The run game of the Philadelphia Eagles was a focal point all season and likely played a big reason in why Chip Kelly was fired. After signing Ryan Mathews, the team went and acquired DeMarco Murray, but failed to make use of the talent on the field. Part of that rotation included Darren Sproles who made it clear that he, like Murray, was not happy with his role on the team. However, with everyone thinking of the fresh start a new coach will bring, Sproles is making it clear that he wants to return to Philadelphia.
Sproles has one year remaining on his contract. He is set to earn $3.5 million in 2016 while being a $4.5 million cap hit. That is reasonable money for the Eagles to retain considering the versatility that the running back brings to the field. However, with Murray and Mathews set to return as well, there might not be room for Sproles, but he is hoping that is not the case.
"I still want to be playing and it bothers me we're not in the playoffs," Sproles said, via CBSPhilly.com. "I'll go back and train and spend time with my family. Things will depend on the new coach. I still fight the same battle. I'm small so there is this fear that I'm going to get hurt (if carrying the ball too much). I am satisfied with my touches. But I understand that it's always going to be the battle. It is what it is. I feel good. We'll see where the future lies."
The Eagles will have a lot of salary cap casualties as they look to bring on a new coach while re-signing Sam Bradford and bringing on more defensive talent. It is unclear just how important Sproles is deemed to the team considering Murray and Mathews were featured more during the year.
One player that could be the first cut is Riley Cooper who put together a very disappointing season. According to Jeff McLane of Philly.com, there is a real chance that Cooper is headed out of Philadelphia with the new coaching staff. The Eagles saw improvement from Jordan Matthews and Nelson Agholor and Cooper's cap hit is simply too much to keep on. Brent Celek could also be on the outside looking in depending on the staff brought in. The players understand that change is headed their way. Tight end Zach Ertz told the media that everyone expects a few big names to be headed elsewhere with all of the changes.
"The past couple of offseasons haven't been too quiet for us," Ertz said, via Philly.com. "Obviously, there will be a lot of breaking news this offseason. "The first season, we lost (wide receiver DeSean Jackson.) Last year we lost (wide receiver Jeremy Maclin, running back LeSean McCoy and quarterback Nick Foles). Now we lose Chip. This is a results business. There is a lot of pressure on us to succeed and if we don't, that pressure builds and new people come in. That's just the nature of this."