2014 Depth Chart: Philadelphia Eagles

A look at the depth and quality of each position on the roster for the 2014 Philadelphia Eagles

| 3 years ago

2014 Depth Chart: Philadelphia Eagles

2014 depth update PHI

[Chart last updated 7/1/14… see update notes from 7/1/14]


•  With an impressive touchdown-to-interception ratio in 2013, many will question why quarterback Nick Foles is only an above average starter. Yet as good as that was, he was lucky to see so few passes picked off with some poor throws in there. Still, he finished the season strong and if he can continue like that in 2014, he’s likely to move up by the time the year is out.

•  With LeSean McCoy and Darren Sproles, the Eagles boast as impressive a running back duo as you’ll find in the league heading into the new season. McCoy came in at No. 8 in our Top 101 series this year for good reason and, at just 25 years old, there’s no reason to expect him to slow down anytime soon.

•  They also boast an impressive offensive line, with two elite players on the left side in Jason Peters and Evan Mathis. They aren’t the only good players on the line, however, with Jason Kelce a very good center last year and Lane Johnson improving massively down the stretch of his rookie season.

•  The only thing consistent about the play of cornerback Cary Williams, and this dates back to his time in Baltimore, is that it’s inconsistent. His three interceptions and eight pass breakups show that he’s capable at making a play on the ball, but he’s prone to too many mistakes, allowing 805 yards through the air in the 2013 regular season.

Roster Battles

1.  Wide Receiver

After re-signing both Riley Cooper and Jeremy Maclin, the Eagles waved goodbye to DeSean Jackson this offseason, leaving the first two as the team’s top two wide receivers. Where the battle really heats up, though, is for that third spot. Jeff Maehl is the player from last year most likely to compete, but with rookies Jordan Matthews and Josh Huff battling with him it will be an interesting contest to watch over the summer.

2.  Outside Linebacker

After drafting Marcus Smith in the first round, the big question is how quickly he’ll push for a starting role. They signed Connor Barwin last offseason, but he has struggled as a pass rusher these past two years and, if they want to increase their pass-rushing presence, it’s surely only a matter of time before Smith gets his chance.


Click here to see all of the depth charts we’ve covered.


Follow Gordon on Twitter: @PFF_Gordon

| Analyst, Lead Special Teams Analyst

Gordon has worked at PFF since 2011, and now heads up the company’s special teams analysis processes. His work in-season focuses on college football, while he is also heavily involved in PFF’s NFL draft coverage.

  • MFGor

    Donnie Jones is an elite player, no doubt. Donnie Football!!!!

    • Jonathan Page

      Yeah having Donnie as a below average punter is pretty crazy

    • Jack Waggoner

      Yes that particular rating is ridiculous. Donnie Jones was terrific last year.

  • Matt Poliquin

    Malcom Jenkins is a below average to poor starter. My only problem with this list.

  • Eric

    I’m most surprised by the secondary. Brandon Boykin high quality? Both safeties average? Seems overrated.

    • Gordon McGuinness

      Was pretty close to dropping Jenkins down, but the feeling is that he’ll have a slightly easier job in Philadelphia than he had in New Orleans. Was definitely a player I was conflicted on though. Boykin is high quality as a slot guy only at this stage, but that is the role he’s being asked to play.

      • Brett Vaccaro

        As a Saints fan, I think it was a fair assessment of Jenkins. He’s a poor open field tackler and at times inconsistent but fairly solid in coverage with above average speed.

    • Zachariah Miller

      Brandon Boykin was second in the NFL in interceptions despite playing limited time as the nickel. He had a great season.

    • Jack Casey

      I believe Boykin has one of the top 3 grades in coverage all year. He was a monster in the slot.

  • Zachariah Miller

    Brad Smith is currently lining up with the first team in the slot in OTAs. Jeff Maehl probably won’t even make the team.

    Even then, Matthews is the likely endgame there.

  • Zachariah Miller

    How close were you to not making Peters elite? I was wondering how much stock you put into his slow start last year.

    • Gordon McGuinness

      Not that close, slow start wasn’t too surprising given he was coming off an injury, positive grade in every game from Week 7 onwards.

  • Fintasy

    Odd that Nick Foles was one of the frontrunners for NFL MVP but only rated light green. I understand PFF wants to see him perform at the same level next year, but are these ratings based on current performance or multi-year future performance?

    • Gordon McGuinness

      Mentioned in the blurb above, but essentially there were a lot more poor throws from Foles last year than his low INT rate suggests. His best play came late in the year though so it wouldn’t be too surprising to see him carry that into 2014.

  • johnny eagle

    I say that the ratings by PFF are yellow.

    • Phil

      I say your Kelly Green color glasses are blue…

  • Zachariah Miller

    My argument for Nick Foles being High Quality:

    You comment on interceptions Nick potentially threw that the defense did not capitalize on. Every QB in the NFL throws these in virtually every game. An overthrown receiver where they’re lucky there wasn’t a safety over the top, a CB getting a hand on a ball to swat it away where if he had another step in his break he could have picked it off, or a tipped ball at the line that goes straight up in the air and falls harmlessly to the ground. I believe you’re over-analyzing Nick’s occurrences because of his gawdy TD-INT ratio. But let’s say he threw 10 passed that we’re ill-advised, and we remove his luck where half of them did actually get picked. Now we’re talking 30 total touchdowns vs 7 interceptions. Is that not still a high quality ratio? Did you know that Donovan McNabb in 2004 was the first QB in NFL history to have 30 TDs and single digit interceptions? It’s happened a few times since then, but that shows how unbelievably rare that accomplishment is.

