Players Poll: Which Eagle Is Ready To Break Out?

Eagles players predict which teammates will have a big season.

NFL: Detroit Lions at Philadelphia Eagles
As is our annual tradition heading into the season, we went around the Eagles’ locker room this week and presented  players with a simple question: Which of your teammates has impressed you this summer and is primed for a big/breakout year?

We got 23 (usable) responses in all. Take a look: 

Mark Sanchez: “Oooh. Didn’t we do this last year? Didn’t I say Mychal Kendricks? He had a pretty good year. (Long pause, deep in thought.) Lane [Johnson]. I think Lane has a big year. I’ve seen how hard he works in the offseason. I think last year he had to miss a couple games, kinda had a chip on his shoulder, came back and played really well. But I think this year he becomes…I think this year he makes the Pro Bowl. I think he’s a Pro-Bowl talent and I think this year he makes the jump.”

Eric Rowe: “Walter Thurmond. He’s really smart, has a knack for the ball. Especially at the safety position, you have to have those instincts. I think he’s going to break out.”

Josh Huff: “The person who really stood out to me in training camp before he got injured was Marcus Smith. So I’ll go with Marcus Smith. Just the improvement he made from how his body looked, he’s a very powerful speed rusher and he adapted pretty well back outside dropping into coverage, getting all in the face of slot receivers. I think he’s going to have a really good year once he gets back healthy and back into the swing of things.”

Brent Celek: “I’ll pick my man Zach [Ertz]. I think he’s going to have a big year. I don’t know what else to say.”

Fletcher Cox: “Jordan Matthews. Jordan, he’s just got a swagger about himself. Confident, and you can see that on the field. He’s real humble about it. I just feel like Jordan is going to have a pretty big year.”

E.J. Biggers:Sam Bradford. When you watch him in practice and see all the throws he can make, it’s amazing to see a person make all those throws effortlessly. That’s very, very unique. You don’t see that a lot in this league. I’ll go with that.”

Kiko Alonso: “Bradford. Because he’s a beast.”

Darren Sproles: “Sam Bradford. He’s a great quarterback and he understands the offense, too. Sam.”

Connor Barwin: “Sam Bradford. He throws a great ball, he’s got a lot of talented guys around him and he’s got the ball in his hands every single play, so I think he’s going to have a great year.”

Zach Ertz: “Sam. Sam and Walter. Walter is a ball-hawk. He’s going to have five forced fumbles at least and a couple interceptions. Sam, he’s a quarterback so I have to say him. No, he’s special. Really, really, special. He’s got the playmakers, he’s got the scheme around him that suits him, and I think everyone is really excited for it.”

Chris Maragos: “I think Zach Ertz is going to have a big year. He’s progressing, he understands the offense a lot better, his route running is great. He’s a real long guy so he catches the ball away from you. He’s a good mismatch with what he does. Bennie Logan, too. He came into the league pretty young. He’s obviously always done a really good job but he’s always continuing to get better. Sky is the limit for him.”

Sam Bradford: “I don’t like doing polls, man. Sorry.”

Lane Johnson: “I think Jordan Matthews is going to have a big year. He had a strong rookie season. By the way he’s been working in the offseason, he’s relentless. He’s primed to have a big year, I think.”

Trey Burton: “J-Matt. It’s just his work ethic and the time he puts in, the time he stays after and the time he comes in early in the morning. It’s special how prepared he is for the game.”

Jordan Matthews: “Oh, Nelson [Agholor]. That’s easy. He’s the best rookie receiver in the class, and he slipped to us? That’s crazy. There are some really good ones…but he’s the best, no question. Easily him.”

Andrew Gleichert: “Kiko Alonso. He’s super athletic and he covers tight ends very well. I’m really looking forward to seeing how he does. He’s just so naturally fluid and he has both the speed and the power.”

Bennie Logan: “[Andrew] Gardner. A new position that he’s playing and he just embraced it and has had a lot of success [this summer]. Going against him in practice, he presents and gives you different kind of looks and I think he’s eager to just go out and establish himself.”

DeMeco Ryans:Jordan Matthews. He’s been grinding, working hard all offseason. First one here, last to leave. He’s been putting in work and I expect him to have a big year.”

Jason Kelce: “I think Allen Barbre is going to have a breakout year. I think he’s going to have a tremendous year in our offense and I think he’s going to be a really well-known name in Philadelphia after this year.”

Beau Allen: “B-Lo [Bennie Logan]. He’s a great player. He had a great year last year and he just kept on getting better.”

DeMarco Murray:Fletcher Cox. He’s a beast.”

Byron Maxwell: “Nelson Agholor. He can take the top off defenses. He’s fast, he’s quick. He’s a special athlete, he’s very mature to be a rookie. Being mature like that, you’re going to hit a rookie wall but he’ll be able to bounce back and handle it better. I expect big things from him.”

Mark Sanchez (a day later): “Yo, I have to put Ryan Mathews on there. He’s kind of like a dark horse in this whole thing. He’s going to get plenty of carries, big-time yards and is going to make plays catching and running the ball. Everyone knows what DeMarco can do, everyone knows what Sproles can do, and Ryan is kind of flying under the radar.”

Josh Paunil contributed to this post.