Sunday, August 29, 2010

Todd Herremans hurting; D-Jax, Cole out

Eagles left guard Todd Herremans was unable to finish the afternoon practice Sunday.
Herremans missed a chunk of the offseason with a 'stress reaction' on the foot that required surgery a year ago.
Though Herremans played in just two of the three quarters given to Eagle starters in their preseason win over the Kansas City Chiefs last Friday, head coach Andy Reid said the veteran felt good.
But Herremans began limping during practice and about halfway through it had to shut himself down.
The good news was center Jamaal Jackson got some work with the first team and veteran guard-center also got back on the field.
Sitting out the Sunday practice were wide receiver DeSean Jackson (neck), defensive end Trent Cole (ankle) cornerback Dimitri Patterson (finger) and linebacker Ernie Sims (undisclosed).
Reid will address those health issues after practice.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Birds season could hinge on Jamaal Jackson

Even before Mike McGlynn's injury, the Eagles were concerned enough about the center position to endorse Jamaal Jackson's rushed rehab from an anterior cruciate ligament injury sustained late last December.
Typically it takes a player two years to feel and play like his old self after a torn ACL. Jackson is probably about 50 percent of what he was before the injury.
That said, half of Jamaal Jackson could be better than what the Eagles have. No one is experienced with the line calls, and it shows in the play of the line.
It starts up front with the Eagles.
It might not start at all without Jackson, who wants to play in the preseason finale this week, and has vowed to be ready for the regular season opener.

Eagles-Chiefs Inactives

The Eagles, as anticipated, played without center Jamaal Jackson (knee), center-guard Nick Cole (knee), defensive ends Juqua Parker (ankle) and Victor Abiamiri (knee), cornerback David Pender (illness) and tight end Cornelius Ingram (knee).
Jackson worked out before the game and anticipates seeing action in the preseason finale Thursday against the New York Jets.
The Chiefs scratched defensive back Maurice Leggett and guard Darryl Harris.

Thursday, August 26, 2010's top 10 NFL GM's (guess who isn't on the list)

Bill Polian of the Colts tops the Forbes list of the top 10 general managers in the NFL.
The rest of the top 10 list is interesting. And there is no mention of Eagles G.M. Howie Roseman or his predecessor, Tom Heckert, who now is with the Browns.
Jerry Reese of the Giants is second followed by Scott Pioli of the Chiefs, who the Eagles oppose Friday night.
Reese, in his first year, drafted a ton of players who contributed in the Giants' Super Bowl championship. Reese didn't look so good when Plaxico Burress - who already was with the team - went to jail after shooting himself in the thigh. The Giants haven't been the same.
And Pioli hasn't exactly cashed in on the worst-to-first nature of the league by putting together a playoff team out there in K.C.
The rest of the top 10 is believable: Kevin Colbert (Steelers); A.J. Smith (Chargers), Ted Thompson (Packers); Jerry Jones (Cowboys); Rob Brzezinski (Vikings); Mike Reinfeldt (Titans) and Mickey Loomis (Saints)

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Look for D-Jax and Maclin to return punts Friday

Special teams coach Bobby April had no trouble pinpointing the strength of special teamss - kicker David Akers and punter Sav Rocca.
Ironically they're the two oldest players on a team that averages 24 years old.
"Those two areas have been good," April said.
The others need work,
But the return game could be ramped up this Friday against the Kansas City Chiefs as April said there's "a possibility: the Eagles could use DeSean Jackson and Jeremy Maclin on punt returns.
Ellis Hobbs and Quintin Demps will return kickoffs. Chad Hall should be looking over his shoulder as after returning kicks in the first two games he's only "a possibility" to do it against the Chiefs.
Rookie cornerback Trevard Lindley, by the way, has been one of the Eagles top special teams coverage guys, with rookie wide receiver Riley Cooper a close second according to April.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Mornhinweg: "There were guys who just played poorly"

Offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg formally let go of the issues plaguing the offense in the loss to the Bengals last Friday.
At his news conference Monday, the veteran assistant admitted the faults and said the offense would be better going forward.
"Last week there was not much good there," he began. "I think there were some fellows who played very hard. I think there were some who were thinking way too much. And lastly, there were guys who just played poorly."
The Eagles were beaten, 22-9. The first team offense seeks its first touchdown in four quarters when it takes on the Chiefs this Friday in Kansas City.
"We have a lot of hard work left to do," Mornhinweg said. "A lot of improvement ahead."

