June 05, 2017
The Philadelphia Eagles kicked off their third round of OTAs on Tuesday, and the practice was open to the media in its entirety. As always, we have notes.
• Carson Wentz was up and down today. Early in practice, he had a really nice play when he stepped up in the pocket to avoid the rush, then moved to his left and threw the ball on the run deep down the field complete to Alshon Jeffery. He also had good, strong throws to Torrey Smith on the sideline, and in between a few defenders to Nelson Agholor.
Wentz also had his bad moments, throwing his share of inaccurate passes. His lowlight on the day was a badly overthrown pass outside the hash on the left side of the field that was easily picked off by Jaylen Watkins.
• It was a very sloppy day for the offense, with a lot of drops by the skill players. The players that I saw drop passes were Nelson Agholor, Trey Burton, Donnel Pumphrey, Billy Brown, Mack Hollins, and Brent Celek. Celek's drop was picked off by Nigel Bradham. There was a light rain, but that shouldn't be much of an excuse.
• Mike Groh was getting on the receivers most of the day. During drills, he had the following exchange with rookie UDFA (and converted quarterback) Greg Ward:
Groh: "Look at where you are!"
Ward: (Looks down, realizes he's lined up offsides and moves back)
Groh: "Is this press?!?"
Groh: "Is this press?!?!?!"
Groh: "Then why are you bent over like that?"
Ward: (Gets into better position to fend off press coverage).
There's a lot of that going on with Groh. He seems very detail oriented and doesn't let his players get away with getting those details wrong.
• I still haven't seen much of anything out of rookie fifth-round pick Shelton Gibson, who has been nearly invisible, though it's worth noting that the media has only attended three of the team's seven practices so far. Today, on one route that I watched the quarterback was able to keep a play alive and Gibson made three different moves on former CFL corner Mitchell White. White was able to stay right in his hip pocket for at least six seconds, which is an eternity. That was less than encouraging.
White has looked pretty good from what I've seen of him so far, by the way.
• Dorial Green-Beckham actually did some nice things today, unlike the first two media-attended practices. He caught three or four passes on slant routes, which is the only good pattern on the route tree that I've seen him run well so far in his time in Philly.
• Jordan Matthews was out today. His snaps in the slot mostly went to Agholor. Matthews was out last week with knee tendinitis, which the team categorized as a precautionary measure. This is now the second straight week he's out as a precaution.
• A lot of reporters (self included) noted that Allen Barbre was with the first team offense early in practice ahead of Isaac Seumalo. It turns out they were rotating guys all over the place along the interior OL throughout practice, showing all different kinds of combinations, which makes sense considering how much they were forced to shuffle last season.
• Small observation here, but it's worth noting that Brandon Graham got reps on the right side today, with Vinny Curry playing on the left.
• A number of you have asked about Nate Gerry. He picked off a Nick Foles throw intended for Byron Marshall. Gerry played safety at Nebraska, but the Eagles have moved him to linebacker. The question likely won't be whether or not he can cover well enough on the pro level from his linebacker spot. It will be whether he can hold up physically as a linebacker at 218 pounds. Today, he showed good instincts in coverage, as you might expect from a former safety.
• Another defender worth noting today was Terrence Brooks. He accidentally collided hard with Bryce Treggs over the middle. Treggs bounced off Brooks and went down hard, while Brooks looked more like a brick wall on the play. Brooks is one of the more jacked up players on the team.
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