Philadelphia Eagles News

Pederson: Bradford Taking Charge At QB

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Prior to Friday's final Organized Team Activity session, head coach Doug Pederson met with the media to review what he's seen from the team to this point and what lies ahead for next week's mandatory mini-camp, which will serve as the final practices before the team reconvenes for Training Camp in late July.

Here are three key takeaways from the press conference.

1. Pederson Impressed With Sam Bradford's Performance

Once again, Pederson reiterated that Sam Bradford will be the Week 1 starter, barring injury, when the Eagles host the Cleveland Browns.

"I think he's really done a nice job and taken that next step to be the leader of this football team and be the starter, and he's done a good job there," Pederson said.

"I look at what Sam's done and he's taken this thing and run with it. It's unbelievable what he's done. I'm so excited about the direction he's going, and the stuff that he's doing on the field right now are the things that I expected and what I saw at the end of the season last year from Sam Bradford. And my message has always been, 'Don't look over your shoulder, look forward,' and that's what he's done. He's embraced it."

Pederson noted exactly how Bradford has stood out.

"One is leadership. The fact that he's embraced that huddle. It's his huddle. He steps in every day when we get ready to compete and he's aggressive with the guys in the huddle and that's great to see from your leader and from your quarterback," Pederson said. "The way he has anticipated throws, his accuracy on throws, how well he sees the field. He throws a nice ball, a nice, deep ball. Things like that have really made him the guy that I knew he was. Those are things that are exciting, finishing up our offseason and getting ready for camp."

2. Pederson Expects Cox, Sproles To Attend Mini-Camp

Defensive tackle Fletcher Cox and running back Darren Sproles elected to stay away from the voluntary portion of the offseason program. Pederson said he fully expects both players to be in Philadelphia on Monday when the Eagles have physicals ahead of the start of the mandatory three-day mini-camp.

"It's the only mandatory aspect of the entire offseason program, so I, as the head football coach, expect both of those guys to be back and be a part of their team and be back in the locker room," Pederson said. "I think it's important that they are both here."

Pederson said that Howie Roseman has been in constant communication with Cox's agent this offseason, while running backs coach Duce Staley keeps Sproles in the loop with what the team is doing on offense and special teams.

3. Cornerback Competition Will Heat Up

Pederson opened his press conference with an injury update. Cornerbacks JaCorey Shepherd (ACL) and Nolan Carroll (ankle) were cleared to take part in team drills next week. Shepherd was in the mix for the team's nickel position last season before suffering a torn ACL in Training Camp, while Carroll started the first 11 games of the season before fracturing his ankle.

Linebacker Jordan Hicks (quad spasm) and wide receiver Rueben Randle (gallbladder) will be on the field next week albeit in a limited capacity.

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