Philadelphia Eagles News

Offensive Assistant Coaches

Offensive Coordinator Marty Mornhinweg

On whether he thinks the improvement of the four incumbent offensive linemen will help offset the loss of LT Jason Peters for most if not all of the season: "We lost a great player, but we expect the next guy to step up and play as good or even better – sometimes that does happen, the even better. Once again, we do know that our offensive line does have the opportunity to become one of the best offensive lines in this league together. That's the important thing."

On whether he expects the backup running backs to play a bigger role this season: "Our skill and ability there behind LeSean (McCoy) is at a high-level. All of the backs that we have here in camp, halfbacks and fullbacks, and (FB Jeremy) Stewart is a swingman and he can play both. I think all of them can play in the NFL and possibly play at a high level in the NFL. There will be great competition there, so that's a good thing. The second good thing is that they're all highly talented, and (general manager) Howie Roseman and the personnel department have done an outstanding job acquiring those players."

On whether he has any concern about the running back position from a pass-blocking standpoint: "As you know, that is a big focus of (running backs coach) Ted Williams and for any young running back. It's a big focus for us and we'll see who is really good at it. If you can pass block and you're talented, you do have a chance to play. We'll see how that goes and that will be a big focus for Ted Williams and the backs."

On the new training camp schedule and how the team benefits from having the walk-through before practice: "What you're looking for there is alignment, then the quick motion sets, and then the assignments. You don't get much with the pass game except for the assignments because the quarterback has to drop back and hold and the receivers just walk. However, you get the protection assignments and the receivers walking the route and you get reads and progressions from the quarterback. You can do many, many things during the walk-through and it's been excellent for us incorporating those in the past year. We did quite a little bit of this during camp."

Quarterbacks Coach Doug Pederson

On where QB Nike Foles falls on the depth chart and what he sees out of him: "First of all, he's talented. He's a smart guy. He's got great size and a good arm. Those are all good things and coming out of OTAs, we wanted to see where he was mentally. We knew physically he could throw it. Really, training camp, the three and a half weeks we're here, we're going to create that competition. We want to see him out when the pads are on and the bullets are flying for real. There's history with (Mike) Kafka. There's history with Trent Edwards, so we kind of know where we're at with those two guys. Nick, now, is the unknown. You've got to see what you have. So the bullets are going to fly for real and even though reps are going to be limited, he's going to have to make the most out of those opportunities."

On how he feels about not having a distinguished backup: "I'm very confident in the guys we have. Number one, Mike Vick understands where he's at and what he has to do to keep himself on the field and he knows that. He's worked hard this offseason to get himself in that position. (I have) all of the confidence in the world in Mike Kafka. We've seen what he can do. In the Atlanta game last year, he came in with good poise and led that team down to a potential game-winning drive and it just didn't happen. Very confident in his ability. This is an important camp for Mike as well and all of the guys. He's got to go out and execute. He's got to prove that he's a solid number two and he's got to go with confidence, just like I have all the confidence in the world in him and I know he can get it done."

On the changes he's seen in QB Michael Vick and his confidence level entering the year: "I have and it really started day one of the offseason. Going back after the regular season after the Redskins game, he was very disappointed in a lot of stuff and the way he performed this past year. He wanted to change his approach, not only to the game but to his workout structure, his study habits this offseason and it started right away. He got right back in the weight room. He healed up after the season and he just exuded that confidence that you need from your starting quarterback. He's carried that over through OTAs and this entire offseason. He's done a nice job. He's led this football team and he's in a good position right now. He knows it's going to take a lot of hard work and there's no substitute for hard work in this business. He knows that, and he's put himself in a good position."

On the biggest difference he's seen in Andy Reid's training camps from his time as a player to now: "Not much. Honestly, not much. I know the rules have changed, but you can't control the rules. The structure, the way we practice hasn't changed. You keep doing the same things over and over again and the players will buy into that system. The coaches buy into that system. It pays off and produces wins on the field, so there hasn't been a whole lot that's changed. This camp will be no different than last year."

Offensive Line Coach Howard Mudd

On the advantage that T Demetress Bell has coming into OTAs and training camp early compared to last year's new free agent signees: "Oh, gosh, well he is miles ahead of where everyone was last year when they walked in here. (Last year) I had sent (the players) a video before the lockout. I gave them a video of drills and Indianapolis stuff and said, 'I want you to look like this, look at the left guard, that's what I want you to look like.' So he's got a big advantage learning the techniques from the OTAs. When we say we want you to do the following things. He may not be able to execute it yet but he knows what it is. That's the big thing about the offseason. That's what the offseason is for. For me anyway it is learning the drills so that when we apply them in training camp, the execution is better. You now have a reference point."

On what he wants to see from G Danny Watkins during training camp: "Comfort in the position and limiting doubt about himself. That tends to happen to players. That is part of the growing process. I call that the 'Valley of Darkness.' You get somewhere and then you start doubting yourself and then the ball is snapped and you don't have a clue where you are. You can be very amateurish. Then things start to click. Then all of a sudden you get there. That is what the offseason is for. I think he is well on his way. It's the 'it' thing and he is starting to get 'it.'"

On what is changing for C Jason Kelce and QB Michael Vick in terms of line calls: "Jason is probably taking on more than he had before. I think Mike trusts that more than he did last year. By that I am saying Jason now understands the scheme so he goes up and says something to declare the pattern we are going to use. Then Mike may even be thinking about something else and will ask Kelce or he will change it. The synergy is way better now because of trust. Kelce has now gone through the war and now Mike knows that Kelce is doing something now only to help us. I think that is a big deal."

