Eagles’ veterans break down their new rookie teammates


The Eagles had an abbreviated spring practice schedule so the work was limited on the field … but they did get to connect.

That’s one of Nick Sirianni’s favorite core values, of course.

The Eagles held a three-day rookie minicamp before welcoming back the veterans for OTAs. At those practices, rookies and veterans took the field and shared the meeting rooms. So it was the first chance for the established players on the team to be around their youngest teammates and in some cases the guys who will one day replace them.

Since we have a long break before training camp begins on July 26, I went back through every interview with veterans this spring to find out what they said about their rookie teammates:

Dallas Goedert asked to name an under-the-radar player who stood out this spring:

“(UDFA receiver/returner) Britain Covey. He’s got a lot of potential. He’s a good player. He’s really smart in his route running. He was the one that probably stood out the most.”

Jason Kelce on second-round center Cam Jurgens, whom he helped scout:

“I’m pretty excited about the kid. I liked him a lot. I like his tools, I like his mentality. Probably overstated a little bit, my involvement in that selection. So I’d like to kind of step that back a little bit. I think I’ve looked at a few guys the past couple years when they’ve asked my opinions. He’s here obviously because Jeff Stoutland and Howie Roseman, Nick Sirianni, all these people, watched his tape and really believe in him. I think although he does have a lot of similar traits to me, he’s going to be his own player and I’m looking forward to helping out any of these young guys, in particular Cam.”


Landon Dickerson on his advice for Jurgens

“Gotta be ready to learn every day and get better. You’re going to make mistakes; can’t let it weigh down on you. Take it on the chin, keep moving forward.”

Brandon Graham on the Eagles’ picking nose tackle Jordan Davis with the No. 13 pick:

“It gives us great depth together. Man, I’m excited for big boy because he’s going to be taking two or three people with him, hopefully, and take a lot off of us. I just believe that he added more depth for us. And it’s going to be a lot of fun once we get everyone up to speed. That’s a big boy for real. That’s another Jordan Mailata on the defensive side. I just can’t wait to see him, man, kind of pick his brain and see what he knows. From Georgia, watching him, you see it. It’s like, OK, this boy explosive, this boy can run and it’s just all about making sure he can do that at a high level.”

Javon Hargrave on the Davis pick:

“Of course we were happy. He definitely adds a big piece to us. A great defensive lineman, so it’ll just make us even deeper. We’re just ready to get rolling with him.”

Fletcher Cox on the addition of Davis:

“It’s great. I’ve talked to him, picked his brain. The little time I have been here with him, I’ve been on him a little bit, just how to be a professional. Trying to teach him how to be a pro, how to practice, how to handle certain situations. It’s good. I think the more talent we have on the D-line, the better we are.

Dickerson on blocking Davis as a teammate at Alabama:

“It was a great experience in college. Obviously, he’s a very good player. Look forward to practicing against him and seeing him grow as a player now that he’s in the league.”

Haason Reddick on the additions of first-rounder Davis and third-rounder Nakobe Dean:

“Some more youth, some energy. Can’t wait to see what they actually do on the field. But Jordan Davis, hopefully he can be a big help in the middle, as big as he is. And then getting Dean, I’ve heard lots about him in terms of him being an intelligent linebacker. So hopefully getting him on the field too and have them guys help the team in any way that they can.”

T.J. Edwards gives his early impressions of Dean:


“Nakobe is a sponge and I think he really wants to be a good player. He’s asking questions to everybody and I think everybody is also trying to make sure they’re pushing each other too.”

Davion Taylor on Dean:

“He’s a great player. I feel like me and him clicked, personally, just because we’re both from Mississippi, we’re both from the south. We talk a lot and we play the same position so, me personally, I don’t see it as competition yet. Right now, it’s OTAs so we’re just connecting. We’re helping each other out. I’m helping him learn what he’s doing. When the time comes, I know we’re going to have to compete. But now is all about connecting and getting better as a team and as a group.”

Reddick on hearing that sixth-round pick Kyron Johnson emulates him:

“I remember being in his position and people asking me the same question. At the time, I was trying to model my game after Von Miller at the time. For him to say that about me, you know, it’s amazing. It’s just a testament to my work and a testament to how far I’ve grown thus far in the NFL.”

Dallas Goedert on his role as a leader to sixth-round pick Grant Calcaterra:

“Obviously was really excited to be here for four more years and my leadership role without Zach is definitely growing. Grant, met him a few times at the agency, watched his film. He’s a tremendous player. I’m excited to get him here and teach him everything I know. And pick up anything he knows that I don’t know. And just excited for how he’s going to be able to improve the group as the whole.”

Hurts remembers being teammates with Calcaterra at Oklahoma in 2019:

“Our time at Oklahoma was kind of cut short due to his issues and overcoming concussions. But I’m so happy that he’s made a return to the game and now we have an opportunity to finish what we started at OU. I know when I talked to him, he was very excited, he was very excited, ready to come to work, ready to build off what we started at Oklahoma my last year, my senior year. I’m excited to get to work with him.”

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