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10 players who could have bigger roles for the Eagles in 2024

The 2024 NFL offseason is officially underway after the Chiefs’ 25-22 win over the 49ers in Super Bowl LVIII from Las Vegas.

The league will take the next month to catch its breath, but the slowdown won’t last long, as potential free agents will face the franchise tag, and all 32 teams will head to Indianapolis for the NFL Scouting Combine at the end of February.

With the Bears now on the clock, we’re looking at ten Philadelphia Eagles who see an increased role in 2024.

Mekhi Garner

Aug 12, 2023; Baltimore, Maryland, USA; Philadelphia Eagles cornerback Mekhi Garner (43) strips the ball from Baltimore Ravens wide receiver James Proche II (10) on a punt return during the second half at M&T Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports
Aug 12, 2023; Baltimore, Maryland, USA; Philadelphia Eagles cornerback Mekhi Garner (43) strips the ball from Baltimore Ravens wide receiver James Proche II (10) on a punt return during the second half at M&T Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

An undrafted free agent out of LSU, Garner has the size and versatility to play multiple positions, adding value as a hyrbrid defender to a retooling Eagles secondary.

Kenneth Gainwell

Dec 25, 2023; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Philadelphia Eagles running back Kenneth Gainwell (14) fiumbles the ball while being tackled by New York Giants safety Jason Pinnock (27) during the second quarter at Lincoln Financial Field. Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 25, 2023; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Philadelphia Eagles running back Kenneth Gainwell (14) fiumbles the ball while being tackled by New York Giants safety Jason Pinnock (27) during the second quarter at Lincoln Financial Field. Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

It’ll be a similar prognosis for Gainwell entering his third NFL season.

Gainwell rushed 84 times for 364 yards and two touchdowns in 16 regular-season games, adding 30 catches for 183 yards.

Gainwell’s carries and yards were career highs, eclipsing his 68 carries for 291 yards as rookie in 2021. He also saw his workload reduced significantly after his first two games, as he averaged four carries per game the rest of the season after rushing 14 times in both of his first two contests.

With Philadelphia having three unrestricted free agent running backs, Gainwell will enter the offseason again hoping for an increased role.

Kelee Ringo

Sep 10, 2023; Foxborough, Massachusetts, USA; New England Patriots defensive end Lawrence Guy Sr. (93) blocks Philadelphia Eagles conner back Kelee Ringo (22) during the first half at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Eric Canha-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 10, 2023; Foxborough, Massachusetts, USA; New England Patriots defensive end Lawrence Guy Sr. (93) blocks Philadelphia Eagles conner back Kelee Ringo (22) during the first half at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Eric Canha-USA TODAY Sports

Ringo finished his rookie season with 1.0 sacks, one interception and 21 tackles in 17 regular-season games.

The fourth-round pick spent the bulk of the season limited to special-teams duty, playing just a one defensive snap prior to Week 14.

Ringo earned a role on defense for the final six games, starting four of them, and he’ll likely replace James Bradberry in 2024.

Britain Covey

Jan 7, 2024; East Rutherford, New Jersey, USA; Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Britain Covey (18) is tackled by New York Giants safety Dane Belton (24) during the second half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 7, 2024; East Rutherford, New Jersey, USA; Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Britain Covey (18) is tackled by New York Giants safety Dane Belton (24) during the second half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

Jeff McLane of The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that Covey underwent a procedure on his left knee this offseason.

Still, the former Utah wide receiver averaged the league’s second-most yards per punt return (14.4).

In 17 games in 2022 with the Eagles, Covey did not record a catch and only had four catches for 42 yards and no touchdowns last season, but that could change in 2024 under new OC Kellen Moore.

Tyler Steen

Aug 17, 2023; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Philadelphia Eagles guard Tyler Steen (56) looks on in a game against the Cleveland Browns at Lincoln Financial Field. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports
Aug 17, 2023; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Philadelphia Eagles guard Tyler Steen (56) looks on in a game against the Cleveland Browns at Lincoln Financial Field. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Cam Jurgens was picked in Round 2 in 2022 as the successor to Jason Kelce at center. Tyler Steen was drafted in the third round last year to replace Jurgens at guard when that position switch happens.

With Kelce leaning towards retirement and Sua Opeta set for free agency, the time is now for the former Alabama left tackle.

