Eagles Training Camp Day 8 Observations: Smallwood, Jernigan Shine in Live Tackling

After a day off on Monday, the Eagles were back at it Tuesday morning, for the hottest and toughest practice of camp thus far. 

The Eagles not only wore pads but had several live periods (tackle to the ground). So it actually looked like football out there. 

The team will practice all week before getting another day off on Saturday. 

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Let's get into today's observations: 

1. As always, *clears throat* injuries first. The Eagles' top two receivers - Alshon Jeffery (shoulder) and Torrey Smith (back spasms) - were out. Doug Pederson said the injuries weren't serious and made it seem like they were rest days. 

Also missing was LeGarrette Blount, who was excused for an undisclosed personal reason. 

Elijah Qualls (groin), Donnel Pumphrey (hamstring), Alex McCalister and Josh Andrews (hand) also didn't practice. 

New cornerback Tay Glover-White, who signed Monday, was on the field for his first practice. He wore No. 36, which had been worn by undrafted free agent Randall Goforth before his ACL injury. 

2. The live periods on Tuesday brought a little juice to training camp. The standout on offense was second-year running back Wendell Smallwood, who was seemingly looking for contact early in the live periods. He made the most of his first-team reps while Blount was out. 

Smallwood had a few big plays, but the most impressive thing was his competitiveness. During 9-on-7s, he didn't try to run around Jaylen Watkins; he tried to run through him. 

3. On defense, the standout was free agent pickup Tim Jernigan. He turned it up another level on Tuesday, making several big tackles in the run game. He's known as a better pass-rusher than the guy who he replaced (Bennie Logan), but Jernigan isn't bad against the run either. 

His new teammates have been impressed. 

"I think he's just a bulldog," Brandon Graham said of Jernigan. "That boy's out there, he's just coming. He's somebody who's an effort guy just like me. He has fun getting to the ball and he's brought a lot of energy. And that's what we need, especially playing up front. We need as much energy as we can."  

4. Carson Wentz, after two spectacular days, came back down to earth a little bit on Tuesday. He wasn't bad, just inconsistent. He threw an interception to Watkins during the first 11-on-11 session and then in a situational 11-on-11 period, he threw a terrible pass into double coverage that was picked off by Rasul Douglas. 

But Wentz also had some great throws too. He's really been hitting deep touch passes during this training camp and Tuesday was no exception. He hit Marcus Johnson perfectly in stride with Patrick Robinson trailing in coverage. And he should have connected with Jordan Matthews on a deep ball, but Matthews dropped it. 

5. Johnson and Bryce Treggs (remember him?) both had very good days. They made the most of their extra reps with Jeffery and Smith out on Tuesday. This is nothing new for Johnson. He's looked good all camp and is seriously pushing for a roster spot. At this point, he's miles ahead of draft pick Shelton Gibson, who continues to drop passes each day. 

And Treggs has looked pretty good as well. If nothing else, he still has that speed that attracted the Eagles to him last year after he was cut by the Niners. 

6. During cornerback vs. wideout 1-on-1s, Nelson Agholor made a really tough catch against Jalen Mills, who was all over him. 

Last year's training camp darling Paul Turner made a nice move around Rodney McLeod. 

And Gibson actually made a nice play too, burning Robinson on a deep ball. 

7. In the offensive linemen vs. defensive linemen drills, Derek Barnett didn't look great. He went up against Dillon Gordon a few times and Gordon got the best of him. 

The most impressive battle from the 1-on-1s was Jernigan vs. Chance Warmack. I'm still not sure if Warmack even got a hand on Jernigan as he pulled off an impressive inside move that would have been an easy sack. 

Halapoulivaati Vaitai did a nice job against Chris Long in the 1-on-1s. Vaitai has been getting a bunch of first-team reps at left tackle after Jason Peters comes out (rest). 

8. On Tuesday, the first-team offense went against the second-team defense, the second-team offense went against the first-team defense and both third teams faced off. 

The second-team offensive tackles - Dillon Gordon and Halapoulivaati Vaitai - were absolutely no match for Brandon Graham. The veteran defensive end went through each of them on consecutive plays. 

9. It's time for the daily Terrence Brooks observation. He was everywhere again on Tuesday. First, he was a wrecking ball to take out Wendell Smallwood on a run to the right in 11-on-11s and then he had a great pass breakup on Zach Ertz on the next play. 

10. After an up-and-down day, Wentz ended practice on a good note, hitting Ertz in the corner of the end zone for a touchdown. Ertz did a nice job of dragging his feet. 

Stupid observation of the day: It was hot enough for several Eagles to grab some Rita's water ice after practice. When they go for the water ice, you know it was a hot day. Rodney McLeod went with half Swedish fish, half mango. Bold. 

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