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

No place like Lehigh U.

The veterans couldn't exit fast enough Wednesday.
What are they going to miss about Lehigh U. after nearly four weeks of training camp?
"The chirping of the crickets," Trent Cole said.
"Nothing," Michael Vick said. "I'm glad to be going back to Philly."
Then again, a chunk of Eagles younger players assembled for a game of h-o-r-s-e at the goals in the parking lot.
Jason Avant, Jordan Norwood, Jeremy Maclin and Keenan Clayton played horse.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

McCoy remebers '36 West'

LeSean McCoy got a little choked up reacting to Brian Westbrook's late opportunity to join the San Francisco 49ers.
McCoy took one of those "phewwww" deep breaths because Westbrook was more than just his teammate in 2009.
"Since Day One he’s embraced me with open arms and has been good to me teaching me things," McCoy said. "And he treats me like a little brother. I even stayed at his house on his couch. So he’s treated me well off the field."
At his introductory news conference in SFO, Westbrook said he was healthy, in shape and eager to start the next chapter.
“It just feels like a really good fit for me,” he said of the 49ers, regarded as one of the premier defensive teams in the NFC.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Coordinator 'OK'd' Sims hit

Eagles linebacker Ernie Sims hasn't endeared himself to his offensive counterparts primarily because he's a big-time hitter with one gear - full speed ahead.

There have been numerous complaints about his physicality in so-called non-contact drills. And so it was again Monday when he crashed into tight end Brent Celek at the goal line. But this bump had purpose.

The defensive players were under orders from their coach not to let the ball carriers cross the goal line. A few players before that Pro Bowl fullback Leonard Weaver ran over a defender to get into the end zone. Sims was only too happy to carry out the orders.

"I want an attitude and Ernie is part of that attitude and aggressiveness," coordinator Sean McDermott said. "And from a defensive standpoint, when you’re not playing against your teammates, you don’t let them cross the goal line. But we have to keep in mind that these are our teammates and we have to learn how to take care of one another at the same time. But, I love Ernie’s aggressiveness.”

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Marty says 'It's a drop'

Jason Avant dropped his first pass of training camp Sunday.
Offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg confirmed it after Avant contended he had caught the ball in question, only to have a defender knock it out of his near-perfect hands.
"Drop," Mornhinweg said.
The drop is less hard news than inside joke among beat writers. There are geeks in the ranks who cater to fantasy football sites.
The reality is Avant has had an awesome camp. His grabs don't always rank high artistically but so what?
In all seriousness if we're left to rely on the word of the coach who last week said Avant hadn't dropped a ball through all of camp, than what are we doing out here?
Now, if you'll excuse me I've gotta get back to FF.

Sunday update

“I have no problems putting (Vick) in there in the Wildcat. You remember last year where I kind of had to juggle things with three quarterbacks. I’m not worried about it.”
Andy Reid on the role of backup quarterback Michael Vick

“It’s a small step and we still have a long way to go and we’re trying every day. It’s better than giving up two touchdowns, so we’re headed in the right direction.”
Stewart Bradley on the starting defense last Friday

Wide receiver Jason Avant disputed what sure looked like his first dropped pass of training camp. “I didn’t drop it,” he said after the morning practice. “I caught it and it was poked out.” Avant made a solid catch in front of Asante Samuel.
Sitting out the Sunday morning practice were center Nick Cole (knee), running backs
Mike Bell (calf) and J.J. Arrington (foot strain), and safety Quintin Demps (knee bone contusion). Cole returned for the afternoon practice.

