July 29, 2021   5 MIN READ

Inside The Birds: Storylines Aplenty As Training Camp Opens


Eagles football is officially back, and there were plenty of items to unpack from Wednesday’s Day 1 of training camp.

On the latest Inside The Birds, Geoff Mosher and Adam Caplan give their takeaways from camp’s debut and dish the latest on the Deshaun Watson chatter.

ITB photo: Eagles training camp opened Wednesday at the NovaCare Complex.

Injuries, already

Geoff Mosher: “So there’s also a couple of players that were hurt. It’s hard to figure out how guys got hurt before the first training camp practice and they don’t tell you. It’s not like the Eagles tell you. Isaac Seumalo is week to week already with a hamstring – [and] by the way that gave Nate Herbig a chance to start. You draft Landon Dickerson, you beef up your offensive line. You hope that you get everybody back healthy and Day 1 you’ve already got Nate Herbig back in the starting lineup.”

“Jalen Reagor threw everyone into a tizzy because he wasn’t out there at the start of practice. Then all of a sudden, he was out there doing warm ups, but then he didn’t have a helmet on and I think he was wearing different sneakers and everything. Then right before the start of practice, he was off the field again. So the team basically called it a lower leg injury and I think they labeled it as day to day. It’s my understanding he’s fine, and that it’s precautionary that they pull him out. Something came up and they just didn’t want to stress it on the first day.”


Mosher: “[JJ Arcega-Whiteside] took advantage of Greg Ward not being there, and saw a lot of time in the slot. He was in the slot with the DeVonta Smith on the outside, and Travis Fulgham on the outside.

Zach Ertz

Mosher: ‘I will say this because I looked for this intentionally, and this is just Day 1 I’ll keep repeating that. There were no times that I saw Zach Ertz and Dallas Goedert on the field in the same formation in a 12-personnel look. So when you’re the Eagles and you’re trying to sit there and put on a spin here and say, ‘Zach Ertz is gonna be back and we’re gonna have all these looks,’ well if Zach Ertz is going to play this year, you’re gonna have to use him, right? We talked about this, you’re not just gonna have him collect dust on the bench, you’re gonna want to be in some 12-personnel there exploiting him and Dallas Goedert, but that was not the case on Day 1. I did not see any of that.”

Devonta Smith

Mosher: “Devonta Smith did not put on the best showcase of himself on Day 1. He dropped a few balls, which is something he never did at Alabama, and he just did not look like a really clean, crisp, precise route-runner. Again, I think when you’re a first-round pick on the first day there’s a lot going on in your head, you tend to play slowly when you’ve got a lot going on up there. You can criticize me for saying that, and say I’m being harsh, but the guy sat at the podium was asked how he did and he said, ‘This was not my best day, there’s a lot I can work on.’ He knows this was not his best day.”

Adam Caplan: “Accountability is huge and I love that about him and Smith is just an absolute stud as a kid … If he’s doing this for two weeks we’re gonna start saying he needs to get going here.”

Josh Sweat

Mosher: “Josh Sweat and Derek Barnett rotated on a lot of first-team reps, and Brandon Graham said ‘Sweaty is coming’. That’s an exact quote, so he thinks Sweat is gonna have a nice impact this year.”

Caplan: “I’ll tell you what, I would have to go to the 31 other teams but I don’t know if there’s a better third end in the NFL. He’s so good. Long, and you can move him inside. Look, he’s in the final year of his deal, if he gets an extension I’m very curious to what that thing’s going to look like. I know he’s good now physically but whether he’ll ever be a 50 play a game guy, remains to be seen, where they could be for the long term, but in his role he’s been fantastic. I gotta give Eagles credit for that.”

Deshaun Watson

Caplan: “There’s some revised and new information, but just to sum the situation up, there are significant legal issues that won’t be adjudicated at the earliest until February of next year. Look, there’s a very good chance – I’m not saying I know, nobody knows, he’s on the active roster with the Texans – whether he’s an Eagle or a Texan or a Dolphin, he might be eligible this year, maybe suspend him next year, who knows? Look, you and I have known, and we’ve talked about this since March, we’ve know for a fact the Eagles have been on this guy before the allegations. After they came out they haven’t stopped looking into it, monitoring it. They know how talented is, he was incredible last year, Don’t let the record fool you, their defense was non-competitive for most of the season for the Texans. He was incredible. He played great football. I just find it hard to believe they would trade for a guy like this, but based on our sourcing on this thing, they’re still in on it.”

– Justin Morganstein (@jmotweets_) is a staff contributor to InsideTheBirds.com.

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