Philadelphia Eagles: 53-Man Roster Projections

Brad Gagnon@Brad_Gagnon NFL National ColumnistAugust 30, 2012

May 22, 2012; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Philadelphia Eagles running back Chris Polk (32) carries the ball during organized team activities at the Philadelphia Eagles NovaCare Complex. Mandatory Credit: Howard Smith-US PRESSWIRE

After the Philadelphia Eagles play tonight, they'll have less than 24 hours to release 22 good men. That's 42 percent of the roster and about one player per hour. Based on what's happened thus far in organized team activities, training camp and the preseason, here's who we see making the final cut:


Quarterback (3): Michael Vick, Nick Foles, Trent Edwards

OK, I get the feeling they'll stick with Mike Kafka, but I feel strongly it should be the veteran Edwards, who knows how to hold things down and manage games.


Running Back (4): LeSean McCoy, Dion Lewis, Bryce Brown, Chris Polk

None of these guys would make it to the practice squad and they're simply too good to cut. They'll make it work.


Wide Receiver (6): DeSean Jackson, Jeremy Maclin, Jason Avant, Riley Cooper, Damaris Johnson, Marvin McNutt

I'm going with the rookie McNutt over Chad Hall. They're confident that Johnson can be a key reserve as both a receiver and a return man.


Tight End (2): Brent Celek, Clay Harbor

Brett Brackett still has a slight chance, but there's no way they can keep any more skill players. He'd have to make the team ahead of McNutt, Hall and Polk, and I don't agree with that.


Offensive Tackle (4): Todd Herremans, King Dunlap, Demetress Bell, Dennis Kelly

Kind of an obvious foursome here. Kelly makes the team as a rookie at a thin position.


Guard (3): Evan Mathis, Danny Watkins, Julian Vandervelde 

I have my doubts about Vandervelde, especially because Steve Vallos can swing at guard. That said, I think they need Vallos and Vandervelde holding things down in the interior until the Eagles add someone from the waiver wire. If that doesn't happen, both make the team.


Center (2): Jason Kelce, Steve Vallos

Rookie Brandon Washington goes to the practice squad.


Defensive End (6): Trent Cole, Jason Babin, Phillip Hunt, Brandon Graham, Darryl Tapp, Vinny Curry

I'm giving them 11 defensive linemen, which is a little excessive, but it's their strongest, deepest spot. Curry won't play much as a rookie and Tapp is trade bait. The key is that lead foursome.


Defensive Tackle (5): Cullen Jenkins, Derek Landri, Fletcher Cox, Antonio Dixon, Cedric Thornton

Thornton won't be active on game days unless someone gets hurt, and if Mike Patterson comes off the physically unable to perform list, he'll be a top candidate to get cut.


Outside Linebacker (4): Akeem Jordan, Mychal Kendricks, Brian Rolle, Jamar Chaney 

Absolutely no room for Keenan Clayton, who ran out of chances to impress. Jordan is probably the weakest link on the defense, but they don't have any better options to start opposite the rookie Kendricks.


Middle Linebacker (2): DeMeco Ryans, Casey Matthews

There wasn't much doubt here. Chaney and Rolle are versatile enough backups to help out, too.


Cornerback (5): Nnamdi Asomugha, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, Joselio Hanson, Brandon Boykin, Curtis Marsh

These five are locks, and all will be counted upon this season. Hanson is a veteran presence at nickel, Boykin is a key nickel corner-in-training and return man, and Marsh is the first level of insurance if Asomugha gets hurt or DRC fails to deliver.


Safety (4): Nate Allen, Kurt Coleman, Jaiquawn Jarrett, Oshiomogho Atogwe

I'm still unsure about Jarrett but I don't really think Phillip Thomas is a better option, and they can probably get Thomas onto the practice squad.


Punter/Kicker/Long Snapper (3): Chas Henry/Alex Henery/Jon Dorenbos

Henry beat out Mat McBriar this week.