It was an extremely hot day at the NovaCare Complex on Monday afternoon, but tempers didn’t flare between the Eagles and Ravens at their first of two joint practices.
That doesn’t mean tempers won’t flare tomorrow.
Anyway, the temperature was around 91-92 degrees with a real feel of around 100 when practice began at 1:30 p.m. today. The record in Philly for Aug. 19 is 94, so we were pushing it.
After practice, a few Eagles were remarking about how much weight they lost during the course of practice. Yeah, one of those days.
1. A tough scene during 11-on-11s, when tight end Richard Rodgers went down with what seemed like a serious injury. He tried to get up and walk off the field, but couldn’t and eventually needed to be carted inside with what looked like a significant lower-body injury of some sort. Rodgers was visibly upset and put a towel over his head as he was carted into the NovaCare Complex. On Sunday, he returned from a foot injury that kept him out for a couple weeks. He has been injured several times in his time with the Eagles.
Also leaving practice on Monday were OL Nate Herbig, OT Andre Dillard and LB Zach Brown. Speculating here, but it was hot and their leaving might have been heat-related.
Wideout Charles Johnson (ankle) missed practice and is day to day.
2. Clayton Thorson had what I thought was his best practice of the summer. In particular, he made two great throws back-to-back right at the end of practice in the red zone. The first was a pass to JJ Arcega-Whiteside over Ravens corner Cyrus Jones in the back of the end zone. The second went to Marken Michel over corner Terrell Bonds.
It’s amazing what a little confidence can do for a young player. Thorson looks like a different guy than he did early in training camp.
3. Carson Wentz had an up-and-down day against a really talented Ravens secondary, but his best play on Monday was one of the best plays we’ve seen all summer. He hit Alshon Jeffery down the seam for a deep ball of around 40 yards. Wentz tossed it over two defenders, the second of which was All-Pro Earl Thomas. Wentz released the ball long before Alshon looked back and hit him perfectly in stride. It was a thing of beauty.
4. Wentz’s worst play of the day came when he didn’t see linebacker Kenny Young in an 11-on-11 drill. Wentz locked in on DeSean Jackson across the middle and Young jumped the route and should have picked it off. The ball bounced off his hands and was incomplete.
5. Corey Clement got a bunch of first-team reps for the first time all summer. The Eagles’ running back has been worked back in slowly as he recovers from a torn ACL last season. He looked great on Monday. He was explosive and after practice he admitted he’s finally starting to feel like himself. I’ll have more on him later. He isn’t sure if he’ll play in Thursday’s game; but he wants to.
6. Sidney Jones had a big PBU in the middle of the field in a team drill. He timed it perfectly. He was in coverage on a touchdown to tight end Mark Andrews, but Andrews made a pretty spectacular diving catch. Not much Jones could have done.
7. Both the Eagles and Ravens worked on fake punts today. On the Eagles’ fake punt, punter/holder Cameron Johnston took the snap and rolled left, finding Josh Perkins with a light flip pass. It wasn’t a great looking throw, but it made it there.
8. On one play, DeSean Jackson ran a quick hitch against 6-0 corner Marlon Humphrey, who simply stood no chance. Jackson picked up a quick 8-10 yard gain. If the Eagles find him on bigger corners like that this season, they’ll have that play all day.
9. In his second practice with the Eagles, Josh McCown got first crack at second-team reps and even changed one play at the line of scrimmage. But after that, the second-team reps were split between McCown, Thorson and even Cody Kessler. It seems like it’s pretty clear McCown is the No. 2 right now, but they’re going to mix the other guys in there for a while.
(Another note: Nate Sudfeld is out of the hard cast. He got it removed yesterday. Still a ways away, but his recovery is going well.)
10. Perkins has made plays all training camp and now with the injury to Rodgers, he’s probably going to make this team. During 7-on-7s, Thorson ripped a touchdown pass into the end zone to Perkins, who thinks he’s way further along than he was this time last year.
Stupid Observation of the Day: Practice was happening on two fields at once Monday with the Eagles’ offense facing the Ravens’ defense and vice versa. At one point, Nelson Agholor caught a pass at the exact same moment as Michael Floyd. Is it bad luck if two No. 13s catch passes at the same time?
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