Philadelphia Eagles fans could see more of these guys in the near future.
It’s too early to tell what the Eagles have in Nate Herbig. The hope is that he can develop into Jason Kelce’s replacement over this next year, but we’ll find out how much the front office and coaching staff really trust him when Kelce retires. There were rumors in April that they were thinking about taking a center in 2020’s draft. While that didn’t happen, it could in the 2021 draft, and it makes you wonder how confident the front office truly is in Herbig.
He only saw 12 total snaps in 2019, but he was on the active roster for the entire year and got to learn under coach Stoutland and the veteran linemen. Before Jason Peters was signed, there was talk about Herbig having a good chance to compete with Matt Pryor for the job at the right guard position but that signing does somewhat indicate how the Eagles felt about both Pryor and Herbig.
Peters has never played guard and has played in a left-handed stance for over a decade, and he’ll have to learn the nuances of his new position in just over a month. The fact that the front office trusts him to do that rather than trusts the guys who actually play the position is not a great look for Herbig and Pryor. Plus, the Eagles drafted two offensive linemen. At the same time, Herbig is still really young at just 22-years-old and has time to continue training and improving.
Again, just because Marcus Epps played more snaps doesn’t exactly mean he is better than Herbig is. Epps’ only competition for the third safety spot was Rudy Ford while Opeta and Herbig had to compete against much more proven teammates with more experience. There’s a good chance Herbig will be active on more gamedays this year than he was last year, and if a COVID-19 wave hits the offensive line or anyone gets hurt, we could see how well or how poorly this team prepared him in 2019.
It’s safe to say Philly fans didn’t expect Anthony Rush to be on the field as much as he was. In nine games and just 149 defensive snaps, Rush put up nine total tackles (three of those for loss) and two pass deflections. Not too bad for the undrafted rookie out of UAB. Rush is the biggest man on the Eagles roster at a whopping 350 pounds. He won’t open eyes with his athleticism, but he can block up the interior on short-yardage runs.
While some of the guys he’s ahead of on this list might have more potential, the Eagles know what they have in Anthony Rush. Some of the other guys are question marks. The front office knows that they have a solid backup in Rush who can be used in a situational role. He’ll be especially important when the Birds are backed up to their own goal line if he gets one of the last roster spots.
If he doesn’t make the cut, he’ll probably be kept around on the practice squad. Who knows? Maybe the Eagles can put him at fullback for a snap or two if he makes the team.