No matter how much they pay you, still a tough way to make a living…

It was a scary moment to be sure…

Philadelphia cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha was evaluated for a concussion after colliding with teammate Nate Allen during a training-camp session Monday. The evaluation was standard operating procedure after such a hit. An Eagles spokesman said later that Asomugha does not have concussion symptoms yet.

Asomugha, signed as a free agent last year after spending his first eight seasons with Oakland, was also left with a lacerated lip and sore neck as a result of the mid-air collision, which occurred on a pass play during a seven-on-seven period.

Quarterback Mike Vick had attempted to hit wide receiver DeSean Jackson near the left sideline, but Asomugha and Allen, a third-year safety, converged as onlooking fans gasped.

“Just one of those plays,” Allen said. “It happens sometimes. His helmet went into my chest and my forearm caught him a little bit. It happened so fast, it’s hard to tell what hit what.”

Allen remained on the ground for a few minutes, coughing. But ultimately he was able to continue practicing. “I felt fine,” he said. “I just had to get myself back together. As soon as it happened, it knocked the wind out of me and I laid there a little bit, and kind of felt around and made sure everything was in one piece.”

Asomugha remained face-down and motionless as team trainers came to his aid and several teammates knelt around him. An Eagles spokesman said he never lost consciousness, but it was several minutes before he was able to regain his feet. He then made his way to a nearby cart and was driven to a fieldhouse adjacent to the practice field, where he was evaluated.

Asomugha, named to three Pro Bowls while with the Raiders, had 48 tackles and three interceptions in his first year with the Eagles…

I think he’ll be all right. As Brizer says, give him a couple of weeks off…

But the incident illustrates what I have said for many years now: Why does everything have to be so complicated at training camp? Okay, I admit it, I’m paraphrasing the Canadian girl singer Avril Lavigne with that line… But the point is trying to be made: Why do we have to beat each other up in TC?  Is there possibly a better way to prepare for the season?

I only ask the question— I do not have the answer, that’s for sure, and I am certainly biased from the memories of the beatings I took in high school training camp all those years ago…not to mention club football in college…

Bottom line— these intrasquad collisions are inevitable…

But still I wonder— will NFL and collegiate football training methods one day evolve to the point where you don’t have to risk collision in practice in order to prepare for collision in games?

Maybe that’s a chicken-and-egg kind of question… and I sure could use Brozer in his Royal Farms Chicken Suit right now to alleviate the awkwardness of that question…

Look… I’m no stranger to major injuries in sports.  I’ve been carted off the field with the best of ’em… Perhaps my biggest gripe is that it really, really hurt to get hurt… not just the physical pain, which sucked, but the emotional pain too of knowing you were knocked out of the team’s history and experience for a while… and the doubt you would ever be able to come back again to be a part of the story.

Add to that dynamic the fear of losing the money-earning potential of guys like Asomugha, and you have a perfect storm of depression.

Well, as our own Leo Pizzini said yesterday, these injuries reported from training camp are usually all the reporters have to write about, and become somewhat exaggerated in the translation.  Leo should know… he’s been in the trenches in college ball as well as semi-pro…

I just have an intuition that injuries to your top money guys like Aso should be avoided at all costs in TC… There’s got to be another way to prepare a big-money guy for competition besides exposing him to injury from another teammate!

Thinking outside the box, here… and in need of mercy.


Safety O.J. Atogwe showed his coverage ability by breaking up a pass from Nick Foles to wide receiver Mardy Gilyard during seven-on-seven drills.

Quarterback Trent Edwards took advantage of increased playing time by hitting Gilyard for a 30-yard gain against safety Phillip Thomas during seven-on-seven drills.

Defensive tackle Ollie Ogbu got a celebratory hip bump from defensive end Darryl Tapp after getting into the backfield during the one-on-one drills.

If season started today…Foles would be the No. 2 quarterback. Mike Kafka is still officially Michael Vick’s backup, but he is expected to miss at least three weeks with a broken left (non-passing) hand.

Play of the day…The Eagles are going to honor former left tackle Tra Thomas by having him sign a one-day contract and formally announce his retirement Thursday at the NovaCare Complex. Thomas played 11 seasons with the Eagles after arriving as a first-round draft pick in 1998.

What they’re saying…Offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg, on last Thursday’s preseason game: “I was extremely disappointed in more than several things, so we have a lot of work to do to be an efficient and dynamic offensive football team.”

On a lighter note… since I believe Nnamdi will be okay after a few days rest, I’d like to point out that our dear GK Brizer’s young pup, the perky Doberman “L.J.”, has quietly come of age… and it’s time for Brizer to have “the talk” with L.J. … especialy since I recently spied upon L.J. in a Bryn Mawr shopping zone as represented in this primitive sketch below:


Thomas Jackson

About Thomas Jackson

Jax Sports Media has been reporting on NFL teams in the mid-Atlantic region since 2006. Thomas Jackson is its senior writer. Tom started covering the Philadelphia Eagles for the MVN Network in 2007. In 2009 he joined the Bloguin Network. He now also covers the Baltimore Ravens.