Eagles 53-man roster prediction: Post Jordan Matthews trade edition


It’s been a big few days for the Philadelphia Eagles. Not only did they open their preseason campaign in Green Bay, but they traded WR Jordan Matthews and a third-round pick to Buffalo in exchange for CB Ronald Darby. There’s no doubting the magnitude of the trade or the effects it will have on the Eagles 53-man roster. Here’s a quick look at how things may be looking after a busy few days:


Quarterbacks: Carson Wentz, Nick Foles   2     (2)
All appears to be quiet on the Western Front as of right now. Wentz is still very much the face of the franchise and looked sharp in his limited preseason snaps. Foles missed the Eagles preseason opener due to elbow soreness, but McGloin struggled to set himself apart and muster a challenge for the QB2 spot.

Running backs: LeGarrette Blount, Darren Sproles, Donnel Pumphrey, Wendell Smallwood   4   (6)
The loss to Green Bay wasn’t exactly a glowing reference for the Eagles backfield or their offensive line, but there aren’t any surprises looming just yet. Corey Clement could be set to see more time in the coming weeks but as of right now it’s Wendell Smallwood who still holds that key fourth spot.


Offensive line: Jason Peters, Isaac Seumalo, Jason Kelce, Brandon Brooks, Lane Johnson, Halapoulivaati Vaitai, Dillon Gordon, Chance Warmack, Stefen Wisniewski, Taylor Hart  10   (16)
There’s only one change on this list from our last prediction and that’s the addition of Taylor Hart in place of Josh Andrews. The Eagles need backup tackles and Gordon’s role could be seen as a swing. That means it would be down to Andrews or Hart to fill the void and after the former Defensive lineman filled in for the injured Vaitai against Green Bay, momentum is on his side.

Tight end: Zach Ertz, Brent Celek, Trey Burton, Billy Brown   4   (20)
The Eagles tight ends didn’t have an amazing game against the Packers, but Brown proved to be a fairly reliable target over the middle. Burton’s fumble may have swung even more momentum his way, but I believe that the Eagles will retain all four tight ends heading into week one.


Wide receiver: Alshon Jeffery, Torrey Smith, Nelson Agholor, Mack Hollins, Marcus Johnson, Bryce Treggs   6   (26)
The trading of Jordan Matthews has opened some interesting discussions. When it comes to the slot, it’s likely that Mack Hollins will be behind Nelson Agholor on the depth chart. Agholor looks entrenched as the starter and Hollins’ impressive touchdown against Green Bay certainly spurred him into contention for that role. Then, things get interesting.

Shelton Gibson is very much on the bubble at the moment…but after a consistent camp that went under the radar, it’s Bryce Treggs who could be in line to knock him back a further step. In just  quarters, Treggs caught 7 passes for 91 yards against the Packers and looked like a threat wherever he lined up. Perhaps it’s the addition of Mike Groh or the subtraction of DGB…either way, Treggs could be an underdog to secure a roster spot.


Defensive tackle: Fletcher Cox, Timmy Jernigan, Destiny Vaeao, Gabe Wright   4  (30)
I said in the last prediction how Qualls could be a man on the edge. There’s no reason the Eagles couldn’t keep him on the practice squad…further making the decision to keep Gabe Wright on the roster a little easier. Wright forced a fumble against the Packers and looked like a dominant force. After a strong camp, it seems as if things are going in the “Wright” direction.


Defensive end: Brandon Graham, Vinny Curry, Derek Barnett, Chris Long, Steven Means   5   (35)
The starting rotation appears to be set, with Graham and Curry leading the charge while veteran Chris Long and first round pick Derek Barnett makeup the guys chomping at the bit to get some action. Barnett exploded onto the scene against Green Bay, while Steven Means was seemingly always in the backfield. It’s a scary rotation for the Eagles and one that shouldn’t see much in the way of changes.


Linebacker: Nigel Bradham, Jordan Hicks, Joe Walker, Nate Gerry   4   (39)
The Eagles drop a linebacker from last week’s prediction in order to keep both Darby and Corey Graham on the roster. Nate Gerry had an eye-popping debut, while Joe Walker looked strong in coverage as he did last year. Both can contribute heavily on special teams which is key for Fipp’s unit.


Cornerback: Ronald Darby, Jalen Mills, Rasul Douglas,  Ron Brooks, Aaron Grymes, C.J Smith     6  (45)
Darby comes in as an instant starter alongside Jalen Mills with Ron Brooks in the slot. This takes the pressure off of Rasul Douglas a little and allows what’s been an inconsistent camp to turn into one of development. Aaron Grymes will backup Brooks over the middle, while C.J Smith will act as the fourth outside corner on the roster.


Safety: Malcolm Jenkins, Rodney McLeod, Corey Graham, Terrence Brooks, Chris Maragos     5  (50)
The Eagles dropped a linebacker in order to retain Graham. The reason is that Terrence Brooks has had such a strong offseason, I’d highly doubt that they want to lose him. Brooks will predominantly be a force on special teams and take over the reins Graham holds, next year.


Special teamers: Donnie Jones, Jon Dorenbos, Caleb Sturgis   50  (53)
No alarms here, Donnie Football is still present, as is Super Sturgis and the magic man himself!


Practice Squad:
Dane Evans QB
Greg Ward Jr. WR
Shelton Gibson WR
Mitchell White CB
Corey Clement RB
Adam Zaruba TE
Craig Winston DT
Tre Sullivan S
Cameron Johnston P
Victor Salako OL



Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports