Preseason is nearing the end as we head to the toughest part of every coaches job, the final roster cuts. On August 30th, every NFL team had to trim their roster down to 80 players and on September 3rd, every team has to get down to the final 53.
Every team is going to have some really tough choices to make including the Eagles, who will be cutting at least five or six players that will find a spot on another team's roster.
Which players will be the odd man out? Stay tuned this week to find out which of the Eagles players get the axe and which players get to stay on for what could be a serious run at the Lombardi Trophy in Philadelphia.
Marlon Favorite was a victim of a very crowded position at defensive tackle. He become a fan favorite mainly because of his celebration move of rubbing his belly after a good play. He finished his three preseason games in Philadelphia with seven tackles and zero sacks. He also attempted a dive in the open field against Browns quarterback Jarrett Brown.
Derrick Locke was an explosive running back when healthy at the University of Kentucky but hasn't been able to show that in the NFL quite yet. Locke was sixth in the Eagles depth chart at running back and never really had a chance to prove himself.
Locke will have to prove himself in another football league such as the AFL or USFL before he can stick with an NFL team.
Gerald Jones was the latest wide receiver to be cut despite his two touchdown catches against Pittsburgh in the second week of preseason. Jones had an up and down career at the University of Tennessee but showed a lot of promise with the Eagles in just a few short weeks. Jones is expected to make the Eagles practice squad if he isn't picked off by another team.
Jamar Wall has struggled to make an NFL roster in his second season. He was drafted in the sixth round of the 2010 NFL Draft by the Dallas Cowboys but was cut by Dallas and the Houston Texans in 2010 before getting a shot with the Eagles in 2010. He spend the rest of the season on the Eagles practice squad. Wall was signed to a futures contract last January with the Eagles but was cut for the third time on August 29th. Wall will be a candidate for the Eagles' practice squad again this season.
Martell Webb is a blocking tight end in his rookie season out of Michigan. He wasn't drafted last April but was brought into Philadelphia to add some competition at the tight end spot. Webb had little shot to make the team going up against veterans like Brent Celek and Donald Lee but is very likely to make the practice squad.
Eagles cornerback Isaiah Trufant was a long shot to make the final 53 man roster even before they signed Nnamdi Asomugha and traded for Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie. Trufant was signed by the Eagles last February after being waived by the New York Jets. Trufant will be one of many cut Eagles players that will be a candidate for the practice squad.
Jorrick Calvin was the Eagles seventh best cornerback headed into preseason and never really was able to move up on a very crowded depth chart. Calvin was part of the Charles Scott trade from a year ago. The Eagles have now officially gotten nothing out of that sixth round pick they used on Scott in 2010.
Rod Harper is a wide receiver attempting to make the Eagles roster for the second time. Harper was signed by the Eagles on September 22nd, 2010 and spend the entire time on the Eagles practice squad. He finished preseason with eight receptions for 76 yards. He has one year left on his eligibility on the Eagles practice squad and could very well stay in Philadelphia for one more season.
Chris Wilson was brought in on August 8th to add both competition and depth at the defensive end position. Wilson was never thought of as a contender to make the Eagles final roster. He had spent the previous three seasons with the Washington Redskins. Wilson may be better served as an edge rusher in a 3-4 defense and may get a shot with someone that runs that defense.
Rashad Jeanty was brought in as a special teams ace and as a potential backup at outside linebacker. Jeanty was outplayed by younger but quicker outside linebackers and became a long shot to make the team. He recorded just four total tackles in four preseason games.
Allan Quay Shipley was an outstanding college center who has never been able to make the transition to the next level. Shipley won the Rimington Trophy in 2008 as college football's most outstanding center. He was signed by the Eagles after the 2009 season after he was cut by the Pittsburgh Steelers. He spent all of the 2010 season with the Eagles on the practice squad and has one more year of eligibility there.
Cornelius Ingram has been the victim of two season ending ACL injuries since 2008. Ingram has battled back like a true professional but still has not fully recovered from two major knee surgeries. He finished preseason with two receptions for 27 yards. If he can ever get back to where he was heading into his senior season at Florida he will easily make an NFL roster. Until he can fully get back to football shape, he will have to settle for someone's practice squad
Stanley Havili is a running back playing the fullback position. Havili is a duel threat type back with limited blocking abilities. He finished preseason with four carrier for 12 yards and one reception for 20 yards. Owen Schmitt is clearly the Eagles fullback and Havili will have to settle for the practice squad or another football league altogether.
Dallas Reynolds career with the Philadelphia Eagles appears to be over. He was cut on September 2nd following back to back seasons on the Eagles practice squad. Reynolds spent on game on the Eagles active roster after center Jamaal Jackson tore his ACL in 2009.
