WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYINGFrom the Press of Atlantic Ciy
No. 1 pick Mike Patterson is making it easier for the Philadelphia Eagles to entertain offers for defensive tackle Corey Simon.
Shortly after the Super Bowl, the Eagles placed the franchise tag on Simon, whom they drafted in the first round in 2000. But Simon has yet to sign the team's one-year, $5.13 million offer and remains a no-show at training camp.
Meanwhile, Patterson - the first defensive tackle the Eagles have taken in the first round since Simon - at No. 31 overall - is progressing faster than expected.
"Now we see that he really shows he's got some intelligence, defensive coordinator Jim Johnson said, (H)e's picking up the defense pretty well."
Patterson thinks he's doing well so far.
"I'm out there learning the plays," he said. "I'm picking everything up and feeling pretty comfortable about it."
In four seasons at USC, Patterson had 21 sacks.
"The thing about Mike is, he's so explosive," Johnson said. "He's going to make plays because he's got great quickness and great pad level, so I'm very happy with the way he's picking things up."
Sixth-year veteran Darwin Walker said of Patterson, "One of the things that I like about him is, as good as he is, he's still trying to learn and pick up as much as he can from the veterans. He's being very humble and like a sponge - trying to soak everything up."
From the (Easton) Express-TimesSurvival on Moats' mind
Lucky for Reno Mahe that Brian Westbrook finally arrived Monday in Philadelphia Eagles training camp. Otherwise, an already overworked Mahe may have had to take all the carries out of the backfield.
Correll Buckhalter and his bruised knee still are out of the practice mix, and rookie Ryan Moats suffered a concussion during a tackling drill.
Still, Mahe said he's willing to take on as much work as he can get.
"When the numbers get a little low, guys have to take a little more (work) and your body's telling you, 'No,' " Mahe said. "It's just part of training camp. A lot of it, I'm just praying my heart out that I'll be able to survive."
He's happy to see Westbrook in camp.
"It's just nice to have him back so you can learn from him," Mahe said. "He's a Pro Bowl running back. He's the best in this business. I'm just hoping one day I can be as good as him."