Philadelphia Eagles: Don’t be surprised if UDFA Jack Stoll makes the team

Jamie Newman was guaranteed nothing but a chance with the Philadelphia Eagles.

Despite being one of only three quarterbacks on the Eagles’ roster and the only signal-caller to turn up to rookie camp earlier this spring, the team could cut Jamie Newman at any point moving forward and wouldn’t owe him a dime moving forward. Granted, the Eagles could also stick it out with Newman as their QB3 for the next three years on a deal worth $2.45 million in total.

Fortunately for some other members of the Eagles’ UDFA class, Howie Roseman did hand out some guaranteed money to rookies in order to secure their services, including $100,000-plus to a pair of offensive players of interest.

Of that duo, which also includes ex-Buffalo guard Kayode Awosika, Nebraska tight end Jack Stoll might just have the best chance to not only make the Philadelphia Eagles’ initial 53-man roster in time for Week 1 but actually contribute with the team moving forward.

Shall we get to know a little bit more about ESPN’s ninth-ranked tight end in the nation back in 2015?

Jack Stoll is a classic bottom-of-the-roster tight end for the Philadelphia Eagles.

2020 didn’t treat Jack Stoll too kindly.

Now granted, that isn’t a particularly unique experience, as the year might just go down as one of the worst in recent memory regardless of age, gender, class, or creed, but unlike many of his peers who opted out of the 2020 NCAA season – like his current Eagles teammate, Jamie Newman – Stoll opted to play out the final year of his college eligibility only to watch his season get derailed due to a Week 1 injury versus Ohio State.

After picking up 200-plus yards in both his sophomore and junior season as the Cornhuskers’ top tight end target in Scott Frost’s run-heavy offense, Stoll finished out his final season in
Lincoln with only seven catches for 89 yards and not s single touchdown to his name.

Not ideal for a tight end looking to parlay a solid college career into a Day 3 draft selection, but for a team like the Eagles who only have one tight end guaranteed a spot on the active roster come Week 1 – two if Zach Ertz somehow decides to stick around – landing Stoll for the low, low price of  $2.45 million over three years, including $122,500 guaranteed and a team-high $22,500 signing bonus, it certainly worked out pretty, pretty, pretty well.

Measuring in at 6-foot-4, 260 pounds, Stoll split his time at Nebraska playing inline and as an H-Back. Though he only hauled in 61 balls for 657 yards and six touchdowns over 43 career games with the Cornhuskers, Stoll provided solid value both in the passing game as a run blocker for Nebraska’s collection of running backs (plus Christian McCaffrey’s brother Luke).

In addition to being a regular contributor on Nebraska’s special teams units, Stoll was a fixture of many an off-field honors list, including a spot on the All-Big 10 Academic Award, the Brook Berringer Citizenship Team, the Tom Osborne Citizenship Team, and the distinguished honor of being, well the Big 10’s Distinguished Scholar in 2020.

Throw that all together with the chip on the shoulder typically associated with not hearing your name called on draft day, and the Philadelphia Eagles may have just walked away from the postdraft free agency period with a wonderful bottom-of-the-roster contributor who can fill a role similar to Trey Burton back in 2015, albeit without the trick play versatility and the occasional snap at fullback.

Even if Ertz somehow sticks around for the 2021 season, which isn’t the worst idea if you really think about it, Stoll is expected to compete with about a handful of other young tight ends – Tyree Jackson, Caleb Wilson, Jason Croom, and Hakeem Butler – for the team’s third spot on the depth chart. Considering only one of his competitors, Cromm, has a single start to his name and the quartet have a combined 410 offensive snaps to their collective name, Stoll has to be considered a serious contender to stick around as the Eagles’ TE3 heading into 2021 if not an outright favorite to win the spot outright.

If, however, Ertz does end up elsewhere and another tight end like Trey Burton doesn’t get brought in to backup Dallas Goedert, Stoll may magically find himself the proud owner of a seriously expansive role in an offense that has been known to run multiple tight ends with good results.

While I’m sure Jack Stoll still would have preferred to hear his name called on draft day, as that sort of memory lives on forever, he can at least take solace in the fact that he landed in a near-perfect spot to not only have a legit shot at an NFL career but potentially play a decent role right out the gate. And best of all? The Philadelphia Eagles paid a premium for his services. It sure must be nice to be in such high demand.