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Pederson sees Blount as 'big part' of Eagles' offense

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Philadelphia Eagles coach Doug Pederson dismissed speculation that LeGarrette Blount could be on the roster bubble.

"I mean, the guy is a beast of a runner," Pederson said Tuesday when asked about Blount's roster security, via the Philly Voice. "I don't know what else to tell you. [He had] 18 touchdowns, 15 in the red zone, last year. That's the production. You saw yesterday the style of running that he can do.

"And the other thing is, we're not game-planning these [preseason] games, so it's really hard going into a game saying, 'This is best against this team.' We're trying to execute our plays. As coaches, we might be doing our players an injustice by putting them in bad situations. But you saw what he's done the last couple of days.

"I'm excited he's here, and he's going to be a big part of our offense."

The coach's comments come on the heels of Blount's preseason struggles, and some beat reporters have suggested the Eagles could part with the bruising back and install Wendell Smallwood as the lead back with Darren Sproles playing a large role in the offense.

In two preseason games, Blount has looked heavy, carrying the ball nine times for 17 total yards (1.9 yards per attempt). The Eagles use of the big back on wide runs this preseason hasn't helped -- something Eagles fans got their fill of watching DeMarco Murray two years ago. Blount also hasn't had the benefit of running behind a full-force offensive line.

The Eagles signed Blount this offseason to a one-year $1.25 million contract and would be left with just $400,000 in dead money by parting ways.

After cutting Ryan Mathews, Blount remains the Eagles' best option in short-yardage situations. Philly could change course if the struggles continue in Thursday's preseason game versus the Miami Dolphins on NFL Network, but Pederson sounds willing to ride into the season with Blount in his backfield and go from there.

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