Friday, August 22, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Westbrook Practicing

Running back Brian Westbrook was working with the first-team offense and seemed OK in Thursday's practice, though he left early, by design.

Westbrook Practicing

 Brian Westbrook, a limited practice participant on Wednesday, when reporters aren't allowed to watch practice, seemed to be doing everything with the first-team offense Thursday, though Eagles coach Andy Reid said he had Westbrook end his session early, by design, so that Westbrook wouldn't tax his healing right ankle.

    The practice didn't seem to involve really sharp cuts, but it's hard to remember an injury Westbrook practiced with and then didn't play on.

      “Yeah, that was the plan," Reid told a pool reporter, when asked about Westbrook leaving early. "We’re throwing him in there a little bit more each day. He did a little more today than yesterday, and we’ll give him a little bit more tomorrow. We’re just being smart with it, and adding something every day.”

Q: “What are you looking for from him to feel good about his progress?
A: “Just movement. How he’s moving around out there, and it’s been real positive. He looked real good out there today.”

Q: “Is he on track to play Sunday?”
A: “We’ll see, but he’s making progress and we’ll see how he does here the rest of the week. Every day has been a good step forward.”

     Westbrook was not available for comment.

 Also, quarterback Donovan McNabb, listed as a limited participant Wednesday, with a chest contusion, seemed to be a full participant Thursday. Wideout Kevin Curtis still seemed to be working with the scout team. Curtis, recovering from Aug. 21 sports hernia surgery, said he can't quite do the things he needs to do to be able to play. Right guard Shawn Andrews (back) did not practice.

    Thursday is coordinators' day at NovaCare. Here are some highlights:

   Special teams coordinator Rory Segrest said he thinks David Akers hasn't fully adjusted yet to his leg being stronger than it was last season. The two field goals Akers missed Sunday at Chicago both were plenty long, but Akers was expecting the wind to affect them more than it did, and he left them wide right.

   "I think it’s just the deal where Dave has got to trust his leg strength," Segrest said. "He’s a different kicker this year than he was last year. I think, the way he was hitting the ball last year, the kicks probably would have been good. He just got so much more powerful over the offseason here, and when he hits the ball from those types of distances, the ball is just not moving as much. He’s not going to have to adjust so much to the wind conditions. I think, right now, it’s just a matter of him trusting that and realizing that he’s got a lot more leg strength this year than he did last year.”

Defensive coordinator Jim Johnson was asked about cornerback Lito Sheppard, who reiterated his unhappiness this week in a ComcastSportsNet interview.

  “I think it’s still tough on Lito," Johnson said. "You’d have to ask Lito. That’s tough. He wants to play more, he just wants to play more. I think he’ll probably play a lot more this week with the type of personnel grouping they have. It’s tough on him.” 
  Johnson said he probably will use Sheldon Brown in the slot against Santana Moss.

Offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg was asked about the offense having scored 75 points in first halves this season and only 35 points in second halves. Was it a matter of defenses adjusting?

 “Not much at all. It’s not normally what your opponent does; it’s normally what you did, when you come out of something like that," Mornhinweg said. "We simply just have to play a little bit better and execute a little bit better. I have to do a better job. Last week we came out of halftime and we were backed up and we popped it out. Then, all of a sudden we had a problem and turned it over.” 
 
One more note: It was never mentioned to reporters, but according to a police blog, Reid attended the Monday night wake of Officer Patrick McDonald. The blog said Reid entered through the back door and presented the family with an Eagles jersey with "McDonald" on the back.

Les Bowen Daily News Staff Writer
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