What a difference a year makes.
At this time last year, wide receiver Shelton Gibson was a struggling rookie and appeared to be lost trying to make the transition from the college ranks to the pros. During 2017, he could barely get on the field, suiting up for only five regular-season games and playing a grand total of 17 offensive snaps. He found his niche at gunner on the punt team, playing 44 snaps on that unit, while his only two catches of the year came in the regular-season finale against Dallas.
Fast-forward to now and you see a much more confident, aware and sure-handed second-year pro.
"I'm just competing at a better level and that's the thing Coach (Doug) Pederson always says - just compete," Gibson said this week. "That's one of the things I do best is compete. I'm trying to do everything I can to just help this team win another championship."
There are times when we all need a little motivation, a voice of reason to push us to another level. For Gibson, that extra push comes on a daily basis from fellow wide receiver Nelson Agholor, who has firsthand experience at overcoming obstacles on the field.
"I definitely lean on Nellie," Gibson said. "Just seeing what he's done in the offseason, the way that he prepares every single day, the way he takes everything so seriously. I'm probably not doing everything that Nellie is doing right now, but i'm gradually getting into it just asking him questions every day."
Agholor added, "He's in here every morning. He's become an early bird, and I'm proud of him. Now its about consistency because that's whats going to define him."
Complete coverage of the Philadelphia Eagles and their NFL rivals from NBC Sports Philadelphia.
The Eagles now go their separate ways for more than five weeks until training camp. While many talk about spending quality family time and vacations, there is no downtime for Gibson.
"I won't shut down at all. No vacations," he said. "Somebody just asked me that the other day - ‘Where are you vacationing?' I said I can't do it."