Former Vol defensive end and first-round draft pick of the Philadelphia Eagles Derek Barnett is continuing to stand out at the Eagles’ OTAs, impressing both his teammates and reporters there to cover it.
Two weeks ago, Barnett was already impressing his teammates with his “bend” and athleticism. Now he’s consistently beating one of Philadelphia’s best offensive lineman, Lane Johnson. And Johnson has nothing but praise for the rookie defensive end.
According to Dave Zarango of CSNPhilly.com, Barnett “really began to shine” at the end of the Eagles’ team portion of practice. Zarango noted that Barnett beat left tackle Lane Johnson on consecutive plays and showed off his “ankle flexion”that Zarango said Eagles’ Vice President of player personnel Joe Douglas raved about when Philadelphia drafted Barnett.
“When Barnett gets so low to the ground without losing speed,” Zarango writes, “it’s tough to get hands on him. ”
Zarango did go on to note that it’s still early in the summer and the team still isn’t wearing pads and there’s no hitting, but he stated that Barnett is still looking good in the early going.
But Zarango wasn’t the only one to notice. Johnson himself had praise for Barnett, as did some other reporters at OTAs.
Derek Barnett killing Lane right now.
— Jimmy Kempski (@JimmyKempski) June 8, 2017
Lane Johnson on Derek Barnett: “He got me a couple times today.” #Eagles
— Aaron Kasinitz (@AaronKazreports) June 8, 2017
Lane Johnson was very complimentary of Derek Barnett. Says he reminds him of Brandon Graham #Eagles
— Eliot Shorr-Parks (@EliotShorrParks) June 8, 2017
It will still be a while before Barnett gets to put on the pads and show what he can do when fully suited up as an NFL player. But as of now, Barnett is impressing his new teammates and the media covering him in Philadelphia.