Young Eagles are stepping up to ensure one positional battle is must-see TV

The cornerback competition is heating up and shows no signs of cooling off.
Philadelphia Eagles Minicamp
Philadelphia Eagles Minicamp / Mitchell Leff/GettyImages

It had only been done three times in the long and storied history of the Philadelphia Eagles. 1980 (Roynell Young)... 1990 (Ben Smith)... 2002 (Lito Sheppard)... The Birds actually rolled the dice on a defensive back during the first round of an NFL Draft. This past April, they took two with their first two picks.

Are you interested? We most certainly are!

Quinyon Mitchell and Cooper DeJean, the 22nd and 40th players taken respectively during the most recent selection meeting, have sent shockwaves through most of Eagles Nation. There were draft pundits who thought they wouldn't be options and would be off the board by the time Philly was on the clock.

Fast forward to the present, and we're enjoying the first mandatory minicamp of Nick Sirianni's coaching era. The defensive backs have taken center stage.

Continue keeping an eye on the Eagles' battle at cornerback. So far, this has been phenomenal.

Two perceived outside starting corners who would both be over 30 when the coming regular season began (Darius Slay and James Bradberry)... A slot guy who is good when he plays but gets hurt often (Avonte Maddox)... A guy who was suspended for the duration of last season (Isaiah Rodgers). Yeah, we can see why Mitchell and DeJean are here.

Something interesting is going on though. James Bradberry took some snaps at safety during the first mandatory minicamp practice (then, he got hurt). Rodgers has taken off. He seems destined to make the roster. Those rookies... They look pretty damn good. They have shown promise. That leads us to the other guys.

Kelee Ringo doesn't look like someone who needs to be left off the roster. He's making plays constantly. Zech McPhearson, Mekhi Garner, Mario Goodrich, Josh Jobe, and Eli Ricks are in the mix. Remember them? The rest of the depth chart is comprised of new guys.

Tyler Hall and Shon Stephens will have tough hills to climb. You can best believe they're here to fight and have their minds on earning roster spots.

So, if our math is correct, that's 14 guys who are competing for what might be six spots on the initial 53-man regular-season roster though last year, the Birds elected to carry seven cornerbacks.

Guess what? The competition is going to be fierce (and must see television).

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