Good morning, Eagles fans! 2018 Training Camp concluded on Tuesday with a final 10-10-10 practice at the NovaCare Complex. The team will hold a walk-through this morning before traveling to New England for the second preseason game against the Patriots. Our live coverage from Foxborough begins Thursday with The Kickoff Show presented by Axalta at 7 p.m. In today's Morning Roundup presented by Microsoft, we hand out some Training Camp hardware and preview what will be a big weekend for the team's franchise quarterback.
1. And The Winner Is ...
After watching 15 days of Training Camp practices, Eagles Insider Dave Spadaro dished out 11 awards ranging from Best Player to Most Disappointing. Defensive lineman Michael Bennett took home the honors for Best Newcomer:
He wasn't around much during the voluntary Organized Team Activities, so Michael Bennett didn't have a chance to establish himself on or off the field with the Eagles. But since he's been here, Bennett has been great, just great. On the field, he's a pro's pro who can play inside or on the edge. He uses his hands well, sets up blockers with deceptive body movement, and has a veteran's anticipation. Off the field, Bennett is a thoughtful, intelligent player who respects his position in the locker room and on the team. The Eagles appear to have hit again in free agency with wide receiver Mike Wallace and defensive tackle Haloti Ngata taking first-team reps as camp ended, but the trade for Bennett looks like it could turn out to be the best move of all. He's legit, and he's going to help the defense a ton.
2. Carson Wentz To Be Re-Evaluated After Patriots Game
The Eagles will take care of business in New England then return to Philadelphia where quarterback Carson Wentz will meet with the team's medical staff. It will then be determined whether or not Wentz, who is coming off the knee injury, can ramp up his level of participation in practice. For two days early in Training Camp, Wentz did full-team drills. He was fearless in the pocket, nimble on the run, and confident in his left leg. The Eagles saw what they wanted and have had Wentz in sessions that didn't feature a pass rush since. Head coach Doug Pederson said that everything has gone according to plan. Graham Foley has Wentz's reaction to this process:
"It's a very positive sign seeing that I have been able to be out here for every practice and my knee has responded well each day," Wentz said. "Obviously, I'm not getting the reps I would like because of where we're at but the positive is how it has responded and it's not just practice, it's things we're doing in the weight room, things we're doing in the training room, and things have been going well."
The goal for Wentz remains to play in the regular-season opener on September 6.
Check out some of the best catches during training camp from both sides of the ball.
3. Nick Foles To Play At Patriots
The Super Bowl MVP will make his preseason debut against the same team he torched for 373 yards, three passing touchdowns, and a receiving one. Foles missed last Thursday's game against the Steelers due to neck spasms. Graham Foley has more:
Foles also shot down any idea of reminiscing about last season as the Eagles take on the team they defeated in the Super Bowl. For him and the rest of the team, it's time to move forward.
"I'm pretty familiar with the opponent," Foles said. "It's a new season, some new personnel. Everyone is installing different things at different times. It'll be fun just to be back on the field. Obviously, it's the last team we played, but I'm excited to get up there and compete against them."
4. Depth Chart Notes From Final Practice
Fran Duffy and Ben Fennell have done an outstanding job of recapping each day of practice. They had 16 observations from the final one, featuring some notes about the depth chart.
First, at outside linebacker:
The defensive starters return to the field, and the linebacker hierarchy is becoming more consistent as the days go on. Second-year player Nathan Gerry is getting a majority of the reps as the starting weakside linebacker in the base defense, and he appears to be battling Kamu Grugier-Hill for the job. Those two are also the backup nickel linebackers (behind Jordan Hicks and Nigel Bradham). Joe Walker is the backup middle linebacker and comes on the field in their heavy goal-line package as a fourth linebacker.
Then, nickel cornerback:
While the second-team defensive line and linebackers are on the field, the starting secondary is out there with Jalen Mills at left corner, Ronald Darby at right corner, Malcolm Jenkins and Rodney McLeod at safety, and rookie Avonte Maddox in the slot. This is Maddox's third straight practice with the first-team nickel package.