Sam Bradford getting more comfortable in Eagles offense
PHILADELPHIA (AP) Whether it was caution or precaution, Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Sam Bradford did not get a lot of work in the preseason.
One series against the Baltimore Ravens and three series against the Green Bay Packers was it.
While all four ended in touchdowns, the quarterback who missed all of the 2014 season with a torn ACL could have probably used more work.
Four games, and just one win, into the regular season Bradford said he is finally comfortable in the Eagles’ up-tempo offense.
”The timing of different things is big,” Bradford said after Wednesday practice. ”Obviously you go through training camp and it’s kind of your base offense. You get into games and you start to game plan. I feel like I have a better grasp of what we’re trying to do in both the run game and the passing game.
”The more reps you get the more comfortable you become. That’s how I feel right now.”
Bradford, who struggled through the first three games of the season, played well in the second half of a 23-20 loss to Washington last Sunday.
He completed 10 of 18 passes in the half for 195 yards with three touchdowns, a 62-yarder to Riley Cooper, a 39-yarder to Miles Austin and a perfectly thrown 10-yarder to Brent Celek.
”In the second half we found a rhythm,” Bradford said. ”We were confident in everything we were doing. Once you get into a rhythm like that it allows you to make some throws that you feel they just can’t cover.”
For the season, Bradford is 88 for 145 for 948 yards with six touchdowns and four interceptions. His quarterback rating is 82.2. Last week against Washington it was 122.1.
”I think he’s more and more comfortable with what we’re doing,” Eagles offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur said. ”He’s becoming more and more comfortable with not only the concepts, but who is running the concepts. I think there have been times throughout the season when our passing offense fell victim to the drop, and then there have been times when he was off the mark.
”I think you saw periods within the game last week where we were on the mark and we caught the ball. So I think that’s what we’re shooting for. But I think he’s getting more and more comfortable with how we run our offense, and then the guys he’s throwing to.”
Before last Sunday, Jordan Matthews had 22 receptions; the rest of the Eagles wide receivers totaled 13. Against Washington eight different players caught passes, including four of the five wide receivers.
”That’s huge, especially in this offense,” Bradford said. ”We want to play spread. The ball can go anywhere at any time. Obviously, in the first couple of weeks we attacked the middle of the field with our inside guys. Last week we spread the ball around outside and hopefully we can continue to do that. The more we can spread the ball around the tougher it makes it on defenses.”
NOTES: Five players, including four starters, missed practice Wednesday and another was limited. Linebackers Kiko Alonso (knee) and Mychal Kendricks (hamstring), defensive end Brandon Bair (groin), cornerback Byron Maxwell (quad) and tackle Jason Peters (quad) all sat out practice. Tackle Lane Johnson (knee) practiced on a limited basis.
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