BETHLEHEM, Pa. - It's Andy Reid's team, but it's Donovan McNabb's leg.

That was one obvious conclusion over the weekend, as McNabb worked out with a group of rookies and select vets, and both he and his coach addressed reporters.

McNabb looked just fine dropping back, planting and throwing Saturday and yesterday, although the Eagles' quarterback was excused from yesterday's morning session after it was moved indoors to Rauch Fieldhouse's hard surface by a prolonged thunderstorm. But just as in last month's minicamp, Reid and McNabb seemed to emphasize different things when they discussed McNabb's recovery from right ACL surgery.

Reid's emphasis was relentlessly positive. When he mentioned that McNabb would wear a knee brace to start camp, he called it a "security blanket" and predicted McNabb would discard it when the season starts. McNabb said the brace was his idea, and he added that if he "can continue to wear it and it doesn't bother me, I'll continue to wear it through the whole season." Oh, he also said: "I'm not looking at it as a security blanket."

In general, Reid tends to talk about how fabulously McNabb is progressing. McNabb, who maintains he is not looking over his shoulder at his designated successor, rookie Kevin Kolb, asserts that he will be ready to play when the season starts, but he does not pretend that all is like it was before he was injured.

"Unfortunately, there are times when there's soreness and swelling," McNabb said when asked if that were the case. "Sometimes when it rains, it aches a little more, or, if it's cold outside . . . when you continue to grind and push yourself more than usual, there will be times when it will be a little more sore than usual, and we're prepared for that."

McNabb said last month in minicamp that he felt his knee was about 75 percent. Asked Saturday to update that percentage, he declined to raise it, but he said that "at 75 percent, I personally feel I can be one of the best quarterbacks in the league."

Reid, asked whether yesterday's rainy weather gave McNabb any problems, said: "I think that's something that, with anybody that's had knee surgery, you feel a little bit of an ache when the weather changes. That's just one of those things. It's not quite as much swelling as it is soreness, and I think that's for everybody - everybody that's had knee surgery."

Reid said McNabb, as usual, would be given off today's final rookie workout, before the rest of the veterans check in tonight.

Darwin trade evolves

The Darwin Walker trade between the Eagles and the Bills has finally been resolved, with Buffalo sending the veteran defensive tackle to Chicago in exchange for a draft pick. The pick was reported to be a fifth-rounder, but Bills general manager Marv Levy said the round will depend on how much Walker plays for the Bears.

The Darwin Walker trade between the Eagles and the Bills has finally been resolved, with Buffalo sending the veteran defensive tackle to Chicago in exchange for a draft pick. The pick was reported to be a fifth-rounder, but Bills general manager Marv Levy said the round will depend on how much Walker plays for the Bears.

"When he didn't show up to begin camp, it looked like it would drag on," Levy told Buffalo-area reporters. "The opportunity presented itself for us to make this deal with the Bears, so it seemed like the best thing to do. We did it and we're moving on."

Walker, 30, started 77 games for the Eagles between 2002 and the end of last season. He was unhappy with his contract, which is scheduled to pay him $1.3 million this season and $1.4 million next season. The Birds traded him to Buffalo in March, along with a seventh-round draft choice, for linebacker Takeo Spikes and quarterback Kelly Holcomb.

The Bills had the right to return Walker to the Eagles if he did not report by Aug. 5. Walker reported to Bears camp yesterday, and his agent, Al Irby, was quoted as saying a new deal wouldn't be a problem with Chicago.

Birdseed

The Eagles have been fortunate with the Lehigh weather the past several years, but yesterday's downpour definitely limited the morning workout, which was moved indoors to Rauch Fieldhouse. Skies cleared in time for the afternoon session . . . Today's forecast calls for a 30 percent chance of thundershowers. Wednesday, when the Birds put on the pads for the first time in front of the public, there's a 20 percent chance of rain and a projected high of 90 in Bethlehem . . . Quarterback Kevin Kolb mentioned yesterday that Canton, his Black Mouth Cur, recently gave birth to nine puppies. None of them will be doing any fighting, Kolb said when asked . . . Tight end Lee Vickers, an athletic player who has been a high-school quarterback and a college baseball pitcher, is getting some work as a long snapper. So far, he lacks consistency. "It's good work for the punter," Andy Reid quipped . . . The rookies are getting a lot of reps, particularly running backs Tony Hunt and Nate Ilaoa, and both looked a little frazzled yesterday, as they ran pass routes. *

The Eagles have been fortunate with the Lehigh weather the past several years, but yesterday's downpour definitely limited the morning workout, which was moved indoors to Rauch Fieldhouse. Skies cleared in time for the afternoon session . . . Today's forecast calls for a 30 percent chance of thundershowers. Wednesday, when the Birds put on the pads for the first time in front of the public, there's a 20 percent chance of rain and a projected high of 90 in Bethlehem . . . Quarterback Kevin Kolb mentioned yesterday that Canton, his Black Mouth Cur, recently gave birth to nine puppies. None of them will be doing any fighting, Kolb said when asked . . . Tight end Lee Vickers, an athletic player who has been a high-school quarterback and a college baseball pitcher, is getting some work as a long snapper. So far, he lacks consistency. "It's good work for the punter," Andy Reid quipped . . . The rookies are getting a lot of reps, particularly running backs Tony Hunt and Nate Ilaoa, and both looked a little frazzled yesterday, as they ran pass routes. *

Daily News wire services contributed to this report.