New role for Foles
Rookie quarterback Nick Foles has seen a few things change now that the full team is in camp. "You can definitely tell the speed's picked up with the vets back," Foles said.
That's not the only thing that's different for Foles, who got significant practice throwing time earlier in the week. Don't look for him to get a ton of reps now with the main offense as Michael Vick prepares for the season and Trent Edwards and Mike Kafka battle for a spot. He gets his time during service plays to help the defense prepare.
"It's our job to give the defense a good look," Foles said. "I'm learning the offense as fast as I can and trying to help the defense. That's my job. And I love coming to work every day."
When fans get their first look at the Eagles full squad Friday, they'll be only one day behind awestruck rookie defensive back Cliff Harris. Since he missed Organized Team Activities earlier this year while still at Oregon, Harris had yet to take the field with all of the team's veterans.
Harris said he grew up watching players like DeSean Jackson and Jeremy Maclin--and now he's trying to stop them.
"It's surreal," Harris said with a laugh. "I almost want to ask them for their autographs."
There were no doubts about his own skills when he lined up against them for the first time. "You don't question your ability at all," Harris said. "Still you do feel like a little kid--I've watched these guys on TV all the time."
From fans to the field
Three of the newer Eagles know what it means to bleed Green, having grown up as Eagles fans as kids. Second-round picks Mychal Kendricks and Vinny Curry, and free agent tight end Brett Brackett all followed the team closely growing up.
Kendricks' father Marvin was on the Eagles training camp roster in 1972 after a standout career at UCLA, where he twice led the team in rushing. Curry, a 6-3, 266-pound defensive end from Neptune High School in Neptune, N.J., grew up wanting to be a running back because his favorite Eagle was Ricky Watters. And he still has Eagles pictures and jerseys around his house.
Brackett, who went to Lawrence High School in Lawrence, N.J., played wide receiver at Penn State but is now trying to stick with the Eagles as a tight end after signing on to the practice squad late last season.
His grandfather, Floyd Wydener, is a fanatical Eagles fan, to the point where he has painted every door handle, car handle, tool handle, and house shutter Eagles green. "He was the most excited person when I signed with the Eagles," Brackett said.
When he was playing at Penn State, Brackett was a big fan of Brett Celek and now he's working alongside him.
"Everybody treats you like one of the guys, so being a fan doesn't really kick in."