As the hours trickle down to Monday night's preseason showdown between the Eagles and the Patriots, here are five offensive players to keep an eye on ...
TE Brent Celek - The first-team offense welcomes back its starting tight end who was sidelined for most of Training Camp with a knee injury. First, it will be good to see a healthy Celek roam the field. Celek raved back in the spring about how much better he felt after two offseason surgeries. Hopefully, Celek will feel as good after his first preseason action. Also, it will be interesting to see how offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg integrates Celek and Clay Harbor, who has had an outstanding Training Camp.
OT King Dunlap - One of the few unsettled position battles among starters is at left tackle where King Dunlap will work with the first-team offense Monday night instead of Demetress Bell. The Eagles' coaches have said there is not much separation between Dunlap and Bell at this point and that Dunlap is more than deserving of this opportunity. Last year, the Eagles sat rookie guard Danny Watkins until he was ready. Are they doing the same with Bell? Or could Dunlap entrench himself truly as the starter with a great performance?
QB Nick Foles - After an outstanding preseason debut, the rookie third-round pick will play most, if not all of, the second half with the second-team offense as Mike Kafka is sidelined. The Eagles obviously want to see how Foles plays with extended playing time. However, if Foles has another really good performance could he make a run at the No. 2 quarterback job?
WR Marvin McNutt - One of the intriguing roster decisions for the Eagles will be how many players they keep at wide receiver. At this point, the Eagles have DeSean Jackson, Jeremy Maclin and Jason Avant as their top three. Riley Cooper is recovering from a collarbone injury. Damaris Johnson has been outstanding to date - he was the featured player on the first offensive player of the preseason. McNutt is a big, physical receiver who is also adept at run blocking. He's still raw in his development after starting his college career as a quarterback.
QB Michael Vick - The first-team offense didn't have any success in its preseason debut. Vick was 3-of-4 for a mere 6 yards. He was sacked once and exited the game after two series with a sore thumb. Vick wants to carry the momentum of a strong offseason into the regular season and success Monday night will go a long way in accomplishing that. Vick will have his full complement of weapons and extended playing time. Let's see if Vick can help the offense gain some traction.
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