Graig Cooper is a player to keep on eye on. He was a very promising player at the University of Miami prior to a torn ACL in 2009. He showed a ton of potential with the Eagles in preseason, finished with 13 carries for 31 yards and one touchdown. If he can get back to where he was back in 2008 with Miami he will make an NFL roster. He is an excellent candidate for the Eagles practice squad this season and could be backing up LeSean McCoy and Dion Lewis in 2012.
Mike McGlynn did a remarkable job filling in at center for the Eagles in 2010 but apparently that didn't impress new offensive line coach Howard Mudd enough for the Eagles to keep him in 2011. The Eagles will save over $1 million in cap space by cutting McGlynn. He became expendable with the good start both interior rookie linemen Jason Kelce and Julian Vandervelde made this summer. He should find a spot on someone else's roster. He doesn't have a very high ceiling but his experience at center from 2010 will probably earn him a backup role somewhere.
Austin Howard was brought in as an undrafted free agent in 2010 as a project player for then offensive line coach Juan Castillo. This season Juan Castillo is coaching up the defense and the Eagles new blocking scheme doesn't fit well for Howard. Howard made one start in 2010 and really struggled against athletic pass rushers.
Sinorice Moss was brought in to compete for the punt returner spot but never really impressed as a return man or as a wide receiver. He finished preseason with six catches for 76 yards and five punt returns for 47 yards.
Chad Hall had become a fan favorite with a pretty good chance on making the Eagles roster but at the end of the day he just didn't fit in with the Eagles plans at wide receiver. Hall isn't a good return man and lacked enough speed and size to make an impact with the Eagles talented receiving core. He can make plays out of the backfield and lined up as a receiver. Hall will probably got a shot with someone else this season,
No players has been hit by the injury bug worse than Marlin Jackson. Over the last three years he has suffered through two ACL tears and a torn Achilles tendon. Jackson hasn't suffered another serious injury but has looked a lot slower when he has been able to get on the football field. I expect his career is over.
Fenuki Tupou was a long shot to make the Eagles final roster. He didn't fit in with the new blocking scheme and he has really struggled in his pass protection this summer. Now he is a free agent who will be looking to latch on to someone else' practice squad.
Reggie Wells had all of 2010 to impress Eagles coaches. He barely sniffed the field last season so it comes as no surprise that Wells was cut during final cuts. He can play four different line positions but having not seen much action on the field since 2009 and being on the decline Wells may not be getting many calls from offensive line needy teams.
Eldra Buckley is a good special teams player but has shown very little of an impact in the offense. With the Eagles being set at running back with LeSean McCoy, Ronnie Brown and Dion Lewis it should come as no surprise that Buckley was cut.
Greg Lloyd is a tough inside linebacker who didn't fit in with a very fast Eagles defense. Lloyd should make the Eagles practice squad unless someone else signs him to their roster. Lloyd is still getting back to football shape following an ACL tear in 2009 that greatly slowed him up last season in college.
Johnnie Lee Higgins, like Moss, was brought in as a punt returner candidate but only had one three yard return during preseason. Higgins also struggled as a receiver in the Eagles offense, dropping several passes and never really stretching the field. His longest catch of preseason went for a whopping 10 yards.
When Ryan Harris made the start at right tackle in the Eagles first preseason game against the Ravens they thought they had their starting right tackle. Harris hasn't seen the field since whether it be at practice or in a game and recently had back surgery. Don't be surprised if he is signed mid season by the Eagles if they are ravaged by injuries. Harris isn't expected to be ready to play for at least another month.
Anthony Hargrove has plenty of game experience at defensive tackle, but his performance this preseason with the Eagles wasn't enough to beat out injured tackle Trevor Laws or undrafted free agent Cedric Thornton. He will certainly shake up the defensive tackle position for some team this season, just not in Philadelphia.
In a surprise move, the Eagles have cut Derek Landri and kept undrafted free agent Cedric Thornton. Landri had an impressive preseason, picking up two sacks. Landri started all 16 games last season with Carolina where he had four sacks.
Andy Reid and the Eagles front office doesn't make roster decisions based on who was drafted higher and it showed when they decided to keep former CFL star Phillip Hunt and released their 2010 third round pick, Daniel Te'o-Nesheim. Phillip Hunt lead to team in sacks with three this preseason. Eagles GM Howie Roseman said Hunt played "lights out" in preseason and was clearly the better player.
Donald Lee wasn't released on Saturday as the Eagles decided to keep just two tight ends. Lee was a Super Bowl champion with the Green Bay Packers last season. Lee finished third on the Eagles with 92 receiving yards.
Joselio Hanson is an outstanding slot corner but hasn't been able to hold his own on the outside and as a result was a part of the final cuts. The Eagles decided to keep three young corners, all with very high ceilings in Trevard Lindley, Curtis Marsh and Brandon Hughes. Hanson is a slot specialist that will get signed very quickly from cornerback needy teams like the Arizona Cardinals or the New York Giants.