The Eagles on Monday afternoon were assigned Australian defensive end Matt Leo through the International Player Pathway program.
The NFC East was chosen at random to receive four players and the Eagles ended up with the former Australian rugby player, who became a defensive end and played at Iowa State.
Leo will be a member of the Eagles but won’t take up a roster spot. And the Eagles will carry him on their practice squad throughout the 2020 season as an extra member.
So this is basically just an extra developmental player.
The International Player Program Pathway is the same program that also produced Eagles offensive tackle Jordan Mailata. He counted toward the roster immediately because the Eagles drafted him.
You’ve been putting in the work! Time to get what’s yours and out yourself on the map!— Jordan Mailata (@jordan_mailata) January 9, 2020
Leo is now the third Australian on the roster, joining Mailata and punter Cameron Johnston.
Leo began his college football career at Arizona Western and then transferred to Iowa State in 2017. He played in three games that season before receiving a medical redshirt.
In 2018 and 2019, Leo had a total of 33 tackles, 11.5 TFLs and 3 sacks. He was a member of the All-Big 12 Academic first-team in 2019.
The problem with Leo, according to his Iowa State bio, is that he turns 28 in May, so he’s going to be a developmental 28-year-old rookie on the practice squad.
Here are the three international players assigned to the other NFC East teams:
Cowboys: Isaac Alarcon, OT, Mexico
Redskins: David Bada, DE, Germany
Giants: Sandro Platzgummer, RB, Giants
The International Player Pathway Program began 2017 with the goal of providing international athletes a chance to make it to the NFL.
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