The roster cuts are officially underway in the city of Brotherly Love as the Philadelphia Eagles announced that they have cut four players, trimming their roster down to 84.
#Eagles release four players:
WR T.J. Graham
C Bruce Johnson
RB Cedric O'Neal
WR Xavier Rush
Roster is at 84. Must be at 75 by August 30.
— Philadelphia Eagles (@Eagles) August 21, 2016
The Eagles released:
Wide receiver: T.J. Graham-
Graham signed a one-year deal earlier this offseason in order to bolster the Eagles receiving unit. A quiet Training camp for the former Bills wideout saw the 27 year old sink down the depth chart. The nail in the coffin after an equally quiet pre-season thus far was the signing of Dorial Green-Beckham, pipping the 5’11 receiver out of a likely spot on the final roster. Graham has 794 receiving yards and 4 touchdowns in his career.
Center: Bruce Johnson-
An undrafted free agent out of Maine, the 6’1, 300-pound Center out of Maine was competing for a backup center role, one that is realistically going to be occupied by Stefen Wisniewski. After being named the top center in FCS, Johnson was looking to mirror the career of Jamaal Jackson, a UDFA who went on to start for an extended period. Unfortunately, the Eagles are inundated with depth and versatility at the line..meaning that Johnson was always fighting an uphill battle to make the final 53.
Running back: Cedric O’Neal-
O’Neal flashed his power and physicality during Training camp but struggled during preseason, averaging just 2.3 yards per carry against the Steelers and 3.2 against the Bucs. Coming out of Valdosta state as an undrafted free agent, O’Neal was competing behind Byron Marshall, Wendell Smallwood, Kenjon Barner and the duo of Ryan Mathews and Darren Sproles for a spot on the Eagles committee backfield. He may have shown the same level of burst as he did during his exceptional College career, but the running back spot was simply too congested.
Wide receiver: Xavier Rush-
Another undrafted rookie, Xavier Rush saw some significant action against the Steelers, catching three of four passes for 22 yards. The arrival of DGB put significant pressure on the WR corps and with fellow UDFA’s Marcus Johnson and Hunter Sharp also competing for roster spots, the elimination process started early. Rush showed flashes of potential in Training camp and could find himself a new landing spot relatively soon.
The Eagles have until August 30th to trim their roster down to 75..making this week’s clash against the Colts all the more important for players on the bubble.