As the Eagles kicked off their three-day rookie camp on Friday, Doug Pederson answered questions for about 14 minutes.
“How about those Sixers, right?” Pederson said as he got to the lectern. “Stay alive, Game 7, love it.”
Here are a few takeaways:
1. Wentz’s health
Doug Pederson didn’t want to talk too much about Carson Wentz’s health or recovery from a stress fracture in his back on Friday morning. This was his response when asked if Wentz will be ready for OTAs:
“How does that pertain to rookie minicamp?” he fired back.
While Pederson wouldn’t say definitively if Wentz will be ready for OTAs, which begin on May 21, he said Wentz has been on the field in recent Phase 2 workouts. Pederson said they’ll address it when OTAs arrive, so stay tuned.
“Encouraged by his progress and where he’s at, just looking forward to the next few weeks with him,” Pederson said.
2. Cross-training OTs
Pederson was asked about his surplus of offensive tackles and if they’ll cross-train some of them to play interior offensive line. He said they like to do that and made it seem like the most obvious candidate to cross-train inside will be Halapoulivaati Vaitai. With Andre Dillard now on the team, that is the most obvious way to make Big V more useful.
From this exchange with the head coach, here’s what to expect this spring and summer:
Big V: To get some training at guard.
Jordan Mailata: To get some training at right tackle in addition to LT
Andre Dillard: To learn the tackle position, primarily LT, first
3. Vets in front of rookies
While this rookie camp keeps veteran players away, the vets will join them at the NovaCare Complex for OTAs starting May 21. The top three draft picks are behind veterans on the depth chart for now.
Andre Dillard —> Jason Peters
Miles Sanders —> Jordan Howard
JJ Arcega-Whiteside —> Alshon Jeffery
It might seem like a strange situation, and it is, but the veterans are expected to help the guys who might one day take their jobs. That’s one of the weird parts about professional sports. Pederson is looking forward to when the rookies get around these veterans. While Howard is new here, we’ve seen Peters and Jeffery be very willing to help younger players in recent years.
4. The quarterbacks
The two quarterbacks in camp are fifth-round pick Clayton Thorson and former AAF player Luis Perez. Pederson said there are a few things he can see from quarterbacks in this very limited camp:
• How they command the huddle
• How well they pick up the offense
• How well they toss the ol’ pigskin
5. Goals for the 3-day camp
Pederson outlined his goals for the three-day camp, which runs through Sunday:
1. Come out healthy
2. See how draft picks handle scheme
3. Begin to see how to use these players
Speaking about coming out healthy, Pederson had a black sleeve on his left leg after offseason surgery to his left ankle. He said he’s about 60 percent, but was running practice like normal from the middle of the field.
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