Philadelphia Eagles training camp preview: The tight ends


With one of the most promising young tight ends and a highly-touted rookie already on the roster, the Philadelphia Eagles search for one more to add to what may be one of the best trios in the league.

In 2017, Philadelphia Eagles tight end Zach Ertz did exactly what every fan of ‘The Birds’ hoped he’d do. He finally delivered on all of that potential that every NFL fan knew he had. Ertz showed he could extrapolate those performances that we saw him come up with against the New York Giants over an entire season.

When the regular season was over, he had hauled in 74 receptions for 824 yards and eight touchdowns while appearing in 14 games. He, then, helped Philly topple the Atlanta Falcons and Minnesota Vikings on their way to a 41-33 victory over the mighty New England Patriots in Super Bowl LII.

Ertz paid huge dividends in that one, particularly on the last drive where he was on the receiving end of the biggest fourth-down conversion in team history and the go-ahead score that put ‘The Birds’ up for good.

2018’s version of training camp is upon us.

The other two tight ends from Philly’s 2017 roster are gone. Brent Celek called it a career and Trey Burton became a cap casualty. The Eagles tried to offset their losses by drafting Dallas Goedert, and now, a training camp will decide who goes on to be the third tight end on Philly’s roster.

Let’s look at the prospects:

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1. Richard Rodgers

The Green Bay Packers took Rodgers in the third round of 2014’s draft. For his career, he has 120 receptions for 1,166 yards and 13 touchdowns. The Eagles signed him on a one-year deal for $880,000 ($200,000 of that was guaranteed. Even still, don’t be surprised if he gets left off of the final roster.

2. Billy Brown

Brown may be the reason Rodgers doesn’t make it. For many Eagles fans, this is the guy they want to get in. Brown worked his way into the hearts of Eagles fans a season ago. Now, with Celek and Burton gone, many think he is the third-best tight end on Philly’s roster.

Training camp and the preseason will prove if that’s accurate.

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3. Adam Zaruba

In the beginning, the idea of Zaruba having a rugby background and that translating to the NFL seemed like a cool idea, but now, if we’re being honest, this just seems like an experiment that’s not going to work.

Zaruba spent time on the Eagles practice squad a year ago, and the best case scenario is probably him ending up on the practice squad again. It may be time to admit the experiment is over.

Next: Is Chris Maragos fighting for a roster spot?

4. Joshua Perkins

Depending on how things work out, either Zaruba or Perkins will end up in the last spot on the depth chart. The latter spent a year on Atlanta’s roster and hauled in three receptions for 42 yards and a touchdown before signing with the Eagles on January 15th.

It’s hard to imagine a scenario where Perkins makes the roster, but that’s why we play the preseason now, isn’t it?