Eagles Training Camp Day 17 Observations: Ronald Darby Vs. Alshon Jeffery

Monday was the last real day of training camp.

Tuesday's practice will be a light 10/10/10 and training camp is technically over after the second preseason game. So this is the last training camp observations of the summer. Try not to shed a tear.

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Let's get into it:

1. *Clears throat* injuries: Brandon Brooks (ankle strain), Wendell Smallwood (hamstring) and Nick Foles (elbow) all returned to practice on Monday, although all three were limited and didn't participate in full-team 11-on-11 drills.

Fletcher Cox (back spams) missed practice for the second straight day.

Paul Turner (shoulder), Ron Brooks (hamstring), Josh Andrews (hand), Halapoulivaati Vaitai (knee) and Anthony Denham (calf) also missed practice again.

2. It's just two days in, but it's already pretty clear that Ronald Darby is the Eagles' best cornerback. Yeah, that didn't take long.

Darby has offered really solid coverage during his two days at practice. On Monday, he played Mack Hollins perfectly during 1-on-1 drills and picked off Carson Wentz's pass. There aren't many interceptions during that drill because it's really hard on DBs, but Darby played it perfectly. Later on, he knocked down a pass intended for Torrey Smith.

And it's been really fun to watch him go against Alshon Jeffery. When those two are matched up, all eyes are on them.

"It's great to have competition," Jeffery said. "He's got great closing speed, breaks on the ball, he's a great player."

3. Speaking of Jeffery, he participated in 11-on-11 drills for the first time in a while on Monday. After his shoulder injury, head coach Doug Pederson has been holding him out at his own discretion even though Jeffery has been healthy. But Jeffery's practicing nearly in full on Monday might be a sign that he'll play in the game on Thursday night.

After practice, Jeffery said he didn't know if he'll play. But he wants to.

"I would like to," he said. "But at the same time, we'll see."

4. Jeffery did make one great catch on Monday. He rose over Rasul Douglas and was able to get his feet down in the end zone for a touchdown.

5. The offense wasn't sharp again on Monday. Wentz had a shaky showing for the third consecutive day. Sometimes that happens; he just needs to snap out of his funk. The offensive line had a few false starts, which led to the entire unit running sprints after practice. Offensive coordinator Frank Reich tried to claim the running was about team-building.

6. The most fun part of practice on Monday was the battle between Nelson Agholor and Malcolm Jenkins. After Agholor beat Jenkins in a 1-on-1 drills the second time, Jenkins gave him a little shot and Agholor didn't seem to like it. The two jawed a little bit as Agholor ran back to the offensive side of the field. The next time the two were lined up against each other, Jenkins popped him at the line of scrimmage and then knocked the ball away from him when it came. The two exchanged a few more words after that play. It was a little heated.

7. After a day of trying different combinations at slot corner, Patrick Robinson spent his day in that role on Monday. Darby took most of the first-team reps at left corner and Jalen Mills took the field at right corner. Even when Rasul Douglas came in to replace Darby at one point, Robinson stayed in the slot. That's interesting. Ron Brooks is out right now with an injury but perhaps Robinson could find a role as a slot corner with the Eagles. Earlier in his career, he had success there.

8. Every time Donnel Pumphrey gets hit during practice, it normally draws gasps from the crowd just because at 176 pounds, he normally goes flying. Sometimes it's actually difficult to tell what hits are actually hard. But give Pumphrey credit, every time he gets hit, he pops right back up.

9. Glassboro's Corey Clement has looked good over the last couple weeks. He's still a work in progress as a pass-catcher, but the big running back just seems to hit holes hard. He might not have a great shot at making the team, but he's been impressive.

10. Give credit to Mychal Kendricks. He's not happy with his role on the team and he hasn't been shy about that. But he has had a good attitude throughout training camp and has played pretty well when he's been on the field. On Monday, he blew up a screen pass for Darren Sproles in the red zone.

Stupid Observation of the Day: Ron Brooks was standing on the sideline, punting a football up to himself and making it flip end over end a few times before he caught it. He made it look much easier than it probably was.

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