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Philadelphia Eagles look to add RB depth with Matt Jones signing

Matt Jones Philadelphia Eagles

The Philadelphia Eagles have signed veteran NFL running back Matt Jones to a two-year deal. Jones visited Philly over the weekend and was competing with two other players for a roster spot. The Eagles announced they signed Jones on Wednesday. This deal doesn’t guarantee that Jones will make the roster, but it does give him a shot to show the team what he has.

With LeGarrette Blount now in Detroit, the Eagles are looking for their premier back. Jones will have some tough competition if he wants to start in Philly. Or at least make the team. Jay Ajayi, Corey Clement, Donnel Pumphrey, Wendell Smallwood, and Darren Sproles are all competing for playing time at the position. Clement and Ajayi may lead as the likely candidates, but don’t count a runner like Matt Jones out.

In three seasons in the NFL, Jones has 964 rushing yards on 248 carries and six touchdowns. After a promising rookie campaign, Jones started seven games for the Washington Redskins in 2016. His numbers were decent and he looked like a solid back, but a knee injury knocked him out of the starting spot. Washington waived the former Florida Gator in early 2017 and he was claimed by the Colts. With only a handful of carries in Indianapolis, the Colts waived him earlier this month.


Matt Jones Philadelphia Eagles

As a rookie in 2015, Matt Jones ran for 490 yards and 3 touchdowns.

If Matt Jones can impress the Eagles like he did with the Redskins his rookie year, he could be a key role player in Philly. A backup role is where I think he’ll end up, but he does have the tools to get his fair share of reps in games. NFL teams like to have at least three capable running backs on their roster and Jones may fit the bill. Although the Eagles rarely use a back in the passing game, Jones does well in that category. He was a good option on screen passes and wheel routes.

Philadelphia finished third in the NFL in rushing last season. It was a critical point in helping them become the 2018 Super Bowl champions. Replacing Blount won’t be easy, but it is a necessity if they are going to continue on with their success. Establishing a good ground game will help Carson Wentz and/or Nick Foles to be more efficient┬áin the passing game.