Hardy, 24, rushed for only 29 yards and a touchdown on 4 carries as a rookie for the Cowboys in 2021. The Tiffin University product was waived, ahead of training camp, earlier in July.
During his time at Tiffin, Hardy produced 3,207 rushing yards, while averaging 6.4 yards per carry, with 28 touchdowns across three seasons at the NCAA Division II school. Hardy also caught 38 passes for 284 yards, while adding 3 receiving touchdowns.
Originally an undrafted free agent, Hardy bounced back and forth between the Cowboys’ practice squad and active roster. The Eagles passed on the opportunity to sign away a former member of their division rivals.
As the Eagles are set to open training camp on Tuesday, July 26, it isn’t surprising to see the team kicking the tires on veteran running backs. However, if the Eagles go shopping for a back, they would need to make a corresponding move in order to fit him under the roster.
Miles Sanders, Kenneth Gainwell, Boston Scott, and Jason Huntley are the only four backs currently on the roster, as training camp and the regular season looms.
Eagles Could Still Be Looking for RB Help
Even after Hardy left town without a deal on Monday, July 25, general manager Howie Roseman and the Eagles could still be in the market for veteran help in the backfield. Specifically, the Roseman and the Eagles could be aiming to replace the role Jordan Howard occupied in the backfield, in 2021.
“We just try to be as aggressive as we can, and knowing just like in the draft we’ll get some guys and we’ll miss out on some guys,” Roseman told reporters on April 30. “I think we got a good class, and there will still be open roster spots when this is all over because we are going to continue to look for opportunities.”
Running back remains as pressing a need as the Eagles currently have on the roster, even with Sanders’ prolific upside.
In 2021, the Eagles finished 14th in rushing offense, as injuries decimated the backfield.
Sanders suffered an ankle injury that sidelined him for three weeks, before breaking his hand in Week 16 which kept him sidelined for the final two weeks of the 2021 regular season. Meanwhile, a shoulder injury put Jordan Howard on the shelf for two weeks, as well.
Where Do the Eagles Go From Here?
The Eagles could still, at some point, bring Howard Back, or go shopping for a veteran when teams begin trimming their rosters later this summer.
Howard remains a free agent, after spending the better part of the past three seasons in Philadelphia, albeit without the security of a long-term contract. He finished last season second on the team in rushing, with 406 yards and 3 touchdowns.
Presuming Sanders can avoid the kind of nagging injuries that slowed him in 2021, he should be the bell cow in the Eagles’ backfield this upcoming season. But, don’t expect Roseman and the Eagles to stand pat if there is a running back who fits their profile who comes available in the weeks ahead.