5 Eagles not named Jalen Hurts to watch during training camp

Eagles
PHILADELPHIA, PA – OCTOBER 18: Philadelphia Eagles Offensive Tackle Jordan Mailata (68) looks on in the second half during the game between the Baltimore Ravens and Philadelphia Eagles on October 18, 2020 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, PA. (Photo by Kyle Ross/Icon Sportswire)

The Philadelphia Eagles open their 2022 training camp next Tuesday. A team full of championship-level aspirations, the Eagles enter camp with one of the most talented and complete rosters in the game.

As always, there are questions to ponder, and players to watch as the Eagles prepare for the next month at the NovaCare complex. Because Jalen Hurts’ name is going to be used a lot over the next year, I have decided to keep him completely off this list. It’s a big year for him – everyone knows it.

Here are five players to watch as training camp draws closer.

Quez Watkins

The Eagles have plenty of offensive firepower heading into the 2022 season. AJ. Brown and DeVonta Smith have been proven commodities. Paired with Dallas Goedert, the trio could form one of the best groups in football.

Don’t forget about Quez Watkins though.

After a strong 2021 training camp, the 6th round pick in 2020 stepped up in his first year as a starter and put up over 600 yards receiving. The speed demon could very well be in for an even bigger year in 2022 if he’s targeted enough.

Training camp was a major stepping stone for Watkins last year, and I think it will be even bigger this year. Eagle fans should be very excited with how Watkins looks in year three.

Jordan Mailata

I truly don’t think there’s been a left tackle as dominant as Jordan Mailata over the course of the last 20 years. Everyone knows his story in growing from a seventh-round project, to one of the top left tackls in the game.

At just 25 years old, Mailata is continuously developing. He’s only going to get better and more dominant.

One thing that I am really excited to see is the battles between him and newly acquired Haason Reddick. Reddick got the better of Mailata when he was playing right tackle last year to the tune of two sacks. If anything, Mailata’s primary area of improvement is dealing with speed rushers.

Working with Reddick this season will only help the Aussie’s growth and further help the Eagles offensive line as they transition away from Lane Johnson and Jason Kelce.

Marcus Epps

The Eagles could absolutely flip a trade for Bengals safety, Jessie Bates, but Epps has already had his nose put out of joint once this offseason.

Epps has been a very solid role player on the team the last few years and is hoping to enter his first season as a starter and leader on a defense. A strong training camp could end any likelihood that Bates comes to Philadelphia.

Nakobe Dean

Dean is one of the more exciting players to watch heading into training camp. There were some injury concerns that had the first round talent fall to the third round, but the Eagles took the risk, and it appears the backer is ready to compete right away.

Jonathan Gannon’s scheme is complex and could take a few weeks for Dean to flourish, but his leadership, speed, and tenacity, are things that Eagles fans have been clamoring for since Trotter left. How he also looks behind Jordan Davis and that Eagles defensive line will also be very telling.

Josh Sweat

The former fourth-round selection has improved his sack totals in every year since he’s been in the league, and is now the unquestioned starter at defensive end. Pair him with Haason Reddick and Brandon Graham and you could be looking at another pro-bowl season and potentially a double-digit sack total.

Another training camp could help Sweat continue to grow into a top defensive product. At 25-years-old, Sweat is on a very team-friendly deal that he signed last season and will only help Philadelphia later on when they need to pay for a quarterback, or offer larger extensions down the road.

Sweat has been a fun player to watch. The 2018 draft class in general has been a fun group to watch.

Eagle fans rightfully can’t wait to see just how much these players improve before the season kicks off in September.

Photo by Kyle Ross/Icon Sportswire

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