By Lindsay Jones, The Ringer
Pro Football Writers of America
TEMPE – The Philadelphia Eagles spent much of their nearly two-hour practice Thursday afternoon focused on their third-down packages in preparation for Sunday’s Super Bowl against the Kansas City Chiefs.
“That’s our big tempo practice right there,” head coach Nick Sirianni said. “Get in, work, let it be sharp and crisp on both sides of the ball.”
Sirianni said he was looking not just for strong execution of his team’s offensive and defensive game plans, but to see how focused his players were on the small details – and he came away from Thursday’s session encouraged by his team’s performance and demeanor.
“I really felt that way today, that the detail was spot on,” Sirianni said. “That’s how you know, on a Thursday, that’s how it’s supposed to look.”
The Eagles had their full roster of players available to practice for the second consecutive day, though several veteran players and others who are coming off injuries took a lighter load of snaps during team drills. The players listed as limited on the team’s injury report with a injury designation were CB Avonte Maddox (toe), G Landon Dickerson (elbow/rest), RT Lane Johnson (groin/rest), WR Britain Covey (hamstring); the following players took a limited load of snaps strictly to rest: CB James Bradberry, WR A.J. Brown, DT Fletcher Cox, DE Brandon Graham, C Jason Kelce, G Isaac Seumalo, CB Darius Slay and DE Josh Sweat. Defensive end Robert Quinn (foot) was a full participant in practice.
Punter Arryn Siposs practiced for the second consecutive day this week, though he remains on injured reserve.
Thursday’s third-down work was especially important for the Eagles’ starting defense as they prepare for Chiefs’ quarterback Patrick Mahomes, and Philadelphia’s backup quarterbacks Gardner Minshew and Ian Book did their best to mimic Mahomes, particularly in the Chiefs’ ability to extend third-down plays.
“You just try to simulate it as much as you can,” Sirianni said.
Thursday’s practice ended with what Sirianni calls a “good on good” period, with the starting defense lining up to practice a prescribed situation against Jalen Hurts and the offensive starters.
The Eagles will hold a final practice Friday, with a focus on red zone situations.
Following practice, WR DeVonta Smith came down with a migraine and was unavailable for the afternoon interview session.