A downpour resulted in the afternoon practice being moved inside Rausch Field House.
With safety Antoine Harris on injured reserve with a Lisfranc sprain, the Eagles worked out safeties Terrell Skinner and Jamal Fudge.

Defensive end Victor Abiamiri (knee) remains on the PUP list.

Those three TD bombs Luke McCown dropped on the Eagles’ reserves looked worse on film. “One was an assignment and the other two we were beat,” Reid said. “They did a good job with it and they got us.”

The Eagles Radiothon on WIP and WYSP runs Tuesday and Wednesday. Bid on lunch with Reid and a game of catch with Kolb at the NovaCare complex, among other auction items. Proceeds benefit City Year Greater Philadelphia and Eagles Youth Partnership.

The Eagles practice here Monday at 8:15 a.m. and 2:45 p.m. It’s also the last day for autographs, with the defensive linemen signing. The Lehigh U. phase of camp concludes with two practices Tuesday (8:15 a.m., 2 p.m.) and a brief one Wednesday (8:15 a.m.). Camp hotline: 215-320-5160.

Safeties Skinner, Fudge workout

The Eagles packed up the gear of safety Antoine Harris, who suffered a Lisfranc sprain to the left foot, and worked out safeties Jamal Fudge and Terrell Skinner.
One likely will be signed as the knee sprain sustained by Quintin Demps in the preseason opener is considered mild.
Undrafted out of Clemson, Fudge (5-9, 194) has one interception in three seasons, the past two with the Falcons.
Skinner (6-3, 214) is a converted wide receiver cut by the Vikings. He picked off two passes in his career with Maryland.

Jackson and Herremans unneeded right now

Center Jamaal Jackson and left guard Todd Herremans went right to work Sunday after being activated from the Physically Unable to Perform list.
While Jackson thinks he still can be in the lineup for the regular season opener, replacement Mike McGlynn is coming off a stellar debut at the pivot.
Jackson might need an injury to McGlynn to get back into the huddle. Jackson is coming off an ACL tear that for all practical purposes is a two-year rehab.
Herremans has to prove his left foot can take the pounding of practice and games. When healthy, he's the anchor up front. But Herremans hasn't quite been himself since injuring the foot last summer.

Parrish cut; Herremans and Jackson in

You probably don't want to be driving around Stroudsburg these days.
Ken Parrish, who just a week ago looked like he had a chance to unseat Eagles punter Sav Rocca, was axed after failing his debut Friday.
Unless Parrish is claimed, he likely will go back to work writing tickets for the Stroudsburg Area Police.
The Eagles also activated guard Todd Herremans and center Jamaal Jackson off PUP list.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

DJax: 'No panic, no rush in Kolb'

DeSean Jackson isn't going to repair his relationship with Donovan McNabb after the former Eagles quarterback breaks down the most recent comments about Kevin Kolb.

“The biggest thing with Kevin is that he is very calm and intelligent at the same time," Jackson said after the Eagles' preseason opener Friday. "There is no panic and no rush. He is back there making great decisions. He’s not back there making foolish mistakes, throwing the ball in the wrong place. He makes the right reads and does the right things. As long as we have a quarterback that is doing those things, we will be alright.”

Pretty revealing comments, whether or not the assessment was intended to be an indictment of McNabb.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Jax preseason game is big test for Chad Hall

With the Eagles loaded with wide receivers, Chad Hall's best shot to make the team is returning kicks.
The Air Force Academy product will get a long look returning punts and kickoffs in the preseason opener Friday against the Jaguars at Lincoln Financial Field (7:30 p.m.).
Hall (5-8, 187) has displayed decent hands as well as the smarts to pick up complicated pass routes after being out of football due to his military obligation.
Special teams coach Bobby April wants to see how much wiggle Hall has in a live setting.
The preseason also is going to be a test for safety Quintin Demps, who April would love to see win the kickoff return job. Demps is 100 percent and having a solid camp after having trouble staying healthy last year.
Sav Rocca and Ken Parrish also will start banging it out for the punting job.

