills and Jay Cutler was having trouble finding anyone in a Dolphins uniform. Ronald Darby nearly picked him off with a bullet intended for DeVante Parker. He hasn’t stopped making plays since being traded to Philadelphia.
Jalen Mills followed up with that as the Eagles were in zone and he jumped in front of Jarvis Landry. The throw by Cutler almost looked like it was intended for Mills rather than Landry.
Terrence Brooks had a pretty good day as well. Ended up 1 on 1 with Kenny Stills on a corner route and was able to break up the pass as Stills looked to haul it in by the sideline.
Rodney McLeod was all over the place today and made the best plays today in the secondary. Was reading and reacting really well no matter which Dolphins QB was throwing. Had a big pass break up where he leaped over DeVante Parker and knocked it out of the way. It was a very “not in my house” basketball swat and his teammates made sure he knew they appreciated it. Also was able to pick off some Jay Cutler mistakes today, good day for him.
Eagles also had some success early in goal-line 7 vs. 7s but the more you watch Joe Walker, the more you see he’s a liability in coverage vs. RBs. Kenyan Drake got him twice coming across the goaline for touchdowns. Julius Thomas had his way a couple of times vs. Nigel Bradham as well.
Patrick Robinson had a few issues covering DeVante Parker (I’m shocked, are you guys shocked?). Beat him a few times but fortunately for him Cutler over-threw his mark and they fell for incompletions.
Although Don Cherry had been playing pretty well throughout camp, he really stood out today and not in a great way. Much like Joe Walker he doesn’t have the speed to get from the middle of field to the sideline on quick outs/flats and it was pretty noticeable today against TEs & RBs. As much as I am sure the Eagles would be interested in trading Mychal Kendrick, it continues to be harder justifying with no other real playmakers at the LB position right now.
The Eagles’ front-four still looked really good despite not having Brandon Graham today. With Graham out Chris Long took his snaps. Vinny Curry stayed with the 1s and it wasn’t until Curry left with cramps that Barnett got snaps with the 1s.
I did see an interesting DLine combo of Long at LDE, Barnett at DT, Jernigan at DT and Fletcher Cox at RDE a few times today. Really allowed Jernigan to succeed breaking through the middle. Something to keep an eye on moving forward
Nigel Bradham struggled a little bit today. After the initial 7 vs. 7 goal-line drills the Dolphins picked on him a lot with success in full team drills. Anthony Fasano juked him for a big gain in the middle of field for about 20 yards. At one point he somehow got matched up with Kenny Stills and he took him for a ride 35 yards downfield for a touchdown. Not sure what happened but someone screwed up. Just goes to show how important Jordan Hicks is on this football team. He elevates everyone when he’s in coverage.
Overall the Eagles secondary did really well today. Jay Cutler held onto to ball for about 12 seconds today during team drills and still couldn’t find anyone. Now, he would have killed by d-line by that point but it was good to see the CBs hold their man for that long. Cutler ended up throwing it out of bounds.
The wheels came off the defense towards the end and the Dolphins were catching everything. Rasul Douglas and Terrence Brooks let TE Mitch Matthews get behind them for a long TD. Miami sideline erupted when that happened.
Fun moment between Dolphins wide out Jakeem Grant and Rasul Douglas. Rasul was running step for step with him down the sideline and just kept saying “Nope! No. Hell no. Oh hell no.” They had a nice chuckle together after the exchange.
Eagles and Dolphins finished the day with full teams on the same field. Alshon Jeffery continues to be Wentz’s safety blanket. Jay Cutler said yesterday “if you throw it to Alshon he’ll catch it.” He has yet to disprove this through camp. He wins so easily against smaller corners on quick hitters and slants. Dolphins CB Xavien Howard, who looked really good yesterday, just had no answers for him. (Would it be bad if I slipped in a big people beat up little people line in here?)
I only saw Nelson Agholor briefly today and I saw one drop from him after he beat the slot corner. Turron pointed out it might have been tipped but it still looked catchable to me. Nelson followed that up with a fantastic grab in a tight window heading to the ground. However, if it was a live game, Nate Allen would have probably destroyed him and probably gotten flagged for it. But a great grab and an excellent throw by Wentz.
Although I didn’t see too much of Blount today it sounded like the pep in his step was back again for the second day in a row. From asking around NovaCare and also Doug Pederson comments praising Blount today, it sure seems like him not being on this team was a little overstated. He’s a vet, he knows what he has to do to get ready for the season. And as Pederson pointed out today, sometime these preseason games do a disservice to the player because they just want to see the play run. They aren’t game planning for Blount or anyone else to succeed. The big man will be here Week 1.
That’s it! Camp is a wrap. YOU SURVIVED! Thank you guys for all the support and conversation this summer. Let’s get to some real football.