In his latest CSN Philly mailbag, Geoff Mosher responded to a fan asking which veteran players could be cut after training camp, and specifically if Riley Cooper has a role on this team.
First, let’s get the response to Cooper.
Cooper is one of several veteran Eagles who might not be around for the season opener. I have no idea how many receivers Kelly plans to keep, but DeSean Jackson, Jeremy Maclin, Jason Avant and Damaris Johnson can safely be considered locks to make the team. That leaves one or two more openings for a committee that includes Cooper, Arrelious Benn, Ifeanyi Momah, B.J. Cunningham and rookie Russell Shepard. Cooper and Benn can both make the team with impressive camps, but a numbers situation could force Kelly to decide upon one. Benn can play the slot, the outside and has return game experience. He’s a former second-round pick and has the versatility that Kelly covets.
I think we all love Cooper’s size as 6’3, but over the course of three seasons he hasn’t done much more than have that great size. Sure, he had that dirty touchdown catch against the Cowboys last season, but in three years he only has 46 receptions. If Kelly has already decided to keep a possession receiver in Avant, than keeping Arrelious Benn over Cooper makes sense because he can do more things for Kelly. And the idea that Avant would get cut seems very unlikely. Not only does Mosher think it is a lock that he makes the team, but when I interviewed 97.5 the Fanatic’s Tim McManus a few weeks ago, he seemed to think it was very unlikey that Avant was cut.
I think he makes the team. Kelly is looking for guys who put the work in and are quality teammates. Avant definitely fits the bill.
So in other words, it seems very unlikely that Riley Cooper is wearing an Eagles jersey come week one next season. And according to Mosher, the same can be said for tight-end Clay Harbor.
At tight end, it looks like a stretch for Clay Harbor to come back for Year 4. With Brent Celek, James Casey and Zach Ertz on the roster, it’s hard to imagine the Eagles paying Harbor’s $630,000 base salary if there’s no guarantee that he’ll be active on game day.
Obviously if there was a realistic chance that Michael Vick would get cut, it would be a huge story. Mosher doesn’t rule out the possibility, but he says for Vick to be cut, Kelly would have to fall head over heels for both Foles and Barkley before the end of training camp.
Michael Vick, of course, could be a roster casualty if Kelly is sold on Nick Foles and the promise of Matt Barkley.
In my interview with Tim McManus, he echoed a similar sentiment about the chances that Vick would be cut.
I think there’s a chance, yeah. He is due another $3.5 million on the first day of the regular season. That needs to be considered. The big question is how Vick would react if he is the backup. Would he play the role? Or, at age 33, would he be itching to try and find a starting gig elsewhere? His reaction would probably determine whether or not he stayed on the team.
Mosher also touched on the idea that Felix Jones, Danny Watkins, Phillip Hunt, Curtis Marsh, Casey Matthews, Kurt Coleman, and Kenny Phillips all need to have big training camps to secure a roster spot.
Tags: Casey Matthews Eagles Quarterback Competition Felix Jones Eagles Geoff Mosher Kenny Phillips Eagles Michael Vick Cut Michael Vick Vs Nick Foles Philadelphia Eagles Philly Sports News Riley Cooper Cut