Maclin: Adapting To West Coast Offense
Fans are hopeful that the Eagles' first-round pick in 2009, wide receiver Jeremy Maclin, can match or exceed DeSean Jackson's amazing rookie campaign of a year ago.
However, there are some differences. Jackson played in a pro style offense at Cal, while Maclin's Missouri Tigers utilized the spread formation. Jackson came in well versed in the routes used in the West Coast offense, while Maclin's biggest challenge early on will be honing the intermediate routes on the passing tree.
But Maclin isn't burdened by the challenge. To him, if you play the position, you play the position. No matter what the style of offense or defense it is.
"I think I'll adapt to it. I don't think it'll be as big as a problem as a lot of people think it is," Maclin said. "If you play receiver, you play receiver. Whether it's in the spread or whether it'd be in the T-Bone formation, it doesn't matter."
The 6-foot, 198-pound Maclin set school records last season with 102 receptions and 1,260 receiving yards, while adding 13 receiving touchdowns in 2008. Also a dynamic returner, Maclin scored 33 total touchdowns and had 5,609 all-purpose yards in his two seasons which both ended with All-America honors. Now that the draft process has worked itself out, Maclin is itching to get back to the field. He hasn't played in a game since Dec. 28 of last year.
"I don't think it's finally sunk in yet," Maclin said. "I think (Saturday) will definitely be an eye-opening experience. I'm ready to get things going."Photo Gallery : 2009 Mini-Camp Arrival Ingram: 100 Percent Healthy
Even though he was a Florida Gator, tight end Cornelius Ingram always kept an eye on the Philadelphia Eagles.
Now, that he is one - he's already well aware of the team's success and its fans. But to be able to help contribute to that success is something Ingram will not take lightly. When he first walked into the locker room at the NovaCare Complex, he looked for Donovan McNabb's locker. He walked by it slowly. Then walked by it again. It finally began to sink in that Ingram will be catching passes from a five-time Pro Bowl quarterback in Donovan McNabb.
"Being in the same locker room as the guy who could be considered a Hall of Famer is an honor," Ingram said. "This is a great team and I'm happy to be a part of it."
Ingram was considered a steal in the fifth round because of his immense size and athletic ability. The only concern is that he missed all of last season with an ACL injury. The Eagles poked and prodded and were fine with the status of his recovery. In fact, Ingram will be out on the practice field this week and said that he is "definitely 100 percent" recovered.
A converted quarterback and a basketball player, Ingram caught 64 passes for 888 yards and eight touchdowns as a Gator. With L.J. Smith leaving via free agency, there is an open spot behind starter Brent Celek. In the Gators spread offense, Ingram worked more out of the slot and will have to learn how to run routes and block alongside the offensive line. Even though he was upset at the fact that teams were passing on him in the draft because of his knee, Ingram is happy with where he landed. He now is recalling what his best friend, Jaguars defensive end Derrick Harvey, told him last year when he was a first-round draft pick.
"'You remember when I told you last year how I had to get up and go to work instead of go to school,'" Ingram recalled.
Ingram is set to go and show everyone that he is all the way back from his injury.
Harris: Philly Reminds Him Of Virginia Tech
When rookies arrive at the NovaCare Complex for the first time, the scene can be intimidating.
A new environment. Competition against the best of the best. The media.
Not for fifth-round draft pick cornerback Victor Harris. In fact, the passionate fanbase of Philadelphia and the aggressive, attacking Jim Johnson defense remind Harris of Virginia Tech, his alma mater.
"I'm blessed to be in this position right now," Harris said. "I feel like Philly is a great opportunity for me. I'm just coming here wanting to learn and win the Super Bowl."
Harris said to play defense there is no room for intimidation. Of course, Harris' nickname is "Macho."
"This game demands a certain type of aggressiveness," Harris said. "You have to bring your heart to table. Being intimidated, being afraid, nah, that's out of the picture. I'm ready to go."
A 2008 first-team All-America selection and a two-time first-team All-ACC honoree, Harris will work in as both a safety and a cornerback this weekend. Harris picked off 15 passes during his college career and returned four of them for touchdowns.
Fokou: Draft Expert
If seventh-round pick Moise Fokou doesn't land with the Eagles, he may already have his next job lined up.
Look out Mike Mayock.
When asked what he thought of the Eagles' draft, Fokou shared the same opinion as many of the experts and raved about the selections. Of course, Fokou might be slightly biased because he is one of those picks.
"It's very interesting because I think the Eagles did one of the best jobs in the draft this year because they got another big-time receiver (in Jeremy Maclin) and with (Brian) Westbrook being hurt at the end of the season, a runner like (LeSean) McCoy, I think, brings a lot of help," Fokou said. "Even with the other guys they picked, I think they brought a lot of speed and new faces to the team. It's going to be good for the city."
Fokou was happy to land with the Eagles because of the defensive scheme they run. Other teams looked at Fokou as a rush end specialist in a 3-4 scheme, but Fokou played both the WILL and SAM spots in a 4-3 base at Maryland. The 6-1, 228-pound Fokou is expected to compete for a spot on the weak side with the Eagles.