Eagles TC Day 4: Carson and DeSean Heat Up, Scandrick Debuts
PHILADELPHIA (973espn.com) — With temperatures soaring into the 90s it seemed apropos that the chemistry between Carson Wentz and DeSean Jackson would heat up Monday at the NovaCare Complex.
When we last saw the Eagles on the practice field things seemed a little disjointed between the star quarterback and his speedy receiver, so much so that the two stayed after practice for a little extra work on the deep ball which paid immediate dividends.
The play of the day Monday when Wentz hitting Jackson on a go-route deep down the right sideline in hurry-up work. Jackson, still the fastest player on the roster at 32, badly beat perhaps the second fastest, Avonte Maddox, and Wentz hit the deep threat in stride to wow the fans in attendance.
Things were at least two other big plays -- a bubble screen which would have gone for big yardage and one where Jackon split double coverage -- in which Wentz found Jackson as well, a positive sign before the calendar even turns to August.
"Every day it [the chemistry] grows,” Wentz said after practice ended. “Whether it’s on the field and you can actually see it with live reps or after practice, off the side in between reps and team drills, we’re talking. Watching film. Chemistry grows in a million different ways so to get those opportunities on the field, you see it and it’s exciting.”
For the defense, the big news was that newly signed slot cornerback Orlando Scandrick made him his practice debut running with the second-team. Scandrick was signed Saturday with three of the six CBs not available for team work. Jalen Mills remains on the PUP list as he recovers from foot surgery and Ronald Darby is limited to individual work as he continues his rehab from a torn ACL. Cre'Von LeBlanc, meanwhile is suffering from a sprained foot that Doug Pederson described as a multi-week injury.
On-field Rasul Douglas showed off his impressive ball skills by stifling Alshon Jeffery on a deep route in combo work before locating a Wentz pass and picking it off. In team drills, Wentz's worst moment was throwing across his body over the middle where Malcolm Jenkins picked it off although Kamu Grugier-Hill likely would have earned a sack in a live environment before the throw.
Backup QB Nate Sudfeld was also victimized by safety Deiondre' Hall after a late throw over the middle.
In other injury news, Mack Hollins missed the session with what Pederson described as a "new injury" parrying between an upper- and lower-body designation before settling on lower-body. Hollins' of course, missed all of last season with core problems and had stood out a bit early in what is a very important camp for him.
After practice, Hollins confirmed it had nothing to do with his core and expected to be back in a day or two.
Veteran linebacker Paul Worrilow, who is recovering from an ACL tear, was also held out. Both Hollins and Worrilow were able to watch practice from the field, however. Safety Balke Countess was back in the mix after missing two practices.
Rodney McLeod, also returning from a torn ACL, seemed to ramp things up a bit taking his familiar single-high safety spot with the first team during some 7-on-7 work and when the offense was working on some combo-routes. Andrew Sendejo continued to be the first-team safety with Jenkins in team drills.
PRACTICE NEWS AND NOTES:
-Avonte Maddox was at left CB today with Sidney Jones in the slot so that rotation continues.
-The offense again started team work in 12 personnel with both Zach Ertz and Dallas Goedert on the field. The receivers starting were Alshon Jeffery and DeSean Jackson.
-Greg Ward seems to be standing out the most among the young receivers while Braxton Miller showed up a bit today after a nondescript start to camp.
-The first minor scuffle in camp [and it was very minor] was between Shelton Gibson and Jeremiah McKinnon.
-Cody Kessler has improved since the spring and is really outshining rookie Clayton Thorson.
-The physical play of the day award goes to RB Boston Scott, who ran over safety Trae Elston in the open field. Like Darren Sproles, Scott is short at 5-foot-6 but extremely powerful.
-The first-team kick coverage unit you ask? We got it for you: R1 L.J. Fort, R2 Kamu Grugier-Hill, R3 Josh Sweat, R4 Rasul Douglas R5 Andrew Sendejo. L1 Nate Gerry, L2 Tre Sullivan, L3 Blake Countess, L4 Sidney Jones, L5 Rodney McLeod.
-John McMullen covers the Eagles and the NFL for 973espn.com. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @JFMcMullen