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May 23, 2017

Eagles OTA practice notes, May 23, 2017

Eagles NFL

The Philadelphia Eagles kicked off their first full team practice of 2017 on Tuesday, and the practice was open to the media in its entirety. We have notes. 

• If we're basing the Eagles' depth chart on how they came out in their first practice (we're not, to be clear), here's what it would look like. We'll just go three-deep for now:

 Offense
 QBCarson Wentz Nick Foles Matt McGloin 
 RB Darren SprolesLeGarrette Blount Wendell Smallwood 
 WR Alshon JefferyNelson Agholor Mack Hollins 
 WR Torrey Smith Dorial Green-Beckham Shelton Gibson
 Slot WR Jordan Matthews Bryce Treggs Paul Turner
 TE Zach ErtzBrent Celek Trey Burton 
 LT Lane Johnson Dillon GordonDillon Gordon 
 LG Isaac SeumaloChance Warmack  Victor Salako
 C Jason KelceStefen Wisniewski Aaron Neary 
 RG Brandon Brooks Josh Andrews Darrell Greene
 RT Halapoulivaati VaitaiMatt Tobin  Taylor Hart


Additional offensive depth notes:

Jason Peters is skipping OTAs, so the move of Johnson to LT and Halapoulivaati Vaitai in at RT is the obvious adjustment.

• Undrafted rookie Eagles rookie UDFA center Tyler Orlosky to miss approximately two monthsTyler Orlosky has a strained left MCL and will be out seven-to-eight weeks.

• In addition to getting extensive reps with the second- and third-team offensive lines, Dillon Gordon was the added blocker in max protect sets. He even caught a pass during one session as a tight end.

• Donnel Pumphrey saw plenty of action, mixing in with multiple teams.

On the defensive side of the ball, the defensive line did a lot of mixing and matching, so it was a little too unclear what the hierarchy is there. We'll omit that, and only include the linebackers and defensive backs:

Defense 
 WILLNigel Bradham Najee Goode  Nate Gerry
 MIKE Jordan HicksDon Cherry  Steven Daniels
 SAMMychal Kendricks  Kamu Grugier-HillKamu Grugier-Hill 
 CB Patrick RobinsonRasul Douglas Dwayne Gratz 
 S Malcolm Jenkins Terrence Brooks Chris Maragos
 S Rodney McLeod Jaylen Watkins Tre' Sullivan
 CB Jalen Mills C.J. Smith Randall Goforth
 Nickel *Rasul Douglas Aaron Grymes Jomal Wiltz


Additional defensive depth notes:

• To note, Rasul Douglas was the nickel corner with the first team defense, which isn't to be confused with the slot corner. When he came in, Douglas played on the outside, and Jalen Mills shifted inside to the slot. This is the same thing the Eagles did a year ago in camp with Eric Rowe. It should also be noted here that Ron Brooks is not yet fully recovered from a torn quad suffered last year, but he thinks he'll be ready for training camp. If Brooks were healthy, he'd probably just be the slot corner, for now.

• Rookies Sidney Jones and Elijah Qualls are out on the West Coast because of that absurdly dumb rule with colleges on the academic quarters system.

• LB Joe Walker was at practice, but he did not participate in team drills.

• Before the start of practice, Doug Pederson noted three players who would be missing practice. They were Jason Peters, Fletcher Cox, and Donnie Jones. Also among the missing, seemingly unbeknownst to Doug at the time was Marcus Smith. Tim McManus (sort of) had more on that:

Practice notes

• A season ago, the quarterback reps were split into thirds among Sam Bradford, Chase Daniel, and Carson Wentz. This year, Wentz is dominating the quarterbacks' reps, as he should.

• After the draft, there was quite a bit of negativity surrounding the Eagles' selection of Derek Barnett. We addressed them all in a post a few weeks ago. Some of the concerns were downright ridiculous, while others were valid. Among the valid concerns was a lack of an extensive pass rush move repertoire. 

Barnett's best pass rush move, by far, is his dip/bend around the edge. Because many offensive tackles in college overplayed that move, Barnett would often get sacks with inside moves, though they weren't exactly flashy or visually impressive. One move that was typically ineffective when he tried it was his inside spin move.

At practice today at RDE, working against Lane Johnson (playing LT), Barnett had an inside spin move that was better than anything I had seen from his games in college. If he can develop a go-to inside move, he's going to be difficult to block.

In other Barnett observations, Barnett smoked Dillon Gordon around the edge after he was able to smack Gordon's hands down. Gordon got an ear-full from Jeff Stoutland after the rep.

• Recent trade acquisition DT Timmy Jernigan looked quick. Working against the first-team offensive line, he beat someone (I didn't see who) badly with a quick swim move and got instant penetration.

• Dorial Green-Beckham had a bad start to his camp. On a day in which the Eagles' receivers were catching everything in drills, DGB had a drop. During team drills, Wentz launched a 50-50 ball far down the field that was on target. DGB jumped at least a full second too early, and Patrick Robinson was easily able to break up the play.

New wide receivers coach Mike Groh was all over DGB today, with this being the funniest example:

• In Donnel Pumphrey's final season at San Diego State, the Aztecs produced 2023 passing yards, while Pumphrey ran for 2133 yards on the ground. In other words, he was their offense. Over his college career, Pumphrey had a grand total of five kickoff return attempts, and no punt returns, likely because he meant so much to their ability to score on offense and they didn't want to risk injury.

Pumphrey is quick, fast, and shifty, making him a prime candidate to return kicks and punts. However, because he didn't do it in college, I was curious to see how he looked fielding kicks and punts. If I didn't know any better, I would have thought he's been fielding kicks and punts for years. He looked totally comfortable with it, and I wouldn't be surprised in the slightest if the Eagles view him as a long-term candidate for both spots.

• Rookie wide receivers Shelton Gibson and Mack Hollins both looked fast. Not to get the hype train going, but Hollins, in particular, looks like a professional wide receiver and not just some special teams demon.


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