Camp officially started this evening as Andy Reid addressed the media at a press conference near the practice fields.
The whole introductory press conference thing is an interesting exercise. Media gather in a tent next to the fields at Lehigh.
The head coach gets driven up in a white GMC Yukon, gets out, answers questions and then hops back in the SUV. And that's it.
My favorite part of the press conference was when Reid said he actually texts quite a bit. I remember someone asked Joe Paterno once about text messaging, as it pertained to recruits, and he thought it was a "tech message" not a "text message."
As for Reid, he said texting is as far as he'll go right now. No Facebook or Twitter accounts quite yet. Too bad.
It was interesting to see what the veteran reporters asked Reid. They do this year in and year out in late July. At one point, Reid was asked how much longer he wants to coach.
"Listen, I haven't thought about that," he said. "I haven't thought about how long I want to go."
He went on to praise Philadelphia and said he's just focused on Tuesday.
I mentioned last month that I was reading War Without Death: A Year of Extreme Competition in Pro Football's NFC East. In the book, Mark Maske discussed the process Jeffrey Lurie and Joe Banner went through when they hired Reid. I remember thinking Reid would be the head coach of the Eagles until he decided he didn't want to be here anymore.
Of course, things can change quickly with a couple losing seasons, but that's the way it appears as he begins his 11th season with the Birds.
Some other thoughts from today:
** A week ago, if I would have told you Todd Pinkston would be here the first day, but Jeremy Maclin would not, you would have told me I was nuts.
** To continue the bizzaro theme, Pinkston has apparently put on a few, and Reid has dropped some lbs.
** Maclin's absence becomes more of a big deal as each day passes. That much is clear. Normally when two sides say publicly that they're confident a deal will get done, it gets done. Reid seemed to be walking a fine line at his press conference. He wanted to make it clear that Maclin needs to be in camp. But he didn't want to overreact since the team hasn't had a practice yet. It will be interesting to see if the tone changes should Maclin still be absent later this week.
** Guys I'm excited to see live Tuesday: LeSean McCoy, Cornelius Ingram and Sean McDermott.
** Thumbs up to Wegman's. There's one five minutes from our hotel. I feel like I could go there every day during camp for dinner and not have the same meal twice.
** Thumbs down to the Sunoco at the Allentown Service Area. Slowest gas pump I've ever used. Must have been there a good five minutes without filling up even half the tank.
** On Monday, the first practice starts at 8:45. We'll be Tweeting, doing video, photos, blog posts, etc.
** Below is our first video Q&A. Bob Brookover provides insight on Reid's press conference and Maclin's absence.