Projecting the Philadelphia Eagles Running Backs Performance in 2017

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The Philadelphia Eagles made a couple of people scratch their heads when they announced their 53-man roster, which showed that the team is keeping five running backs, including both hometown-favorite Corey Clement and the disappointing Donnel Pumphrey. With all of these mouths to feed, let’s take a look at how the Eagles might split up the touches between all of them. To put things into perspective, an Eagles running back touched the ball, including both carries and receptions, 461 times.

Projecting the Philadelphia Eagles Running Backs Performance in 2017

LeGarette Blount

Blount was an exciting free agent acquisition for Philadelphia after he had just come off an 18 touchdown season with the Patriots. However, it left some people feeling uneasy with just how deep into free agency he made it through and how little money he settled for. Nevertheless, Blount figures to be the short-yardage specialist and will most likely lead the team in rushing touchdowns, assuming Doug Pederson doesn’t run jet sweeps on first and goal at the two-yard line.

Projected Totals:
Rushing Attempts: 131
Rushing Yards: 602
Rushing Touchdowns: 8
Receptions: 14
Receiving Yards: 117
Receiving Touchdowns: 0

Wendell Smallwood

The Eagles have been really high on their West Virginia product much of this year’s training camp, but his inability to stay healthy has hindered much of his early success. He has shown bursts of the potential many hyped up, but he needs to put it all together. Assuming that he does, it is safe to assume that he will lead the running backs in carries and total touches this season. Look for him to be the early-down guy.

Projected Totals:
Rushing Attempts: 183
Rushing Yards: 812
Rushing Touchdowns: 4
Receptions: 20
Receiving Yards: 146
Receiving Touchdowns: 0

Darren Sproles

This will be the last season that Sproles suits up in midnight green. He has been the most dynamic playmaker for the Eagles for about three seasons now, and he may very well be again this season. Look for a slight regression in his receiving totals this season, considering the fact that the team has formidable receivers, especially compared to last season.

Projected Totals:
Rushing Attempts: 48
Rushing Yards: 187
Rushing Touchdowns: 1
Receptions: 40
Receiving Yards: 344
Receiving Touchdowns: 3

Corey Clement

Clement was an undrafted free agent out of Wisconsin. The Glassboro native became a fan favorite with his tough runs and was told he will be a part of the 53-man roster. Clement will probably become the lead back for the Eagles, but he can carve out a nice role in the event that Blount is ineffective or needs a breather.

Projected Totals:
Rushing Attempts: 31
Rushing Yards: 119
Rushing Touchdowns: 1
Receptions: 4
Receiving Yards: 29
Receiving Touchdowns: 0

Donnel Pumphrey

Although it is only the preseason, Pumphrey has been a disappointment. His size disadvantage was supposed to be made up for by his shifty cuts and quickness, but there has been much to be desired, especially against second and third team defenses. It does not seem that Pumphrey will have much of a role this season, but the Eagles hope that he can eventually replace Sproles as the primary change-of-pace back.

Projected Totals:
Rushing Attempts: 18
Rushing Yards: 92
Rushing Touchdowns: 0
Receptions: 13
Receiving Yards: 94
Receiving Touchdowns: 0

Team Totals

To break it all down, it is predicted that the Eagles backfield will account for the following:

Rushing Attempts: 411
Rushing Yards: 1,812
Rushing Touchdowns: 14
Receptions: 91
Receiving Yards: 730
Receiving Touchdowns: 3

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