Lots of Roster Talk

Posted: August 31st, 2017 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 62 Comments »

The final cut down isn’t for a few days and the Eagles still have a final preseason game to play. But that didn’t keep them from making some moves.

Lots to cover, but let’s start with Steven Means. This guy has been great both last summer and this summer. He plays a ton of snaps and goes all out. He is highly productive and disruptive. He’s the kind of guy you want to reward for what he’s done.

There was no question in my mind that he was going to make the team. My only question was whether he would be active on gameday. With Graham, Curry, Barnett and Long, the Eagles already have a good 4-man rotation. Means will turn 27 this season so he’s not some young guy you’re developing for the future. He gives you depth at DE and even if he doesn’t play a ton of snaps, he has good value as a practice player.

The Eagles could go light at DT because Curry, Graham, Long and Means have all played DT in the past or this summer. Obviously the DEs would only play there situationally, but they could eat up some snaps to help rest the DT starters if needed.

I love the fact the Eagles rewarded a player who has made the most of his ability. That shows the other backups and fringe players that you can be a valued contributor even if you aren’t a key starter. Good teams get help from all 53 guys in some way, shape or form.

I was not surprised to see Ron Brooks cut. He wasn’t cheap and had durability issues. That’s never a good combination. Brooks was also about to turn 29. The Eagles are building this roster for the future. Brooks isn’t such a good player that you keep him over younger guys like Aaron Grymes, C.J. Smith or Dexter McDougle. By cutting him now, Brooks has a chance to find another job.


I think the addition of Metz and the two LBs is all about the preseason finale.

The Eagles like their DEs. They don’t want to risk having Means or Alex McCalister playing a ton of snaps and getting hurt. I bet Jake Metz and Winston Craig will play most of the 2nd half.

As for the LBs, Najee Goode and Nate Gerry were banged up. If they don’t play, the Eagles need someone to eat up snaps. Fields and Tago get a chance to show what they can do and the Eagles can protect the players they want to. It isn’t ideal, but it does work for both sides.


Interesting. The Eagles already have 237 QB gurus in the organization. Why add another?

They must be planning for the future. Get Miles on board and acclimate him to the organization so he can take over as QB coach if John DeFilippo gets an offer for a promotion in the offseason. The Eagles blocked him from leaving this offseason because they wanted continuity for Carson Wentz. Getting Miles in here and making him part of the staff prepares him to take over if Flip leaves.

The Eagles don’t want to block Flip in the future. That’s not the right thing to do to your assistants and I’m sure most of these guys get along personally and they want to see each other succeed. At the same time, you can’t let a guy leave if it hurts your organization.

It is possible that report is wrong. Miles has a strong WR background. His one year of NFL experience came working with the Packers QBs. He has coached in the WCO and also has Air Raid experience so he’s seen it all. Miles spent a ton of time in college and CFB has had a huge impact on the pro game in recent years.

If the Eagles receivers have a big year, Mike Groh’s reputation could be sky high and he might get some good offers. Miles will work with some part of the Eagles offense and have them better prepared for if/when one of the staff leaves for a better job.


CB Joe Haden got cut and there was a lot of talk about whether the Eagles should be interested. Haden signed with the Steelers.

I’m glad the team didn’t make a big bid for him, if they had any interest. The Eagles have had CBs coming and going for the past 5 to 7 years. They need to develop a group of players who will be here for a few years. Jalen Mills is young. Ronald Darby too. Patrick Robinson isn’t young, but he’s cheap. Next year the Eagles will have Sidney Jones at one spot and either Darby or Mills at the other spot. The three of them could be the CB trio. Haden is an expensive band-aid that just doesn’t make sense for the Eagles right now.

If this felt like a Super Bowl team, Haden would make a lot more sense.


62 Comments on “Lots of Roster Talk”

  1. 1 Jamie Parker said at 12:16 AM on August 31st, 2017:

    That last part about the CB’s and Joe Haden and you didn’t even mention Douglas. Hmmm…don’t know if that’s good or bad.

