We got a chance to hear from more Eagles players on Wednesday and Thursday after practice, including about offseason adjustments from J.J. Arcega-Whiteside and Travis Fulgham, why Jordan Howard didn’t get more playing time in Miami, and some updates by young offensive lineman.
Here’s what some of the guys had to say:
RB Jordan Howard
After admitting that he thought his career might’ve been over after the 2020 season, he’s taking things day-by-day, but definitely still feels like he has what it takes to be on an NFL roster. Howard also noted that when he signed with Miami last year, the offensive coordinator told him he didn’t really fit with the offense — so, now he just wants to prove that he can do everything asked of the position.
As far as his role in Philadelphia, the coaches haven’t really said anything other than they want him to come in and work hard. They have him doing everything they ask of Miles Sanders and Kenny Gainwell, so he has to step up and prove that he can multi-faceted. He said he’s close to where he was in 2019, if not better, but he’ll see once he gets back into a game.
RB Kerryon Johnson
Johnson said that he’s been loving his first week in Philly and what they’re doing as a team. He also admitted that he hasn’t had this much fun playing football in awhile, so he’s enjoying the fresh start, getting to know new teammates and getting to work with everybody. The running back talked highly about all of the Eagles coaches, noting that you can tell how much they love the game and how that translates in the meeting room and on the field.
WR J.J Arcega-Whiteside
He’s been playing a little more slot so far in training camp, and he likes the move because he gets a little more time at different positions, inside and outside.
The receiver talked about how he took a lot of time over the summer to reflect, and he’s approaching this camp with a different mentality than he’s had the past couple years. He noted that he’s going back to being himself and not trying to do to much or prove that he’s good enough, but rather be great at the things that don’t take talent and then let his talent take over from there. That was his mentality at Stanford, and he’s going back to what got him to the NFL in the first place, and he’s been having a lot of fun.
On Nick Sirianni’s coaching
“Attention to detail is a big thing that he’s been preaching — within the route, before the route, after the route, catching the ball, tucking it, every phase of the route gets coached. We’ve been very receptive to it and you can never hear a coaching detail enough if you don’t do it right. He’s definitely a coach that will stay on you until you get it right, and then when you get it right, stay on you some more so when we’re playing out there for real we don’t even think twice about it, it’s all automatic.”
WR Travis Fulgham
On what he learned last season, Fulgham pointed to the good, the bad, and the ugly, including being more efficient with his route-running and being ready to step up whenever his name is called. Fulgham touched on his role changing despite playing his best football.
“Alshon [Jeffery] came back healthy, and that was his spot, so I just went back into my role, I guess.”
The receiver admitted that it was rough having to take a step back, but it’s a team sport and he understands that he can’t be selfish. Fulgham went on to say that it definitely motivated him this offseason because he felt he left a lot out on the field, so he’s excited to do more this year.
On the WR group
“I feel like a lot of people are sleeping on our receiver room, but we have a bunch of young, talented guys that are hungry to make some plays this year.”
LB JaCoby Stevens
The rookie safety turned linebacker has been working the past two weeks on hitting his marks when he goes out wide, and it paid off in Wednesday’s practice as he was able to nab an interception on a play-action pass. He said it was a relief for it to all come together a week before the start of the preseason and also showed him that the coaches know what they’re talking about.
Stevens acknowledged that transitioning from college to the NFL you have to get your body ready, especially going from a 10-game season to a 17-game season. He also talked about working with the training staff to stay within his 15 pound weight range, which they worked out based on how he felt at different sizes while keeping his mobility, and it’s currently 215-225lbs.
OG Nate Herbig
The guard talked a bit about working out at Lane Johnson’s barn this offseason and acknowledged that his motivation was not being good enough last season and wanting to learn from someone like Johnson — who he called a “specimen”. The veteran holds a high standard and pushed Herbig to better himself.
Herbig went on to say that he wanted to put the work in this offseason for himself and for the team, he wanted to be lighter, leaner, and in better shape. Ultimately, he lost about 20 to 30 pounds, so he feels a lot faster, in better shape — not as tired —, but he feels just as strong. He admitted that it’s taken a little bit of adjustment because he wasn’t used to being able to step so quickly, so he’s working on his footwork.
OT/OG Jack Driscoll
Driscoll did a lot of cross training last season, his rookie year, and while he’s mostly been focusing on the tackle position so far in training camp, he expects to start cross-training at guard at some point as well.
He noted that he leaned into what his college coaches emphasized last season, that if you stay ready, you never have to get ready, and with Lane Johnson in and out with injuries, Driscoll wanted to be sure he was always available when called on.
Driscoll also acknowledged that he put on about 15 pounds this offseason and so far in camp feels like the extra weight and strength has really helped him. Specifically, he pointed to it helping him stop strong defensive ends, and he felt like last season he was a little undersized going up against the NFL-caliber defenders.
LB Patrick Johnson
“It’s been good. It’s been a big learning curve, I’ve been going up and down a little bit learning as a rookie. Learning from the vets, they’ve been doing a really good job of telling me things I need to work on, how to grow as a player, so honestly it’s been a great camp so far. Can’t complain.”
Johnson was asked who he’s been leaning on in terms of veteran’s, and he noted that he spoke with Ryan Kerrigan on Thursday, and he’s someone he wants to pick up on some of his routine and break down film with him.
WR Greg Ward
The receiver was asked about Nick Sirianni’s tough approach — something the head coach also spoke about on Thursday.
“I think that’s exactly what we need, we need to be held accountable. It’s only going to make us better, make us grow as a unit, and it’s definitely going to push us to where we all want to be.”