Chip Kelly Puts Fresh Spin On OTAs

Chip Kelly allowed the media into Monday’s practice for the first time in his tenure with the Eagles. By all accounts, it was as crazy as expected. Here’s what you need to know:

  • Kelly blared rap, techno, and rock and roll music through speakers for most of the practice. He did this at Oregon, too, in order to simulate crowd noise and force his players to stay mentally sharp.
  • Michael Vick is the first-team QB, and although Nick Foles got a few reps with the ones, Vick is handling the bulk of the snaps. Both Vick and Foles ran the read option.
  • DeSean Jackson was excited about practicing option routes, which were not a part of Andy Reid’s offense. He’s also working as a punt returner.
  • Along the offensive line, Danny Watkins started in place of the injured Evan Mathis, Dallas Reynolds got the nod at center (Jason Kelce is still not cleared for team drills), and Dennis Kelly is working with the first team at right tackle ahead of Lane Johnson. Todd Herremans is the starting right guard. Expect Johnson to ascend into the starting lineup in the next few weeks.
  • The starting defensive linemen are Fletcher Cox, Isaac Sopoaga, and Cedric Thornton. Sopoaga comes off the field in the nickel package in favor of Brandon Boykin.
  • Connor Barwin and Trent Cole are the starting outside linebackers. The positions seem to be relatively interchangeable as both players dropped into coverage at times. Barwin is working on the weak side with Cole on the strong side. This comes as a surprise, as Barwin is the more athletic and versatile of the two. Cole, who is the better pure pass rusher, is not playing his more natural position on the weak side.
  • CB Cary Williams did not practice as he just got married this weekend. He was replaced in the starting lineup by Curtis Marsh.
  • According to Jeff McLane, Donnie Jones had a better day punting the football than rookie free agent Brad Wing.
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