Yes, I know it’s only May 24, 2012, but the good feelings coming out of Eagles voluntary OTA’s in Philly yesterday have got me juiced up for the prospects of a great season ahead…
Kurt “Killer” Coleman was loving it… he’s still projected as #1 strong safety for the Eagles and had a solid workout for the Birds yesterday… And as Kurt himself pointed out, he did not have the luxury of these preliminary team gatherings last year due to the lockout…and he is more than ready to prove how much that difference of preparation can make…
Much gratitude is owed to our own Eagles Eye correspondent Kenny “Big Game” Kenemeka, who supplied us yesterday with a tweet-by-tweet, blow-by-blow account of the practice session yesterday at NovaCare Complex.
And it certainly didn’t hurt when I tuned into the NFL Network on my over-priced Comcast cable TV box and heard Michael Vick proclaiming with humility and sincerity: “Andy Reid will not be fired in 2013 because of me…not on my watch…”
Could the perfect NFC Championship storm be brewing right before our eyes?
It truly seems these guys are motivated to prove something beyond the value of their paychecks…
I should also point out: what we learned yesterday is there actually is “contact” in these OTA drills…
Although the players are not wearing shoulder pads and there is no “hitting”, there is still plenty of contact. Demetress Bell, who is replacing injured Jason Peters as the starting left tackle, spent the majority of Wednesday’s OTA scrimmage fending off DE Trent Cole and defensive tackle Derek Landri.
“I’ve learned that I’ve got to bring it every play against Trent Cole,” Bell said Wednesday. “But that should help me this season. From what I can see, the NFC East is a pass-rushing division, but I’m confident I’ll be up to the challenge.”
The offensive linemen go full bore through even the most mundane drills and sprint from station to station. Once the scrimmaging starts, Bell has to deal with hyper defensive end Trent Cole.
As defensive coordinator Juan Castillo is fond of saying, “There’s 100 percent and then there’s Trent Cole percent.”
“Demetress Bell is OK, but he’s not Jason Peters,” ESPN analyst Ron Jaworski said Monday during a golf tournament at Atlantic City Country Club. “Jason Peters was the best player on the entire Eagles team last season. No one graded out higher than him. Demetress Bell has to replace Peters. That’s a significant loss.”
I get the point Jaworski is making… but jeez, he could have said it in a nicer way!
Bell, who spent his first four NFL seasons with Buffalo, may face more pressure than any other Eagles player this season. Peters, who has ruptured his right Achilles’ tendon twice this offseason, was considered by many to be the best offensive lineman in the NFL last season.
Assistant offensive line coach Eugene Chung worked with the linemen Wednesday in place of Mudd. Chung at OT was the 13th player selected in the 1992 NFL Draft (out of Virginia Tech) by the New England Patriots…he also played for the Jaguars and the Colts, and at age 42 is considered a rising star in OL coaching … Backup linebacker Keenan Clayton underwent surgery Tuesday to repair a torn core muscle (sports hernia)….Former Eagles center Hank Fraley was at Wednesday’s practice. He is an assistant coach at the University of San Diego.
As I said, I’m liking the “spirituality” coming out of this current OTA gathering… planets, stars and asteroids seem to be aligned…
Next blurgg we’ll look deeper into the more mundane meaning of anything you can take out of an off-season workout.
For now, it just feels good.