Another Eagles player apologizes for poor judgement

It what is becoming an annual rite of training camp, Eagles guard Todd Herremans asked for trouble, and he got it.
Instead of getting busted for making an illegal turn, like last year, Herremans offended some followers on the social network Twitter.
Herremans used his Twitter account Tuesday morning to suggest the HBO series “True Blood” had too much homosexuality for him.
When a follower asked Herremans if he wanted to amend his Tweet, he said he had “no issues with homosexuality. … It’s just not for me.”
It touched off a furor leading to a conversation with Eagles management and Herremans issuing this apology, via Twitter:
“After speaking with Eagles management, I realize that my tweet earlier was insensitive and tasteless, and for this, I deeply apologize. It was not my intention to offend or hurt anyone.”
The insensitive Tweets, if you will, were deleted.
It appears Herremans will devote his energy toward some type of community service to help make up for his choice of words.
Quietly the Eagles are fuming about Herremans’ judgment. With several players plugged into Twitter, the team can count on a lecture about “tweeting smart” by head coach Andy Reid.
A distraction is the last thing Reid and his coaching staff want to deal with as they mold a young group of players into a team.
Especially from a veteran like Herremans, the anchor of the offensive line, who has been held out of practice due to a foot strain.
Herremans still is on the Physically Unable to Perform list.

Monday, August 9, 2010

LeSean, DeSean and Eldra OK; Lawrie signed

The heat issues sidelining running back LeSean McCoy and Eldra Buckley, and wide receiver DeSean Jackson before the end of the morning practice weren't serious.
Soon after Eagles head coach Andy Reid revealed that, all three players returned for the afternoon practice.
Nonetheless the list of walking wounded grew.
Running back Mike Bell is out of action with a recurrence of hamstring issues. Wide receiver Hank Baskett joined center Nick Cole and tight end Cornelius Ingram in the whirlpool, all with swollen knees. Ingram also has a calf issue serious enough the Birds signed former United Football League tight end Nate Lawrie, just in case.
And kicker David Akers sat out practice with a left heel contusion.
Other than that, the Eagles survived the morning practice in high humidity beneath the unforgiving sun.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Flight Night! practice a step back

Eagles fans keep asking me how the team looked at its annual Flight Night! practice.
I tell them something like it may have been the worst Eagles practice I've seen since Ray Rhodes' players were running the asylum in 1998.
Dropped passes, bad throws, missed assignments ... Andy Reid showed a little compassion ending it about 20 minutes early.
I was tempted to snap a shot of offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg, who had an incredulous look of dismay on his face near the end of the practice. At that point the ground floor of the Linc looked like a mosh pit.
Yeah, it's early.
Yeah, the players legs were tired.
And yeah, you don't win Super Bowls on Flight Night!
But you can lose them by setting the wrong tone.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Cost of Eagles Flight Night! for family of four

By my calculations - and if you really know me, I never dreamed about being a mathematician - a family of four would shell out roughly $120 to attend what the Eagles are billing as an "affordable" night out.
The rundown is $60 for tickets ($20 for the adults, $10 each for the children), $15 for parking and $11.25 apiece for food (assuming they're OK with just a pork sandwich and ice cream, with no drink).
Now, is that affordable?
Could a family get more enjoyment out of a night out together at say, Chili's, for the same kind of money including the tip?
And that's not even considering a practice look at Kevin Kolb, Mike Vick and a few other Eagles starters.
Considering the proceeds go to charity, "affordable" gets a thumbs-up.