  2. 2 ColorSgt said at 12:32 AM on August 31st, 2017:

    I’d say Douglas sounds like a good prospect that isn’t ready to start this year. CBs seem to take some time to get comfortable with the scheme as well as the players around them. Douglas has to play more consistent football to get to where he needs to be. I think there will be a learning curve for Jones whenever he is able to play too.

  3. 3 Guy Media said at 5:14 AM on August 31st, 2017:

    Jones was the guy I saw as the best CB in the draft prior to junking his achilles. I’d really prefer he spend the year learning from the sidelines. If he comes back every bit the player he was for 2018, I’d rather have the extra year of team control of him on bobo wages than risk putting him out there this year for minimal return.

  4. 4 Bob B said at 7:36 AM on August 31st, 2017:

    I’ve been thinking that if Jones and Darby work out, Douglas may be a good guy to groom at safety. Malcolm Jenkins is getting older and in the meantime he’d be an excellent mentor. Douglas could be a monster at safety!

  5. 5 daveH said at 10:45 AM on August 31st, 2017:

    Kam Chancellor like

  6. 6 Bob B said at 6:37 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    Yes! That’s what I was thinking too…

  7. 7 daveH said at 7:03 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    And Dawk wasn’t an automatic beast on day 1 either right ??

  8. 8 Bob B said at 4:43 PM on September 4th, 2017:

    I don’t remember, but probably not…

  9. 9 Greg Tulino said at 12:28 AM on August 31st, 2017:

    I read that the Jets are trying hard to trade Matt Forte. I am thinking a 7th round pick could get him. He is making 4 mil this year. If we were to cut Blount and get Forte would that be an upgrade? Forte is a very skilled at catching passes out of the backfield. He runs hard too, but is often injured. He has played for bad teams in Chicago and the Jets. I think he would be highly motivated to play for a contending team here in Philly. Like Blount this would be a one year stop gap as I firmly believe the team will be looking to draft a franchise RB next year. Hey, we all know HR will be looking at any area to improve the 53 man roster. I am just unsure if this would be an upgrade worth pursuing.

  10. 10 gibsonplyer said at 12:38 AM on August 31st, 2017:

    I heard that this morning and had the same thought. The strange thing was before that news broke they were talking to him and I had a stray thought it would be nice to have a guy like that(a vet who is a complete back) on the team,

    My problem is why are the Jets, a team that looks like they could be among the worst in the league, looking to trade a guy if he’s any good? Age/cost sure but you still have to field a football team. If the Jets don’t think your worth paying…

    I think we just have to hope Smallwood stays healthy.

  11. 11 Greg Tulino said at 12:45 AM on August 31st, 2017:

    Right now the Jets are an absolute train wreck. They will be lucky to win 1 game. That is how bad they are. They have already rid themselves of most of their proven veteran players and are in the middle of a complete rebuild. I do not think wanting to trade Forte is anything more than saving money and continuing with the rebuild. That’s my opinion anyway. If the Eagles believe Forte would be a good fit and an upgrade I would think we would at least consider the possibility. Fingers crossed that Smallwood stays healthy and improves from his rookie year.

  12. 12 ColorSgt said at 12:51 AM on August 31st, 2017:

    What about keeping Blount and trading for Forte? RB would be Smallwood, Spoles, Blount and Forte. Rotate them regularly.

  13. 13 Greg Tulino said at 1:21 AM on August 31st, 2017:

    IMO we would not trade for Forte and keep Blount. I agree that whoever we go to war with to start the season at RB will be RB by committee. I just have a feeling that before teams make their final roster cuts or shortly thereafter that HR is going to look for an upgrade at RB to help us this season before we go after a franchise type RB in the draft next year. Good news is we will find out in the next few days.

  14. 14 or____ said at 9:33 AM on August 31st, 2017:

    Good way to waste assets solving a problem we don’t have.

    We are fine at RB.

  15. 15 Someguy77 said at 2:30 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    Seriously trading a 7th round pick is an asset especially if it is a later-round pick? Drifts quickly into UFDA territory.

  16. 16 or____ said at 3:39 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    Who said a 7th rounder will get him first of all.

