Babin Absence Creates Opportunity

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Eagles defensive end Jason Babin is sidelined with a calf strain. (Yong Kim / Staff Photographer)

Tuesday's news that the Eagles expect to be without defensive end Jason Babin (calf strain) for two to three weeks wasn't unexpected, but it does confirm that there will be quite a few training camp reps for other defensive ends trying to make an impact.

One guy who so far has made the most of every opportunity is 2010 first-round pick Brandon Graham, who has been focused and relentless. Vinny Curry, this year's second-round rookie, is an imposing figure who has had his moments but seems pretty raw. Don't be shocked, given their depth at defensive tackle, even without Mike Patterson right now, if the Eagles use Cullen Jenkins a lot on the outside this camp.

Jenkins, 31, a starting defensive tackle, notched five of his 5.5 sacks last season in the first five games. In the offseason, I think coaches figured if they moved him around a little, it would be harder for offensive lines to shut him down.

Already, from the first live day at Lehigh, we've seen Jenkins outside some, standing up inside some.

"I think they're just using me different spots. I kind of like that, being able to move around, bounce around, maybe play end some against the run, go back inside against the pass ... you never know the situation. I just like being able to bounce around and play wherever needed," Jenkins said recently.

In other breaking news, Jenkins seems to be cultivating a much narrower, goateeish version of center Jason Kelce's bushy beard. But Jenkins did not embrace the comparison.

"Oh, no. That thing is terrible," He said.

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