Every season we see players who seem to come out of nowhere and have big seasons. On the other end of the spectrum, there are always players who receive a ton of hype and never live up to the expectations.
With such a young team, the Eagles have their fair share of guys who could really make a name for themselves. These are the type of things you like to see happen during a season. However, there’s no hiding the possibility that the Eagles may have players who won’t live up to all they’re cracked up to be.
Today we look at the top five overrated and underrated Eagles heading into the 2010 season.
1. Jason Peters
This one is a no-brainer to me. Peters was a Pro Bowl selection last year but was far from living up to the hype he brought in when coming to Philadelphia. There was a lot of excitement about bringing in a player of his level, but that excitement has died very quickly.
This preseason, we saw Peters make a ton of mental errors and still not block at a very high level. If he plays like this during the regular season, it will be absolutely devastating.
I constantly see him ranked high in terms of offensive lineman, but I don’t think he has shown enough during his time in Philadelphia to earn these rankings.
2. Asante Samuel
This is another guy I think most people would put on their lists, and we all know why.
With Samuel, you have to be willing to sacrifice tackles for interceptions and there’s no escaping that. If a ball carrier is looking the other way, you may see Samuel lay some wood. However, he is not the guy you want to rely on to make a one-on-one tackle in the open field.
He knows his tackling is a problem, but he’ll never change. Samuel is stubborn in his ways and believes that if he can be one of the league leaders in interceptions every year, then people should overlook his inability to tackle.
3. Michael Vick
I think Vick may be able to do some good things in the red zone this season as a wildcat quarterback. However, that’s the only good I see him bringing to the team.
I was asked many times in the off-season about why Kevin Kolb would be the starting quarterback and Vick wouldn't. We got to see first hand that Vick can’t be the drop back passer that this system requires. He made horrible decisions throwing the ball in the preseason and is not the guy you want to be your every down quarterback.
His ability to make plays with his feet are second to none. He's just not an every down quarterback.
4. Mike Bell
When Bell signed with the Eagles, it seemed like he would be a perfect compliment to the elusive LeSean McCoy. He presented the power running game that McCoy lacked and also looked like he would be able to catch the ball out of the backfield.
However, Bell has been injured for the majority of the preseason and not shown a whole lot in the action he did see.
Are the Eagles doomed with Bell as the number two? No. He has shown in the past that he has what it takes to be a legitimate back in this league. However, he has yet to show that in an Eagles uniform.
5. Mike Patterson/BrodrickBunkley
The Eagles used first round picks in consecutive years to bring in these two guys. Both were thought of to be players who would come in and dominate the middle of the defensive line.
Although the duo has been good, they have not dominated in the fashion that people expected.
I think 2010 could be a year in which this may change. The Eagles are going to see some outstanding pressure coming off the corners this year, and this should only open things up in the middle. Until that happens though, they remain on this list.
1. David Akers
He is the longest tenured athlete in Philadelphia and still doesn’t get the recognition he deserves.
Year in and year out, Akers has been an extremely valuable asset to the Eagles and proven to be one of the top kickers in the league. However, the position he plays rarely gets any recognition so he has flown under the radar.
So far through the preseason, it doesn’t seem like Akers will play any different than in the past. He looks as consistent as ever.
2. Todd Herremans
Herremans is a leader on the offensive line and is a guy that I think plays at a Pro Bowl level. We saw just how much of a difference he makes on the field in his preseason debut against Kansas City.
Along with his high level of play at the guard position, Herremans has the versatility to play tackle as well.
A healthy Herremans in 2010 should have a big impact upon the success of the Eagles offense.
3. Leonard Weaver
Sure he was a Pro Bowl and AP First Team selection last season, but fullback is another one of those positions that doesn’t see any glory for the job they do.
To me, Weaver is the Chase Utley of the Eagles. He goes full steam on every play and is the type of player you should tell younger players to emulate.
No matter what the Eagles ask him to do, he does it at a high level. This includes everything from blocking, running the ball, or catching it out of the backfield. To me, he is definitely an underrated asset on the Eagles offense.
4. Jason Avant
This is an easy one. Although he lives in the shadows of the flashier DeSean Jackson and Jeremy Maclin, Avant has to be one of the most talented third receivers on any team.
He is able to go across the middle in ways that Jackson and Maclin cannot, and has a very underrated set of hands. We heard Marty Mornhinweg rave about them this pre-season.
Another part of his game that is often overlooked is his blocking. He is a great down field blocker and allows for normal plays to turn into big plays.
5. Stewart Bradley
One of the biggest downfalls of the 2009 season was the fact that the Eagles didn’t have Bradley on the field.
The entire 2009 season was spent trying to find a combination of linebackers who could play well at a consistent level. This was because they lacked Bradley to anchor the middle.
We’ve already seen him all over the field in the preseason and having him for the 2010 season should make a world of difference.