Apologies for the late post today. I got ready to write about 12 different times, and something kept coming up.
Anyway, a couple links to pass along, and then some observations from Eagles rookie camp today.
ESPN.com's John Clayton lists the five teams that had the worst offseasons. The Eagles just made the cut at No. 5. Above them are the Saints (4), Cardinals (3), Vikings (2) and Bills (1). Here's Clayton's reasoning:
Kevin Kolb takes over in a season in which the Eagles face 11 top-level quarterbacks, a league high by far. Can Kolb outduel Aaron Rodgers, McNabb (twice), Tony Romo (twice), Eli Manning (twice), Peyton Manning, Matt Schaub, Matt Ryan and Favre? Chances are Kolb will go 4-7 or 3-8 against those arms and limit the Eagles to a six- or seven-win season. That's what happened to Rodgers when the Packers traded Favre to the Jets.
Meanwhile, Jason Cole of Yahoo Sports ranks the quarterback situations for all 32 NFL teams. Where do the Birds come in? No. 17:
Yeah, yeah. “Insiders” like to talk about how Kevin Kolb is the next big thing and that the Eagles were smart to get rid of McNabb. Maybe, but all I know is that McNabb can play. As for Kolb, he has had three games with significant playing time. He got hammered in relief against Baltimore in 2008 and New Orleans in ’09 during his first career start. He looked great against Kansas City in his second start, but that’s the Chiefs. It’s going to be awhile before the jury returns a verdict.
Observations from rookie camp
* I caught up with second-year linebacker Moise Fokou. More on that tomorrow, but you can check out the video here.
* Interesting scene early in practice with the defensive linemen practicing together. Brandon Graham was paired up with Antonio Dixon. Dixon was playing the role of offensive tackle. That meant wrapping his arms in two black pads that looked like yoga mats or gym mats. Graham's job was to work on his technique - lift Dixon's left arm up and drive him back towards where the quarterback would be standing. In between reps, it looked like Dixon was showing Graham what he was doing right, and what he was doing wrong.
Dixon, an undrafted rookie free agent a year ago, a guy that worked his way on to the Eagles' roster and into Sean McDermott's rotation, telling Graham, a first-round pick with heavy expections, how it's done.
Two guys who could potentially line up next to each other on Sundays, but who arrived at this place by two completely different paths.
* Rookie wide receiver Riley Cooper took a little too long to turn upfield after making a catch on a comeback route. "That's what happens if you stop moving your feet," yelled receivers coach David Culley.
* Wide receiver Dobson Collins made a couple nice grabs, including one on a fade during red-zone drills.
* The loudest "Ooooohs" came when running back Martell Mallett brought defensive end Eric Moncur to the ground with a juke, after catching a pass in the flat. The offensive linemen loved it, especilly Max Jean-Gilles, whose voice could be heard above the others.