Taking the Heat
Defensive line coach Jim Washburn is neither quiet nor shy when it comes to his approach to coaching. So there are a lot more comfortable spots on this earth than to be a defensive lineman being quizzed by an animated Washburn on a hot summer day.
Washburn took top picks DT Fletcher Cox and DE Vinny Curry, along with DT Tevita Finau, DE Frank Trotter, and DE Monte Taylor off to the side during Tuesday's morning walk-thru to work on the Wide-9 techniques so vital to the Eagles line play.
"It just takes time," said Washburn. As for the rookies being the only ones getting his attention, Washburn said, "It's a saving grace."
Rings and things
Offensive lineman Alfred McCullough holds a unique distinction over his fellow rookies, but you won't hear him talk about. He's the only Eagle currently in camp who won a national championship in college.
He actually was on two national champs at Alabama, as a senior in 2011 and again as a sophomore in 2009.
"I'm not a bragging person, so I don't say anything about it," said the undrafted free agent who started five games as a senior.
He's also not sporting either of his title rings. "I never wear them," McCullough said. "I let my mom have them."
McCullough is one of just four players currently on the roster to have won a title in college. The others are Mike Patterson (USC, 2004--since vacated), Riley Cooper (Florida, 2006, 2008),and Chas Henry (Florida, 2008).
One main priority
Special teams coach Bobby April has several potentially explosive rookie return men to choose from, including Cliff Harris for punts and Brandon Boykin for kickoffs. But he emphasizes only one priority to those players.
"You've got to secure the ball," April said. "If you can't do that, it doesn't matter."
Former Eagles star Duce Staley, now the special teams quality control coach, likes what he sees from the group, especially Cliff Harris. "He's elusive, he's electric," said Staley. "He can go back and make plays."