We’re just two preseason games away from the return of regular season Football. There’s everything to play for when it comes to roster spots and depth chart positioning but for these five players, tonight’s clash with Cleveland carries some extra weight.
To say Foles looked rusty against the Patriots last week would be generous. The Super Bowl MVP had missed a chunk of training camp and this was the first live-game action he’d seen during the short offseason following his incredible Lombardi winning effort. There is still a very good chance that Foles will start in week one, making it imperative to reacclimatize himself with the Eagles offense and the weapons around him.
This may be hard to do given that Alshon Jeffery, Nelson Agholor and Mike Wallace have all missed time and could likely be sidelined tonight too. It will be down to Foles to make the most of the first half and fall back into the rhythm that saw him soar higher than ever just a few months ago.
The Eagles backfield is an intriguing point of discussion right now, largely because the opportunity to become the team’s fourth running back has been sitting on a silver platter for weeks now, with nobody hungry enough to dig in. Adams is set to play his second ever preseason game tonight after struggling with injury last week and throughout camp. In his lone appearance, he averaged 5 yards per carry on 6 attempts, breaking off an 18-yard run in the process. Adams simply has to put the pedal to the floor tonight if he has any chance to snatching that fourth role on the roster away from Wendell Smallwood.
Sidney Jones:As documented in this week’s film room, the slot battle between Avonte Maddox and Sidney Jones is well underway.
Last week, Maddox got the start in the nickel before the rotation began but there’s a very good chance the Eagles leave Jones out on an Island this week. Why? Two words. Jarvis Landry. The Browns slot receiver who has been ‘blessing’ every corner on his team this offseason went without a catch last week but could be primed for a much bigger outing as the starters prepare to play anywhere up to 50% of snaps. This means that Jones will have plenty of time to prove himself against one of the league’s most electric pass-catchers.
In two preseason contests, DeAndre Cater has 4 catches for 68 yards. Not bad for a wideout playing for his fifth team since 2015. The former undrafted free agent has shown plenty of desire and potential to change his stars and make the final roster and he’s doing all the right things. The problem is, the Eagles may not have enough slices of Cake to go around. With that said, Carter has been proving people wrong all offseason and if he has another big game tonight, there’s no reason he can’t at least audition for teams starved for depth at the position.
The Eagles run defense is going to have a few question marks hovering over it until Timmy Jernigan returns, especially given how much the team rotates their defensive tackles and the durability concerns facing veteran Haloti Ngata. The Washington product entering his third season hasn’t exactly set the field alight this preseason, but Winston Craig has certainly upstaged him. Qualls has to do something tonight to cement himself in the pass-rushing rotation.
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