Philadelphia Eagles News

Head Coach Andy Reid

Opening Remarks: ''These players will not practice this afternoon. (DE) Jason Babin, (WR) Riley Cooper. Jason is making progress, as is Riley. (CB) Cliff Harris has the ankle sprain. He won't practice. (DT) Cullen Jenkins has a slight hamstring strain. He will not practice. (QB) Mike Kafka actually fractured his left hand, so what you'll see from him is he'll come out to practice, he'll be able to do the seven-on-seven (drills); everything where he doesn't have to take a snap, he'll be able to do. So, the seven-on-seven, some of the individual work, he'll do. That's a couple to three weeks; we'll see how it all works out. We'll keep an eye out on it as we go. (RB) Dion Lewis has a slight hamstring strain; should be okay. (WR) Jeremy Maclin, same thing, slight hamstring strain. And then (G) Brandon Washington hasn't been cleared for his concussion. Everybody else is fine. (QB) Michael's (Vick) thumb is fine. The way I described that to you before is like a stinger on the nerve on the top of his thumb, but he's okay.

Things I saw from the game, and I mentioned this to our team, that we've got to do a better job executing with the ones and the twos. There were too many mistakes; penalties, mistakes, they're all correctable things. But we'll go back and we corrected the mistakes off of the film this morning during the walkthrough and then we'll continue to work to get better as we prepare to play New England in a few days; quite a few days actually. Then, I saw some good things from the threes and the fours. The young guys, there were some guys I was very impressed with and it's important that they continue to build on what they've done. It was obviously the first preseason game, so I don't think you get too alerted from the ones to the fours. You're not too alerted other than you want to give the young guys an opportunity to play, which they were able to do. They got a lot of snaps in, so you were able to see some positive things there. As far as any changes go in lineups this week, I mentioned that there's competition at positions. Left tackle is one of those positions, so (OT) King (Dunlap) is scheduled to work with the ones and (OT) Demetress (Bell), he'll back up and work with the twos. King was obviously told that, when he was re-signed here, that he would have an opportunity to compete for the starting position, as was Bell. And you know with (offensive line coach) Howard (Mudd), Howard mixes the guys and moves them all around at all different positions on both sides of the ball.''

On whether he saw anything from T King Dunlap and T Demetress Bell that precipitated the move today: ''Not necessarily. Just a scheduled switch. Like I said, King's been with us a while and he deserves that opportunity. Demetress has done a good job. He's worked hard, so he's doing fine. But I just want to make sure; I want to make sure everybody has their shot there.''

On whether QB Nick Foles will take second team reps in place of QB Mike Kafka in drills that involve snaps: ''It'll be Nick. He'll work with the twos.''

On the subtle things that he saw from Foles after watching the film of Thursday's game: ''He's progressing. He did some nice things. I mentioned about keeping your eyes down the field on the one long ball to (WR Damaris) Johnson where he had to move and then make the throw. That just came very natural to him. He felt the pressure, he scooted to the right, kept his eyes downfield, knew he had the receiver and gave him a catchable ball. Again, Damaris did a good job of getting open too. That was a heck of a route.''

On the specific play where Kafka was injured: ''It was stepped on. If you watch the tape, you'll see it. His hand was stepped on, his left hand.''

On the areas Bell needs to focus on before Week 1: ''Just continue to progress. Just continue to progress and he'll do that with reps. He's going to get plenty of reps and everybody needs that. Right now, everybody needs that. We need to get better.''

On RB Bryce Brown and what he saw from him on the game tape: ''Bryce is a really smart kid. He's picking things up well and then he's a big, physical kid. He's got good speed and good moves so you got to see that. It's important though that he continues to fine-tune himself as we go here. Like any young player needs to do, he needs to continue to do that. But I would tell you he was one of the positives coming out of the game. I thought he did a nice job.''

On the problems he saw on defense that allowed Pittsburgh to break several long runs: ''We missed some tackles. We missed some tackles and there were some gaps that we were supposed to close that we didn't close. This game comes back down to that. It's blocking and tackling and then it's how do you get off of a block from a defensive standpoint and then how do you make that tackle. So, you've got to make sure that you put yourself in the right position, take the right angles and those are things that we can correct. The talent's there. We've just got to make sure that we're getting the fundamental work down. We've got a nice, long stretch here before we play the Patriots and it's important that we really focus in on that.''

On starting DT Cullen Jenkins at the right defensive end position rather than a defensive end at the position on Thursday: ''Well, you've seen where we've been doing that during camp and it gives you a big, strong guy in there. We think we've got some pretty good defensive tackles inside and we want to give him an opportunity out there to play a little defensive end. He did some of that in Green Bay and he was effective with it. Last year, we were just trying to get him in and going at tackle and we figured we would evolve into that by the second year. He's very comfortable there and he plays well there.''

