The Philadelphia Eagles cut their roster down to 53 on Saturday. Here is an analysis/breakdown of the 53 man roster position by position:
-Carson Wentz, Nate Sudfield, Jalen Hurts
This is about what everyone expected. Of course, Wentz will be the starter, Sudfield is looking like the backup and Hurts will be the third stringer.
After drafting Hurts in the 2nd round of April’s draft, many would expect that Hurts would be the number two. However, with the lack of a full offseason and no pre-season, Sudfield being the number two makes sense. This does not mean Hurts won’t play, however. Expect Hurts to dress week one and have some form of a role on offense as a runner in/near the redzone or even in an option type set.
Running Back (3):
-Miles Sanders, Boston Scott, Corey Clement
This will be the Miles Sanders show. He will be the feature back for this offense. For the first time in the Doug Pederson era, the team has kept three running backs. This is how much trust the organization has in Sanders, who finished with more rushing yards (818), scrimmage yards (1,327), and all-purpose yards (1,641) than any rookie player in franchise history.
If everything holds to form, the RB2 snaps will be split between Clement and Scott. Likely dependent upon the matchup. Scott gives the Eagles the Darren Sproles slippery/quick type runner and Clement gives them that change of pace type back who can catch out of the backfield as well. With this being the Eagles initial 53 man roster, I still expect them to look at possibly adding a 4th running back.
Wide Receiver (7):
-DeSean Jackson, Jalen Reagor, Greg Ward, JJ Arcega-Whiteside, Alshon Jeffery, John Hightower, Quez Watkins
The Eagles have selected to keep 7 wideouts. For the first 3-4 weeks of the season they will likely be without Reagor and Jeffery. They cut Deontay Burnett, who was said to have had a “great” training camp. Burnett will likely be back with the team on the practice squad, as teams can add up to 2 players on game days this season.
Surprisingly, the Eagles removed Alshon Jeffery from the PUP list and counted him towards the 53 man roster. Jeffery is unlikely to play the first few weeks of the season, as he continues to rehab from a foot injury from last December.
DeSean Jackson’s health is always a situation to monitor. For the first few weeks, the Eagles will get to see what they have in Arcega-Whiteside, Hightower and Watkins.
Tight End (2)
– Zach Ertz and Dallas Goedert
As stated this is the initial 53. The Eagles have never kept just 2 tight ends and I don’t think they will. Considering they play 12 personnel majority of the time on offense, expect them to add another tight end.
Offensive Line (8)
– Jason Peters, Isaac Seumalo, Jason Kelce, Matt Pryor, Lane Johnson, Nate Herbig, Jack Driscoll, Jordan Mailata
Much has been made about the Eagles lack of depth along the offensive line since Brandon Brooks and Andre Dillard were both ruled out for the season. The team brought back Jason Peters to play right guard, but that was before Dillard’s injury. Since then, it’s been reported that Peters wants more money to return to his left tackle spot, and the Eagles don’t appear to be budging.
The team has brought in Cordy Glenn for a workout and will decide between him, Matt Pryor (please no), and paying Jason Peters before next Sunday’s game at Washington.
Defensive Tackle (4)
– Fletcher Cox, Javon Hargrave, Malik Jackson, Hassan Ridgeway
The Eagles have one of the stronger defensive tackle groups in the NFL. This group will likely be led by Cox and Hargrave in traditional 4-3 sets and Jackson can kick out to defensive end if needed. Ridgeway is a solid rotational piece that has shown he can play and start if needed.
Defensive End (6)
– Brandon Graham, Derek Barnett, Josh Sweat, Vinny Curry, Genard Avery, Casey Toohill
The Eagles defensive end position is a bit clouded. There’s Brandon Graham, who has shown he’s a consistent year in and year out. Then there’s the rest. Derek Barnett is in a contract year and has missed most of training camp. Genard Avery was injured during training camp and is expected to miss time (reminder: the Eagles traded a 4th round pick for Avery). Josh Sweat flashed last season and is expected to have a bigger role in this upcoming season. Curry is a vet who can provide some pass rush in a rotational role. Toohill is said to have had an impressive training camp.
–Nate Gerry, Duke Riley, T.J. Edwards, Shaun Bradley, Davion Taylor, Alex Singleton
This position is another that may be added to with veteran roster cuts over the next few days. Expect TJ Edwards and Nate Gerry to be two of the starters. Riley will likely start at the strong side position through the first few weeks of the season while the team figures out what they have in Taylor and Bradley. Singleton was kept for special teams.
–Darius Slay, Avonte Maddox, Nickell Robey-Coleman, Cre’Von LeBlanc, Craig James
*In the middle of writing this, it was announced the Eagles have released Cre’Von Leblanc to make room for RB Jason Huntley, so the number is now down to 4*
The team cut two high draft picks from previous drafts in Rasul Douglas and Sidney Jones. Douglas was claimed by the Carolina Panthers and Jones went unclaimed. Howie Roseman did say that the organization would not rule out bringing back Jones or Douglas.
The team added Slay in the offseason and has given Avonte Maddox the nod to start opposite him. Nickell Robey-Coleman will start in the nickel and James will likely be the main backup. James has been said to have also had a good training camp.
–Jalen Mills, Rodney McLeod, Will Parks, K’Von Wallace, Marcus Epps, Rudy Ford
Mills and McLeod will be the starters. Parks is out for the first few weeks of the season with injury. Wallace or Epps will contribute some, possibly in the role that Parks would’ve played had he been healthy. Ford will mainly contribute on special teams.
Special Teams (3)
–Jake Elliott, Cameron Johnston, Rick Lovato
The usual 3 are back.
- The Eagles have added Josh McCown to the practice squad, which has no age restrictions this season
- The team has claimed RB Jason Huntley and released CB Cre’Von Leblanc
- Huntley was drafted by the Lions in the fifth round with the 172nd pick in the draft.
- He ran a 4.37 40 yard dash and had a 39.5″ vertical at the New Mexico State pro day
Photo Credit: Trey Madara