Coming off of 4-12 season and drafting fourth overall in the NFL draft, the Philadelphia Eagles are expecting big things from their rookies and, so far, they haven’t disappointed. Throughout the first two preseason games, the Eagles rookies have made some great plays and are making the Eagles front office look really good. Here are five rookies who have quickly made a name for themselves in the NFL.
Lane Johnson: When the Eagles took Johnson with their first selection (fourth overall), the Eagles front office and coaching staff expected a lot from Johnson early and he hasn’t disappointed. Since being drafted, Johnson has come to Philadelphia, earned the starting right tackle position, and play at a very high level through the first two preseason games. Johnson has looked great in the passing game, only being beat once, and has showed his strength and hustle in the run game. If Johnson can continue playing at such a high level as the regular season approaches, the Eagles may have found the missing piece to their offensive line.
Zach Ertz: From the moment that Chip Kelly was hired, Kelly said that he loves tightends because they’re mismatch nightmares and that’s all Zach Ertz has been since arriving in Philadelphia. In his short time in a Philadelphia Eagles uniform, Ertz has shown his ability to dominate in the preseason. In the first two games of the preseason, Ertz has caught three balls for 34 yards and he has shown that he can lineup all over the field, including outside, to create the mismatch that Chip Kelly wants. Due to Chip Kelly’s loves to use his tightends all over the formation to create mismatches, Zach Ertz could be in for a BIG rookie campaign.
Bennie Logan: Logan was drafted in the third round to compete to be the backup nose tackle behind, newcomer, Isaac Sopoaga. In the first two preseason games, Logan has cemented himself in the defensive line rotation heading into the season. Logan has been all over the field during the Eagles two preseason games and has surprised many with his pass rushing ability. Due to his strong performance in the preseason, Logan will see a lot of action this year.
Earl Wolff: Since Brian Dawkins left Philadelphia for Denver, the Eagles haven’t been able to find a solid starter to step into the safety position. The Eagles front office has brought in so many different players to fill the role, Nate Allen, Kurt Coleman, Jaiquawn Jarrett, etc., but they have yet to fill the void. Though it is very early, Wolff has shown signs that he may be the one. Wolff has looked awesome all offseason and he has helped bring physicality back to the Eagles secondary. As of now it doesn’t look like Wolff will start Week 1, but with the Eagles question marks at the safety position, Wolff may get his chance sooner rather than later.
Jake Knott: Before the first preseason game, nobody had ever heard of Jake Knott, but after his two stellar performances Knott has emerged as a solid backup linebacker for the Eagles this season. Jake Knott is a big kid, measuring in at 6′-4″ and 243 lbs, and he has showed that he is a heat seeking missile. When he has been on the field, Knott always seems to be around the ballcarrier and he hasn’t missed tackles. Though he was an undrafted free agent, Knott will most likely dress for the Eagles in their Week 1 game against the Washington Redskins and he has given his coaches confidence that he can step in, if needed, and play at a high level.