Several Eagles are facing uphill battles in their quest for contract extensions

The Eagles have dished out a ton of money this offseason, so what's going on with these guys?
Avonte Maddox, Philadelphia Eagles
Avonte Maddox, Philadelphia Eagles / Cooper Neill/GettyImages

We have now had plenty of time to put an exciting free-agency signing period and the introduction of an outstanding draft class in our rearview mirrors. Training camp and the preseason near. It's time to see if all those offseason additions pay off and if the Philadelphia Eagles are as good on the football field as they appear to be on paper.

There's just one problem. July just started, so we still have to wait on all of that to begin. In the meantime, it's back to the drawing board for us. We'll spend the next couple of weeks discussing any nuggets we can find and dissecting theories we don't know to be true yet.

During what has been an expected slow news cycle, we couldn't resist the urge to look ahead. Almost 30 of the names on the current 90-man training camp roster belong to guys playing on one-year or expiring contracts.

Some have a better shot at earning extensions than others. Here is a handful of some of the more notable mentions that may have a tough hill to climb if they're going to receive one.

Avonte Maddox, cornerback

Who doesn't love Avonte Maddox? A homegrown Eagle, he was drafted in 2018. He's someone we trust when he plays. He's good when he is healthy, but that's the problem. He's never healthy.

He has only played 13 games during the past two seasons. Now, he's looking over his shoulder. The additions of Quinyon Mitchell and Cooper DeJean may serve as some writing on the wall.

Zack Baun, linebacker

Zack Baun started six of his 17 games played with the New Orleans Saints last season. 30 tackles, two sacks, four additional QB hits, and an interception were the results of his efforts. If he can pull off something similar in Philly, he might be able to run for city council.

There's a lot to be excited about here. Baun will make the team, but with two young linebackers on the payroll (Nakobe Dean and Jeremiah Trotter Jr) and other veterans also under contract (Devin White and Oren Burks), we'd assume his chances of hanging around past this season are slim.

But, that doesn't mean this is an impossibility.

Matt Hennessy, offensive lineman

For Matt Hennessy to earn an extension, he must first make the roster. That isn't a sure thing. They drafted two interior offensive linemen (Dylan McMahon and Trevor Keegan). They really like second-year prospect Tyler Steen.

Hennessy could be a victim of the numbers game, and even if he makes the squad, he feels more like a placeholder than a long-term solution.

C.J. Uzomah, tight end

We'll say what everyone else is thinking. C.J. Uzomah's acquisition has never given us any feeling that his acceptance of an Eagles jersey is a sign of great things to come.

It's about time for Philly to figure out what it wants to do about Dallas Goedert's extension. Uzomah might be the second-best tight end on the roster. No disrespect to Grant Calcaterra, but C.J. is better than McCallan Castles, E.J. Jenkins, and Albert Okwuegbunam.

Like the other guys on this list, however, earning long-term coin will be tough. This just doesn't feel like it's the beginning of a long-term working relationship.

Kenneth Gainwell, running back

Before we say anything else, we truly believe that Kenneth Gainwell is better than many others believe him to be. The problem is he's a running back. That means he plays one of football's most punished positions, one many teams treat as expendable.

Philly signed Saquon Barkley to a recent three-year deal. Perhaps you have heard. They also added Will Shipley in the NFL Draft.

Yeah... Kenny G won't be cashing in.

Here's our bold prediction. He'll be the new Boston Scott, a guy Philly likes but signs annually to a one-year deal.

Worth mentioning: Zech McPhearson, cornerback

Darius Slay... Quinyon Mitchell... Cooper DeJean... Avonte Maddox... Kelee Ringo... Isaiah Rodgers... Is Zech McPhearson even going to make this team? Josh Jobe is the better special teams player, right?

Zech is in trouble we believe, but like we have said with others, even if he makes the roster this season, nothing past the close of the campaign is certain. The clock may be ticking, and it's ticking loudly.

Worth mentioning: Patrick Johnson

Say what you will about Patrick Johnson, but he keeps hanging around. Like Jobe, he's a good special teams contributor, and that may turn out to be his saving grace.

He has contributed 868 special teams snaps to Philly's cause over the past three seasons. Is that enough of a reason to keep him around? Keep in mind the fact that a young draftee is now peeking over his shoulder.

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