The Eagles find themselves with a running back dilemma after a poor preseason by LeGarrette Blount. His 2.8 yards per carry average back up the preseason struggles. Blount is 30 and coming off the biggest workload of his career. The Eagles would save $850,000 by cutting Blount. Trading Blount would save $1.05 million. Blount has struggled with his weight this offseason weight so the latter might be tough.
The is a weight clause in his contract that gave him a bonus if he was 245 pounds or less. Blount has missed spring practice time and Wendell Smallwood has had a good camp. They also have undrafted rookie Corey Clement showing promise. They could stay in house and rely on Darren Sproles for a spark. Donnell Pumphrey was also expected to have a larger role in the offense this season. If he was not a fourth round pick, he would be on the roster bubble. This puts the Eagles in a tough position. The Eagles can look to trade for a running back or wait until after 53-man rosters are set.
If the Eagles want to make a trade there are a few options available to them. Thomas Rawls of the Seahawks could be the odd man out in the Seahawks backfield. Two years removed from a breakout season, Rawls could use a change in scenery. An ankle injury ruined Rawls’ chance to really make a name for himself last year. Being removed from all the expectations that we’re laid on him to fill Marshawn Lynch’s could allow him to thrive.
Matt Forte is a viable option if reports are true about him being available for trade. He provides a dual-threat back option the Eagles lack. Coming off a good year with the Jets, he would be a perfect veteran for a young quarterback and backfield. His age, however, and his $4 million price tag might scare off the Eagles especially after failing with Blount. He also has a history of injuries.
Matt Jones of the Redskins seems to have fallen out of favor in Washington. As a rookie, he was productive for Washington, but has been plagued by fumble issues. Nonetheless, Jones is another running back with high hopes that faltered under the limelight. He is a big back who can provide a nice 1-2 punch with Sproles. A trade within the division seems unlikely though.
I believe the Eagles will choose to stand pat and promote from within. They could poach the waiver wire for a veteran. With a young quarterback, it would behold the Eagles to provide a good safety outlet for Carson Wentz.