clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Eagles 53-man roster projection after one preseason game and two weeks of training camp

New, comments

Who’s gonna make the final cut?

NFL: Philadelphia Eagles-Training Camp Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

The Philadelphia Eagles have been through eleven training camp practices and one preseason game so far this summer and we’ve learned a lot about this year’s team in that time. Now it’s time to put that knowledge to use in the form of an updated 53-man roster prediction. Let’s see how much things have changed since last week’s projection. Keep in mind I do one of these predictions every week and I reserve the right to change my opinion at any time in order to make myself look smarter than I really am. [Click here for a link to last week’s version.]

OFFENSE

Quarterback: Carson Wentz, Nate Sudfeld, Cody Kessler (3) [3]

Sudfeld’s wrist injury is reportedly going to prevent him from playing until Week 3 at the earliest. That means the Eagles will need to carry a veteran behind Wentz for at least the first couple weeks. Kessler is the current leader for that job since he’s already on the team. If Kessler continues to struggle like he did during the Eagles’ first preseason game, however, the team must look for a new option. The Eagles can then cut that veteran quarterback once Sudfeld is healthy enough to be Wentz’s No. 2 again.

Running back: Jordan Howard, Miles Sanders, Darren Sproles, Corey Clement (4) [7]

Howard and Sanders are clearly the top two guys in the Eagles’ rotation. It’s just a matter of how their playing time is divided. Doug Pederson has a role for Sproles in this offense. Clement isn’t cleared to play yet but he’s been showing some positive signs in practice. It’s not like anyone is seriously threatening to replace Clement on the 53.

Wide receiver: Alshon Jeffery, DeSean Jackson, Nelson Agholor, JJ Arcega-Whiteside, Mack Hollins, Marken Michel (6) [13]

Arcega-Whiteside isn’t fighting to make the roster but the rookie is fighting to show the coaching staff he can be trusted with playing time. Hollins needs to get healthy and there are encouraging signs on that front (see tweet below). I had Michel on my 53-man roster back in May so I’m not just overreacting to his 75-yard touchdown reception last night. I’m keeping the former CFL product around because he’s shown deep threat ability (valuable if something happens to DeSean), he can help out on special teams (returns punts), and he provides depth if Hollins can’t stay healthy. Michel can solidify his case by continuing to stand out over the next few weeks. Greg Ward continues to be a no show in the preseason despite looking good in camp. There’s still time for that to change. The 6-6 Carlton Agudosi is my practice squad guy at receiver.

Tight end: Zach Ertz, Dallas Goedert, Richard Rodgers (3) [16]

I’m tempted to keep four here as I did last week, especially considering Rodgers is dealing with an injury. Joshua Perkins could be that fourth guy. For now, I’ll project the Eagles to keep a fourth tight end on the practice squad.

Offensive line: Jason Peters, Isaac Seumalo, Jason Kelce, Brandon Brooks, Lane Johnson, Halapoulivaati Vaitai, Andre Dillard, Matt Pryor, Jordan Mailata (9) [25]

Vaitai could end up being trade bait but he’s here for now. Dillard looks ready to supplant Big V as the team’s top tackle option off the bench, at least on the left side. Pryor stunk against the Titans (three penalties!) and Mailata was inconsistent but I don’t think the Eagles are going to give up on their developmental guys just yet. I have Stefen Wisniewski — who’s really struggled snapping the ball in practice — getting cut here since he’s a vested veteran. The Eagles can bring him back after Week 1 in order to avoid his 2019 salary being fully guaranteed. Teams were not hot after Wis in free agency so it’s not like the Eagles are risking a lot by letting him go. One of two undrafted rookie free agent guards Sua Opeta and Nate Herbig could make the team. For now I’m keeping them both on the practice squad.