    Second of all, Marcus Colston – drafted 7th round. Harold Carmichael – 7th round. Seth Joyner – 8th! Clyde Simmons – 9th! Dwight Clark – 10th! Donald Driver – 7th, Shannon Sharpe – 7th…

  17. 17 teltschikfakeout88 said at 11:05 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    Come on the hit rate on 7th rounders is very low… every year most of those drafted late don’t make teams… are there exceptions… yes as you have noted… don’t make it out that 7th round picks are all solid gold…

  18. 18 CrackSammich said at 1:22 AM on August 31st, 2017:

    I guess it depends on how they feel about Smallwood. If they plan on him being a big part of the offense going forward, then it doesn’t make sense to bring in a RB that’s going to take his reps. Blount isn’t going to be used the same way as Smallwood.

  19. 19 Guy Media said at 5:12 AM on August 31st, 2017:

    He might be shot as well. I’m not sure how many more old heads we want to add at this point. I’m really ok with the mix at RB this year.

  20. 20 Ark87 said at 7:44 AM on August 31st, 2017:

    My best friend is a Jets fan so I watch too many jets games every year. He’s fine, but not the guy he was, would probably be a good fit here as an all-purpose back. Probably not worth trading to get. Not for maybe a year of good play.

  21. 21 Someguy77 said at 2:29 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    I’d trade a 7th round pick for Forte and use him as the every down back mixing in Smallwood/Sproles.

    I was pretty psyched about the Blount signing initially but he camp into camp heavy, still doesn’t look like he is in great shape, and hasn’t shown much.

    When Blount is on the field and the only RB, their versatility in playing calling is seriously compromised. I’d bet Forte is a better pass blocker than Blount at this point.

  22. 22 CrackSammich said at 1:20 AM on August 31st, 2017:

    On Haden, I want no part of a CB that couldn’t make the Browns. I realize the situation is more complicated than that with their ongoing rebuild, but if he was worth keeping around, they’d have done so. Browns absolutely do not need the cap space.

  23. 23 Guy Media said at 5:10 AM on August 31st, 2017:

    Flat out, he’s damaged goods. You’re not getting “Joe Haden”, you’re getting some dude who doesn’t really play football that well or that often. Pittsburgh reeks of desperation, but they’ll (and especially their fans) continued to get dominated by New England in that conference.

  24. 24 CrackSammich said at 1:24 AM on August 31st, 2017:

    And at the risk of this becoming a complete Howie circlejerk, You have to admire the way Howie has rebuilt this team completely without turning into the halfassed Process attempts going on in New York and Cleveland. Results will be what they are, but at least we got entertaining seasons out of the “rebuilding” years. I can’t imagine being a fan of those tragic teams, and then having to deal with such a naked punt on the season before it even started.

  25. 25 Guy Media said at 5:16 AM on August 31st, 2017:

    Due to the large roster size and frequent contributions of guys drafted late or as UDFAs, there really isn’t a reason to “process” in football. I get doing so for a QB if you get the sense that you’re going to be a really bad team, but that should only be for one year.

  26. 26 ChoTime said at 1:44 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    Getting a possible franchise QB, getting rid of crap players and contracts, and taking shots of players in the draft. Yeah, he has done great at this stuff. He’s certainly shown some top-shelf ability in those aspects of the job. And one would assume he’s working under some constraints from Lurie (for example, Doug is still a WTF for me).

    He does need to hit on some players. The Eagles may be mediocre, but they’re not a dumpster fire. They may even be good.

  27. 27 Koy: The Legend of Neckbeard said at 9:00 AM on August 31st, 2017:

    I wouldn’t be surprised if the Iggles took a look at one of the 1,000,000 Raheem Mosterts who will be hitting the streets soon.

  28. 28 Dominik said at 10:28 AM on August 31st, 2017:

    The Eagles like their DEs. They don’t want to risk having Means or Alex
    McCalister playing a ton of snaps and getting hurt. I bet Jake Metz and
    Winston Craig will play most of the 2nd half.

    I’m a die hard Football and Eagles fan, but that’s the reason I probably won’t watch todays game. Last year I didn’t watch the 4th PS game. The only Eagles game I missed since 2011 or so. But for the life of me, if the two players who battle for the #5 and 6 DE spot (ok, with Means extension, the battle is over, but still) are too valuable to play significant snaps in this game, it’s just a completely useless game.

