Getting Close

Posted: August 16th, 2020 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | Comments Off on Getting Close

Training Camp practices will get underway on Monday. To this point, the Eagles have done conditioning work and walk-throughs. Now they will have more traditional football practices. This is where we’ll start to find out who is ready to play and who isn’t.

Obviously this hasn’t been a normal offseason so the grading has to be done on a curve. That will be one of the major challenges for the coaches. They have to assess players with only limited information. There were no passing camps. There won’t be any preseason games. Coaches will study these practices closely and will need the ability to figure out who can play.

It is exciting to have football practices upon us. There will be some real contact and actual tackling. Not right away, but soon enough.


The Eagles got good Covid news with the return of Lane Johnson, Jordan Mailata and Doug Pederson. It is important to have Pederson running practices and being as hands-on as possible. With the limited practice time, Pederson needs to get a feel for his players as individuals and his team as a whole.

It is also important to have the two OL back. Johnson will be playing beside Jason Peters for the first time in his career. They need to get used to each other. The RG and RT will have double-team blocks and need to work on timing and doing that in sync. They also need reps as pass blockers going against different fronts and blitz looks. Johnson and Peters are both smart veterans but they need to be on the same page with what they are seeing and doing.

Mailata needs as many reps as possible. I’m assuming for now he will be the backup LT. We’ll find out when we start to get TC reports.


The Eagles are young at LB. Rookies Davion Taylor and Shaun Bradley will have a chance to earn playing time. I like Taylor and think he can be a good role player as a rookie.

I’m not as high on Bradley so I was excited to see Fran Duffy’s Rookie Film Room piece on him. Fran has access to tons of All-22 tape. Fran also knows football. If anyone could make a compelling case for Bradley, it would be Fran.

Didn’t work.

I came away as concerned as ever. Bradley loves to avoid blockers. That can work in college, but is much tougher to get away with in the NFL. LBs must be able to stack and shed. That’s when they take on a blocker and defeat them.

There is a case to be made for Bradley. He does diagnose plays well. He is a good athlete. The coaches at Temple raved about him as a person and leader. He could prove to be a good fit for the Eagles. Jim Schwartz let’s his LBs shoot gaps and that’s something Bradley is good at.

I still have my doubts, but I hope I’m dead wrong and Bradley turns out to be a good player for the Eagles.


DeSean Jackson burned Darius Slay for a TD in a recent drill.

Jackson remains one of the fastest players in the league. This play shouldn’t surprise anyone. In a real game, there would be a safety over the top to help Slay out.

That said, the Eagles have made such bad moves at CB over the past decade that we’re all going to be nervous until we actually see Slay play well. Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me 37 times, shame on me (and the Eagles ability to evaluate veteran CBs).


Some updates:

Good to hear that about Dillard. Just adding weight won’t solve all his issues, but it will help with his biggest…inability to anchor well. It is encouraging to know Dillard is working on his weaknesses.

Brooks coming back is an interesting idea, but I’m not going to worry too much about it. You don’t want to rush that injury. Also, the OL might have good continuity at that point. You might want to leave the lineup alone. If Peters is hurt or struggling, that would change things.

We’ll see.


Jimmy Bama posted his 25 things he’ll be watching at TC.


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