The Eagles added All-Pro punter early Wednesday morning to compete with incumbent second-year player Chas Henry for the team's punting job. According to head coach Andy Reid, McBriar was only available at this juncture of the season because he's coming off an injury from which he's only about "90 percent," recovered.
Reid expounded on McBriar's status following the final practice of the rookies and selected veterans portion of Training Camp.
"He had a cyst on a nerve, they removed the cyst, it created Drop Foot, nerve damage," said Reid. "So, it's coming back and we didn't work him out earlier because of that. This was a time that he felt comfortable doing it and the doctors felt comfortable doing it, so he wears a brace there.
"He's not totally healed, but he's close. About 90 percent you'd say."
In 2011, as a rookie, Henry averaged 42.9 yards per punt, 29th in the league among punters who played in at least eight games. On Tuesday, special teams coordinator Bobby April said "I think (Henry) needs" competition, and so McBriar is here to do just that.
"It should be great competition, that's what we're trying to do," Reid said. "I mentioned at all the positions we're really trying to create that. You're talking about a kid that is one of the best in the National Football League. He's coming off an injury, so we'll have to see how that all works out and he works through that, but he had a good workout, obviously he impressed us there. So I wouldn't expect Chas to bow down to him at all, he's going to come out here and compete and it should be a good battle."
Reid was also asked about tight end Visanthe Shiancoe signing with the New England Patriots after working out for the Eagles on Tuesday.
"We're keeping all our options open and it has nothing to do with Clay (Harbor) and (Brent) Celek coming off the injury," said Reid. "That's not what it is. There were a couple good tight ends out there that we liked and thought we'd look at, and that's really where that went."
Reid added that there are no plans to bring in or work out any more tight ends at the moment.
One of the rookies who has stood out through the first three days of practice is undrafted cornerback Cliff Harris, an extremely talented player with his fair share of baggage. Reid noted that, in addition to some highlight interceptions, Harris has impressed with his learning curve.
"He did some good things," Reid said of Harris. "Yesterday, he learned a couple lessons down in the red zone, but ... we ran the same route against him today and he broke it up, so that's a good sign that they can learn from their mistakes."
Finally, Reid indicated the Eagles will don the pads and "go live" for the first time on Saturday, a practice that begins at 2:45 PM. If you're unable to make it to Lehigh to attend the practice in person, we'll of course bring you live footage of all the action on Training Camp Live!
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