Is Dion Lewis becoming a forgotten man for the Philadelphia Eagles? Given the hype around the running back position, it certainly looks like Lewis might end up being the odd man out. Philadelphia is set with LeSean McCoy as the starter. Meanwhile, rookies Bryce Brown and Chris Polk have both been impressive during OTAs. Lewis likes his chances of winning the backup job and I like that confidence. But as a fan, I wouldn't be surprised if he ends up being cut sometime before training camp.
Lewis is a nice athlete but he is really limited by size. At only 5'8" the running back is limited in terms of what he can do for the Eagles. He obviously isn't a third down running back that can be used to grind out yards. Lewis uses the questions about his height as motivation but that only goes so far. There is a reason that the Eagles brought in Brown and Polk. Sure, the team hasn't invested a lot in either player but there is no doubt that they hope one or both lives up to their potential. If that happens, there won't be room for Lewis on the roster.
At this point, Lewis is probably the favorite to be the number two running back simply because of his experience. However, if Brown looks as good in training camp as he does right now, we shouldn't be surprised if he steals that job. He has better size and a better skill set. The only thing that limited Brown in college was his own mentality. If he proves that he is more mature throughout the offseason, there really isn't much reason for the Eagles not to give him the number two job.
If Brown does beat out Lewis, the Eagles will have to figure out what to do. Brandon Boykin figures to take over duties in the return game, further limiting plays for Lewis. The decision would then come between Lewis and Polk for the number three running back. By that point the Eagles might feel like trading Lewis is the best option. For that reason, there is extra pressure on him this offseason. He has confidence right now so I expect him to push hard. However, I'm not sure that it will matter in the end.
Mark Paul is a Philadelphia resident and lifelong Eagles fan.