The Philadelphia Eagles were sobered by the season-ending injury suffered by wide receiver Jeremy Maclin, but have strived to stay optimistic after watching their teammate tear his ACL.
Less than two days into training camp, the Eagles lost the player who led them in receptions, receiving yards and receiving touchdowns from a squad that went 4-12. Needless to say, Michael Vick sounded bummed when asked about losing a big target:
"I [saw] it out the corner of my eye," Vick said. "I [saw] him fall. And usually when a guy falls like that it's something to be worried about..."
"He was going to be a big part of what we do," Vick said. "Getting him involved was very important. There were some great plays designed for him, but it can't change our game plan. We hope and pray that everything is going to work out for Maclin and he's gonna be back."
DeSean Jackson was a little unrealistic about how recovery from ACL injuries works:
"Hopefully it's not too bad and he can get back out here and play with us again this year," the Pro Bowler said. "Anytime a player goes down on a stretcher and things like that you definitely have to be concerned. But until we know further, you've just got to keep praying for him."
Center Jason Kelce found moving forward to be difficult:
"It's really tough to go on, especially within five minutes of it," said Kelce, who's coming off an anterior cruciate ligament tear from last season. "The first five minutes, we all got in a huddle and everybody was shaking their heads almost just in disbelief.
He knows what it's like, having after torn his ACL last year:
"After you get going a little bit, you kind of put it in the back of your head and you can move on a little bit. And then ironically, when practice starts coming down that's when you start thinking about it a little more again.
"That's a terrible situation, everybody has seen it happen in camp, it's just one of those things that happens, so you kind of get accustomed to dealing with it, unfortunately. It doesn't do us any good to sit there and grieve about it. The only thing as a team we can do is go out there and try to get better and hope for the best for Jeremy."
The Eagles will have to depend even more heavily on Jackson, who remains the No. 1 receiver. Jason Avant, Arrelious Benn and Riley Cooper will have to step up their games to fill in as Vick will need a secondary option in Chip Kelly's new offense, one where Maclin had hoped to excel.