Jordan Davis hates viral video of him bulldozing Eagles teammateAugust 11, 2022
PHILADELPHIA − The video of Philadelphia Eagles defensive tackle Jordan Davis basically treating center Cam Jurgens like a blocking sled has nearly 5 million views as of Thursday.
That might seem like a source of pride for a first-round rookie like Davis, showing the full force of his 6-foot-6, 336-pound frame.
After all, Jurgens is no slouch. He was the Eagles’ second-round pick and is considered the heir apparent to longtime center Jason Kelce.
But Davis sees it differently.
“I hate it, honestly,” Davis said. “I just feel like it’s very one-sided. You see one rep, but you don’t see Cam blocking me and getting me at practice and getting me at the other reps. So I always say looks can be deceiving.
“One rep and it goes viral, whatever, but Cam is holding his own. He’s a very good player. It’s just been a competition.”
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The Eagles need Jurgens because Kelce is expected to miss the next three to four weeks after having elbow surgery, leaving Jurgens as the first-team center. Jurgens has certainly had his moments. There have been one-on-one drills at the Eagles’ practice facility where Jurgens has kept Davis from getting to the phantom quarterback.
“Kelce’s down right now, so I just have to do my best to fill in there,” Jurgens said. “It’s good for me because I get those extra opportunities, those extra reps.”
Jurgens said it’s also good that Kelce is constantly talking to him, serving as a mentor.
“I can ask him about the playbook, what we’re doing on the field in individual techniques, then stuff off the field, like what does he do to recover,” Jurgens said. “Pretty much I like to just pick his brain.”
Jurgens said he doesn’t expect that to change now that Kelce is out for the foreseeable future.
“He’ll be in my ear. He’ll be in everybody’s ear,” Jurgens said.
In a sense, so will Davis. That’s what makes them two of 12 players to watch Friday night when the Eagles play their preseason opener against the Jets.
Here are the others:
A.J. Brown, wide receiver
Through two weeks of training camp, Brown has been far and away the Eagles’ best wide receiver. Jalen Hurts is comfortable throwing deep to Brown. But more importantly, Hurts is comfortable throwing over the middle to Brown. Hurts did not throw over the middle often last season, which was an area of concern for the Eagles.
Jalen Reagor, wide receiver
Everything is different for Reagor in this camp, starting with his status on the team. Reagor was the Eagles’ first-round pick in 2020, but after two disappointing seasons, he’s running with the second team. That means that he’ll see a lot of action in the preseason game, while the starters will get a series or two before coming out. How Reagor handles his diminished role could go a long way toward determining his future in Philadelphia.
Isaac Seumalo, right guard
Seumalo is playing in his first game since last Sept. 26, when he suffered a Lisfranc fracture that led to two surgeries. Since then, Seumalo had to change positions, moving from left guard to right guard, and he was told he’d have to compete for the starting job. Seumalo has pretty much ended that with his strong play. Even though it’s the first preseason game, this will mean something to Seumalo.
“I remember the first day we had pads on, I took a minute,” Seumalo said. “It had been 9-10 months since I put on cleats and pads and stuff. I’m really enjoying the moment.”
Nakobe Dean, linebacker
Like most rookies, Dean is learning on the fly, so the Eagles’ third-round pick hasn’t been getting many chances with the first team in practice as he’s behind Kyzir White and T.J. Edwards. That’s what makes the preseason games so important for young players like him.
Marcus Epps, safety
Over the past three seasons, the Eagles have released veteran safeties Malcolm Jenkins and Rodney McLeod without having an early-round draft pick or a premier free agent ready to take over. Epps, in fact, was the Vikings’ sixth-round pick in 2019. Epps has worked his way up the depth chart and has had a strong training camp. Now he’ll have to prove that he can do it when it counts.
Brandon Graham, defensive end
Graham is much like Seumalo, returning after missing all but the first two games last season after tearing his Achilles. Graham is 34 years old, however, and while he has looked good in practice, it’s different in the game. Still, Graham is a leader and someone the Eagles need to play well.
Britain Covey, wide receiver
The 5-foot-8, 173-pounder has been the star among the undrafted free agents, both with his speed and shiftiness. But Covey has long odds as there are about six players competing for that last wide receiver spot. As Eagles coach Nick Sirianni put it from his experiences with other teams: “We’ve had guys make the team because of what they’ve done in the preseason (games).” In other words, this is where players like Covey have to make their mark.
Carson Strong, quarterback
It has not been a good training camp for Strong. He’s clearly behind Reid Sinnett for the third quarterback spot − if the Eagles decide to keep that many. Strong doesn’t get more than a few reps in practice, so whenever he gets into a game, he has to make the most of his opportunities. That begins Friday, but probably not until the fourth quarter.
Haason Reddick, pass rusher
Reddick, who grew up in South Jersey, signed a three-year deal worth $45 million to play close to home. Reddick has had 23½ sacks in the past two seasons, and the Eagles desperately need that kind of production. He’s also the linchpin in defensive coordinator Jonathan Gannon’s strategy to go with an odd-man front.
J.J. Arcega-Whiteside, tight end
Arcega-Whiteside, the Eagles’ second-round pick in 2019, is getting one more chance after changing positions from wide receiver to tight end. But really, it’s a longshot for Arceag-Whiteside. Still, he’ll get some chances with rookie Grant Calcaterra out and Tyree Jackson still working his way back from the PUP list. With Dallas Goedert not expected to play much, it’ll pretty much be Jack Stoll, Richard Rodgers and Arcega-Whiteside against the Jets.