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The Eagles will finish off their 2021 preseason at MetLife Stadium against the Jets on Friday night, but don’t expect to see a ton of starters play.
Jalen Hurts and most of the starters aren't expected to see action.
After four joint practices in the last two weeks, this preseason game is really going to be about giving the Eagles’ younger players and those fighting for roster spots one more chance to show they’re worthy before final cuts.
With that in mind, here are 10 Eagles I’ll be watching closely:
Rodney McLeod still hasn’t been activated off the PUP list and we’re still not sure if he’ll be ready for the start of the regular season. With K’Von Wallace missing time with a groin injury, Marcus Epps and Adams have gotten a lot of those reps. Adams is a veteran and he looks like it on the practice field. He has made a lot of plays this summer. He is not just pushing for a roster spot but he’s also pushing for playing time.
The Eagles have brought Clark along slowly after taking him off the PUP list as he comes back from an Achilles tear. He has looked pretty good in limited practice action and I’m hoping he gets the green light to play in this game. If he holds up, he might be worth a roster spot.
Coming back from a knee injury, Dillard had a rough couple days against the Jets. He has clearly lost the battle to be the Eagles’ starting left tackle. But a good performance in this game might prove he can be an adequate backup or perhaps it could showcase him to another team thinking about trading for a left tackle.
It’s not that Fulgham has had a bad training camp but he hasn’t taken a step the Eagles probably hoped he would. And after coming into the summer with a chance to earn a starting spot, he lost it to Quez Watkins. I think he still has a roster spot and can help the team but he needs to be more consistent.
One of the toughest positions to figure out on this 53-man roster is receiver. Will the Eagles keep just five? If they keep six, who’s the odd man out? It might be J.J. Arcega-Whiteside, but it might also be Hightower, a fifth-round pick last year. We’ve seen some plays from both of those two throughout the summer so it might come down to whoever finishes stronger.
There was a time this summer where I thought the Eagles might be forced to keep Huntley as their fifth running back. But then he suffered a ribs injury and missed some time. He has big play ability and kick return ability but it would be nice to see him do it in game action.
Genard Avery is hurt and Joe Ostman was waived this week. So Johnson is the only player left on the depth chart as a SAM linebacker. Now, the Eagles could always move a guy like Ryan Kerrigan or Alex Singleton into that role but Johnson is making a roster push. The seventh-round pick from Tulane plays the SAM but has also shown his versatility, taking reps at all the linebacker spots.
Another rookie linebacker, Stevens missed significant time this summer with an injury but returned just in time for this final week and even had a big pass breakup against the Jets in practice.
With Tyree Jackson out with a fracture in his back, Stoll has really stepped up to become one of Joe Flacco’s favorite targets on that second-team offense. The UDFA from Nebraska is a very smooth pass catcher who had a couple really nice once up in Florham Park.
Unlike a lot of these players, Williams obviously has a roster spot locked up. The third-round pick has played end and tackle this summer but his game snaps have come almost exclusively at end. I’d like to see him play inside in this game to get a sense of where he might be a better fit as a rookie.
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