Eagles TC Day 13: McLeod Scare, Harold Debuts
PHILADELPHIA (973espn.com) — A two-plus hour Eagles training camp practice on Sunday was quiet for the most part until late in the session when rookie receiver J.J. Arcega-Whiteside rolled into the legs of safety Rodney McLeod.
The play resulted in an interception by Avonte Maddox but the bigger concern was McLeod, whose 2018 season was cut short by an ACL and MCL injury. He was slow to get up and ultimately limped off. The good news is the veteran safety who is just working back into team drills, insisted he was OK and maybe needed a scare like that to be back.
The session also included the debut of defensive end Eli Harold, acquired in a trade with Buffalo on Friday for rookie offensive tackle Ryan Bates. Playing as a 4-3 end for the first time since his college days at Virginia, Harold, wearing No. 59, worked in with the second-and third-team in team drills at right end.
"I'm excited about the opportunity," Howard said after practice. "Can't wait to get to work with the guys and really learn and try to mold and build this thing the right way."
Vinny Curry, who has been the starter at right end during most of camp as Derek Barnett continues his rehab from offseason shoulder surgery, missed Sunday's practice due to an illness.
Barnett, who returned to team drills for the first time on Saturday took part in only one 11-on-11 session Sunday but insisted that was just the plan.
"That's just what [the team] wants," Barnett said.
Josh Sweat took the most of the first-team reps on the right side Sunday and had a difficult time with veteran left tackle Jason Peters while Harold and another recent pickup, Kasem Edebali, worked in from there. Harold showed off his athleticism in 1-on-1 pass-rushing drills.
“Good body for what we are looking for,” defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz said when asked about Harold after practice. “Our scouts had liked him a couple years ago. He has had a little bit of production. He played sort of a hybrid role last year for Detroit, but we are a little bit different. Put his hand in the ground and let him come. He’s big, he’s strong and we will add him to the mix and see where it turns out, but he does have a little bit of experience. It’s a little bit different than a rookie coming in. We should get him up to speed pretty quickly.”
The highlight of the day came from Jason Kelce after a Carson Wentz throw to Nelson Agholor was intercepted by an undercutting Malcolm Jenkins. The ultra-athletic center raced down Jenkins and forced a fumble to the delight of his teammates watching.
With Lane Johnson (knee) out at right tackle, Jordan Mailata got the first-team reps while Josh Perkins was the flex tight end in some 12 personnel grouping without Dallas Goedert available (calf). Defensive tackle Malik Jackson had an excellent day from a pass-rushing standpoint.
NEWS AND NOTES:
-Ronald Darby is getting closer. During group install, he lined up as the first-team right cornerback in front of Rasul Douglas, another example of why should listen to #FootballatFour on 97.3 ESPN. You would have known that was coming.
-Boston Scott, who has been out with an ankle injury, did some work with Darren Sproles and Donnel Pumphrey as a punt returner but remains out of team drills. Pumphrey has looked a lot better this summer but faces an insurmountable numbers game and dropped a punt today.
-Julie Ertz was at practice to take in her husband and stuck around after to play a little catch and even punt the football. Julie, of course, is coming off the USWNT World Cup victory in Paris.
-Rasul Douglas dropped an easy interception when Wentz tried to hit Ertz down the seam and misread the coverage.
-Alex Singleton got home on a blitz of Cody Kessler as he continued to stand out. The former CFL All-Star has a big man in special teams coordinator Dave Fipp and was the Eagles' top-rated defender against Tennessee, per ProFootballFocus.com.
-John McMullen covers the Eagles and the NFL for 973espn.com. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @JFMcMullen