5 players Eagles can feel more comfortable about (other than Jalen Hurts)

Marcus Epps #22, Philadelphia Eagles (Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images)
Marcus Epps #22, Philadelphia Eagles (Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images) /
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Derek Barnett, Philadelphia Eagles
Derek Barnett, Philadelphia Eagles (Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports) /

. . Derek Barnett, defensive end. 96. player. 54.

The light bulb seems to be coming on for Zech McPhearson. Can Derek Barnett make strides as well?

During the 2017 NFL Draft, the Eagles added eight young prospects to their roster with the hope that they’d be a part of this team’s long-term future. Only one of those guys is still on the team, Derek Barnett, and successful arguments can be made that many are still scratching their heads in an attempt to draw up reasonable explanations for that being the case.

Rest easy Birds fans. Here’s as simple as we can put this. If Barnett is one of the top guys on your depth chart at defensive end, your team has an issue, but if he’s in a reserve or rotational role, you’re probably in good shape.

Expect some big plays from a former first-rounder who will now be playing stress-free without any pressure.

. Zech McPhearson, cornerback. 27. player. 54. .

Philly’s fourth-round draft choice from the 2021 NFL Draft, Zech McPhearson, appeared in 16 of the Eagles’ games as a rookie, making one start in the process. That resulted in 16 tackles and a pass breakup. He wasn’t great. He wasn’t terrible. There is evidence that he has some ability.

Truthfully, we probably won’t see much of the former Texas Tech Red Raider unless there’s an unexpected injury to Darius Slay or James Bradberry, but he’s the fourth man on the depth chart and the ‘next man up’ should anything happen.