On whether they started Jenkins at end to get a bigger presence on the edges: ''It gives you that. That's what it does. Naturally, that's what it gives you and you don't lose a lot of athletic ability. He's still as fast and strong and quick and all those things.''

On whether he saw S Jaiquawn Jarrett settle down following early miscues on Thursday: ''Again, we all saw it. He can work on his angles and he can work on the tackling part and those are things that he did very well in college. I think it's just a matter of more snaps, just continuing to play and you know the problem; go ahead and fix. I think he'll do that.''

On LB Mychal Kendricks and how impressed he was by his performance on Thursday: ''With the exception of that first third down, the third-and-four that we had where they hit the fullback-tight end into the flat, I thought he did some good things. He got better as time went on with it, but again, like any rookie, there are small things that he's got to continue to work on. But he had the right attitude. When you talk about blocking and getting off blocks and tackling, those aren't attitudes; that's not attitudes, that's taking the angle. The guy's played their tails off and played aggressive football, but you've got to know, you've got to know how to situate the field and how fast the opponent is and those things and make sure that you approach it the right way and (know) how you fit exactly into the defense. For the young guys, we've got to do a little better job of that.''

On whether Kendricks' will be in the first team nickel package: ''We've got a bunch of different personnel groups that we're using him in, but he has that ability to do that.''

On whether he has a clear vision of the return game, with CB Brandon Boykin and WR Damaris Johnson: ''I thought that both those two did a nice job in the punt and the kick return game. You never know how many reps you're going to get in that and you want to make sure you come out of the preseason knowing what you've got there. So we were lucky to get a few shots in there where we could see them. But I thought both the rookies did a nice job and they'll continue to work at it. I felt comfortable as them being one of the pluses coming out of this game.''

On whether he is looking for an increased sharpness in the ones this afternoon: ''Every rep you take, I want that and that's what I'm looking for. So it doesn't matter if it's in practice or a game, I want you to execute and do that. That's important and if you're going to be a good football team, you better do that. I'm always looking for that.''

On whether the tone of practice has shifted to a regular season workload: ''You might have a light period here or there, finishing up here, but we'll be in full pads today and we'll move the ball and do some things that are pretty aggressive. We'll finish up these four days we have up here and finish them up the right way and then they get a break. The day that we move, the players are off and we'll get set back up at the NovaCare (Complex) and then we'll be right into a regular week's practice after that as we prepare for New England on Monday night.''

On whether the afternoon practice will be live today: ''There will be hitting today. Taking to the ground, we probably won't do that part of it. We probably won't tackle to the ground.''

On whether he has considered moving any of his larger cornerbacks to the safety position: ''We've talked about that. I think we're okay there. I think we're okay at safety. I want to see what we've got there. I want to get (S) Nate (Allen) back in the fold here. He's coming off an injury so getting him back moving and get reps with the guys that we have. There are some guys that do have a little size there (at cornerback). The tackling part, the physical part, you've got to be aware of that too. It's a little different back there.''

On FB Emil Igwenagu and how he has progress in pass-blocking: ''Since (TE) Brent (Celek) has come back now, (Igwenagu) will go back to fullback full-time. He won't be taking the reps at the tight end spot. He has a nice feel for that. He has a nice feel as a tight end for that. That's what he played in college. So now you move him back there, there's a little different approach you've got to take and he needs to get reps at that. But he'll do that the next few weeks here. We'll give him an opportunity to get some reps at that.''

On whether there was any reasoning behind only running the ball a handful of times on Thursday: ''No, not necessarily. We got down a little bit there, so we wanted to make sure we got back. We needed to throw the football there.''

On K Alex Henery and his no-nonsense demeanor: ''He handles things the right way. I was happy for him. You can see he's gotten stronger from last year. You can see it on his kickoffs. He wanted that 59-yarder when we went for it on fourth-and-two there. He wanted to knock that thing through. As quiet as he is, he's got an aggressive personality and he doesn't let a lot of things bother him; a pretty cool guy. So he gives you a lot of confidence. From a coaching standpoint, he builds a lot of confidence in you. Everybody can see his leg is even stronger than it was last year and he did a pretty good job last year for us.''

On whether he feels Bell will take his reps with the second team as a challenge: ''I think, naturally, you do that. Just naturally, you don't want anybody being on the ones. You want to be the guy on the ones. But, on the other hand, it's fair to King to do that. He came back here under the assumption that he'd have an opportunity to compete and he's done well, so he'll get an opportunity. There's not a lot of separation between those guys right at this minute, so King deserves that opportunity.''

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