Good morning, Eagles fans! The longest-scheduled practice of Training Camp is set for Thursday, with the workout set to last two hours and 40 minutes. Practice kicks off at 9:15 a.m. and head coach Doug Pederson will speak to the media close to noon. Pederson's press conference will be livestreamed here and on our social media platforms. In this edition of Morning Roundup presented by Microsoft, there is a lot to go over as the first week comes to a close, so let's get into the big stories!
1. Wentzday magic among 15 takeaways from practice
Wednesday's practice was a spirited one as the Eagles rebounded nicely from the sauna that was the NovaCare Complex on Tuesday when the team hosted its longest, most physical workout of the summer. – to date. Here's one of the notes from Fran Duffy.
The offense took the field for their second set of plays, and Carson Wentz got things going early. First, he rifled a pass into Alshon Jeffery (who made a great hands catch) in the middle of the field in pretty tight coverage. A couple of plays later, he dropped a perfect touch pass to Nelson Agholor down the field over the shoulder, and while it fell incomplete, it made me think about some of the best passes Wentz has thrown so far through six practices. Thinking about it, his best tosses have been those touch throws at the intermediate or deep areas, dropping the ball in a bucket, or driving the football in traffic in the intermediate part of the field.
2. Shhhh ... It's quiet around Eagles punter Cameron Johnston (and that's a great thing!)
Cameron Johnston enters his second season as the punter for the Eagles. While other teams in the league struggle to find consistency at the position, Johnston's presence gives the team a sense of stability. Eagles Insider Dave Spadaro dives into how Johnston made his way to Philadelphia. Johnston won the job in 2018 after being released by the Eagles the previous season.
"Yeah, that was a great feeling but you don't ever get too comfortable in this profession and you can never be perfect," Johnston said. "When I was here two years ago, it was a great learning experience. Donnie (Jones) is such a great punter who has seen everything in the NFL. I felt I improved every day, but it wasn't enough. I just kept working at it. I felt I had the talent, but I had to be more consistent with my technique and with my performance."
3. Groh: Miles Sanders is on track for success
After Wednesday's practice, offensive coordinator Mike Groh spoke with the media about the veteran presence on the squad as well as how the rookies are adjusting. Among the new players, running back Miles Sanders stood out to Groh. Sanders' perseverance through a spring hamstring injury and his explosive plays in Training Camp have caught the eye of the coaches.
"I think he's feeling good with his fitness level," Groh said. "I think he's getting more confident coming off the hamstring there in the spring. Again, he's just learning how to run our plays. But there have been some plays where you are standing at it from behind, you say, 'Wow, that was a really good cut right there,' unique skill level in the hole and in a short area and being able to make quick cuts and then get vertical, and he's made some plays in the passing game down the field. I know it was Vinny (Curry) peeling out on him on the one down the field the other day, but it was still an over-the-shoulder throw and catch, really good throw by Carson and good play by Miles."
4. Ray Didinger's award-winning play, Tommy and Me, returns to Philadelphia
Tommy and Me, the award-winning play about Pro Football Hall of Fame wide receiver Tommy McDonald, is coming back for a fourth summer engagement. There will be 19 performances at the Fringe Arts Theatre on Columbus Boulevard. The play opens on Friday, August 9 and runs through Sunday, August 25. The play is produced by Theatre Exile. It was written by Ray Didinger, the author of Eagles Encyclopedia: Champions Edition, and it is directed by Joe Canuso. The four actors are Tom Teti, who played the older Tommy McDonald; Frank Nardi, Jr., who plays young Tommy; Matt Pfeiffer, who plays Ray, and Simon Kiley, who plays Ray as the little boy who befriends McDonald at Eagles Training Camp in 1957. For ticket information, go to theatreexile.org.