The Eagles have released their depth chart for Thursday night’s preseason opener against the Steelers.
Not a lot of surprises, but here are some notes.
* The quarterbacks are listed as you’d expect behind Michael Vick: Mike Kafka, Nick Foles and Trent Edwards. Edwards’ days on the roster are clearly numbered. Kafka’s your backup. There’s no battle there.
* At running back, Dion Lewis is listed behind LeSean McCoy. Bryce Brown is third, and Chris Polk is fourth. Lewis has had an excellent camp and is the clear favorite to back up McCoy in the regular season. Brown has a good shot to make the roster, but Polk has shown flashes during recent practices. That’s still a competition to keep an eye on.
* Stanley Havili is the first-team fullback, ahead of Emil Igwenagu (second) and Jeremy Stewart (third).
* No surprises at wide receiver. Chad Hall is ahead of undrafted rookie free agent Damaris Johnson, but I think Johnson has a great shot of beating him out for a roster spot.
* Tight end is what you’d expect: Brent Celek, followed by Clay Harbor and Brett Brackett.
* Rookie Dennis Kelly is listed behind Todd Herremans at right tackle, but King Dunlap would be the first tackle off the bench at either spot in the regular season. He’ll likely be the only tackle active on gamedays. And don’t forget, Dunlap played guard last year too.
* Dallas Reynolds is listed as the backup center, but as Julian Vandervelde told me recently, all of the Eagles’ backup interior linemen who make the roster are going to be expected to play both guard and center. We’ll see if Vandervelde plays some center in Thursday night’s game.
* With Mike Patterson out, Derek Landri is listed as the first-team defensive tackle. That’s consistent with what we’ve seen out here at practice. Fletcher Cox and Antonio Dixon are the second-team defensive tackles. Cedric Thornton is third, although he has a shot to make the roster. Cullen Jenkins is listed as a first-team tackle, although he’s been playing some defensive end with Jason Babin sidelined.
* Brandon Graham and Darryl Tapp are your second-team defensive ends. Vinny Curry and Phillip Hunt are with the third team. Curry is a lock to make the roster. Hunt is battling for a spot.
* DeMeco Ryans, Brian Rolle and Mychal Kendricks are your starting linebackers. The Eagles were in nickel (two linebackers, five defensive backs) about 47 percent of the time last season. At the start of camp, Ryans and Rolle stayed on the field. Then it was Ryans and Jamar Chaney. With Chaney injured, it’s been Ryans and Kendricks.
* Keenan Clayton is third on the depth chart at WILL, behind Rolle and Chaney. Casey Matthews is the backup middle linebacker. Akeem Jordan is behind Kendricks at SAM.
* Slot cornerback is not listed, but Joselio Hanson still has a hold on the No. 1 spot there and will try to fight off rookie Brandon Boykin in the coming weeks.
* The safeties are what you’d expect. Nate Allen and Kurt Coleman are the starters, with Oshiomogho Atogwe and Jaiquawn Jarrett as the backups.
* Mat McBriar is listed as the first-team punter, ahead of Chas Henry. If McBriar is healthy, he is the favorite to win that job.
* Johnson is the first-team punt returner, and Boykin is the first-team kickoff returner. Special teams might be the No. 1 thing to watch on Thursday night. The Eagles need to get more out of their return games in 2012.
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