Eagles Notes: McBriar may have a leg up as punter

Mat McBriar at work in camp. He's battling with Chas Henry to become the Eagles' punter.
Mat McBriar at work in camp. He's battling with Chas Henry to become the Eagles' punter. (YONG KIM / Staff)
Posted: August 08, 2012

BETHLEHEM, Pa. - Mat McBriar was listed as the No. 1 punter on the Eagles' depth chart, indicating that the two-time Pro Bowler is the leader in the punter competition entering Thursday's preseason opener against the Pittsburgh Steelers.

McBriar was signed before the veterans arrived at training camp to compete with Chas Henry, who is entering his second season.

"I don't know if it's totally official," the former Dallas Cowboy said. "Maybe they know a little bit more about Chas and just want to see where I'm at, and maybe I'll get some more opportunity. I don't know. It's really nothing to me. Doesn't matter to me."

McBriar said he did not think the job was his to lose entering the preseason. He declared it an "open competition" and complimented Henry.

"From a competitive standpoint, he's certainly making me better and I'm hopefully making him better as well," McBriar said.

The Eagles need to see that McBriar can recover from a nerve condition called drop foot that hindered him last season in Dallas. McBriar is still not at his best, which is why the preseason will be a valuable indicator.

"I'm trying to get back to it, and I don't know if I'm back there yet," McBriar said. "I've had a bit of a layoff. . . . It's coming. And we're working on it every day."

There were no surprises on the depth chart. Derek Landri is listed as a first-team defensive tackle and Mychal Kendricks as the starting strong-side linebacker, and Stanley Havili is atop the fullbacks.

Cramps for Maclin

Wide receiver Jeremy Maclin left practice early because of cramps. Fellow wide receiver Jamel Hamler also left early because of a hamstring injury.

Defensive end Trent Cole (shoulder), tight end Brent Celek (knee), and safety Nate Allen (hamstring) all were scheduled to have limited participation while recovering from injuries. Linebacker Jamar Chaney (hamstring) worked with the strength and conditioning staff, while Cliff Harris (ankle), Brandon Washington (concussion), and Jason Babin (calf) were not present.

Fletcher Cox returned to practice after missing time to attend his cousin's funeral.

Impressive blocker

Rookies Bryce Brown and Chris Polk are competing for the No. 3 running back spot, and though Brown is praised for his rushing ability, Polk continues to impress with his blocking.

On Monday he decked cornerback Brandon Hughes with a block. It is that part of his game that could help Polk make the roster, because the Eagles will factor in blocking and receiving skills in addition to rushing skills.

"I actually messed up on that play because I went the wrong side, but I knew he was coming, so I had to get back there quick," Polk said. "I don't want the quarterback to get hit on my behalf."

Linebacker added

The Eagles signed linebacker Adrian Moten and released wide receiver Andrew Brewer, who joined the team last week. Moten is 6-foot-2 and 230 pounds and worked out for the Eagles on Friday. The Maryland product played with the Seattle Seahawks and Indianapolis Colts last season.

Contact Zach Berman at zberman@phillynews.com or follow on Twitter @ZBerm.


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