Eagles TC Day 12: Foles Returns, Pumphrey Put on Notice
PHILADELPHIA (973espn.com) - After missing three practice sessions and the preseason opener with Pittsburgh on Thursday, Nick Foles was back and participating as the Eagles held their final open practice of training camp at Lincoln Financial Field on Saturday.
Foles took some time to deal with what he described as muscle spasms in his neck and shoulder area, likely the trap judging by wear the veteran quarterback was pointing during his press conference last week.
"It’s not a big deal," Foles explained at the time. "Once again, we’re just being smart."
Also returning to practice were veteran receiver Mike Wallace, who has been dealing with some tendinitis in his knee, as well as running back Matt Jones, who has been sidelined with a lower-body injury. Cornerback Sidney Jones, meanwhile, was dressed but barely worked after spraining his left ankle against the Steelers.
Receivers Nelson Agholor and Markus Wheaton missed the session while Mack Hollins was dressed but didn't do any team work. Running backs Corey Clement, who tweaked his ankle against Pittsburgh, and Donnel Pumphrey, who was a late scratch for the preseason opener with a lower-body injury, were also absent.
For Pumphrey, time seems like it might be running out.
"Obviously it's hard. It's an injury. Any time it's a lower body [injury] it takes time and we just got to make sure he's one hundred percent," coach Doug Pederson said before the practice. "... It's hard. It's hard for young players, quite honestly in this league, to make rosters. But he's flash. He's done some nice things. Just got to make sure we; as a medical staff, myself, we don't push it. We make sure he's healthy again before we put him back out on the field and see where he's at.
"It' just unfortunate at this time.
Foles was in his normal first-team role in group install and team drills while Carson Wentz continued to work in during controlled 7-on-7 periods, something Wentz indicated would continue throughout the upcoming days of practice.
The crowd, which filled the entire lower bowl of the stadium with some overflow in the second and third decks, was immediately charged up when Foles opened team work by going over the top for 40 yards to Wallace, who beat Jalen Mills with Malcolm Jenkins late arriving with the help.
The star of the session, however, was undoubtedly Pro Bowl tight end Zach Ertz, who dominated in red-zone drills with three touchdowns, including a one-handed grab from Foles near the back pylon with Jenkins in coverage.
Late in the session the defense recovered a bit as Mills was able to stick Ertz on back-to-back reps with each player jawing at each other.
DAY 12 NEWS AND NOTES:
-Others absent were offensive lineman Ian Park and linebacker Asanty Brown. Tight end Dallas Goedert, meanwhile, left the field early and did not finish the practice.
-With Jones unable to go, De'Vante Bausby was the first-team nickel and rookie Avonte Maddox even got some first-team work while Bausby was positioned outside.
-Some West Virginia on West Virginia crime unfolded when Shelton Gibson badly beat Rasul Douglas for a TD from Nate Sudfeld.
-The sloppiness of the day included more poor shotgun snaps from Isaac Seumalo as well as a fumbled RPO play between Foles and Darren Sproles at the mesh point. Tight end Joshua Perkins, who has been excelling as a receiver, also uncharacteristically dropped a perfect throw in team drills.
-With some attrition in the backfield, Josh Adams got some first-team work and is continuing to impress.
-John McMullen covers the Eagles and the NFL for 973espn.com. You can reach him at email@example.com or on Twitter @JFMcMullen