Eagles

Eagles Stay or Go 2021: Who stays after Miles Sanders?

Eagles

Reuben Frank and Dave Zangaro bring back Stay or Go in 2021, trying to figure out the futures of every Eagles player on the roster.

Today, we’ll look at running backs:

Corey Clement

Roob: Hard to believe Clement is going into Year 5. He’ll always be beloved here for his remarkable performance in Super Bowl LII, but I would think with a new coach coming in and Clement hitting the open market as a free agent, his days here are coming to an end. Clement is valuable enough on special teams that I could see him coming back if he doesn’t get any good offers elsewhere and the Eagles don’t draft a running back. But I feel like it’s most likely he’ll continue his career elsewhere.

Verdict: Goes

Dave: The Eagles didn’t give Clement much of a workload on offense in 2021. He played just 10% of the Eagles snaps this past season. Clement is still just 26 but he’s had some serious injuries and his ties to the coaching staff are mostly gone. He’s a good special teams contributor but Clement is an unrestricted free agent and my guess is the Eagles will want to rebuild this offense with new players under Nick Sirianni.

Verdict: Goes

Elijah Holyfield

Roob: Evander’s son has been here since late in the 2019 season and has never gotten in a game. I would have liked to have seen him get some run at some point, but instead we got to see Jordan Howard at the end of this past season. Why? Who knows. But it’s hard to imagine Holyfield finding a role here in 2021.

 

Verdict: Goes

Dave: I’m a little surprised Holyfield didn’t get a chance to play in 2020. The Eagles brought him in at the end of the 2019 season but let him sit on the practice squad all last season. When he came out of Georgia, I thought there was something there but we haven’t gotten to see it yet. Again, my guess is the new coaching staff will want to fill in these backup spots and will have competition in camp. Maybe Holyfield earns a spot but for now, I doubt it.

Verdict: Goes

Jason Huntley

Roob: Out of all the fringe running backs on this list I think Huntley has the best chance to stick. He’s only 22, he was a Lions draft pick last year so he's got a little pedigree, he’s a capable runner and receiver (5.9 rushing average, 134 catches at New Mexico State) and he’s cheap, with a $780,000 cap hit next year. Still think he’s a long shot though. Would have liked to have seen more of him this past year, but when the coach never runs the ball that’s a lot to ask.

Verdict: Goes

Dave: It was weird that the Eagles used a roster spot on Huntley for most of the season and still didn’t play him. They obviously liked him or they wouldn’t have claimed him after final cuts. Huntley definitely has some serious speed and maybe the coaching staff gets the most out of him. I want to see him get a serious chance to make the roster. So I’m going out on a limb here.

Verdict: Stays

Jordan Howard

Roob: I still haven't figured out why Howard was here last year. Other than that Howie Roseman just loves bringing back former Eagles. If Howard's here next year we've really got problems.

Verdict: Goes

Dave: The Eagles brought back Howard last year in another instance where they put too much stock into familiarity. Howard has really hit a wall in his career and if he revives it, it won’t be here.

Verdict: Goes

Adrian Killins Jr.

Roob: It would be nice to see Killins get another chance to get some carries so he doesn’t have to spend his whole life with a career rushing average of minus-12 yards per carry. But it won’t be here.

Verdict: Goes

Dave: The idea of the Eagles’ finding a way to use Killins and his speed, especially as a receiver out of the backfield, is intriguing. And it’s especially intriguing because of the background of Nick Sirianni and how the Colts have used Nyheim Hines in Indy. But I think Huntley fills that quota. I do think this staff will be intrigued by Killins but I don’t think he’s going to make the 53-man roster.

 

Verdict: Goes

Miles Sanders

Roob: Can't wait to see what Sanders can do in — presumably — an offense where the running backs play a somewhat more significant role than they did in Doug Pederson’s pass-first, pass-second scheme. No doubt Sanders will miss Duce Staley, who he spoke of as the father figure that he never had. But with 15 or 16 carries a game and a full offseason — something he didn’t have his first two years — the sky’s the limit for the 23-year-old Sanders.

Verdict: Stays

Dave: The coaching staff change will help several players and Sanders is clearly at the top of the list. Doug Pederson would always get away from the run too early and often, so I think the change will help Sanders. But I’m also very curious to see what the departure of Duce Staley does. Staley was a great position coach and worked Sanders hard in his first two seasons, helping him improve certain areas of his game, including pass protection. There’s no question that Sanders is talented, but Year 3 needs to be a true breakout.

Verdict: Stays

Boston Scott

Roob: Scott is one of only 13 NFL backs who’s had at least 200 yards both rushing and receiving in each of the last two years. He’s a good little back, doesn’t cost much, versatile, productive. If I was building a team, I’d find a role for Scott. I’d be fine with the Eagles going into 2021 with Sanders and Scott and either a draft pick or another young guy.

Verdict: Stays

Dave: Scott is a good player. He’s not great but he has shown the ability to give the Eagles something when Sanders is out and the Eagles will still play the Giants twice per season.

Verdict: Stays

Stay or Go: Wide receivers

Stay or Go: Cornerbacks

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