The 2017 NFL regular season is quickly approaching, and with it comes hope for the City of Brotherly Love. The Eagles brass and coaching staff have seemingly done an amazing job up until now, adding talent in both free agency and the draft. With organized team activities (OTA’s) underway, all eyes will be on the new faces as they look to create the comradery needed to become a special team.
As you look through the Eagles roster, you see the potential of a team,that is doing a bit more than “building for the future”. You see a team that has the early look of a true competitor. Stacked with talent from bottom to top, Howie Roseman and company have done a good job of bringing in a ton of talent. So with that said, we decided to feature a few players that could really be in for a great season.
WR Jordan Matthews:
Considered the Eagles best wideout over the last few years, Matthews found himself on the wrong end of trade talks this off-season. Warranted or not, with the addition of Alshon Jefferey and Torrey smith, the trade talks made sense from a business standpoint. But when you look at his talent, combined with the players added around him, it is easy to see why he could be looking at one of the best years of his career.
In 46 games Matthews has 225 receptions for 2,673 yards and 19 touchdowns, with the bulk of his success coming from the slot. The difference is that this year there are legit weapons surrounding the young vet, which in turn could create better situations for the Vanderbilt product as he is a proven match up nightmare coming from the slot. Once considered damning for Matthews, the signing of Jefferey and Smith, could end up being a blessing for him.
QB Carson Wentz-
Like Matthews, the addition of the new offensive weapons creates a great opportunity for Wentz. Last season you saw a young QB running for his life, trying to make a play. Some of that had to due with his youth and some of it was the lack of talent surrounding him. This year, the Eagles are looking for Wentz to take a large leap and were not shy about adding players that help make it possible.
With the aforementioned WR’s coming in to help with the passing game, what may help the most is the solidifying of the offensive line. With OT Lane Johnson back in the fold (hopefully all year) and second year OG Isaac Seumalo taking a big step this year, the Eagles line seems to be smothered in talent from head to toe. Add those things to a new look running game, with bruiser back LeGarrette Blount, and you could see an amazing year for the former second overall pick.
RB Donnel Pumphrey- When the Eagles drafted the 5’9, 175 lbs, RB, some scratched there head in confusion. The birds needed a back, but why Pumphrey?
When you look past his size, you see the exact reason they chose the SDSU star. He is a tough as nails, quick as all hell, and a big play waiting to happen every time he touches the ball. Don’t get me wrong, I understand why there would be skeptics, but luckily for those, a certain Patriots veteran is there to answer all your worries.
Pumphrey is so much more than a RB, he is a weapon. A legit weapon, on the ground as well as the air, which was apparent on day one of OTA’s, as Coach Pederson had him lined up everywhere he could on the field. In addition to his versatility on offense, he brings difference maker potential to the Eagles special teams unit, which is widely regarded as the best in the NFL. When you decide to look past his size, and really watch the kid play, you can see the potential shining.
Other players who could have stand out years: WR Nelson Agholor, TE Zach Ertz, OG Isaac Seumalo, C Jason Kelce, WR Alshon Jefferey, RB Lagerrette Blount .
Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports