The Philadelphia Eagles will take on the Pittsburgh Steelers in their first preseason game scheduled for tomorrow night. These are not necessarily the things I’ll be watching in tomorrow night’s game specifically, but rather the things I’ll be watching throughout pre-season.
This is an interesting game because the Steelers plan on starting both Mike Adams and David DeCastro. The Eagles have one of the league’s beat pass rushes with Trent Cole and Jason Babin on the outside and Cullen Jenkins and company on the inside. DeCastro and Adams are too big talented offensive linemen, but will they be able to handle the speed up front of the Philadelphia Eagles? Obviously not much can be taken from the performance of these players in limited action tomorrow, but it could be a good barometer for the progress of Decastro and Adams.
The Eagles #2 Running back situation.
It’s going to be hard, but at some point the Eagles will have to let someone other than LeSean McCoy play running back on occasion. The Eagles are full of young talent with Dion Lewis, Chris Polk, and Bryce Brown as the backups vying for the #2 spot with the Eagles. I’m interested to see how that shakes out tomorrow against what is traditionally one of the best run defenses in the entire league.
The New look linebacker corps for the Eagles.
The Eagles will be rolling out two, maybe three different starters at linebacker from a year ago. Will this unit look more impressive, even in a brief period of play than the unit the Eagles trotted onto the field last year? And who will win the weakside linebacker position-Brian Rolle or Casey Matthews.
The Punting battle.
The Eagles brought in former Cowboys punter Matt Mcbriar to push Chas Henry, will Henry be able to hold him off.
For the Steelers
The Defensive line.
I’m curious to see how the defensive line will shake out. The Steelers have quietly (at least speaking from a national perspective) gotten very young along the defensive line with Cameron Hayward, Ziggy Hood, and Ta’amu in line for big roles this year.
Will the #2 Cornerback please stand up?
I’m not the biggest fan of the Steelers cornerbacks and I think the Steelers desperately need someone to emerge in the secondary (actually two players would be great). The Steelers’ Kennan Lewis, Cortez Allen, and Curtis Brown will vying for playing time. The Eagles have one of the better WR groups in the entire league and could be a good litmus test for the young cornerbacks.
These are the main storylines I’ll be watching for these two teams throughout pre-season. Have any others?
Obviously I’ll be watching for roster bubble players to stand out on special teams, and for the rookies to stand out and the second year players to show major improvements, but that’s the same thing with every team in pre-season.
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