Running Backs Coach Ted Williams

On what he is looking for in a backup running back: "The biggest thing I tell them is to be able to get in the huddle and line up. Show me that you know what you're doing, because the rest of it will follow. If you can line up and know what your assignment is, half the battle is won because you can figure out the adjustments along the way. But if you can't line up and figure out what your assignment is, you're in a world of trouble. Everything else falls by the wayside from that point on. With me, I always ask them and I've learned this from coaching, when a player makes a mistake, the first thing I want to know is what did you hear in the huddle. What did they tell you? If you get that wrong, then everything else is downhill. Once I ascertain what it is you heard, what information you garnered from the huddle, then I want to know what did you process that into; why did you do it that way? So that lets me know how you're processing the information. Then I can make suggestions; I can make changes. I can determine basically where you're not getting the proper information channeled to. So with that particular facet of coaching, I just want to know what you heard. From that point on, it's about transferring conscious thought into conscious action and that's what this is all about and in any game, it's that way. I'll tell you one more time, how you separate the good from the great. The good think; the great never do. So, the faster you can process, the better off you are. If you know when they say 'Brown right' or 'A right' here's your next route, then you're already ahead of where you belong, where you end up and where you're supposed to be. Knowing the process by which we call plays, the sequential adaptations that go with what you do with this and what you do with that. That's more terminology."

On what he saw from rookie RB Bryce Brown and RB Chris Polk and how the backup position may unfold: "I'm really impressed with both of them because they work hard and they appear to be intelligent enough to master this offense, which is really the biggest problem you get with kids coming into this offense. It's a mouthful. You put a plate in front of them and it's a whole meal. They've got to know how to take which bites to digest it. But they have shown me that they can handle it. I'd say the best thing about them is they have extraordinary skills, both of them do. Chris is faster than I thought he was. He's bigger than he looked. We knew how big Bryce was. I knew how fast he was, but I didn't know how athletic he was. So they both have rare talents and the fact of the matter is that, as one guy once said, 'The most important thing about worth and beauty is in the eye of the appraiser.' I think those guys are going to be good players. They've got skill, they've got talent and they've got instincts, and they're bigger than most guys I've ever coached."

On the pluses and minuses of having such a young group of backs: "That might be the most unique coach in the NFL, coaching no one over the age of 23. But I understand that and because you're young doesn't mean you can't be good. Because you're young, it doesn't mean that you can't be mentally acute to what we're doing. Knowing that and understanding the strengths and weaknesses of each kid, I think we've done a pretty good job so far of keeping them abreast to what's going on. The new CBA, we've had far more meetings. So consequently, we were able to take it from ground zero all the way up in just hours and hours of studying and talk and putting them on the board. I think that has really helped us. The meeting time has helped so, consequently, I feel that they're further along."

Wide Receivers Coach David Culley

On the progression WR Riley Cooper has made during the offseason: "Well I think the one thing that hindered Riley last year was the lockout. There is usually a big jump from your first year to your second year in this league and it happens during the offseason. Riley did not have an offseason. This offseason I saw the things that I expected from Riley last offseason. I expect Riley to be right there. I expect Riley to be a big contributor to our team. Riley's got tremendous talent. He's got good size and good strength. He is a playmaker and has made some plays for us. Not as many plays as we would like but I look for him to be a quality player for us."

On the depth and talent level of the entire wide receiver group at training camp: "I think depth-wise it is (one of the most talented groups in years). I think from top to bottom, the bottom guys are a little more skilled than the guys we've had in the past. I think they have shown that throughout minicamp."

On whether the Eagles have the right type of receivers to thrive in the red zone: "Well I think the guys we've got are the right ones as long as we execute. I think the biggest problem we have had down there is that we have not executed and made plays when we had the chance to make plays. Last year, (WR Desean Jackson) had a couple times to make plays in the red zone and didn't make them. It wasn't because of his size; it was because we didn't make the play. Obviously having that size is a help but I think if we execute and do the things we are capable of doing, that won't be an issue."

Tight Ends Coach Tom Melvin

On what is expected of TE Brent Celek from a blocking standpoint this season with the offensive line set: "I think what you're seeing in terms of Brent is what you'll see from everybody. He's part of the offensive line when he's asked to be a blocker, and he's in that same realm. He had that same learning curve in how we were setting different. Our blocks were different, our calls were different, and our techniques were different in both run and pass. Now, for him, it's the same with him as it is the offensive line in that we'll be a step ahead of where we were a year ago. We had a great offseason, and I think we're in a pretty good spot where we're at right now."

On Celek and QB Michael Vick's chemistry throughout the season and how it seemed to improve as the season went along: "I think it just had to do with the fact that we didn't have an offseason and everyone was really just working their way in. Mike was becoming the guy at that point and had his first training camp as a starter. It takes a little bit of time for all of that to click. It also had more to do with our game planning as opposed to all of the sudden, the two of them getting on the same page."

On whether he expects TE Brett Brackett to challenge TE Clay Harbor for the backup position: "I think for all of them, they just have to get better with what they do. He's not competing against Clay Harbor, but he is competing against (himself) to get better. Where they end up on the depth chart is going to depend on where the wideouts are and where the running backs are. It's really going to be a depth issue in terms of where he works into the 53-man roster. He can't look at Clay Harbor and just say he needs to beat him. He needs to be a better Brett Brackett than he was last year."

On whether this is the best group of tight ends that he has had in a while going into training camp: "I'm pretty excited with that. Obviously Brett wasn't here all year last year, but he's not really as much of a rookie as the new guys coming in. Chase Ford is a very bright and instinctive player, and he's a lot further along than many rookies have been in the last couple of years."

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