Thirteen things to know from this week's NFC OTAs

Organized team activities season is a dangerous time for hot takery. There isn't much predictive value in watching who succeeds in non-padded practices, and folks watching the same practices can draw different conclusions.

In Philadelphia, one columnist this week called Sam Bradford the best player on the team in OTAs. Another columnist said there wasn't much difference between Bradford, Chase Daniel and No. 2 overall pick Carson Wentz. A third said Wentz "seems to be ahead" of Bradford in learning the Eagles' offense.

Meanwhile, the team's quarterbacks coach said he has been "pleasantly surprised" with Wentz's NFL readiness and that Bradford is as "naturally gifted" a passer as he's ever seen. Add it all up and you end up back where you started: Wait until training camp.

This time of year is more about monitoring injuries, preparing for the season and getting early peeks at depth chart developments. So what nuggets mattered from Week 2 of full-fledged OTAs? Let's look at the NFC:

  1. DeSean Jackson passed on a $500,000 workout bonus to work out in California away from the Redskins. Jackson's absence normally would mean more snaps for first-round rookie Josh Doctson, but he hurt his foot Tuesday. It sounds as if Doctson will miss the rest of OTAs and possibly mandatory minicamp.
  1. The Giants' OTA on Wednesday included three rookies running with the first team: receiver Sterling Shepard, cornerback Eli Apple and safety Darian Thompson. With Victor Cruz out until training camp, Shepard will have a big role. Thompson is competing with Nat Berhe for a spot opposite Landon Collins. Apple has been working on the outside and in the slot, where he didn't play at Ohio State. As ESPN's Dan Graziano pointed out, the Giantscould have rookies or second-year players at six different starting jobs.
  1. Jimmy Kempski of the Philly Voice made a compelling case for why Leodis McKelvin is the favorite to start at cornerback over Nolan Carroll opposite Eric Rowe. I'm convinced.
  1. DeAngelo Hall looks to be locked into one starting job for the Redskins at safety. They have a lot of faith in a 32 year old who had injury issues last year. David Bruton has emerged as the favorite to start opposite Hall, with rookie Su'a Cravens taking snaps as a backup inside linebacker.
  1. Rookie defensive tackle Maliek Collins' recent surgery is another setback for a thin Cowboys defensive line. While the team is deeper at defensive tackle, they now have less flexibility to move Tyrone Crawford to defensive end. Rolando McClain, who is holding the middle linebacker seat warm in 2016 until Jaylon Smith is ready, has not been at practice. Sean Lee's recent knee surgery has also slipped under the radar. Lee was supposed to only miss two weeks, but it sounds like he won't be ready until training camp.
  1. While the 49erswait for Colin Kaepernick to return to the field, some of the early favorites for other starting jobs are starting to clear up. Tramaine Brock and former safety Jimmie Wardhave been lining up as the team's starting cornerbacks. The receiver rotation also has been static, with Quinton Patton and Bruce Ellington lining up as the No. 2 and No. 3 receivers behind Torrey Smith, according to the Sacramento Bee.
  1. Quick, name Russell Wilson's backup quarterback. If you said undrafted rookie Trevone Boykin, you are a bigger NFL fan than most (or you are a Seahawks fan). It remains quite possible the team still signs Tarvaris Jackson, but for now Boykin is playing ahead of Jake Heaps.
  1. Jeff Fisher's confirmed Nick Foleswill have no place on the Rams barring an injury to Jared Goff or Case Keenum in offseason practices. The Rams probably are hoping an injury on another team could inspire another squad to inquire about Foles, who is due only $1.75 million in base salary. General manager Les Snead has already spent $6 million on a roster bonus for Foles, which essentially is money flushed down the toilet.
  1. We aren't going to get too carried away with Jordy Nelson saying that he could "play a game" if needed. He's not going to participate in all drills until training camp for the Packers. But it's a good sign that Nelson and Ty Montgomery are both on the field without incident as the team's receiver crew tries to get healthier.
  1. Unlike Nelson, Bears receiver Kevin White has been practicing full tilt following his shin injury last year. Considering White's lost rookie year started with a lost offseason, this is a positive step.
  1. Lions first-round pick Taylor Deckercontinues to line up at left tackle. It sure looks like he will play the blind side with Riley Reiff moving to the right.
  1. The Falcons have a lot of linebackers. Three of them are young players: second-year pro Vic Beasley, rookie second-round pick Deion Jones and rookie fourth-rounder De'Vondre Campbell. It's interesting to note that Campbell, who has the worst pedigree of the group, was the one lining up with the starters in the team's base defense on the weak side. Coach Dan Quinn is going to mix and match through training camp, but Campbell is a player to watch.
  1. After two weeks, Saints rookie receiver Michael Thomas has probably helped his fantasy draft stock more than anyone with positive news about his role. Then again, I started this article by saying you should ignore the noise until the pads come on. Thomas might very well take over some of Marques Colston's role on the offense but those are enormous shoes to fill.
This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.

Related Content