DEFENSE

Defensive end: Brandon Graham, Derek Barnett, Vinny Curry, Josh Sweat, Daeshon Hall (5) [30]

Ostman’s season-ending ACL injury opens the spot for another edge rusher to make the team. I don’t know how the Eagles can’t keep Hall if he continues to flash like he did against the Titans. I previously had Hall making the 53-man roster back in May and wrote at the time: “Hall flashed in limited opportunities last year; I think he’s a dark horse candidate to make the team.” Sweat seems like a safe bet to make the roster but I’d still like to see more from him. I still have Shareef Miller getting stashed away on injured reserve with a phantom injury in this spot. Otherwise he’s the sixth defensive end.

Defensive tackle: Fletcher Cox, Malik Jackson, Timmy Jernigan, Hassan Ridgeway, Treyvon Hester (5) [35]

Ridgeway was looking good against the Titans before suffering a head injury. Hopefully he’s okay. Hester also flashed on Thursday night and he even blocked another kick! The Eagles look to be VERY deep at defensive tackle. That’s great to see after they were incredibly thin at that spot in 2018.

Linebacker: Nigel Bradham, Zach Brown, Nathan Gerry, L.J. Fort, Kamu Grugier-Hill (5) [40]

Still waiting to see when Bradham will be cleared. Also hoping that Kamu’s six-to-eight week recovery timeline holds true and he won’t be out longer for that. In the meantime, Gerry, Brown, and Fort have been the Eagles’ starting linebackers in base. The coaching staff like Gerry, so I think he’ll make the team, but he’s not very inspiring. Brown and Fort look better than Gerry does. Given the injuries at this spot, the Eagles could look to keep T.J. Edwards on the 53. Maybe they can get him to the practice squad, though.

Cornerback: Ronald Darby, Rasul Douglas, Avonte Maddox, Sidney Jones, Orlando Scandrick, Cre’Von LeBlanc (6) [46]

It’s still unclear if Darby will be ready for Week 1. I have some doubt since he’s not doing team drills with less than a month to go. If Darby isn’t playing, the trio of Douglas, Maddox, and Jones will be the team’s main cornerbacks. Keeping Scandrick gives the team veteran depth, especially in the slot. LeBlanc could eventually be placed on injured reserve (and later activated to return) if the Eagles feel like he’s going to miss a lot of time. There’s a report out there that Strap might not be ready to play until November. Josh Hawkins and Jeremiah McKinnon aren’t worth keeping on the roster. Jay Liggins gets the practice squad nod.

Safety: Malcolm Jenkins, Rodney McLeod, Andrew Sendejo, Blake Countess (4) [50]

Sendejo isn’t getting cut so the Eagles can save a compensatory pick. He’s going to be this team’s Corey Graham — a veteran third safety. Countess took “first team” reps across from Sendejo in the Titans game so that’s good for his stock. Assuming Countess can stay healthy, he should be the fourth safety. Johnathan Cyprien might be able to sneak on as a fifth safety but he needs to show more. Tre Sullivan is a practice squad guy at best.

SPECIAL TEAMS

Kicker: Jake Elliott (1) [51]

It was good to see Elliott hit a 53-yarder against the Titans. It wasn’t good to see him doink a 40-yarder off the right upright.

Punter: Cameron Johnston (1) [52]

Johnston averaged 49 yards per punt on six punts against the Titans. Three were downed inside the 20.

Long snapper: Rick Lovato (1) [53]

Lovato long snaps for the Eagles.

PHYSICALLY UNABLE TO PERFORM (PUP)

Jalen Mills

The Eagles can take Mills off the active/PUP list at any point before roster cuts take place but I’m guessing he begins the year on reserve/PUP. In that case, Mills would be required to miss at least the first six weeks of the regular season before being eligible to return to the 53-man roster as soon as Week 7.

PRACTICE SQUAD

QB Clayton Thorson, RB Boston Scott, WR Carlton Agudosi, [some tight end], OG Sua Opeta, OG Nate Herbig, DT Bruce Hector, LB T.J. Edwards, CB Jay Liggins, S Tre Sullivan