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Hanson talks starting, plus injury updates

Rain forced the Eagles to move Wednesday's OTA into their indoor practice facility at the NovaCare Complex. It was their first indoor practice since the one last week when safety Marlin Jackson ruptured his Achilles tendon.

Much to the relief of the Eagles' coaching and training staff, no one was seriously injured today, though safety Quintin Mikell tweaked his knee and left practice. Rookie wide receiver Riley Cooper didn't practice at all because of hamstring spasms.

Linebacker Omar Gaither, who is recovering from a Lisfranc fracture in his foot, was given the day off because of the artificial surface inside the practice facility. Guard Todd Herremans (foot), linebacker Stewart Bradley (calf), running back LeSean McCoy (ankle) and offensive tackle Fenuki Tupou (chest), who have been sidelined with injuries, didn't practice again. Cornerback Ellis Hobbs, who is recovering from spine surgery, practiced only on a limited basis, which has been the case during most of the May and June OTAs.

Wide receiver Jeremy Maclin, who didn't practice Tuesday because of a tight hamstring, was a full practice participant Wednesday.

Cornerback Asante Samuel and wide receiver DeSean Jackson were missing for the third straight practice after deciding to take an early summer vacation.

Some other things worth mentioning:

* While the popular assumption is that Ellis Hobbs will be the starting right corner when the season opens in September, Joselio Hanson is assuming nothing. The Eagles' nickel corner has made it clear that he feels he deserves an opportunity to win the right corner job.

``With Sheldon (Brown) gone, I'm going into training camp with the attitude that the right corner job is open,'' Hanson said. ``I feel I'm a good player. I'm just trying to take the next step. I want to be a starter in this league. If I get out there (in training camp) and get the reps, I hope to prove that I can be solid (as a starter) as well as at nickel.''
Added Hanson: ``If I make the plays on the ball in training camp, they're not going to have no choice (but to start him). If I'm playing the best at right corner, I'll (deserve to be the starter).''

* Thursday will be the Eagles' final practice before the start of training camp on July 26. It will be the end of the line for a few players. The Eagles are expected to release a few players after Thursday's final workout. They currently have 87 players on their roster and have to be down to 80 by the start of training camp.

* Defensive coordinator Sean McDermott was using ends Daniel Te'o-Neisheim and Darryl Tapp as his nickel tackles in Wednesday's practice, with Trent Cole and Juqua Thomas on the outside in a four-man front.

* Rookie fifth-round pick Ricky Sapp, a hybrid pass-rushing end at Clemson, who the Eagles initially moved to strongside linebacker after the draft, seems to be playing a lot more end than linebacker.

* Defensive tackle Antonio Dixon, who is listed at 322 pounds, looked surprisingly mobile dropping into coverage on a couple of zone blitzes. By practically living in the Eagles' NovaCare weight room during the offseason, Dixon has turned a lot of last season's flab into muscle.