Philadelphia Eagles

OTA Observations: Eagles kick into higher gear

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OTA Observations: Eagles kick into higher gear

Offensively, the Eagles were the NFL’s fastest team to snap the ball last year in Chip Kelly’s first season as head coach.

It appears that Kelly has a new race car to unveil for Year 2.

To the naked eye, Monday’s OTA seemed to run at its fastest pace of all the open practices, especially in 7-on-7s and 11-on-11s. From the first string down to the reserves, the Eagles moved at a pace well ahead of last year’s spring camps.

Kelly has said his offense could go faster this year. Nick Foles agreed.

“We always want to go faster,” he said. “We always want to be more efficient and and get plays going. Sometimes, situationally in a game you don’t want to do that. Sometimes there’s a different blitz look or thing we have to recognize … I think the big thing is not necessarily the speed, but we want to be efficient. The speed is part of it, but let’s be under control.”

Last year, Kelly had to tone down the pace of his practices when he realized that his roster, going through his system for the first year, needed some catch-up time. Rookies and veterans were in the same boat, learning a new playbook in the fly.

With so many starters returning from last year’s 10-win NFC East championship team, including the entire offensive line, the offense is much more familiar with Kelly’s system and more able to run the offense without interruption.

“I know we’re going fast right now because there was a lot more learning going on on the field (last year), whereas our offense right now we were able to carry on from last season,” Foles said. “We definitely installed a lot of new stuff, so there’s definitely a learning curve and we do have younger guys, but I feel like guys understood how we need to practice and just the culture change. The young guys are doing a really good job following the guys that are here, and the guys that were here last year are doing a really good job stepping it up.”

Other observations:

• Kelly is really making his rookies climb the ladder, as opposed to last year, when first-round pick Lane Johnson was promoted to first-team right tackle early in OTAs and when fifth-round safety Earl Wolff logged some first-defense reps in place of Nate Allen.

First-round outside linebacker Marcus Smith is still running with the third team, as is third-round wideout Josh Huff. Free-agent outside linebacker Bryan Braman is still running with the second team with Brandon Graham and veterans Brad Smith and Arrelious Benn are still higher on the totem pole right now than Huff.

• In the same vein, Kelly did a lot more personnel mix-ups last season as he opened competition at every spot. It wasn’t uncommon to see the first-team front seven come out with the third-team secondary. He’s still subbing here and there but there haven’t been any odd personnel packages or crazy tinkerings that really stand out when the teams come onto the field.

• The defensive line looks different depending on the playcall and package. Joe Kruger, a 2012 seventh-round pick who spent his first season on IR, is logging snaps all over the place, including some first-team reps at defensive end. Rookie fifth-round pick Taylor Hart and last year’s practice squadder, Brandon Bair, are also swapping in and out on the second team.

• Wide receiver Jeff Maehl practiced for the first time after missing the other open sessions with an undisclosed injury. He ran mainly on the second string. Dennis Kelly, who missed an OTA last week, also practiced.

• Mark Sanchez, who continues to be the second string quarterback, threw a bad pick in 11-on-11s. Nolan Carroll came up with the interception. ... The practice’s best pass came from fourth-string quarterback G.J. Kinne, who tossed a touchdown bomb to James Casey down the left sideline past linebacker Jake Knott. The pass hit Casey in stride to his outside shoulder. … Foles looked extremely sharp, although one of his red-zone passes was intercepted by DeMeco Ryans at the goal line. But Foles also threw red-zone TDs to Brent Celek and Damaris Johnson.

Eagles trade Matt Tobin to Seahawks

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Eagles trade Matt Tobin to Seahawks

The Eagles on Monday made a minor trade.

They acquired a 2018 fifth-round pick from the Seahawks in exchange for offensive lineman Matt Tobin and a 2018 seventh-round pick.

Tobin, 27, played 42 career games with the Eagles from 2013 to 2016. He made 21 starts, including 13 in 2015.

In 2017, he was slotted as a backup left tackle.

(More coming…)

Eagles WR Bryce Treggs fined $25K, says he'll start a GoFundMe to pay it

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Eagles WR Bryce Treggs fined $25K, says he'll start a GoFundMe to pay it

Eagles receiver Bryce Treggs is out $25,000.

The second-year player tweeted on Monday that the league fined him $25,000, presumably for his hard block on Packers corner Damarious Randall in the first quarter of the first preseason game on Aug. 10. 

The hit left Randall with a concussion. 

Treggs, who was claimed by the Eagles after final cuts a year ago, made $450,000 in 2016. This fine is about 5.5 percent of his salary from a year ago. 

Randall didn't take long to respond, via Twitter. 

Since the first preseason game, Treggs has missed practice with and the second preseason game with sore legs. He did have a fantastic preseason opener though, catching seven passes for 91 yards. 

While Treggs didn't seem happy about the fine, he expected it. Here's what he told Philly.com about it: 

“I tried to hit him in the shoulder, but I think the top of my helmet caught him in the chin, from the film that I watched," he said. "I just gotta be more precise with my target area, just a little bit lower, and I think I’ll be fine next time."