Top 3 Training Camp Positional Battles To Watch
Football season is just around the corner, as the start of Eagles training camp is just two weeks away. This offseason has felt longer than most due to the heartbreak this team had in New Orleans on January 13th. Another reason this offseason might of felt longer to many fans is due to the expectations this team has this season.
Howie Roseman has done a tremendous job this off season, and this team is ready to win now and should be the favorite to come out of the NFC. With all the depth on the roster, it leaves for some interesting positional battles in training camp. Let’s take a look at the top 3 positional battles heading into camp.
The most intriguing and deep position on the roster is definitely cornerback. The Eagles were bitten by the injury bug last season to say the least, and felt it most at corner. In the second half of the season, this teams cornerback depth chart was almost laughable at first glance, however they rose to the occasion. Players like Avonte Maddox and Cre’von Leblanc turned into fan favorites down the stretch, and were a big part of their playoff run.
This years battle at corner is very interesting. Ronald Darby is returning on a one year prove it deal and is a lock at one of the outside corner spots, leaving the other one literally up for grabs. Jalen Mills looks like he will start the season on the IR, maybe even the PUP list which means players like Avonte Maddox and Rasul Douglas will be battling for the second outside spot. The Eagles will essentially be 6 corners deep to start the season with Darby, Maddox, Douglas, Jones, LeBlanc and Mills. Where they all end up on the field will be the most interesting part of camp.
In this day and age of football, linebacker has become almost a forgotten position. Most teams roll 3 safeties with a nickel corner on the field, leaving only 1 or 2 linebackers on the field at once. Having said that, the Eagles are desperate for better linebacking play this year. The signing of Zach Brown is the most underrated signing of the offseason, and should step in right away and be our middle linebacker. Nigel Bradham is also returning, and hopes to get back to 2017 form.
After those two, it is a big question mark on who makes the roster. Kamu will be a lock to make it, however his time on the field could be limited if Brown steps up early in the season. Players like Nate Gerry, L.J Fort, and Paul Worrilow will be battling for roster spots and special team snaps. One thing to keep in mind is if L.J Fort were to be cut, the Eagles could get an extra draft pick with the compensatory formula. Keep an eye on the linebacker battle during camp
Well, this battle got a lot less interesting with the signing of Darren Sproles. I absolutely loved the move to bring Sproles back. Having him as our 4th runnning back and potential return man with our return game up in the air was a big move in my mind. If the Eagles do decide to keep 5 running backs, this battle does get interesting.
Howard, Sanders, Clement and Sproles are etched in the roster already in my mind and should be. All of them bring different skill sets and are easily one of the best running back units in the league if they are all healthy. If they are all healthy is the key term in that sentence. Clement and Sproles had injury issues last season which would make Howie and Doug want to carry 5 running backs. That leaves Smallwood, Adams, and Scott fighting for one roster spot. All three failed to step up last year and take hold of their opportunity last year when called upon so I think fans shouldn’t stress too much about who makes it. But hey this is Philadelphia and for some reason fans love to argue over the final running back spot.