This article was originally published in the Daily News on June 12, 2004.
There was alarming news out of the final day of Eagles minicamp.
Never mind the lengthy list of injuries for a noncontact camp, which included a "sore shoulder" for quarterback Donovan McNabb and minor surgeries for backup quarterback Koy Detmer (knee) and 2003 first-round draft choice Jerome McDougle (shoulder).
The really disturbing part came when coach Andy Reid not only confirmed that he has agreed to let wide receiver Terrell Owens wear tights without shorts in practice if Owens scores 15 touchdowns this season, but also upped the ante.
If T.O. scores 15 touchdowns, "I told him I'd wear the tights," Reid said.
This seemed to be news to Owens and not entirely welcome news, as one might expect. Told of Reid's jest, T.O. shook his head and smiled. He agreed with a reporter's assertion that this was something one would not yearn to see.
The good news is, we have plenty of time to prepare ourselves. We're nowhere near seeing Owens' first Eagles touchdown, let alone his 15th. The end of the spring's final minicamp means the Eagles now adjourn until training camp, which starts July 28 for rookies, July 30 for veterans. The first exhibition game is still 2 months away, the first regular-season game is nearly 3 months distant.
Because of the luxury afforded by that time frame, Reid said he was unconcerned about any of the injuries he reported during his wrapup news conference yesterday.
"It doesn't concern me. Would I have liked it to have been a clean slate? Absolutely. But we'll be fine, so I'm not worried about it," said Reid, who predicted all the afflicted Eagles would be ready for the start of training camp.
Reid said McNabb had "thrown a lot of balls the last few weeks" and had soreness in his passing shoulder, so he sat out yesterday's final workout. Detmer, who was walking without a crutch or cane, had surgery Thursday for a meniscus tear in his right knee, Reid said.
McDougle, a defensive end, had his shoulder "cleared out," Reid said.
Reid said one upside to Detmer's missing the last two workouts and McNabb's sitting out yesterday was that newcomer Jeff Blake got more minicamp work than he would have gotten had everyone been healthy.
Reid noted that Blake got "not only reps, but reps with the No. 1 group. He sure handled it well. "
Reid and the coaches have been on the field most of the last 3 weeks, first with rookie camp, then this so-called "passing camp. " Reid said he felt the sessions had been "a nice introduction for training camp. "
One of the key tasks has been getting No. 1 draft choice Shawn Andrews up to speed. Andrews, a natural tackle, is scheduled to start at right guard for the Eagles, a rare opportunity for a rookie. Though Reid cautioned that the true test would come in training camp under more demanding conditions, he was pleased with how Andrews has picked up the offense and finds him "very strong and explosive. "
Jermane Mayberry, who is moving from right to left guard for Andrews, agreed that the rookie "seems to have a good grasp of things."