Cody Parkey, in his bid to unseat kicker Alex Henery days before final cuts, couldn’t have made his Eagles debut better.
Parkey, recently acquired in a trade with the Colts, nailed all three of his field-goal attempts -- two from beyond 50 -- to help the Eagles beat the Jets, 37-7, at the Linc in their annual preseason finale showdown.
All NFL teams must trim their roster to 53 by 4 p.m. Saturday. Parkey, let go by the Colts last week, converted kicks of 54, 25 and 53 yards. He could be the replacement for the struggling Henery that the Eagles were seeking months ago when they signed former Vanderbilt kicker Cary Spear.
Parkey, a former Auburn kicker who last year led the NCAA in touchbacks, is 5 for 5 this preseason on field-goal attempts, including 2 for 2 with the Colts. Indianapolis has this guy named Adam Vinatieri, who might end up in the Hall of Fame. The Eagles have Henery, who might be unemployed by Saturday.
Veteran wide receiver Arrelious Benn also made a late push for the final roster. He caught a 43-yard touchdown from Matt Barkley in the first quarter and finished with a team-leading two touchdown catches.
Rookie free agent tight end Trey Burton and receiver/running back Damaris Johnson also scored touchdowns for the Eagles, who racked up -- are you sitting down? -- 568 total yards, 278 rushing, in their destruction of the Jets.
Barkley played almost the entire game, surprisingly. He won’t get cut, but he didn’t exactly sparkle in his last appearance. The second-year pro started slow, but finished strong. He completed 21 of 33 passes for 253 with two touchdowns -- one by ground -- and an interception. He ran for a seven-yard touchdown.
He compiled a passer rating of 84.5. The pick may have been the fault of receiver Quron Pratt, who slowed up in the end zone and watched LeQuan Lewis jump the pass. Barkley finished the preseason 41 for 65 for 495 yards, three touchdowns and three picks for a passer rating of 82.5.
G.J. Kinne took over and finished perfectly, completing all three of his passes for 39 yards and a touchdown, a nice 21-yard strike to Burton.
Rookie tailback Henry Josey continued to make a strong roster push, rushing for 121 yards on 22 carries, an average of 5.5 yards per rush. He finished the preseason with 225 rushing yards. Enough to make the team? We’ll find out (see 10 observations).
Good luck to Jets running back Alex Greene, who probably won’t make the team. He fumbled twice, losing one. That’s not gonna help his case.
Give it to Earl Wolff, who caused one of Greene’s fumbles when he crashed his helmet into the Jets' running back in the second quarter and forced the ball loose.
Jaylen Watkins had some issues again. He was flagged for illegal use of hands in the first quarter and gave up a 42-yard touchdown to receiver Clyde Gates.
Almost every starter didn’t play against the Jets, but some key reserves were also withheld. Slot cornerback Brandon Boykin, running back Darren Sproles, cornerback Nolan Carroll, tight end Zach Ertz and rookie wideout Jordan Matthews didn’t play. Interestingly, veteran Brad Smith also didn’t play, which seems to be a sign that he's made the 53-man roster.
Chris Polk returned to practice this week after hearing Chip Kelly all but call him out for missing too much practice time with a hamstring injury, but Polk didn’t play against the Jets. He didn’t even dress. He wore sweats and stood on the sideline the whole night. More information on his status should be available after the game.
Polk, per a league source, suffered a minor setback Wednesday, but is expected to be ready for Week 1 -- whether that’s with the Eagles or another team is yet to be determined.
Bennie vs. the Jets
Other than right tackle Lane Johnson, defensive tackle Bennie Logan was the lone projected starter to play against the Jets. Johnson will serve a four-game PED suspension to start the season. Logan missed the first two games because of a hamstring injury, so maybe he’s making up for lost time.
Going out in style
If this was his last game as an Eagle, Damaris Johnson went out with a bang. The shrimpy third-year wideout caught two passes for 19 yards and scampered for a 46-yard touchdown run late in the fourth. Johnson was again forced into action as a ball carrier because of injuries at running back. Johnson finished the preseason with 83 yards on 12 carries, an average of just under seven yards per carry.
Heck of a return for former Eagles quarterback Mike Vick. He played one down, handed off the opening snap, then headed to the sidelines with a tip of his visor to the applauding Linc crowd.
Left guard Matt Tobin limped off the field on the first series after having his left leg rolled on by a Jets lineman. Tobin had his ankle examined on the sideline and then re-taped before he went back into the locker room. X-rays came back negative, but Tobin didn’t return.
Running back Kenjon Barner left the game with an ankle injury and didn’t return. X-rays came back negative. Running back Matthew Tucker injured his shoulder and didn’t return.