It started with men descending into the Linc on parachutes, then ended with a laser light show. All in all, just another typical Eagles practice.
The second Eagles Flight Night took place last night in front of a 26,200 fans. The open practice was more for show than anything else. Players worked on red-zone drills, special teams coverages and threw in a few gadget plays — DeSean Jackson took an end-around to the house, Jeremy Maclin worked on a wide receiver option, Mike Vick rehearsed a few flea flickers.
The fans ate every minute up.
There was no Flight Night last year due to the NFL lockout. Two years ago, in its debut, then-linebacker Stewart Bradley tore an ACL. There was one casualty yesterday, when Nate Allen tweaked a hamstring. Other than that, it was mostly uneventful.
Akeem Jordan saw his first action with the first-team defense, after he beat out Brian Rolle for the starting spot at weakside linebacker.
“I’m like a hungry dog, man,” Rolle said, promising to regain the starting spot buy Sept. 9. “It is what it is, I'm going to keep working hard.”
Vick also assured everyone that he’d be ready for the season opener in Cleveland.
Earlier in the day, coach Andy Reid announced that King Dunlap would be his starter at left tackle. Dunlap was promoted two weeks ago, stealing the spot from high-priced free agent Demetress Bell.
“King right now is the starting left tackle,” Reid said.
Among the highlights …
» Chad Hall and DeSean Jackson shared the crown for best end-zone celebration. After practice ended, selected team members put on a dance competition, running into the end zone and combining music and dance moves.
» The Eagles defensive backs, led by Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and Nnamdi Asomugha, participated in an impromptu “Dougie” session on the sideline during practice.
» During player introductions, the Eagles offensive line put on a skit. Evan Mathis casually walked out, then Jason Kelce came running out of the tunnel (with Davy Crockett cap on) and jumped on his back. Mathis acted like he was dead as Danny Watkins (with firefighter's hat on) tried to revive him. By the time Todd Herremans arrived on the scene, Mathis was back up.
» Center/guard Julian Vandervelde sang the national anthem. He used all of his wind pipes, in a deep soprano style. It was very good.
» The event opened with a Brian Dawkins’ tribute video. Right after, two tickets to the Sept. 30 Giants game, where they will officially retire Dawkins’ No. 20 jersey, were given out to two lucky fans.
» Eagles owners Jeffrey and Christina Lurie were both in attendance, watching the action from the sideline. They spent a few moments standing side-by-side, showing no outward sign of any bad blood.