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Omar Gaither Sustains Knee Sprain, Position Battles Heat Up

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During Monday's practice, linebacker Omar Gaither was escorted off the field after sustaining a knee sprain. While he is not expected to miss significant playing time, his absence deprives the Eagles of an experienced veteran in a rapidly thinning position. Gaither was competing for both the starting MLB and WILL positions with Joe Mays and Akeem Jordan, respectively.

More information on Gaither's condition will be released later this week, so stay tuned.

Depth chart battles have been heating up at Lehigh lately. With only three weeks left to crack the final roster, Eagles newcomers are kicking it into high gear. Here are a few positions to watch for when the Eagles take the field against the Colts for preseason game number two:

Defensive End: With Trent Cole temporarily out of the picture, newcomer Jason Babin has been taking reps at the starting RDE position. Babin's impressive performance against the Patriots (3 tackles, 1 sack) should net him some significant playing time during week two and, if he impresses, should land him a spot on the final roster. The only question is, whose spot will he take?

Running Back: Eldra Buckley has been continuing to impress after his sensational performance in week one (8 rushes for 23 yds and 1 TD, 6 rec for 56 yds and 1 TD) and lit up the third-string offense. During the only two live plays of Monday's practice, Buckley gained big chunks of yardage, showing once again his big-play ability. Watch out, Lorenzo Booker, looks like your days are numbered.

Strongside Linebacker: Rookie and 7th-round pick Moise Fokou has been opening eyes ever since he stepped on the field at Lehigh, quickly rising to the 2nd-string SAM position behind Chris Gocong. The Maryland product racked up two tackles in week one, catching the attention of defensive coordinatior Sean McDermott:

"He's done a nice job and it all starts with his preparation," McDermott said on the seventh-round pick. "He takes great pride in the work he puts in off the field. He brings a lot to the table at that SAM linebacker position. When the lights come on the look in his eye is the right look, the look that we want to see from our players."

Free Safety: Although second-year man Quintin Demps has been slated to be the starter since the departure of the beloved Brian Dawkins, former Brown Sean Jones has given the young safety a run for his money. However, Demps has stepped up his tackling technique, and is showing that he has the ability to be a starter in the NFL. McDermott had this to say of the former UTEP standout:

"Quintin Demps did a nice job. They both did a nice job. Quintin, specifically, did a nice job," McDermott said. "Again, you're talking about a young player that is really playing in his first game as a starter and he handled himself well. He tackled well."