Philadelphia Eagles Training Camp Preview
The Philadelphia Eagles were off to a surprising 3-0 start last season, but they faltered afterwards. Philadelphia finished in last in the NFC East last season, but they are one of the teams that improved in the offseason.
Carson Wentz is one of the reasons why the Eagles could take a big step forward in 2017. Do you want to know a weird stat for the Philadelphia Eagles in the 2016 season? When the Eagles had Lane Johnson in the line, they went 5-1. They were 1-9 when he was out of the lineup.
Do you want to know another weird stat? When Johnson was in the lineup, Wentz threw for 10 touchdowns and 2 interceptions. When he was out of the lineup, Wentz threw for 6 touchdowns and 12 interceptions.
Also, Wentz will obviously be the starting quarterback. Nick Foles will be the backup and Matt McGloin will be the third quarterback.
At running back, they have a lot of good running backs but not great running backs. That might force them to keep five on the roster instead of the traditional four most teams usually do. LeGarrette Blount will most likely be the starter. Don't be surprised Eagles fans if he doesn't blow you guys away.
Once he gets touched he loves to go down. Also Blount is a terrible pass catcher out of the backfield. Ryan Matthews has a case of the fumbles and injuries. Can he be relied on either?
Darren Sproles loves to be used on screens, but he is more of a special teamer. Donnel Pumphrey has the most to gain from this possible weak running back core. He is only a rookie and needs to impress in training camp. If that's the case. Pumphrey could definitely see time as a rookie.
So it will come down too Wendell Smallwood, Byron Marshall, or Corey Clement for the final running back spot on the roster.
The Eagles signed Alshon Jeffery and Torey Smith to bolster their wide receiving core. They had tons of drops last season. Jeffery and Smith will be the number one and two, and Jordan Matthews will now become the number three receiver.
Expect Nelson Agholor, Bryce Treggs, and Mack Hollins to be the number four, five, and six wide receivers on the roster.
Zach Ertz and Brent Celek will be a solid one-two punch at tight end for the Eagles. The question is who will be the number three tight end for Philadelphia. The competition will be between Trey Burton, AD Denham, or Billy Brown.
The starting offensive line is projected to be Jason Peters, Allen Barbre, Jason Kelce, Brandon Brooks, and Lane Johnson. Stefen Wisniewski will be a solid backup to Kelce. Isaac Seumalo could also fight for some playing time as well.
The Eagles have a solid defensive line. Chris Long, Fletcher Cox, Timmy Jernigan, and Brandon Graham is the projected starting defensive line. Rookie Derek Barnett is going to have to earn his way into the rotation on the defensive line.
Vinny Curry and Steven Means are one of the two players he has to compete with for a possible rotation spot. Elijah Qualls will be a solid rotation player too.
Nigel Bradham, Jordan Hicks, and Mychal Hendricks is the projected starting linebacking core. They're not very deep after that.
The secondary is going to be a major concern for the Eagles if they don't rush the quarterback well. Jalen Mills, Rodney McLeod, Malcolm Jenkins, and Patrick Robinson is the projected starting secondary.
It is unknown how long Sidney Jones will be sidelined for with his injury. Caleb Sturgis will be the Eagles kicker and Donnie Jones and Cameron Johnston will have a competition in camp to see who will be the Eagles punter.
Darren Sproles is expected to be the punt returner. Nelson Agholor could be the Eagles kick returner.