Eagles Flight Night! lineups

Andy Reid said he's leaning toward practicing middle linebacker Stew Bradley at Eagles Flight Night tonight at the Linc.
Though Bradley tore an ACL at the inaugural event last year, it's important he gets back on the horse, if you will. If only for a couple of series.
Defensive tackle Antonio Dixon, who had been having a dominating camp, is out indefinitely with a concussion.
For Flight Night purposes Reid has scratched wide receiver DeSean Jackson (back) and cornerback Asante Samuel, who were cleared to run Thursday and aren’t “too far away” from returning to work.
Also shelved is wide receiver Jeremy Maclin, although the good news is he’s rehabbing an inconsequential bone bruise, not what was originally feared to be a hyper-extended knee.
“I’m blessed and I’m thankful that it didn’t turn out as bad as it could have,” Maclin said. “I’m happy. It is what it is. I wish I was out there competing, but now I can get better and get out there as soon as I can.”
The others who are out are running back Mike Bell (hamstring), safety Victor Harris (hamstring strain), tight Martin Rucker (hamstring) and center A.Q. Shipley (ankle sprain).
Tickets for Flight Night are available at Lincoln Financial Field.
Tickets are $20 for adults and $10 for children.
The event will be held rain or shine.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Lap-band surgery and football

Max Jean-Gilles didn’t think the lap-band procedure he got partly to resurrect his football career was such a great idea Sunday.

In the middle of Eagles practice the 350-pound guard said he couldn’t cool off basically because his stomach was too small to accommodate the fluids he tried to fill it with. It was kind of like using a mini air conditioner to cool the entire downstairs.

The next thing Jean-Gillies knew he was being carted off the field. Luckily for him the locker room and stream after stream of Gatorade is as far as it went.
Jean-Gillies was here a couple of training camps ago when defensive end Chris Clemons was ambulanced to the hospital with heat stroke.

“I was sweating real bad and I couldn’t hold anything in,” Jean-Gillies said after practice Monday morning. “I kept throwing up and I just started locking up a little bit. I can’t really pump in liquids like I want to because my stomach is a little shrunk. So when I drink a little quicker it comes back up. So I have to learn how to deal with that.”

'Cop' could win Birds punting job

Special teams coach Bobby April sure sounded like the punting job was Ken Parrish’s to lose, not Sav Rocca's.

Without a lot of prodding April gave a detailed analysis of the competition between Rocca, the punter since 2007 and Parrish, the former Stroudsburg Area cop.

“Certainly Sav is the incumbent and he’s punting tremendously," April said after the Monday morning practice. "But Parrish is punting tremendously, as well. I think his ability to kickoff could be a factor. I think it’s a real strong competition.”

April also said Parish has shown "he can punt for this team or any team in the NFL."

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Catch me on Fox 29 Sunday night at 10:30

All things training camp with Fox 29 in the 10:30/11 p.m. time slot Sunday.

Monday morning Eagles talk on WIP 610-AM with Angelo Cataldi.

Latest casualty is RB Mike Bell

Running back Mike Bell is the third key Eagle out of action in the first two days of contact practices, as he strained his left hamstring running out a catch.
J.J. Arrington, Eldra Buckley and Charles Scott got more reps in place of Bell, who had a big morning practice.

Bradley, DJax still out

On the seventh day, the Eagles rested middle linebacker Stewart Bradley.
With a sore hamstring and the Eagles working on a wet track, light showers having slicked the field, it seemed like a good idea for Bradley to rehab his “minor hamstring spasm.”
Pro Bowl wide receiver DeSean Jackson, who was helped off the field clutching his back Saturday, also sat out the morning practice. He’s out indefinitely with “a low back strain.”
Bradley is just two practices into his return from an ACL tear. Though the Eagles list Bradley day-to-day, don’t expect him to practice at Flight Night this Thursday at Lincoln Financial Field. He blew out the knee at the inaugural FN last year.
Running back J.J. Arrington got on the field for his first snaps with the Eagles, who acquired him from the Denver Broncos in a trade for linebacker Joe Mays. Arrington was so new his No. 33 jersey didn’t have his name stitched on it.