Some Practice Notes

Posted: August 3rd, 2012 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 29 Comments »

* I’m not going to say much about injuries.  Nothing has been too serious so far.  Nagging injuries are part of football.  You just deal with them.  Geoff Mosher reported today that LG Evan Mathis has vertigo.  I don’t know what to make of this.  The Eagles referred to it as an inner ear infection.  As long as it can be dealt with in a short period of time, I’m okay with it.  If this is a serious problem…that would stink.

* RB Bryce Brown caught my eye with good runs over the last 2 days.  He had an especially good run yesterday.  He has the ability to make a defender miss, but then quickly goes back to being a North-South runner.  That’s important.  Some young players start putting moves on and spend too much time dancing and going E-W.  Brown knows to get by the first guy and then go upfield.  He has a good burst.  Big guy, but not an upright runner.

* Let’s talk about blocking.  Brown shows potential, but has a lot of work to do.  He simply has no experience and is learning on the fly.  I’m curious to see where he is in a week.  He doesn’t need to look polished, but he must show progress.  The QB and coaches must be able to trust  you in order to get you on the field.

Got to see a lot of Brett Brackett in pass pro.  He was awful initially, even getting thrown to the ground like a rag doll at one point.  Give him credit, though.  Brett hung in there and got better.  He still has to be classified as a bad blocker, but the fact he showed some progress is encouraging.

Chase Ford is good.  He knows what he’s doing and also has the strength/build to get the job done.  I’m sure the coaches like what they see from him.

One problem that the young guys have is a lack of confidence.  A good blocker has his feet under him.  He’s not on his heels, nor is he over-extended.  Balance is crucial.  The blocker must be able to cover the outside, but can’t sell out or that will leave him exposed to inside moves.  So many of the young TEs/RBs now are reacting to how they got beat that the next rep they over-compensate and get beat to the other side.  Or, like Brackett, they don’t set strong and just get bull-rushed.

* I like what I’m seeing from Cedric Thornton.  He’s not lighting it up, but he’s in good shape and is a better player than we saw last year.  He was a project, coming from a small school and shifting from DE to DT.  Cedric has made good progress and has a real shot to make the team.

* Kurt Coleman isn’t flashy, but has quietly had a good camp.

* Due to injuries to Mathis and Herremans, Dallas Reynolds was at LG and Dennis Kelly was at RT with the starters.  Interesting.  Not sure what to make of this.  Kelly needs work, but is talented.  Reynolds is a grinder.  I don’t know if Mudd is testing him to see what he can do or maybe is really happy with him.  I thought for sure that Julian Vandervelde would replace Mathis.

Keep in mind that part of TC is experimenting.  You put players in situations to see what they can do.  You test them.  It doesn’t always mean that you prefer that player over someone else.  The only way to find out how players react is to give them a chance.

* Casey Matthews might turn out okay after all.  He has played well this week.  He’s around the ball a lot.  He’s making tackles.  He isn’t out of control.  I think having the spotlight off him and time to learn has paid off.  Glad to see him having some good things happen.  That will help his confidence a lot and bring out the best in him.

DeMeco Ryans left practice yesterday with a cramp or something like that.  It was scary to see Casey back out there as a starter.  As much as I like Casey’s progress, I’m not ready to count on him as a starter right now.  I want to see Ryans at MLB.  Thankfully, Ryans came back into practice after sitting out a few snaps.

* Dion Lewis is dangerous in space.  He put a wicked move on Cliff Harris near the sideline and  cut back to the middle for a good gain.  Love his elusiveness and burst.  I really am impressed with Dion so far.

* OJ Atogwe hasn’t made huge plays, but he is an active defender and has tackled well from what I’ve seen.  Problem is that Jarrad Page looked terrific last summer.  Will any Eagles fan ever again trust a veteran Safety based on TC or PS games?

* * * * *

Former Eagles scout Daniel Jeremiah was up at Lehigh and offered some thoughts on Twitter.



At one point he talked about how Cox beat Watkins with a move. Someone asked if that was a sign of Watkins not being all that good. Jeremiah responded that the move would have beaten just about any OG in the league. Sounds as though he’s really high on Fletcher at this point.


