Camping out: Eagles key issues at Camp Kelly

Washington Redskins v Philadelphia Eagles
Will Nick Foles or Mike Vick be handing off to LeSean McCoy this season?

The first training camp under new coach Chip Kelly begins this week at the NovaCare Complex. Rookies report Monday, followed by veterans on Thursday. The first full-team practice open to the public is scheduled for Friday. Here are some things to keep an eye on:

Running the show » Mike Vick or Nick Foles? It’s the most asked question in Philadelphia since Pat’s or Geno’s? Hopefully, we’ll have an answer in the next few weeks. Foles appeared to have the edge in spring practices, getting a few more reps while receiving higher praise from the coaching staff. He’s more accurate. He gets the ball out quicker. However, Vick still has a certain wow factor attached to his 33-year-old legs. If Vick can improve his accuracy and stop throwing interceptions — two very big ifs — he’ll emerge as the starting quarterback.

Amazing new offense » Chip Kelly’s up-tempo, no-huddle offense has become the stuff of legends. Skill players, namely LeSean McCoy and DeSean Jackson, have to be salivating at the possibilities. McCoy was downright giddy when he was asked about in April, saying the offense “looks amazing.” Kelly has installed a new signaling system so coaches can get plays in faster — remember, his Oregon teams averaged 20.9 seconds per play. Look for tight ends running receiver routes, running backs catching bubble screens and quarterbacks picking up blockers. We know it worked in college, but can it work in the NFL?

Secondary concerns » Bradley Fletcher and Cary Williams are the favorites to win the starting cornerback slots after the Eagles lost last year’s starters in free agency. The safety position is where things get interesting. Incumbent starters Kurt Coleman and Nate Allen were drafted by Andy Reid, so they’ll have to fight for respect. It won’t be easy, either. Kelly brought in well-established veterans Kenny Phillips and Patrick Chung, then drafted rookie Earl Wolff. This should be the biggest battle outside of quarterback.

Flipping the switch » The defensive line is loaded with question marks. As the team transitions to a 3-4 defense — or at least some hybrid form of it — they’ll have to work with the chess pieces on the board. The Eagles’ defense is currently constructed as a 4-3, so to make this experiment work guys like Trent Cole and Brandon Graham will have to drop back in coverage, as outside linebackers. Can they do it? Jury is out. It will probably be harder for bigger bodies, like Antonio Dixon and Cedric Thornton, to make the final cuts.

Culture club » Chip Kelly isn’t just installing a brand new offense, he’s created a whole new culture. Players are required to get 10 hours of sleep each night — lights out at 11 p.m., although Kelly admits he’s not tucking anyone in — and feed their bodies the proper nutrients. (Kelly’s assistants provide personal smoothies for each player based on their varying needs). The coach even appointed a former Navy SEAL trainer as Sports Science Coordinator to help with strength and conditioning.

Welcome to the new nest » The city of Bethlehem might not like it, but Eagles fans have to love having the hometown team back in South Philly for training camp. Most practices remain open to fans, including five specialized sessions at Lincoln Financial Field. Kelly knows how important it is to connect with the fans. He’s also scheduled a joint practice with the New England Patriots, while choosing to start at 12:30 every day. If this heat wave keeps up, players might be searching for Andy Reid’s pickle juice jar.

 



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Brooklyn man charged in roommate's stabbing death

A Brooklyn man accused of violently stabbing his roommate to death on Monday is in police custody and faces murder charges.

International

Dinosaurs could have survived asteroid strike

It turns out there is a good and a bad time for the planet to be hit by a meteor, and dinosaurs were just unlucky.…

National

OkCupid admits to Facebook-style experimenting on customers

By Sarah McBrideSAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - OkCupid, a top U.S. matchmaking website, intentionally mismatched users to test its technology, the IAC/InterActive Corp service said on…

Local

MTA fares still increasing 4 percent in newly…

The agency said the 4 percent increases, previously announced in December, will remain steady even as the MTA deals with increasing labor costs.

Movies

Interview: Brendan Gleeson on the way 'Calvary' depicts…

Brendan Gleeson talks about how his new film "Calvary" began over drinks and how his character here is the opposite of the lead in "The Guard."

Movies

'Get on Up' producer Mick Jagger on the…

Mick Jagger, a producer on the James Brown biopic "Get on Up," talks about the time had to tell the singer some bad news and his favorite JB record.

Television

'Glee' star Lea Michele to appear on 'Sons…

"Glee" star Lea Michele has been confirmed as a guest star in the final season of "Sons of Anarchy."

Television

TV watch list, Monday, July 28: 'The Bachelorette'…

See Andi Dorfman make her big choice on tonight's 'Bachelorette' finale.

MLB

Angelo Cataldi: Ryan Howard deserves better from Phillies

Just last week, Ryan Howard endured the embarrassment of a benching that was inevitable, and yet still shocking.

NFL

Larry Donnell has inside track in Giants tight…

Little-known Larry Donnell of Grambling State currently has the inside track, as the second-year player has received the bulk of the first-team reps.

NFL

Computer to Jets: Start Michael Vick over Geno…

Jets general manager John Idzik says the choice of who starts between second-year quarterback Geno Smith and veteran Michael Vick will be a “Jets decision.”

MLB

Yankees looking to trade for Josh Willingham: Report

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Sunday the Yankees are interested in Twins outfielder Josh Willingham.

Travel

Glasgow: Hey, hey, the gangs aren't here

This European city has done a good job getting rid of its more violent residents and revitalizing with artists.

Education

Babson College tops list of best colleges for…

Money magazine has just released its inaugural list of "The Best Colleges for Your Money" -- and the answers have surprised many. Babson College, which…

Education

NYC teens learn how to develop apps during…

Through a program sponsored by CampInteractive, the high schoolers designed their own community-focused apps.

Tech

The Ministry of Silly Walks app is both…

Monty Python have dug into their back catalogue for cash-ins once more, but with the Ministry of Silly Walks app, they've made something that's fun too.