Eagles training camp 2022, Day 16: Eagles wrap up camp by themselves


MIAMI GARDENS, Florida – The Eagles were back on the fields of the Baptist Health Training Complex…but the dolphins were left with no company.

The Dolphins had to cancel the second of two joint practice sessions “as a precaution” against the Eagles because of a stomach flu that swept through their team. So the Eagles used the facility on their own Thursday.

“We have no symptoms on our side,” said Nick Sirianni. “So that’s why we’re practicing here today.”

This exercise lasted about an hour in the hot South Florida sun. But without the dolphins, at least the Eagles could stretch out on their beautiful, air-conditioned back yard.

The Eagles put in a lot of work in the red zone on Thursday, but they had to produce the intensity that would have come naturally against the dolphins on Day 2.

“Our guys know how to practice and they know how to get here and compete,” said Sirianni. “We’ll talk before the training starts: Hey, this is an intense training, a lot of work with those. We’re going to get more work with those who are here today and go after it.”

This was technically the last training camp workout of 2022. Thanks for reading every day.

To the observations:

1. As always, housekeeping:

• Derek Barnett (ribs) and Andre Chachere (groin) were added to the injury report.

• Landon Dickerson and AJ Brown missed practice with rest days, according to the Eagles.

• Not practiced: Derek Barnett (ribs), Shaun Bradley (illness), Brown (rest), Andre Chachere (groin), Dickerson (rest), Christian Ellis (hamstring), Javon Hargrave (toe), Josh Jobe (elbow), Jason Kelce (elbow), Miles Sanders (hamstring), Josiah Scott (hamstring), Greg Ward (toe)

• Jack Anderson (ribs) returned to training today.

2. Jalen Hurts hadn’t thrown an interception in practice for a long time, but that streak ended on Thursday when he pitched a couple in 11-on-11s. The first went straight to Darius Slay; resembled a miscommunication with one of its receivers.

The second was a slightly undermined fade in the back end zone to DeVonta Smith. Give credit to Avonte Maddox, who made an impressive jumping interception.

In general, every move Hurts made this summer has been closely scrutinized, leading to many sweeping statements. He had his ups and downs. Sirianni said Hurts had his best training in the last two years against the Dolphins on Day 1. I didn’t see that. But Sirianni’s point was that Hurts went through his books and made the plays he needed to make. Hurts couldn’t really push the ball across the field on Day 1, which makes it hard for me to accept that this was his best training ever under Sirianni. But I think the coach just made the point that sometimes their measure of successful practice is slightly different.

On Thursday, Hurts had some nice passes in the red zone. We will return to some of these later.

3. Gardner Minshew pitched a choice on Thursday that didn’t appear to be his fault. He lasered a pass to Richard Rodgers about 10 yards down the field, but the ball deflected back to the line of scrimmage. That’s where defensive side Tarron Jackson picked it up. Good response from Jackson.

4. While Brown got a rest day, Zach Pascal worked with the first team offense and caught a touchdown pass in the near right pylon; Hurts snuck it inside. Pascal has had an excellent training camp after returning from food poisoning and is earning playing time. Before Pascal’s return and while Smith was still out, the Eagles used Jalen Reagor with the first team. But since then it has been much more Pascal in those situations.

5. Undrafted safety Reed Blankenship worked with the second team on Thursday and had a nice pass-breakup on a pass from Minshew that likely would have been a touchdown for Deon Cain. There may not be room on the roster for Blankenship, but at the very least he’s worth a spot on a practice squad.

With a roster spot open after trading Ugo Amadi on Wednesday, the Eagles filled it up by re-signing UDFA corner Josh Blackwell. The Duke corner was released on Tuesday. Blackwell returned with a PBU that was nearly an interception during 11-on-11s.

6. Boston Scott has looked explosive by getting some first team reps while Sanders is gone. He broke through a huge hole opened on the left by Jordan Mailata and Sua Opeta, filling in for Dickerson on the left hat.

Meanwhile, Minshew found Kenny Gainwell for a touchdown after the sophomore running back leaked from the backfield and ended up wide open in the end zone as the defense seemed lost in cover. That really got Minshew excited; he pumped his fist in victory.

7. Before starting the team drills, the Eagles had a short 7-on-7 period. It started with an Anthony Harris PBU on a pass to Dallas Goedert. But then Hurts came back and delivered a touchdown to Goedert for Slay.

In the next play, Slay knocked out a pass to Smith. But then Smith had an impressive back-shoulder touchdown catch against Zech McPhearson.

8. We saw a rare drop of Smith. It passed through his hands during a team exercise. He fell and did push-ups in penance.

9. The Eagles used a shovel pass on Goedert at the goal line. I think someone found Andy Reid’s old script at the NovaCare Complex last week.

10. Thursday we saw some big runs from Hurts. On one in particular, Josh Sweat fell into cover, leaving a huge gap. Hurts took advantage and ran for what probably would have been a touchdown in a game. Over the few years we’ve seen Hurts in these practices, he makes it hard to know how to rate these pieces because there’s no tack. I think in a game it’s a spectacular touchdown. Right after that “touchdown,” the Eagles made a 2-point conversion. It was close, but I think they fell short of Hurts’ goalkeeper; credit a run thing to great old Jordan Davis.

Dumb observation of the day: The Miami heat is no joke, but it’s a nice touch that the dolphins have a row of palm trees surrounding their exercise facility.

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The Valley Voice
The Valley Voicehttp://thevalleyvoice.org
Christopher Brito is a social media producer and trending writer for The Valley Voice, with a focus on sports and stories related to race and culture.


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