Rookie Andre Dillard could be Eagles' third tight end after keeping just two
Perhaps the biggest surprise when all the trimming was made and the Eagles reached their limit of 53 players on Saturday was that they kept just two tight ends.
This is a team that has used plenty of 12 personnel (two tight end sets) since head coach Doug Pederson arrived in 2016 and figures to use even more of it this year with the arguably best 1-2 tight end punch in the league with Zach Ertz and Dallas Goedert.
Yet the Eagles released all three tight ends that were in the mix for what was believed to be a third tight end spot on the roster: Josh Perkins, Alex Ellis, and Will Tye.
VIDEO: Howie Roseman talks briefly about his tight end situation
The thing with those three, though, is that they are considered better pass catchers than run blockers. The Eagles’ interest in a tight end could come down to blocking. They don’t necessarily need one who can catch, not with Ertz and Goedert on board.
General manage Howie Roseman said they will likely add somebody on Sunday, at least on the practice squad.
There could be another interesting option at tight end already on the roster, at least one who can block.
That would be rookie left tackle Andre Dillard (pictured above).
Dillard can line up as the third tight end in running situations or maybe even as someone else to stay in and block while Ertz and Goedert run a pass pattern.
It is something the Eagles did early and only at certain times with Isaac Seumalo during Seumalo’s rookie season in 2016, and before Suemalo became a full-time start on the line.
So that could be something to watch on game day as a way to get Dillard a taste of a regular-season NFL game.
In the meantime, here are some tight ends the Eagles may look to bring onto the roster or add to the practice squad on Sunday, keeping in mind that the Eagles have the No. 25 waiver claim:
- Logan Paulsen. Released by the Falcons, Paulsen fits the bill as a blocking tight end and the 6-5, 260-pound, 10-year veteran can also play special teams.
- Charles Scarff. Released by the Ravens, but not before making an impression on some media members during Baltimore’s two-day practice session with the Eagles a couple weeks ago. More of a pass-catcher than run blocker, however, he can develop that part of his game. Perhaps on the practice squad. He also played at the University of Delaware so the Eagles figure to have even more familiarity with him.
- Luke Willson. Released by the Raiders, Wilson is an athletic 6-5, 250-pounder who was originally drafted in the fifth round by the Seahawks in 2013. Now 29, he is good enough that it may be unlikely he will still be on the board when it is the Eagles’ turn to make a claim.
- Ellis. There is a very good chance that the Eagles add him to their practice, a process that can begin as early as noon on Sunday.