How many of those players who ended 2013 on Injured Reserve can help the team in 2014? Let's take a look ...
ARRELIOUS BENN, wide receiver
Acquired in a trade from Tampa Bay,
What's in store for Benn next season? He's an interesting guy to watch. Benn didn't get enough reps in the spring or in training camp to totally immerse himself in the new offense, so the first question is how much he has retained and how fluid will he be when practices begin. Of course, Benn has to show that he is fully recovered from his ACL injury and that he can run well enough to separate and to play in coverage on special teams.
The entire wide receiver corps is a bit up in the air with some free-agency questions and some general questions about how much the Eagles will challenge this group in free agency and in the draft. Where does Benn figure into the mix? If he can run and learn the system and build chemistry with the rest of the offense, he could be a help to the passing game.
PHILLIP HUNT, linebacker
Scheduled to become a restricted free agent in March,
He didn't have enough time to show what he could do. Hunt went down in August with a knee injury and missed the entire season, so now he's in a tough spot. Do the Eagles make a tender offer to Hunt and retain his services? Does Hunt hit the market and see what kind of opportunities are out there for him?
No doubt Hunt's first goal is to show that he is healthy. He's been rehabbing since September and has always been a hard-working guy and an underdog. The Eagles could use every bit of an improved pass rush, so maybe Hunt is someone who returns and gets a chance to show what he can do. His picture will be clarified when the team decides on its plans for the RFA.
JOE KRUEGER, defensive end
A seventh-round draft pick last April, Joe Krueger is an intriguing prospect. He's 6 feet 6 and is listed at 269 pounds. A shoulder injury ended Krueger's rookie season in the summer, so he spent the season studying the defense and working on his overall body strength and explosiveness.
Where is Krueger now from a physical standpoint? He should be in the best shape of his life, stronger than ever and much more prepared for the NFL life. Head coach Chip Kelly understands that big guys beat up little guys on the football field, and Krueger has plenty of room to build his body. Keep an eye on him this spring and summer and see how he fits into the defensive line equation.
JEREMY MACLIN, wide receiver
We all know the story here:
It's quiet now as we wait to see what happens next. Maclin started for four seasons prior to his injury and now faces a critical career moment.
JASON PHILLIPS, linebacker
Signed as an unrestricted free agent last March,
Phillips is a tenacious, tough player and if he's healthy and can run and play at the level the Eagles think, he can be an asset every time he is on the field. The Eagles will look to create more competition throughout the defense in 2014, so having Phillips back should help.
Who is the stopper on special teams as Dave Fipp looks ahead? It could be Phillips, who wants to make up for lost time in the season to come.