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Things I Think I Know About The Eagles

The Eagles have explained their draft process, have weaved through the who's and why's and what's since the seven rounds ended on Saturday, and they now have the opportunity to look ahead to the weekend of football, to a time when the team convenes for the first time and some idea of a depth chart is assembled. Here are some thoughts about what is going on with this football team ...

  • Stewart Bradley will practice this weekend, barring any setbacks between now and Friday. He is likely to be monitored very closely to make sure his knee doesn't swell too much between practices, but just seeing Bradley on the field means something for the defense. He is the leader of this group and he has such a presence that everyone will be buoyed by his place on the field. There is no need to rush Bradley, and the Eagles won't. The goal is to have him as close to 100 percent as possible for the game against Green Bay.
  • Same deal with tight end Cornelius Ingram. Having him back is like adding another draft pick to the mix. Ingram is expected to practice as he makes his way back from an ACL injury and the Eagles will certainly welcome his return with open arms. The kid is a great prospect when he is healthy.
  • Kevin Kolb is the starter, Michael Vick is the backup and Mike Kafka is the third quarterback. But I have to say that I'm going to really study Joe Elliott in this post-draft camp. I don't know how many reps he will get, but Elliott is here to impress.
  • For the most part, the post-draft rookies and free agents team sign are considered long shots to make a roster. But guard Shawn Murphy is intriguing. He is a former fourth-round draft pick (Miami) who saw minimal action last year with the Bucs. Good size, a bit of NFL experience ... Murphy is going to add depth at least through the spring portion of things here.
  • Does Riley Cooper come in and win a job on the roster? Well, the Eagles are going to keep five receivers, if history proves a guide, and Cooper will be right in the mix. But the fourth and fifth receivers here have to excel on special teams, which means Hank Baskett has a huge advantage at this point in time. And Jordan Norwood and Dobson Collins have to show they, like Cooper, can make it on specials.
  • He says he hasn't gained much weight -- Jeremy Maclin weighs 200 pounds -- but Maclin's body is so much more sculpted and powerful having worked in Barry Rubin's off-season conditioning program. I really, truly have seen a difference in many players, who have taken to Rubin's program with great enthusiasm and participation.
  • Moise Fokou has to be the starter right now at SAM linebacker, and the Eagles are counting on him making great strides from his rookie season to year two. Fokou has range, good lateral quickness, can drop in coverage. Is he big enough to play over the tight end in the NFL? That is the question with Fokou.
  • What does the depth chart look like at defensive end? I think Juqua Parker is the starter at left end, but I don't know. Darryl Tapp is here to be a player and, of course, Brandon Graham is expected to make an immediate impact. Oh, the fun of the post-draft camp. Finally, finally, we get a chance to see a team come to life.
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