Eagles mailbag: Biggest concern, roster battles, kicker fight!


Training camp isn't that far away. Really — it isn't. 

In fact, the Eagles kick off this year's camp in less than a month, so before you know it, football will be back in Philadelphia. 

Earlier this week, I took another shot at a 53-man roster projection, knowing full well it's way too early to try. But I had some fun. 

And I asked for questions and you good people, even in the middle of summer, came through. So I'll try my best to answer them: 

There are plenty of roster questions about this Eagles football team. To put it bluntly, they're just not very talented at some positions and they lack playmakers. But really, the biggest question is about the head coach. Doug Pederson might end up being a great coach. He might end up being Andy Reid 2.0 and take the team to multiple championships and a Super Bowl. Heck, maybe he'll even win the big game. 

But for now, it's fair to wonder if Pederson will even be a decent coach. It's not that he can't be, it's that we don't have a ton of evidence to support the idea that he will be. The Eagles scoffed at the question during his introductory press conference, but it sure seemed like Pederson wasn't their first choice and there weren't exactly many teams lining up to interview him. He's an offensive coach who has been in the shadow of another offensive coach during all of his years coaching in the NFL -- that's another worry. 

I actually think Pederson is off to a pretty good start. He had some unique situations -- Fletcher Cox, Sam Bradford, Darren Sproles -- this offseaon, and he handled all of them well. Players seem to like him. Heck, everyone seems to like him. He's a nice guy, which helps because players want to play for him. But how will he handle game situations, when -- as he says -- the bullets are flying? We'll have to see. For now, though, it's a serious concern. 

As far as starter positions go, I think the wide receivers are going to be fun to watch in training camp. There are several guys who could end up being starters. And it might sound boring, but the kicker battle will probably be pretty close. Right now, I think Caleb Sturgis might have a slight (very slight) edge. 

But the biggest logjam of players is probably at cornerback. No, the team doesn't have top-flight guys, but it does have plenty of young talent there. Guys like JaCorey Shepherd, Jaylen Watkins, Jalen Mills, Aaron Grymes, Randall Evans and Denzel Rice will all be trying to stick at the bottom of the roster. 

Hmmm, a literal kicker battle. Well, let's look at the tale of the tape: 

Caleb Sturgis: 5-9, 192 pounds, 26 years old, has five siblings

Cody Parkey: 6-0, 193 pounds, 24 years old, played LB and OL growing up

Sturgis had five siblings and his brother is an MLS soccer player, so there's a good chance he got in some fights as a youngin. But Parkey, in the media guide, said he played LB and OL and was actually a chubby kid. 

Verdict: I have no idea who would win, but if a kicker fight broke out at training camp, I'd smile a mile wide. 

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