29 Comments on “Some Practice Notes”

  1. 1 Mac said at 2:53 PM on August 3rd, 2012:

    Tommy, can you please edit your post to remove offensive material. This is a family website and you had the audacity to publish the name of him who should not be named once again… the horror.

  2. 2 TommyLawlor said at 3:04 PM on August 3rd, 2012:

    Ha, I wonder if some new or casual readers will know what the heck you’re talking about. I refuse to remove his name. Fans must be reminded of the horrors of the past so we don’t repeat those errors. This is for the future generations of Eagles fans and IB readers.

  3. 3 ChaosOnion said at 4:36 PM on August 3rd, 2012:

    Sometimes you just have to turn the page on these things, Tommy.

  4. 4 TommyLawlor said at 4:52 PM on August 3rd, 2012:

    Well played.

  5. 5 Cliff said at 8:36 PM on August 3rd, 2012:


  6. 6 D3FB said at 3:18 AM on August 4th, 2012:


  7. 7 austinfan said at 8:59 PM on August 3rd, 2012:

    Turn the Page.

    Darn, someone beat me to the paper punch.

  8. 8 Arby1 said at 3:04 PM on August 3rd, 2012:

    Tommy, if you’re picking today, who makes the team of Brackett, Ford, and the FB’s, or is it just to early to hazard a guess? Or, if we carry a 3rd blocking TE, might we pass on a FB altogether?

  9. 9 TommyLawlor said at 3:05 PM on August 3rd, 2012:

    I think Ford is P-squad material right now. Brackett looks like a keeper.

    I’m leaning toward no FB, but I’m not completely comfortable with that.

  10. 10 ian_no_2 said at 5:30 PM on August 3rd, 2012:

    I think the opposite. Brackett by what I read blocked better than Ford in college but it’s reversed. Guys with Ford’s size and ability usually don’t pan out if they come in raw, but Ford’s picking everything up quickly.

  11. 11 TommyLawlor said at 5:44 PM on August 3rd, 2012:

    Brackett was a WR in college. Never blocked a LB or DE at the LOS. Was taking on DBs out on the edge.

  12. 12 ICDogg said at 6:17 PM on August 3rd, 2012:

    If it were only based on today, Igwenagu would beat them both out.

  13. 13 austinfan said at 8:58 PM on August 3rd, 2012:

    Brackett is 6’6, Celek is getting dinged more and more.
    Love Harbor, but he’s only 6’2, Igwenagu is 6’1. Igwenagu has the lead at FB, Brackett could play both TE and split out at WR if needed (4.61 speed, 6.74 cone, that matches up close to most big WRs).

  14. 14 rage114 said at 3:17 PM on August 3rd, 2012:

    I am encouraged by Matthews play.
    Also, I thought this quote from him pretty much summed everything from last season, “I still don’t know how I made it through my rookie season.”
    I think that is pretty telling about where he was last year at this time.

  15. 15 iskar36 said at 3:30 PM on August 3rd, 2012:

    We have gone over it multiple times, but really, there was never a good reason to trust Matthews to start his rookie season. The Eagles did him a disservice by forcing him into the starting role so quickly and then using his family name as it’s reasoning publicly (I don’t question… at least I hope… that they did truly believe in him regardless of his background, but Castillo pushed “Matthews” on us instead of pushing any kind of talent evaluation). The reality is, for a fourth round pick, you are happy if he turns into a solid backup player/special teamer. Expecting him to start week one was an incredibly risky move, and in the end it definitely directly cost us at least a few points early on in the season.

  16. 16 ICDogg said at 3:38 PM on August 3rd, 2012:

    Inner ear infection makes you lose your balance. I had one and I fell on my face and twisted my leg and peroneal nerve, giving me foot drop for two months.

  17. 17 iskar36 said at 4:16 PM on August 3rd, 2012:

    That sounds rough. Vertigo can range from being a short term thing or a long term thing. If Mathis has a minor inner ear infection, that definitely can cause vertigo, and as long as they can clear the infection, he should be fine. I think more likely than not, Mathis should be fine and this shouldn’t keep him out too long.

