Eagles should consider carrying two quarterbacks on 53-man roster

Jalen Hurts #1 and Gardner Minshew #10, Philadelphia Eagles (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
Jalen Hurts #1 and Gardner Minshew #10, Philadelphia Eagles (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /

It’s only practice. It’s only training camp and the preseason. There’s a vibe though, and for the most part, most of us like how it feels. After a tough start towards the end of July and the early portions of August for the Philadelphia Eagles offense (the defense was killing them for a while there), the ‘O’ seems to have found some rhythm.

In speaking with NFL Network’s Daniel Jeremiah, head coach Nick Sirianni credited Jalen Hurts’ confidence in the offense and plays that his team is running for some of the improvement we’ve seen since camp began. QB1 looks comfortable. His backup, Gardner Minshew, looks less so, but we know him well enough to know that he’ll be solid if disaster strikes, there’s an injury, and he’s forced into action.

He won games in Jacksonville with the Jaguars. That should tell you a lot. That’s also why we’re confident in saying that, behind the Eagles’ offensive line and with the weapons that this team has on that side of the ball, he can win a few games if called into action.

We aren’t certain about those other two guys though…

Might the Philadelphia Eagles consider walking into Week 1 of the regular season with two quarterbacks on the 53-man roster?

Now, don’t read something that hasn’t actually been written. We aren’t ready to give up on Carson Strong or Reid Sinnett. We are also aware that Inside The Iggles recently released a take stating Sinnett had the tools to possibly pass Minshew on the depth chart.

This isn’t necessarily a retraction, but our staff will admit that we may need to shelf that one for a while. Sinnett’s game still needs some fine-tuning. Both he and Minshew threw interceptions during the first of two scheduled joint practices versus the Cleveland Browns, and as we approach the end of August, with the knowledge that Philadelphia will have to trim what’s now an 85-man roster to 53 men, they may want to consider something.

Perhaps they could survive with only carrying two quarterbacks on the 53-man roster. Here are three reasons why that makes sense.

Jalen Hurts and Gardner Minshew are typically healthy.

There’s always the fear of injury when your offense is led by a quarterback that has the ability to scramble. Jalen Hurts missed a game last season with an ankle issue, but that’s the exception to the rule, not the rule itself.

He’s been relatively healthy throughout his career as has Gardner Minshew. The latter dealt with a thumb injury in 2020, but if Philly walks into Week 1 and Minshew hasn’t been traded, it’s unlikely that either of the other two signal-callers will see the field in 2022.

The Eagles may want to carry an extra linebacker or defensive tackle (or both).

The Birds may want to consider using that spot typically given to the third quarterback to another member of the roster. There are theories that the decision could be made to keep six linebackers and four defensive tackles, but that may not be wise. They may want to keep extra bodies at both roster positions. Think about it.

Most would say the Eagles are going to want to keep T.J. Edwards, Kyzir White, Haason Reddick, Nakobe Dean, Davion Taylor, and Kyron Johnson. That would give them six linebackers, but you can’t leave Shaun Bradley off of the roster though right?

Philadelphia has a similar situation at the interior of their defensive line. Fletcher Cox, Javon Hargrave, Milton Williams, and Jordan Davis will make this team, but it would be hard to say goodbye to Marlon Tuipulotu. To make long stories shorter, keeping Bradley and Tuipulotu makes more sense than keeping Strong or Sinnett.

Giving the former $320,000 in guaranteed money isn’t a good enough reason to give him a roster spot over a better football player. We’ll have to wait and see if the Eagles agree with that theory, but for now, that’s how we see it.

It’s unlikely that another NFL team poaches the Eagles’ practice squad for Carson Strong or Reid Sinnett.

So, with all of that being said, here’s where we stand. The best thing the Eagles can do is place Carson Strong and Reid Sinnett on their practice squad. The danger in that is the other 31 teams in the NFL are allowed to poach one if not both prospects if that happens. Still, if we’re being honest, neither of those two have done much to warrant another team’s interest.

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Things can change. Two preseason games remain, but after being passed on by the majority of the NFL six times or more during the most recent NFL Draft and after word got out that he’s struggling to make basic throws, it appears that Philly could safely stash Carson Strong on their scout team without any worry of losing him and place him right next to Sinnett who’s clearly the better player but also unworthy of being handed the keys to an NFL offense at this point.