With NFL rosters consisting of 53 players, it should come as no surprise that there is usually a high turnover rate for rosters from year-to-year. Contracts expire, trades are made, or players just straight-up start sucking and teams decide to move on from their old players and find some new ones.
Since the Eagles are entering Week 17 with a 4-10-1 record, it's safe to assume there will be plenty of players suiting up on Sunday that will never put on an Eagles uniform again. Here's a breakdown of some obvious players who will be shown the door, as well as some surprising names that might be playing in a new organization in 2021.
Players that are 100% out the door
Jeffery's contract is too much of a burden with the team needing to create a ton of salary cap space this offseason. Plus it's just not a smart business practice to keep a 31-year-old receiver with an extensive injury history. The plan this offseason should be to draft a dominant receiver early in the draft, or develop Travis Fulgham into the starting "X" receiver.
When he was drafted he was supposed to be the player that took Alshon Jeffery's role as the "X" receiver In the offense. We know now that he is not the answer for that, and the Eagles have no plans for him at this point with him being inactive these past few weeks. He might still be here for training camp and possibly even make it as far as the preseason, but there's no way he plays another regular season game as an Eagle.
The Super Bowl LII hero has failed to step up his play in any game since February 2018. At this point he's considered a dime a dozen running back, so it'd probably be better for the team to draft a running back late in this year's draft or bring in a younger running back in free agency to see if you can get some sort of upgrade at the position.
Curry has actually played pretty well in 2020 as a rotational piece of the defensive line, but he will be turning 33 in the offseason, and lately this front office has been keeping players a year or two too long and it damages the team's depth. It's time to give some younger players an opportunity to earn a roster spot.
I will vomit endlessly if Pryor is on next year's roster. The guy has failed miserably both as a guard and as a tackle this season. He needs to be gone before his disastrous play causes a career-ending injury for the quarterbacks he is "protecting"
The signing of NRC was one of the most-hyped moves of the offseason. The front office was expecting him to lockdown the slot, but he did anything but that in 2020. Countless missed tackles and poor coverages has fans thinking back to the depressing Leodis McKelvin and Bradley Fletcher days. His contract is up and he will not be back next year. Maybe they can try putting Avonte Maddox in the slot and bolster the other cornerback spot opposite Darius Slay with an early draft pick.
Ford is supposed to be a depth safety and special teams ace, but he has spent way too much time on the injury report than on the field. The entire special teams unit needs to be torn apart anyway, so Ford should be out the door with his contract expiring.
McGill has filled in from time to time at defensive tackle, but he hasn't shown anything special. Let Raequon Williams or another younger tackle take the spot in training camp and prove themselves.
He hasn't played since the final game of 2018, but with his contract expiring Sudfeld is going to want to go somewhere he can compete for a starting position or can securely be the #2 guy. There will definitely be some suitors for him.
Injured players who have already played their last game as an Eagle:
The future Hall of Famer really needs to retire at this point. His body has just completely deteriorated, and it resulted in poor play and injuries that he tried to play though, resulting in further poor play. The only good thing that could have come from his poor play this year is that other teams shouldn't have any interest in him this offseason, so maybe he truly will call it quits.
Jackson has made $17.3 Million these past two seasons, and he rewarded the team that gave him that money with just 246 snaps played. Now 34 years old, there is no possibility of Jackson ever playing a full NFL season. Releasing Jackson this offseason will save the Eagles $5.1 Million in cap space, so it's a no-brainer to make that move. There is a way for him to be on the 53-man roster next year, but that would involve him taking a massive, massive, MASSIVE paycut, and no one should expect Jackson to take that. The Eagles will hope that Jalen Reagor and/or Quez Watkins can develop into a Jackson-type player with game-changing speed and separation.
Gerry was abused countlessly this season, and he only played about 1/3 of the season before going out with his achilles injury. Alex Singleton has shown tremendous promise and T.J. Edwards has shined bright occasionally too. With the team selecting Shaun Bradley and Davion Taylor in last year's draft, they need to see what they can do. That means Gerry is out the door.
LeBlanc seemed to fall out of favor in Jim Schwartz's eyes. The team signed Nickell Robey-Coleman who took away the starting slot position, and he could not beat out Avonte Maddox for the outside corner job. LeBlanc is turning 27 this offseason, so at this point it's time to call it quits and try to find someone younger who can play.
Players with an outside shot of leaving Philadelphia
Barnett hasn't lived up to his first-rounder-hype, but he hasn't necessarily been bad either. The problem is his contract -- the Eagles need to make room for cap space and the team can release/trade him this offseason with zero dead money and gain $10 Million in cap space. Josh Sweat has developed into a solid pass rusher, and with Brandon Graham playing at a Pro Bowl level the team might want to use that cap space for other problem areas on the team.
Ertz bet on himself and lost. He wanted a big contract extension and earn more than Travis Kelce and George Kittle, but dropped passes, a long-term injury earlier this season, and the emergence of Dallas Goedert put that dream away. He obviously will still want that big contract, but he knows he won't get it in Philadelphia now. The team can either try to trade him this offseason or let him ride out the last year of his contract in 2021 and let him walk the following offseason and hope to gain a compensation pick in the process.
Jackson earned $20.1 Million these past two seasons, and all he has to show for it on the field is 1.5 sacks and 12 QB hits. Multiple injuries have sidelined him, which is why Howie Roseman invested in Javon Hargrave this past offseason. The Eagles could try to trade Jackson, who will turn 31 in January, to a team that has the cap room and needs to bolster their interior defensive line. Or they could just cut their losses and gain just $1 Million in cap space and pay $12 Million in dead money.
The special teams captain and starting linebacker will have his contract expire this offseason. He wasn't a threatening presence on defense this year, and with the need to keep spending sparse this offseason, it's unlikely Roseman will want to shell out money to a linebacker when he spent two draft picks on linebacker last year.
Mills has been pretty "meh" trying to fill the Malcolm Jenkins role this year. If he's willing to come back cheap and as a rotational player I'd be fine with him coming back, but the Eagles need to improve their secondary this offseason. I'm sure Mills also wants a big payday and/or be a starter, so he'll likely find a suitor for his services somewhere else in the league.
Kelce has been mulling retirement since the conclusion of the 2018 season. He probably wouldn't like going out on a downer season like this one, but his body might be telling him it is reaching a breaking point. Even if he does return for one more season, the Eagles need to be ahead of the game and draft an IOL in the middle or late rounds this year to start to develop. Worst case scenario is that he retires and they slide Seumalo, who has some experience, over to center and the team then needs to fill in the LG hole.
Wentz made headlines in December when media reported that he would not be interested in staying an Eagle in a backup role (which was a pretty obvious observation anyway and didn't need to be said). Rookie Jalen Hurts has shown some flashes, but he is far from a sure thing and someone the team can have complete confidence in moving forward. If the Eagles did want to move forward with Hurts, the problem lies with that mega-contract that is just getting underway for Wentz. It's not an impossible contract to move, and there might be some talented teams in 2021 that are just a good quarterback away from winning and would want to acquire Wentz (Indianapolis Colts, Pittsburgh Steelers, Cleveland Browns, New England Patriots, Chicago Bears, San Francisco 49ers). At the end of the day, the Eagles will likely have a huge hit in dead money if Wentz is moved, so the front office needs to decide if it's worth eating all of that dead money just to ditch him.