How preseason finale impacted Eagles biggest positional battles

This is it, the lights seem a bit brighter now on the Philadelphia Eagles. They had an offseason for the ages. The focus was on depth, playmaking ability, and the trenchers. They somehow mastered all three goals without breaking much of a sweat but now, it seems the sweat may just make an appearance after all.

The team has added so many quality players that it may have been more of a curse than a blessing at this point. There are players on this roster that have other teams GMs drooling. They’re pacing back and forth waiting for the Eagles to make a cut that could end up being a significant player on their team.

It’s a blessing for the Eagles because it shows just how great the front office really is when it comes to scouting. It also shows that the Eagles aren’t scared of losing a “good” player because they believe they’re keeping “great” players only. “The New Norm”, what a spectacle it has become.

If you caught the Eagles final preseason battle against the New York Jets then you may have noticed a few things.

Linebackers

Alex Singleton and T.J Edwards put on a show Thursday night, one that was incredible to see live in person. It seemed as if they were just taking turns every time a ball carrier came their way. They went blow for blow until the very last minute. Singleton finished the game with 15 tackles and a fumble recovery, as for Edwards, the rookie UDFA finished with 10 tackles and a TFL but the numbers won’t tell you the full story. I witnessed the focus and discipline the allowed T.J Edwards to dominate. It was hard to not see Singleton involved in every play, the man just wouldn’t quit until the down was dead. The Eagles are in a tough spot because as it stands right now, they have Nigel Bradham, Zach Brown, Nate Gerry, and LJ Fort ahead of Singleton and Edwards.

It’s unfortunate because I truly believe that Singleton and Edwards have unlimited potential as Gerry and Fort may never really peak. Fort is already 29 years old and has never really been an overachiever in this league. Gerry is 24 years old but has the odds stacked against him due to his size at the position. Singleton is 25 years old and has enough experience in the game to be everything the team needs him to be. As for Edwards, he’s only 23 years old and the kid is a flat out stud. The front office will absolutely lose their hair on this decision.

Wide Receivers

Here’s a case of good news/bad news. Good News: Mack Hollins is back and he’s alive and well. Bad News: We still don’t know what he can do. He had flashes in his rookie year but that’s really all we’ve seen. The touchdowns against the Packers and Redskins were great but that was two years ago. There hasn’t been much progression revealed during this offseason when it comes to Hollins and as much as I think that should hurt his stock, it probably won’t. See, the Eagles are focused on size right now and Hollins fits the criteria.

But the team also needs playmakers and he hasn’t shown he can be that just yet. Fortunately, Greg Ward has.

The former QB turned WR has shown he belongs on an NFL roster this preseason. He’s shiftier and quicker than he ever was before but his size may hurt his chance to make the Eagles. The Eagles already have a slot WR in Nelson Agholor, plus with the possibility of 12 and 13 personnel, there’s a chance that Agholor’s role diminishes as well in favor of a tight end.

Running Backs

Now here’s the grand finale. Who, oh who, will be RB5? Will there even be an RB5? The team has a dangerous group in Sanders, Howard, Clement, and Sproles, they really don’t need anyone else. Which devalues the need for Wendell Smallwood but somehow someway we continuously visit this conversation about Smallwood and he seems to always avoid getting cut. Smallwood hasn’t done much since arriving in the league and hasn’t really added much value to the RB group. He runs hard yes, and he’s been there go-to guy when the RB corps was depleted but now, the really no need for him lets see what Coach Pederson has planned for the young running back.

As for the others, Boston Scott was raved about all offseason as the replacement to Darren Sproles but how can you replace Sproles if he’s still on the team? Would I love having Scott on the team? Absolutely but you have to look at the bigger picture. What value does he bring to the team if those first four guys can do it all??

Josh Adams was a great story last season. A local kid who was undrafted and ended up leading the team in rushing yards this season. He flashed great potential last season but with great potential also comes great worry. Adams has been able to be consistent this offseason and I believe injuries factored on his growth. He also hasn’t done himself any favors with fumbling the ball. The odds are stacked against these three running backs.

Its the worse time of the season when you have to see players get cut from their dreams in hopes to land somewhere they’re needed. Fortunately for the Eagles, it’s a win-win situation if they manage it all correctly. At the end of this weekend, the team will be all set with all the players that coaches believe can make an impact on the team, who are you rooting for??

Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

2 thoughts on “How preseason finale impacted Eagles biggest positional battles

  1. Keep Singleton!!! What he showed in the past two weeks is more then Gerry showed in a couple of years! He’s hungry!!! Let’s feed him with a spot on this roster!!!! Bleedgreen60

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