    I get that it’s important for the total bottom of the roster guys. Literally their last chance. But honestly, I think most of them will never make it in the league, regardless if there’s a 4th PS game or not. I mean, what can you really show against other players who don’t even have a chance to be back-ups?

    I totally get that you rest your star players. Even the starters. But if the teams decide that it’s too much risk to play your back-ups, they should just cancel those games. NFLPA would like it for sure (because the bottom of the roster guys don’t matter much to them).

    Have to say, though, this year it’s better than the years before. It was a pure joke that the players who gain the most from this game were cut right before it.

  29. 29 Koy: The Legend of Neckbeard said at 11:06 AM on August 31st, 2017:

    This game tonight will barely resemble football (and feature zero in-season play calls) and most of those playing will never wear an Eagles uniform again.

    We can all agree that the NFL preseason is a hilariously brazen money grab and nothing more. At most, an NFL team would want to play two preseason games. Even two seems high. They practice EVERY DAY. What more do you need to see from a coach’s perspective? Four games of bland play calling, penalties, and messy play with marginal talent.

    Goodell and Tagliabue have built a money-printing behemoth that bilks taxpayers out of millions, permanently damages participants, and pays a non-guaranteed contract to boot. Impressive, really. These guys should run Amtrak, it might actually turn a profit.

  30. 30 Bert's Bells said at 2:47 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    If Amtrak had the type of government collusion that the NFL gets, they’d be richer than Tesla Motors.

  31. 31 SteveH said at 12:57 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    I’m totally down for Dane Evans starting at least 3 quarters tonight. The only way watching Rashard Davis and Anthony Denhem running around out there is going to be fun is if Evans is in there to try and gun it into quadruple coverage. I want a 300 yard 4 td 4 interception game out of him.

  32. 32 A_T_G said at 1:12 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    On the other hand, forcing 4 quarters of Matt McGloin upon us will make us appreciate Carson that much more…

  33. 33 unhinged said at 2:26 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    I thought MM looked the part of an inexperienced back-up QB in the Miami game. If he reverts back to Mark Sanchez on prozac I will shut up.

  34. 34 Sean Stott said at 3:58 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    he kind of looked ok vs. the fins, no?

  35. 35 RC5000 said at 1:22 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    I wouldn’t be shocked if Mcalister played a good amount tonight. If he got injured, they’d put him on IR and free up a practice squad spot. They can’t afford to keep more than Graham, Barnett, Long, Curry and Means on the roster.

  36. 36 A_T_G said at 1:58 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    That’s not a bad idea. Maybe put Pumphrey at guard to pretty much guarantee that he makes it to the IR as well?

    Really though, if McCalister needs a second year of redshirting, you gotta wonder if the juice will be worth the squeeze.

  37. 37 or____ said at 2:18 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    I’m not sure about that last part. Plenty examples of guys taking a few years “in” the NFL to blossom.

  38. 38 A_T_G said at 7:49 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    Really? Granted, my knowledge is limited compared to many of you, but I could not come up with a single example of a successful career that began with two years on the IR.

  39. 39 D3FB said at 9:04 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    Took Harrison like 4 years to make a 53. You’re PSing him this year because you don’t think he can make it through waivers.

  40. 40 or____ said at 9:23 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    Not saying i have an example of that no. But players that blossom a few years in, sure.

  41. 41 Sean Stott said at 3:41 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    What’s the point of Pumphrey on IR though?

    The only one on the roster who makes sense on IR is McCalister, since you could argue he could still use some extra weight.

  42. 42 sonofdman said at 5:28 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    One could argue that Pumphrey needs to add some extra weight.

  43. 43 Sean Stott said at 6:11 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    I don’t think that’s beneficial for his style of play though

  44. 44 RC5000 said at 4:06 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    I wonder if the juice will be worth the squeeze whether McAlister is on IR or the practice squad. And he’ll benefit from playing more in pre season imo.

  45. 45 Someguy77 said at 2:34 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    This team’s CB depth is still really shaky. They must have thought the odds of Brooks staying on the field must have been pretty remote to cut him over Robinson.

