AFTERNOON SPECIAL TEAMS SESSION
3:00 PM - Special Teams practice comes to a close. We'll be back tomorrow with the exception of a water main break, rainy weather or a blogger sleeping through his alarm clock.
2:40 PM -Over 200 yards away from where I (Chris) stand, a group of Eagles who are not taking part in the special teams practice are grunting. Loudly. Upon further inspection they are seen doing what else, but P90X. The latest craze in personal fitness has taken overly Bethlehem.
2:36 PM -Sav Rocca booms away ball after ball. Each punt is just as impressive, if not more so, than the previous one.
2:23 PM - Special teams coordinator Rory Segrest is a southern gentleman, but if one of his guys does not give the effort that he requires he makes them do it again - much to the players' disappointment.
2:10 PM - Offensive line coach* *Juan Castillo utilizes the breezy weather to work with his young offensive linemen who are less than a week away from facing tough preseason competition.
2:06 PM -Most of the veterans are enjoying a break from practice, but starters like Omar Gaither, Stewart Bradley, Chris Gocong, Mike Patterson, Brodrick Bunkley, Juqua Parker and Quintin Mikell are pulling double duty this fine Sunday afternoon.
10:10 AM -While DeSean Jackson runs back a punt Juqua Parker grabs him and screams, "Let's go peanut." Catchy nickname JP.
10:03 AM - Jason Avant digs a ball out of the ground while falling to his knees in the end zone. Touchdown #81.
10:02 AM -Lorenzo Booker is something else, like he has a right joystick attached to his body. Could "The Scissors" be an accurate nickname for him (or is it just awful)? He makes a good four sharp cuts en route to a 23-yard gain before being brought down. You never want to overhype a guy in training camp, but he looks like the real deal. Can't wait to see him in Pittsburgh on Friday.
10:00 AM -This is one of those plays where both the offense and defense does something you like to see. One, DeSean Jackson manages to beat both Sheldon Brown and Brian Dawkins for a sure touchdown. But Brown recovers and makes a fantastic diving swat at the pass, which is incomplete.
9:55 AM -Darren Howard seems to have two extra steps this camp. Check out some of the highlights we'll be sure to have on Training Camp Live.
9:45 AM -I really like watching Therrian Fontenot play. The guy has a chip on his shoulder. On the first play of live drills, he breaks up a bomb intended for Hank Baskett, and calls for some love from the crowd, which he receives.
9:39 AM -Donovan McNabb forces a pass to Hank Baskett in about quintuple coverage, and Baskett gets sandwiched by the defense. "How do you expect me to get that?" Baskett yells. McNabb is cracking up on the sidelines. It was obviously his plan to make the impossible throw.
9:23 AM -On another short yardage situation Lorenzo Booker is brought down quickly by Stewart Bradley. The "ref" says it's a first down but you can tell that Bradley disagrees, shaking his head in disbelief.
9:20 AM -Kevin Kolb to DeSean Jackson. Learn it and memorize it because you will hear it all through the preseason.
9:17 AM -Top play candidate: Kevin Curtis reenacts the scene from Jerry Maguire where Cuba Gooding Jr. catches a ball in the end zone and takes a big hit. Minus the drama and the break dancing. The fans all start the E-A-G-L-E-S chant in unison.
9:14 AM -Third-and-two again and Jason Davis pushes the pile for three yards.
9:12 AM -Third-and-two is the situation. Donovan McNabb goes with the play action and completes a 10 yard pass to L.J. Smith for the first down.
9:10 AM -Here's a fan observation I've made: I've seen at least one #91 Andy Harmon jersey every single day. Now there's a blast from the past.
9:07 AM -One of the things I (Joe) have been really intrigued by has been the battle for the fifth cornerback spot. Who will it be? Will the Eagles even keep five corners? I tell you, it looks to be a pretty tough decision. Nick Graham, Therrian Fontenot and Kyle Arrington have each had their moments, and each have struggled at points, too. It changes practically every day. But today, they all have something in common. DeSean Jackson beat all of them in one-on-one drills.
9:02 AM -Offense is installing red zone packages. It starts on the 20, and moves up five yards every five plays. Lots of action for the tight ends here, which looks to be a pretty extensive part of the attack this season.
8:53 AM -Tony Hunt is getting more reps today with the second team. You get an idea that coaches are giving him his chance to stand out. He's been running screen routes, and he drops a ball on one of them.
8:51 AM -Nickel zero blitzes from the D. It's these third-and-long, all-or-nothing blitzes that defensive coordinator Jim Johnson is famous for.
8:48 AM -The defense is working in its nickel package, including four defensive ends on the line. They're generating as ton of pressure - Juqua Parker slams down a pass, and then Trent Cole goes absolutely unblocked en route to McNabb. Good thing he has a red jersey on.
8:40 AM -More work in the red zone. Tight ends seeing a lot of action, including L.J. Smith who came back Saturday afternoon (calf).
8:37 AM -Thank you to Tom Sredenschek from FOX 29, who points out a nice golf clap by the fans after Kevin Curtis catches a ball on a smooth 20 yard fade route. Producer's name = villain from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
8:30 AM -The offense goes through a new set of plays during group install. Kevin Curtis and Reggie Brown are out wide, Jason Avant is in the slot on the first play. The second formation is much more interesting. Both Brian Westbrook and Lorenzo Booker are set out wide on the same side with an empty backfield. Donovan McNabb likes the creativity of Marty Mornhinweg and Andy Reid saying, "Ohhh, that was nice."
8:20 AM -Even though training camp has been going on for two weeks, offensive line coach Juan Castillo has amazingly managed to not lose his voice. Everyone in Bethlehem could probably hear him yell, "Keep your shoulders back. Keep your head outside. Punch 'em baby. Who's up next? Let's go. Set, hut!" Music to any football fans ears at 8:20 in the morning.
8:15 AM -Practice is underway. The big news today: Brian Westbrook has conquered his illness and is back in action. Also, team chairman/CEO Jeffrey Lurie is in attendance and will be roaming the sidelines. Stay tuned for more from Lehigh.
7:15 AM - The Eagles are an hour from starting practice. It'll be interesting to see if the pads go back on after Saturday morning's practice was cancelled due to the water main break near the practice fields. Let us know who to keep an eye on if you can't be here.