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Eagles bring back a familiar face at tight end

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Just not the one you may have expected.

NFL: Philadelphia Eagles-Minicamp Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

The Philadelphia Eagles have signed free agent tight end Anthony Denham, according to a tweet from his agent: David Canter. (Hat tip to BGN’s Benjamin Solak for first noticing.) The team also officially confirmed the news.

You may have forgotten him but Denham actually has experience with the Eagles. He spent time on Philadelphia’s practice squad during the 2016 season before trying to compete for a roster spot on the 2017 team.

Denham ultimately failed to survive final cuts last year. A calf injury caused him to miss a significant amount of practices and preseason games. Prior to his injury, I thought Denham actually showed some flashes in practice. This isn’t just revisionist history; I wrote as much last year:

TE Anthony Denham - Had some nice moments in the spring but missed a lot of training camp with a calf injury.

The Eagles are currently a little thin at tight end with Richard Rodgers (knee) and Joshua Perkins (head) not practicing. Zach Ertz, Dallas Goedert, Billy Brown, and Gannon Sinclair were the only healthy guys before adding Denham.

Ertz and Goedert won’t get much (if any) playing time in the Eagles’ preseason finale against the Jets. That leaves Brown, Sinclair, and now Denham to help Philadelphia get through the Thursday night game.

It’s very possible Denham is just a warm body to help the Eagles out this week. It doesn’t seem impossible that they’ll keep a fourth tight end on their 53-man roster, however, with Rodgers expected to miss some time early in the season. Perkins would’ve appeared to be the favorite but it’s unclear when he’ll be back. Maybe the Eagles go with Denham instead? I don’t think it’ll be Brown, who didn’t even see a single offensive snap in the Eagles’ third preseason game. And I don’t think Brent Celek, who said he’s leaning towards retirement and has reportedly lost weight, is coming back.

We’ll see how this one shakes out.

For now, the Eagles’ roster is back at the 90-player limit. They have until 4:00 PM on Saturday to trim down to 53.