- Good morning, everyone. Thursday is set up to be a fun day at Training Camp as live hitting resumes. Wednesday's focus was on the red zone, Thursday will be goal-line and short-yardage situations. After practice at around 11:45 this morning, offensive coordinator Mike Groh is scheduled to speak to the media, and we'll bring that to you live. Later this afternoon, Molly Sullivan will recap all of the day's action on Inside Training Camp presented by Independence Blue Cross. But for now, here's what you need to know to start the day in our Morning Roundup presented by Microsoft.
1. Carson Wentz's Rehab Is Going According To Plan
Carson Wentz was held out of 11-on-11 drills for the third straight practice on Wednesday. Is there any reason for concern as he works his way back from the knee injury? No, not at all, says head coach Doug Pederson.
"What I saw last week is enough to ease my mind," Pederson said. "I don't need to see him in 11-on-11 drills right now. He's progressing extremely well. I don't want to subject him to any kind of setback or anything like that. I want to keep him progressive and moving forward and those two days we had with him were very exciting and encouraging for me."
Wentz's plan for a full return is not set in stone. He expects his workload to change day by day based on how he feels physically.
"I think ever since the injury, we've been saying it's a fluid process," Wentz said. "It's constantly a fluid process. Some days you're feeling better than other days. So could there be some change of plan? For sure. But this is part of the plan right now, so we're sticking to it."
Zach Ertz had an interesting perspective on Wentz's progress. You'll have to read Graham Foley's story for more.
Check out how the pass catchers are looking during 2018 training camp.
2. A Long-Term Solution?
Eagles Hall of Fame kicker David Akers' final season with the team was in 2010. Since then, the Eagles have gone through Alex Henery, Cody Parkey, Caleb Sturgis, and now Jake Elliott in search of stability at the position. Henery never panned out. Parkey and Sturgis battled injuries. Elliott went from being not even a blip on the radar of Eagles fans to hero with the franchise-record 61-yard game-winning field goal against the Giants in Week 3 of last season. He went on to nail clutch kick after clutch kick including the game-sealing 46-yarder late in the fourth quarter of the Super Bowl. As Elliott preps for Year 2, Dave Spadaro writes about whether Elliott can be the long-term answer at kicker.
A look back at what Elliott calls a "huge roller-coaster ride of a year for me" has simply helped him transition to this year, to this challenge. What does Jake Elliott do for an encore after one of the great kicking seasons in Eagles history?
"I just do what I always do," Elliott said. "I'm not going to get ahead of myself. I'm just keeping a level head. It's a day-at-a-time thing. It's something I've developed through the course of my childhood, through high school, through all the sports that I played. It's always been important. I look back to my tennis days (in high school) and you're all alone out there. You have a bad point and you've got to bounce back for the next one.
"That's the way I am with every kick. I just try to stay in that moment."
3. Practice Notes: Dallas Goedert Dominant In Red Zone
Hopefully, the Eagles only need Elliott for extra points and kickoffs in 2018. The Eagles had the league's best red zone offense last season, scoring a touchdown on 65.5 percent of their trips inside the 20-yard line. On Wednesday, rookie Dallas Goedert was dominant as the team focused on the red zone. Here's part of the recap from our Practice Notes.
As the Eagles are rolling out two-tight end formations with Zach Ertz and Goedert, we're getting our glimpse into how a defense could potentially match up against it. The Eagles practiced several 12 personnel (one running back, two tight end) sets in the second red zone session with both Ertz and Goedert on the field. The defense would respond with a "big nickel" package featuring three safeties. One rep saw Malcolm Jenkins cover Ertz extremely well, but Goedert was able to shake Jordan Hicks for a touchdown on the opposite side of the field.
4. One Week Until The Preseason Opener!
The Hall of Fame Game is tonight in Canton, Ohio as the Baltimore Ravens take on the Chicago Bears. This marks the beginning of the Hall of Fame festivities as Brian Dawkins will be inducted on Saturday. Next Thursday, the Eagles open the preseason at home against the Pittsburgh Steelers. The season is right around the corner!
5. Darren Sproles Going Out On His Terms
Enjoyed this longform from former teammate Bo Wulf who is now over at The Athletic. Wulf documents Sproles' journey from Olathe, Kansas to Philadelphia and the hurdles that Sproles navigated along the way. My favorite part is the recurring theme that holds true, "Once an Eagle, Always an Eagle." The mascot at Sproles' Olathe North High School just so happens to be the Eagles as well. We should have known back then what was in store.