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NFC East Training Camp Roundup:July 27-Aug 2

Dan Ciarrocchi, Mike Harar and Sean Patterson take a look at what's been going on with the Redskins' NFC East rivals so far in training camp:

Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

New York Giants

  • The Giants finally got wide receiver Victor Cruz back onto the field, but getting his counterpart Hakeem Nicks back into full swing is proving to be difficult as well. Nicks is nursing an apparent groin injury and was limited in Monday's practice. This is in wake of a broken foot and a knee injury which hampered his production in 2012 and ultimately required surgery, so despite it being the early stages of camp, the Giants wouldn't be faulted for being concerned.

  • With Nicks struggling to see the field consistently, Rueben Randle has made the most of his extra opportunities. The second-year receiver has shined so far in camp according to Big Blue View's Ed Valentine, writing that he has been the most impressive player on offense so far during camp. With the exception of the 2012 season, Eli Manning has typically had a reliable trio of receivers to bolster his passing game, and it looks like Randle is a prime candidate to round-out his go-to receiving corps.
  • The Giants released a depth chart for the first time this offseason, and it came without many surprises. Most notably, however, is that with the offseason losses of linebackers Michael Boley and Chase Blackburn, undrafted third-year linebacker Mark Herzlich is slotted to start in the middle. Herzlich sat-out the 2009 season at Boston College when he was diagnosed with Ewing's sarcoma, a rare form of bone cancer. However, just four months after his initial diagnosis, Herzlich announced he was cancer-free and has since returned to football shape. The fact that he could be a full-time starter on an NFL team only adds another chapter to his already remarkable story.
  • First-round pick Justin Pugh will anchor the right side of the offensive line someday, but "someday" doesn't look like it will come soon. David Diehl is listed as the starter at right tackle, and early reports are that Pugh has gotten abused by his defensive line so far this summer. There was early speculation that he could be moved to guard while he seasons his game, but that's all it has been up to this point. The preseason will be more telling of what Pugh's immediate future holds.
  • Fullback Henry Hynoski is still recovering from an injured MCL which required surgery after the Giants' organized team activities. Hynoski is targeting a Week 1 return, but there are no guarantees. As a result, the team is practicing several one-back formations and is having tight end Bear Pascoe fill-in at Hynoski's post when he has to. The Giants had shown interest in fullback Vonta Leach, but missed out after he recently signed with the Baltimore Ravens.

Philadelphia Eagles (by Sean R. Patterson)

  • The biggest news to come out of Eagles camp so far is that wide receiver Jeremy Maclin tore his ACL and is out for the season. Based on the way he fell during practice, his teammates Michael Vick and DeSean Jackson were not surprised by the severity of his injury.
  • With Maclin out for the season, the other receivers on the roster will be under the microscope more than ever. Bleeding Green Nation reported Damaris Johnson, Jason Avant and 6-foot-7 giant Ifeanyi Momah turning heads. Johnson caught an impressive pass from Foles in the seam and a deep pass from Michael Vick. Zach Ertz has also been having a stellar camp with some impressive catches and impressive route running. Ertz has had some drops in camp, so his hands can use improvement. Greg Salas is also impressing at camp with some nice catches.
  • The training camp notes from Bleeding Green Nation for July 27 noted several interesting facts from Eagles practice, and included a nice tidbit about LeSean McCoy. McCoy took it upon himself to participate in a quarterback drill and threw a nice pass to former Eagles receiver Harold Carmichael, who was catching for the quarterbacks. Now that would be an interesting plot twist. Is anyone else feeling the wildcat?
  • Bleeding Green Nation had nothing but good things to say about second-year cornerback Brandon Boykin during Tuesday's practice, as he is having a tremendous camp. Boykin is constantly breaking up passes and seems to always be around the ball.
  • Eagles beat reporter Jeff McLane tweeted: "By my unofficial count, Vick took 42 total reps, 25 with the first team and Foles took 37 total and 18 w/ the ones. Barkley had 27 with 3s." The repetition count between Vick and Foles shows that Vick may be "winning" the quarterback competition right now.

Dallas Cowboys (by Mike Harar)

  • The Cowboys were one of the first teams to start training camp. To recap that week, their first practice was July 21 and they started off by suffering a season-ending injury right away. Defensive tackle Tyrone Crawford tore an Achilles tendon and was carted off the field. Defensive tackle Jay Ratliff and tight end John Hanna suffered minor injuries but the team got out of the rest of the week basically unscathed. Dez Bryant was noted for a having a great first week as he was catching almost everything thrown his way and Tony Romo was noted for looking sharp as well.
  • The Dallas Morning News gave updates on day seven of camp which included a scrimmage better known as the Blue-White game. It involved mostly third stringers and the defense was well ahead of the offense for the most part. Wide receiver Jared Green, the son of former Redskin Darrell Green, had a mixed day. He caught a nice touchdown pass on 7-on-7 drills but later short-armed a pass he should have caught. DeMarcus Ware beat left tackle Tyron Smith twice in a matter of a few plays for sacks on Tony Romo during the team drills. Also noted, the Sunday Night Football broadcast crew was on hand for the day and the team suffered no notable injuries.
  • Under the category of weird training camp injuries, starting safety Barry Church missed Monday's practice because he was busy getting a root canal. The reason he had to have the root canal? He had chipped a tooth on a cherry flavored Jolly Rancher.
  • After coach Jason Garrett said in a afternoon news conference that Tony Romo would not practice on Tuesday, Romo suited up anyway and participated fully. Tight end Jason Witten was quoted as saying "It sends a message to the lineman. We are going full live goal-line and he's out there with us." Defensive end DeMarcus Ware stated "That's what we need to see - a guy out there working when he shouldn't be working."
  • The Cowboys did not practice Wednesday. On their off day, they tried out three defensive linemen and one offensive lineman, and decided to sign defensive end Toby Jackson out of Central Florida. The free agent had gone undrafted in the supplemental draft and his specialty is pass rushing. The team also found out that Kevin Kowalski will miss two to three weeks with a knee injury.