  18. 18 ICDogg said at 4:34 PM on August 3rd, 2012:

    Yeah… good idea for him to be sitting until it clears up in the next few days.

  19. 19 TommyLawlor said at 4:52 PM on August 3rd, 2012:

    Drop foot? Are you Matt McBriar?

  20. 20 ICDogg said at 6:11 PM on August 3rd, 2012:

    Same injury, but fortunately mine got better. I think for most people it’s more of an annoyance than anything else. It doesn’t hurt, it only affects one small motion of lifting your foot up from the ankle. I did not use a brace, though I think I would have ordered one eventually if it continued. As I’ve mentioned before, recovery was immediate when it happened. One day it didn’t work, the next day it was if it had never happened.

  21. 21 Mac said at 3:48 PM on August 3rd, 2012:

    It’s nice to read some good stuff about Fletch and Thornton. Hopefully those 2 can team up to make the interior a constant nightmare for other teams (when CuJo and the demigod are sipping Gatorade on the side lines comparing their sack and TFL records for the game).

  22. 22 T_S_O_P said at 4:15 PM on August 3rd, 2012:

    Nice article on the back up C on PE


    TC update

    Peanut looks grogy on a hit by Coleman. he better be OK

  23. 23 T_S_O_P said at 5:31 PM on August 3rd, 2012:

    Not a bad article by yourself either Tommy

  24. 24 Mikko Koikkalainen said at 4:48 PM on August 3rd, 2012:

    Tommy, what`s your take on the physicality of the training camp? The players have been dropping left and right. We are also usually slow starters and if the team beats it self we are looking at 2-4 start again. I know Andys team finish strong but will it be enough?

  25. 25 austinfan said at 5:13 PM on August 3rd, 2012:

    Thorton looked in great shape to start camp, and has just been a solid player throughout, not the athlete that Cox is, but probably stronger right now (remember Cox hasn’t filled out yet, won’t turn 22 until December), and playing with good leverage and much better technique than last year. It’s going to be really hard to cut him.

    Dixon is looking better than the first few days, but he’s just not a one gap DT, though I’ve noticed he got a lot of PT today, maybe they want to see how much stamina he has. He’s a strong boy, but I think he’s gonna get showcased in an early exhibition game and traded for draft picks if Patterson is ready to start the season. And if they like Thornton enough, it may not matter because they’d rather trade Dixon and keep Thornton in that case.

    Polk is making a good push after a slow start, but Brown is for real and keeps improving, imagine how good he can be by September. One suggestion that made sense is have Polk get surgery for his shoulder at the end of TC, put him on IR so you can stash him for 2013 after he gets a full off season in the system, and get that shoulder fixed, if it can be fixed.

  26. 26 D3FB said at 3:15 AM on August 4th, 2012:

    Grigson may come calling again, I see Dixon as a much better fit in their new 3-4 than he is here.

  27. 27 ian_no_2 said at 5:27 PM on August 3rd, 2012:

    Evan Mathis’ vertigo is going to spoil the play where he gets on King Dunlap’s shoulders and blocks the Cowboys kick (make use of those replacement refs).

    Speaking of which – I am skeptical of raw athletes but Chase Ford may actually be a find, contrary to whatever I may have said, But if the TE ranks are thin, can King Dunlap catch a fade pattern on a tackle eligible?

    You can tell that Dallas Reynolds managed to hang around (by talking to Andy about how his whole family plays at BYU) until his perfect coach came in, and unless they pick someone up he’s the center right now if Kelce goes down. He’s the kind of player that Mudd has a history of grooming.

  28. 28 TommyLawlor said at 5:46 PM on August 3rd, 2012:

    Mathis on Dunlap? That’s darn near impossible to kick over. I’ll forward the idea to Bobby April.

  29. 29 ICDogg said at 7:57 PM on August 3rd, 2012:

    lol… he would probably refer you to rule 12, section 3, part (o) of the NFL rulebook