Ten Eagles underdogs to watch during the preseason opener

Quez watkins
PHILADELPHIA, PA – OCTOBER 18: Philadelphia Eagles Wide Receiver Quez Watkins (80) warms up during the game between the Baltimore Ravens and the Philadelphia Eagles on October 18, 2020 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, PA. (Photo by Andy Lewis/Icon Sportswire)

We’re just one day away from preseason football. The Philadelphia Eagles will square off against the Pittsburgh Steelers tomorrow night and there’s a lot of excitement around what is a very young Eagles team. But every year, there are a few preseason standouts who win our heats and surprise us. Here are ten players who could fit the bill this Summer.

TE Tyree Jackson

The star of Training Camp will make his Eagles preseason debut on Thursday. At 6’7, the former Bills QB has been turning heads as a big-bodied tight end and as we all know, the Eagles lack depth at the position as well as both long-term and developmental options. If Jackson can make some noise during the preseason, he could force his way onto the final-53 as a TE3 or red-zone specialist.

CB Josiah Scott

Scott recorded the first INT of Training Camp and has been consistently putting in good performances since. Formerly of the Jacksonville Jaguars, Scott projects to be fighting for a depth nickel role. This is important because if Zech McPhearson is working outside, he could have an inside track to being the default backup behind Avonte Maddox if he can prove his worth in preseason play.

QB Nick Mullens

The former Niners QB started out red-hot and has cooled off a little since. Locked in a battle for QB2 with Joe Flacco, Mullens is going to have to showcase that big arm on Thursday, as well as an ability to protect the rock and avoid taking unnecessary risks. There’s every chance he wins the battle to be Jalen’s backup, but it really starts here.

WR Quez Watkins

If his highlight-reel touchdown in front of the fans at the Linc a few days ago was a sign of things to come, then Quez Watkins might just be this year’s Paul Turner. The second-year wideout has a long road ahead of him if he is to carve out a regular role in such a crowded WR room, but his Summer has been sensational up to this point, making it very hard for Sirianni to leave him out of the conversation.

OT Brett Toth

Andre Dillard’s injury has opened the doors for Brett Toth. The Army graduate originally caught on with the Eagles two years ago and has been very much under-the-radar since, having been on the edge of the practice squad for quite some time. Now, he has a chance to get second-team preseason reps. We’ve seen what Jeff Stoutland can do with raw offensive line talent (Jordan Mailata), I wonder how Toth will look tomorrow night.

RB Jason Huntley

Huntley has speed and lots of it. We didn’t get to see it at all last season, despite the Eagles submitting a late waiver claim to acquire him. He’s been zooming through training camp so far and has a chance to really cement his worth with a home-run hit on Thursday night.

CB Kevon Seymour

I love Kevon Seymour. I think he ticks every box that the Eagles would look for in a corner. Surprisingly (to me at least), he’s been pretty quiet this Summer. But with speed and length in abundance, we may see some flashes late in the fourth quarter, just like we did in his limited in-game action last year.

C Luke Juriga

The Eagles are still yet to find a backup to Jason Kelce, but Juriga has been around the team for a while now and will see a huge chunk of time on Thursday night. It’s unlikely we see much, if any play from Kelce, giving Juriga a chance to run with the first-team and strut his stuff in front of the Philadelphia faithful, proving that he has enough upside to warrant taking a swing on.

LB Genard Avery

The Eagles traded a fourth-round pick for Avery in 2019 and he’s struggled to break free since. However, he’s converted to linebacker this offseason and will be working at the SAM position. He’s athletically gifted and has a lot of upside as a stand-up rusher of the edge as well, as proven against the Jets just after his arrival. Thursday night will show us just how much higher the ceiling really is…or isn’t.

DE Milton Williams

I know he’s a rookie and everyone’s going to be keeping an eye out for him anyway, but Milton Williams is among the most versatile players on the roster. He can line up inside and outside, and given that the Eagles have run a mix of 3-4 and 4-3 looks, he could be a very fun player to watch.

Photo by Andy Lewis/Icon Sportswire