Eagles 53-man roster prediction: Did preseason loss to Patriots shake up the depth-chart?

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Another preseason game is in the books and we’re just 19 days from the season opener against Atlanta. The pressure is mounting on those still fighting it out over positions on the Eagles roster and time is running out. Who has the momentum heading into the third week of preseason and how much has changed?

 

Quarterbacks: 3 (3)
Carson Wentz, Nick Foles, Christian Hacken Nate Sudfeld

Barring a 19 touchdown breakout from Christian Hackenberg next week, I think it’s safe to say that the Eagles quarterback room is set. Joe Callahan was unable to muster a challenge in the end as Sudfeld stormed off into the sunset with two very promising preseason performances.

 

Running backs: 4 (7)
Jay Ajayi, Corey Clement, Darren Sproles, Wendell Smallwood

By default, Wendell Smallwood appears to be the team’s fourth running back thanks to his marginal special teams efforts. It’s going to take a lot more to secure that fourth spot on the depth chart, but as of right now, it’s injury plagued backs and a struggling Matt Jones. Smallwood is the safe bet at this point, to some degree.

 

Offensive line: 9 (16)
Jason Peters, Stefen Wisniewski, Jason Kelce, Brandon Brooks, Lane Johnson, Halapoulivaati Vaitai, Matt Pryor, Isaac Seumalo, Jordan Mailata

The main surprise here is the addition of Jordan Mailata. He won’t play a snap during the regular season, but I don’t think the Eagles would risk exposing him to the waiver wire, especially after a very promising first EVER Football game one week ago. Matt Pryor will be a name to watch as the season goes on, especially if the injury bug begins to bright. The TCU product has been a real summer standout and brings plenty of potential to the table.

 

Tight end: 3 (19)
 Zach Ertz, Dallas Goedert, Richard Rodgers

The three Muskateers have been near-locks to make the roster all season long and there’s no change this week. Unless the injury Rodgers sustained against New England is more significant than we think, the Eagles have their TE position perfectly laid out for another year of playmaking perfection.

 

Wide receiver: 5 (24)
Alshon Jeffery, Mike Wallace, Nelson Agholor, Mack Hollins, Shelton Gibson

Markus Wheaton has been a total non-factor during preseason and Shelton Gibson has enjoyed two blistering outings so far. The Eagles won’t feel the need to keep six wideouts, feeling fully confident that their draftees from one year ago and be step up to the plate as deep-threats, while Hollins showed more than enough explosiveness out of the slot last year to give his former College Coach, Gunter Brewer, a sense of comfort in keeping just five at the position.

 

Defensive tackle: 4 (28)
Fletcher Cox, Haloti Ngata, Destiny Vaeao, Winston Craig

Elijah Qualls simply has not done enough this offseason. Winston Craig should have made the roster last season after a dominant preseason but was pipped at the post. This time around, depth is lower and the need for consistency is higher. Craig has outperformed the other players competing for those roster spots in both preseason games so far.

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Defensive end: 5 (33)
Brandon Graham, Derek Barnett, Chris Long, Michael Bennett, Josh Sweat

There’s been no change at the defensive end blueprint over the last few weeks. A late breakout from Steven Means may force the Eagles to carry the extra depth, he has always flashed when placed in live situations and it would benefit a position that’s still relatively light on depth. At this stage however, the five listed would fill Schwartz with confidence.

 

Linebacker: 6 (39)
Nigel Bradham, Jordan Hicks, Kamu Grugier-Hill, Corey Nelson, Nate Gerry, LaRoy Reynolds

The Eagles are probably going to go a little heavier at linebacker than you think, purely because of the lack of starting talent. KGH and Nate Gerry will likely flex OLB reps between them depending on the formation, while Corey Nelson will take on a role as a prominent special teamer. Joe Walker loses out to a linebacker who has been performing admirably during preseason and doesn’t carry the same injury concerns.

 

Cornerback: 6 (45)
Ronald Darby, Sidney Jones, Jalen Mills, Rasul Douglas, Avonte Maddox, De’Vante Bausby

The depth chart itself may have questions that still need to be answered, but the talent itself has all but sealed the pot from which the names will be drawn from.

 

Safety:5 (50)
Malcolm Jenkins, Rodney McLeod, Corey Graham, Tre Sullivan, Chris Maragos

Corey Graham’s return is huge for the Safety position. Tre Sullivan’s 8-tackle performance against the Patriots puts him in good stead to seal the fourth spot on the depth chart ahead of the team’s special teams captain.

 

Special teams: 3 (53)
Jake Elliott, Rick Lovato, Cameron Johnston

Signed, sealed, delivered.

 

Practice squad:

S Jeremy Reaves
TE Billy Brown
DE Joe Ostman
RB Josh Adams
CB D.J Killings
DT Elijah Qualls
QB Christian Hackenberg
LB Kyle Wilson
DT Bruce Hector
OL Aaron Evans

 

Mandatory Credit: Stew Milne-USA TODAY Sports

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