Projecting the Eagles final 53-man roster is really hard this year. There are at least 60 players that are good enough to be on just about any roster. That means about seven players that should make this team are going to be cut. That is a good problem to have but it doesn't make the decisions any easier.
Nnamdi Asomugha; Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie; Brandon Boykin; Curtis Marsh; Brandon Hughes
This is one less player than the Eagles had at cornerback last season. Cutting Joselio Hanson was a difficult decision to make, but can you justify keeping two slot corners on the same team? If Boykin gets hurt, Curtis Marsh should be able to fill in in the slot. He has enough quickness to handle the position.
Trent Cole; Jason Babin; Brandon Graham; Vinny Curry; Phillip Hunt
This is the strongest and best-utilized position on the Eagles roster. All five players demonstrate explosiveness off the line and can all consistently get after the quarterback. Darryl Tapp is the odd man out here as expected. You can't cut a player with the upside that Phillip Hunt has and you can't cut a player that you just drafted in the second round.
Fletcher Cox; Cullen Jenkins; Mike Patterson; Derek Landri; Antonio Dixon
I don't know which player is left inactive each week, but I do know that these are the five best defensive tackles on the roster and all give you something different. Cox is the best athlete and the most versatile. Jenkins is the best pass-rusher as he proved with his 5.5 sacks last season. Patterson is the craft veteran who always finds a way to get the job done no matter what. Landri is a flat-out warrior who will get into the backfield consistently. He just has a knack for it. Dixon is the best run-defender, by far.
This his Havili's job to lose. He doesn't have any experienced competition. All he has to do is prove he can block and the job is his.
Alex Henery; Chas Henry; Jon Dorenbos
Same three guys as last time. Alex Henery was outstanding last season, only missing two kicks under 50 yards, and none after Week 4. Chas Henry wasn't great but should win the job over the undrafted rookie Ryan Tydlacka. Jon Dorenbos is one of the best long-snappers in the game. You don't hear about him or hear his name called during a game. For a long snapper that is a good thing.
DeMeco Ryans; Casey Matthews
Ryans locked this position up when the Eagles traded for him last March. Matthews' putting on about 15 pounds of bulk tells us that the Eagles want him to stay at middle linebacker. Greg Lloyd will spend another season on the practice squad if he is lucky.
Evan Mathis; Danny Watkins; Jason Kelce; Mike Gibson; Brandon Washington
Julian Vandervelde was a tough cut here, but the Eagles don't really need him. He is a good backup with the ability to start by 2013. The problem with that is Mathis and Watkins have no history of injuries and they are both signed through next four-plus seasons. They aren't going anywhere.
Gibson makes the team because he can fill in at all three interior line spots. Washington makes the team because he has the most upside of all the backup guards.
Demetress Bell; Todd Herremans; King Dunlap; Dennis Kelly
Bell and Herremans are the starts and Dunlap is the backup at both tackle spots. He has started on both sides and has also played guard as well. Kelly stays on as a project player and the emergency tackle, should two tackles get hurt.
Brian Rolle; Mychal Kendricks; Jamar Chaney; Akeem Jordan
Keenan Clayton is the surprise cut here but he doesn't offer much but coverage skills. Ryans and Kendricks are both every-down linebackers who can cover. The only reason you need a cover-linebacker is if a starter gets hurt and his backup struggles in coverage.
Michael Vick; Mike Kafka; Nick Foles
By far the easiest position to figure out. Vick is the starter, Kafka is his backup and Foles is the project. Case closed.
LeSean McCoy; Bryce Brown; Dion Lewis
If it's between Brown or Chris Polk for the final roster spot at running back, then Brown is in good shape after a strong showing at OTAs and a poor one for Polk.
Nate Allen; Kurt Coleman; Jaiquawn Jarrett; O.J. Atogwe; Colt Anderson
Colt Anderson is the real wildcard in projecting the 53-man roster. He isn't much of a safety but man, can he cover on special teams. You can't cut a player like that. Special teams has become that valuable.
Brent Celek; Clay Harbor; Brett Brackett
The Eagles keep three tight ends this season. They will look to run more two tight ends sets this season. You can't consistently run two tight-end sets without a third tight end for insurance purposes. Plus Clay Harbor needs someone on the roster that can push him for playing time.
DeSean Jackson; Jeremy Maclin; Jason Avant; Riley Cooper; Damaris Johnson
Damaris Johnson is the reason that Marvin McNutt won't make the Eagles roster in 2012. You just can't cut a player with that much speed and talent. He can line up on the outside or in the slot and he is a dangerous return man on punts.