    Not like Robinson is a good fit for the slot CB or has had a particularly good camp. Fortunate to still be here.

  46. 46 or____ said at 2:53 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    Uh, I heard the exact opposite – that Robinson is a particularly good fit for the slot…

    And while the CB depth is shaky – sure – it’s a heck of a lot less shaky than last year, and most teams are in the same boat…

  47. 47 Someguy77 said at 3:03 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    Eagles’ coaching staff has been saying that and the same kind of talk about Robinson since last week reminds me of the earlier talk about Agholor in camp.

    If he doesn’t stink this year, I’ll be surprised. Ditto Mills on the outside. Still is just really slow and even a bit more experience won’t compensate for that. I just hope they don’t have to provide him with constant help like they did down the stretch last year.

    Not sure how you can say the Eagles’ CB depth isn’t as shaky as last year either. It might be better overall simply because Darby might be a solid corner if he plays more like he did in 2015.

    This team hasn’t had a decent starting CB since Rodgers-Cromartie in 2012.

  48. 48 Sean Stott said at 3:46 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    DRC was not a good starting CB in 2012 though…

  49. 49 RC5000 said at 3:50 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    Yeah it has to be proven. But Robinson was good in the slot for San Diego . It’s not just Eagles talking him up.

    Darby should be an upgrade and Mills could improve.

  50. 50 Sean Stott said at 3:51 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    In addition to Darby being an upgrade and Mills hopefully improving, when you add a player to a position group that is literally better than anyone else you had at that position group, it means you got better at CB1, CB2, CB3, CB4, and CB5. That’s really critical when you are facing teams with tons of good WRs

  51. 51 RC5000 said at 3:53 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    Plus everyone agrees the pass rush should be better.

  52. 52 RC5000 said at 3:46 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    That’s misrepresenting Patrick Robinson somewhat…two seasons ago:

    When he lined up in the slot, he allowed just 0.78 yards per coverage snap—2nd best for cornerbacks with at least 200 coverage snaps in the slot, behind only Chris Harris.


  53. 53 P_P_K said at 3:54 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    I have a different take on PS game #4 than a lot of my friends. I like the game. For many of the players, it’s their last shot at a dream they’ve probably been cultivating since they were kids — to play in the NFL. Everyone who is clearly on the roster is sitting on the bench tonight, warm and cozy. The players on the field are busting their butts for one final chance to have their dream come true. It’s a golden ring that few will ever grasp.

  54. 54 Bert's Bells said at 6:09 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    I’m with you.

  55. 55 Someguy77 said at 4:32 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    Is the NFC East the best division in the NFL this year and it possible that all 4 teams finish >.500 this year?

    Almost happened last year with the Eagles at 7-9 and everybody else at >.500

    I could easily see that happening with no division team winning more than 4 games again and even all four team that going 3-3 vs one another.

    Eagles can’t beat the Skins; Cowboys struggle against the Giants; Giants struggle with the Eagles; Redskins struggle with Boys

  56. 56 Sean Stott said at 5:00 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    NFCE is unequivocally the best division.

  57. 57 Ark87 said at 6:48 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    probably about average, though unique. Bunch of teams in a tight cluster around the 8-8 range. Probably one 11 win team, one 9 or 10 win team, one 8 win team, one 7 win team. Whereas most divisions have 1 team with a ton of wins, and one brutally bad team and it all averages out the same.

    Skins are starting to climb to the top of my most hated rival list. Even when they were garbage and we were good, we always managed to play like crap against them. Now they have a 5 game winning streak on us thanks to a Chip regime going belly up and a freaking long snapper getting injured. We need to sweep them this year.

  58. 58 Ryan Rambo said at 9:40 PM on August 31st, 2017:


  59. 59 Ryan Rambo said at 9:56 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    I like Byron Marshall.

  60. 60 Ryan Rambo said at 9:58 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    Greg Ward down, being examined by team doctors.

  61. 61 CrackSammich said at 10:03 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    Smart career decision right there. IR for the season. See you next camp, sir.

    Also, there’s a new thread.

  62. 62 Ryan Rambo said at 10:11 PM on August 31st, 2017:

    Thanks brotha!