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Eagles Sign Practice Squad Players to Futures Contracts

Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

The Eagles announced they have signed seven of their eight practice squad members to futures contracts. Those players are as follows:

Name Position Height Weight Age Experience
Emmanuel Acho LB 6-2 240 23 2
Brandon Bair DE 6-6 285 29 2
Michael Bamiro T 6-8 340 23 R
B.J. Cunningham WR 6-2 215 24 1
Emil Igwenagu TE 6-2 245 24 1
G.J. Kinne QB 6-2 218 25 1
Travis Long OLB 6-4 252 22 R
Will Murphy* WR 6-2 193 23 R

*Will Murphy hasn't been officially signed yet, but it is expected he will sign his futures deal on Wednesday.

A quick breakdown on each player:

Emmanuel Acho - Acquired by the team last offseason from the Browns in a trade that sent Dion Lewis to Cleveland. Acho lost his roster spot to Najee Goode after final cuts in late August, but found his way back to Philly after the Eagles signed him off the Giants' practice squad. Acho spent some time on the Eagles active roster in a special teams role before the team released him again and signed him to their practice squad.

Brandon Bair - Bair was an in-season addition to the practice squad. At 29 years old, he's more of a good practice player than a developmental player. Former Oregon Duck.

Michael Bamiro - A weird scenario caused Bamiro to be ruled ineligible for the NFL draft, so he was able to sign with an NFL team right out of college without having to be subject to the draft process. Bamiro is a developmental player.

B.J. Cunningham - This Michigan State alumnus is a wide receiver that spent a brief time on the Eagles active regular season roster this year. He also spent the 2012-2013 season on the practice squad before entering 2013 training camp with the Eagles.

Emil Igwenagu - Iggy signed with the Eagles as an undrafted free agent in 2012. He spent the 2012-2013 season on the team's practice squad as well.

G.J. Kinne - Just read this.

Travis Long - The Eagles signed Long during the 2013 training camp. Long showed some potential in camp and during the pre-season, so there's reason to believe he has some potential.

Will Murphy - The former Oregon Duck WR is a reliable practice player.

Note that the NFL roster limit expands to 90 in the offseason. For a more detailed explanation on what a futures contract is, see this explanation. (Source)

Basically, when a player is signed to "reserve/futures" contracts means they are being signed for the upcoming  season even though that season does not officially begin until the official start of the league’s new year as outlined by the NFL. Only players who were not on any NFL team’s active roster when the previous season ended are eligible for these types of contracts. If they were under contract, then they would remain so until the league’s new year starts. Players who were on practice squads at the end of the season are eligible to sign with any team. Hence the reason that you see many practice squad players being signed by their current team for the upcoming year to a reserve/futures contract. That way the team can continue to work with a player they’re familiar with and hopefully get them ready for an eventual roster spot on game day.

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