Nolan Smith

PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA – AUGUST 17: Nolan Smith #3 of the Philadelphia Eagles looks on prior to the preseason game against the Cleveland Browns at Lincoln Financial Field on August 17, 2023 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA – AUGUST 17: Nolan Smith #3 of the Philadelphia Eagles looks on prior to the preseason game against the Cleveland Browns at Lincoln Financial Field on August 17, 2023 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)

Smith recorded 18 tackles and 1.0 sacks in 17 regular-season games during his rookie season.

Playing Haason Reddick and Brandon Graham, the former Georgia star linebacker didn’t play more than eight defensive snaps in a game until Week 12.

His season in snaps played was 21, but with Haason Reddick and the Eagles at a contract impasse, Smith could see his role increase immediately.

Milton Williams

Dec 3, 2023; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Philadelphia Eagles defensive tackle Milton Williams (93) reacts after a defensive stop during the second quarter against the San Francisco 49ers at Lincoln Financial Field. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 3, 2023; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Philadelphia Eagles defensive tackle Milton Williams (93) reacts after a defensive stop during the second quarter against the San Francisco 49ers at Lincoln Financial Field. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Williams set a career-high in tackles (42) but a career-low in sacks (0.5) in his third NFL season, playing 16 regular-season games for the Eagles.

The 2021 third-pick started ten games in 2023 after a combined two in his first two years in the league, though his snap share (46 percent) did increase from previous years.

Williams will enter the final year of his deal as the most-tenured player at defensive tackle if Fletcher Cox doesn’t return.

Ben VanSumeren

Dec 31, 2023; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Philadelphia Eagles linebacker Ben VanSumeren (57) in a game against the Arizona Cardinals at Lincoln Financial Field. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 31, 2023; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Philadelphia Eagles linebacker Ben VanSumeren (57) in a game against the Arizona Cardinals at Lincoln Financial Field. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Last summer, the former Michigan State linebacker had an outstanding training camp, logging 17 tackles in the preseason finale before VanSumeren was released with final cuts. The Eagles had Nakobe Dean, Zach Cunningham starting, and Christian Ellis as a depth piece.

After the Eagles finally signed VanSumeren to the 53-man roster on Nov. 30, he made an impact with 131 special teams snaps in six games down the stretch.

Philadelphia will have a decision to make on defense, and if Howie Roseman again doesn’t address the linebacker position, VanSumeren could be in line for a starting role.

Isaiah Rodgers

INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA – NOVEMBER 20: Jalen Hurts #1 of the Philadelphia Eagles slides in front of Isaiah Rodgers #34 of the Indianapolis Colts during the second half at Lucas Oil Stadium on November 20, 2022 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA – NOVEMBER 20: Jalen Hurts #1 of the Philadelphia Eagles slides in front of Isaiah Rodgers #34 of the Indianapolis Colts during the second half at Lucas Oil Stadium on November 20, 2022 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

Philadelphia always looks to add talent, and the Eagles signed suspended cornerback/return specialist Isaiah Rodgers to a deal.

The NFL suspended Rodgers for violating the league’s gambling policy, and the Colts waived him.

A 5-10, 176-pound cornerback, Rodgers was a sixth-round pick out of UMass in 2020.

Rodgers appeared in 45 games (10 starts), logging 88 tackles, ten passes defensed, and three interceptions.

A phenomenal special teams standout, Rodgers became just the sixth rookie in Colts history to return a kickoff for a touchdown, earning PFWA All-Rookie honors last season.

Rodgers has averaged 27.0 yards per kickoff return in his career and will undoubtedly be a factor for the Eagles.

Tristin McCollum

Jan 7, 2024; East Rutherford, New Jersey, USA; New York Giants tight end Darren Waller (12) makes a catch in front of Philadelphia Eagles safety Tristin McCollum (36) during the second half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 7, 2024; East Rutherford, New Jersey, USA; New York Giants tight end Darren Waller (12) makes a catch in front of Philadelphia Eagles safety Tristin McCollum (36) during the second half at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

McCollum attended Sam Houston State, where he was a starter in the secondary before signing with the Houston Texans as an undrafted free agent.

In the regular-season finale against the New York Giants, he played six tackles, making the first significant defensive snaps of his career.

McCollum was elevated from the practice squad three times last season, playing 37 total snaps on special teams.

With Sydney Brown rehabbing a torn ACL, McCollum could see a jump in snaps.

Story originally appeared on Eagles Wire