Mid-Season Grades for Eagles Rookies


The 2015 NFL season is at its halfway point and it’s safe to say that the Philadelphia Eagles aren’t where they expected to be. The preseason saw the team looking like a tough Super Bowl contender. Yet once the season started, the team struggled to find a rhythm. The offensive line is still trying to work together as a cohesive unit. Sam Bradford is still having his ups and downs finding his place at the helm.

A bright side in the season should be the Eagles’ 2015 draft class. They looked promising and many had high hopes, especially for number 20 overall draft pick Nelson Agholor. However, as the season has progressed, these rookies have not been living up to expectations. After seven games, it’s important to take a look as to why they might not be performing as well as the team had hoped.

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Nelson Agholor

Nelson Agholor was giving high expectation when he was picked by the Eagles. He was supposed to be the guy who could step up and fill the shoes of Jeremy Maclin. Agholor could be Rookie of the Year and have a stellar year under head coach Chip Kelly. None of these things have happened and Agholor is playing well below expectations. He’s only had eight receptions for 105 yards and no touchdowns. Granted, he’s suited up for every Eagles game that he’s started so that’s a plus.

Yet he hasn’t been delivering the quality of performance expected of such a high draft pick. Agholor also has one drop and a fumble yet the reasons for his disappointing start aren’t all his fault. The struggles of Sam Bradford haven’t made Agholor’s job easier as Bradford isn’t throwing the ball downfield as much. If Bradford trust his arm and throws downfield, Agholor will have more chances. He needs to recover from an ankle injury before he can prove he’s worth keeping.

Grade: B-

Eric Rowe

Defensive back Eric  Rowe has been used primarily as a cornerback for the Eagles. Rowe has only had 106 defensive snaps and he only had a chance to play in the dime slot after an injury to Chris Maragos. He did have an interception in Week 3 against the jets but besides that, he’s been a small player for the team. However, Rowe has been doing well on special teams and that might be where Kelly uses him the most.

Grade: C+

Jordan Hicks

There is no question that the best rook thus far in the season is the Eagles inside linebacker Jordan Hicks. There was virtually no expectations for the third round draft pick yet he’s blown most away. He wasn’t supposed to be used more than on special teams and maybe in the fourth linebacker position. However he’s seen his star rise due to injuries to Mychal Kendricks and Kiko Alonso.

Hicks has had played on 403 defensive snaps and of those he’s had 37 tackles, six assists, one interceptions, one sack, one forced fumble and three fumble recoveries. He had the sack that took out Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo. He’s going to be a figure in the Eagles defense for seasons to come and if he keeps performing at a high level, Hicks could potentially be Defensive Rookie of the Year.

Grade: A

JaCorey Shepherd

JaCorey Shepherd had potential and that potential led the Eagles to feel comfortable trading Brandon Boykin. Unfortunately, Shepherd was place on injured reserved during training camp with a season-ending injury.

Grade: F

Randall Evans

Randall Evans didn’t even see the field during the regular season. He was waived and ended up on the Eagles practice squad. He wasn’t a particular stand out during training camp.  Evans will likely never make it to the Eagles 53-man roster.

Grade: N/A

Brian Mihalik

Brian Mihalik was waived by the Eagles in the final round of preseason cuts. He’s not playing on any NFL team or on any practice squad so it’s safe to say he’ll never been seen by the Eagles again.

Grade: N/A

Next: Eagles Fantasy Football: Analysis at the Bye Week

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