    Technically he played in more than 10 games. But the half he played in the first Giants game can evened out by the quarter he was injured in the first Cowboys game and the quarter he sat against the Raiders because they were blowing them out. He took the 32nd ranked pass defense to a winning percentage marginally lower than Russell Wilson had with the best D in football. He’s the only opposing QB to post a 140 QB rating in the history of Lambeau Field. Andrew Luck, a very mobile QB, averaged 23.5 rushing yards per start. Nick Foles averaged 22.

    This isn’t Scott Mitchell here who profited from teams putting 8-9 in the box every game to stop Barry Sanders. Nick Foles had the 3rd highest QB rating in the history of organized football.I know that’s not a stat you guys regularly throw around, but the high end is a decent metric for high quality QB play. Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady. Nick Foles, Peyton Manning. How many offenses ranked number 1 NFL did not have a high quality QB (at that specific time) leading them over the last 10 years? It took a historic QB performance to prevent him from ascending to the top of the mountain in offensive greatness. If Manning didn’t perform at that level and Nick was the QB of the best offense in football, could you have kept him out of high quality? Should the legendary season of Manning bump down a guy who had nothing to do with it? But instead, he led the 2nd best offense. And the Eagles were not rated that high when Nick took over. He had to overcome Vick’s inconsistency to climb the rankings.

    Andrew Luck has had 2 nice years, Ryan Tannehill showed improvement in his second year in Miami, Russell Wilson has a career 100 QB rating, even Robert Griffin put up on of the greatest rookie seasons ever. Total 27 Passing TD seasons from 2012 draftees: 1. In 10 starts, Nick Foles had thrown more TDs than any of those other QBs in an entire season.

    You make a very specific point about not rating players for potential. That door has to swing both ways. Just as it isn’t fair to say Andrew Luck will be Elite by this time next year, you can’t sit year and say you expect Foles to regress. You’re rating him as the player he is right now: the man who beat out a 55 TD QB for the passing title. He’s not worthy of being listed at elite. However, you can list every QB you have at ‘Good Starter’, and it’s undeniable that his season blew them out of the water. Is that enough?

    • Andreas Haakshorst

      I apologise in advance to all the readers who have heard this argument time and time again (by PFF, of cause), but it can’t be said often enough:

      I think in the end it all comes down to the overall play looking at every down played. That’s exactly what PFF does and what constitutes their player grades. Meaning: there is no need to guess if there were more poor throws by Foles not showing up in the stats than by other QBs or not. Each single one of those poor throws will impact his grading, as do the good ones.

      I personally trust their grading way more than any statline, however good it may look. And the grading doesn’t support anything but “Above Average”.

    • Chris from the Cape

      Well articulated, but I think everyone is impressed with Foles, regardless of his grade on this site. PFF tends to only to move players up after they’ve established their reputations, and 10 games w/ an elite RB + elite O-Line is just causing them to hold off a bit in moving him up to dark green, which almost certainly will happen.

  • Chris

    Look at that OL. Back to the playoffs they go.

    Jenkins is below average. And it’s a shame Ryans is stuck in a 3-4, a scheme he’s always been poor in. He was pretty good as a 4-3 backer earlier in his career.

    • Chris from the Cape

      I’m surprised by both Williams(who was albeit rather overrated playing w/ team Ray Lewis) and Ryans not making a positive impact on the D. I remember thinking at the time that the Texans D would take a hit, especially with Cushing’s talent apparently looking to go ‘lights out’ after the first suspension.

  • Jeb Banks

    It’s like you did this right before your deadline…

  • Avery Greene

    Roc Carmichael should be poor. He played enough downs last year to allow a bunch of first downs and kick a punt into the back of the endzone.

  • Greg Maus

    I think Foles is a good qb and will continue to be one. however, I think it does bear mentioning though that 5 of his 12 games came against PFF’s bottom-5 graded defenses. he is about to face the NFCW.

  • DrAWNiloc

    This is a fine snapshot of the most talented team in an albeit weak NFC-East. They’ll look even better after 2014, given the opposition their skill players will face: QB (weakest), RB (2nd weakest), WRs (6th), and TE (5th). Even better news: rookie WR Jordan Mathews is being touted as the best WR on the team. I’m not a fan but in Fantasy Football I’ll be taking every Eagle I can get my mitts on.

    All of that said, Philly has had trouble in the past translating talent into wins…

  • Djc

    Donnie Jones a below average starter? Did you actually watch him play or just rolled the dice on his rating because he’s only a punter?

  • RealEagleZ

    Does Foles play against the Packers (couple lucky bounces on deep passes against those guys), The Raiders, Bears, and Lions again this year?

    • Calvin Wasdyke

      nah try the Seahawks, Rams, Niners, and Cardinals. Have fun!

    • Stephen E.

      No one lucks into 7 passing TDs in a single game… not outside of grade school.

  • matt

    If Kelce repeats his 2013 performance again next year does he become elite? He did lead your center ratings after all. Was it just that one terrible week that kept him from elite this time around due to not being consistantly good?

  • Trey Warner

    Lol at Nate Allen and Bradley Fletcher being better than Demeco and Cary Williams!

  • Moe Abd

    How was Kendricks an average starter, Ryans a below-average starter, Donnie Jones a below average starter, Ertz an average starter, and Alex Henry a below average starter? I think Henry should be lower and everybody else higher.

  • Dean

    Can someone help me understand something? not coming here to criticize or argue just confused. Eagles ranked 31st last year in adjusted sack rate, how can their offensive line be all such high quality? Is it because the run game was so effective? Or because Foles held the ball too long? Or a combination of both? It just seems a little odd to me that they could have been sacked so often and still rank that high, even with the ground production.

  • joof

    Can we get an update on the depth chart and the skills of each player? Ertz seems like a good or very good player at this point