By Peter Gleason

Cody Kessler is the top internal option to replace the injured Nate Sudfeld, but he struggled in the preseason opener, going 3 of 6 for 12 yards and a 56.2 passer rating.

Kessler wasn’t asked to do much with the Jacksonville Jaguars last season, but he was accurate on the passes that were thrown 0-to-9 yards. Per Pro Football Focus, Kessler finished fifth in the league in passes that went 0-to-9 yards at 72.3 percent (that measures the away from coverage designation by PFF).

Kessler went 73 for 89 on passes that went 0-to-9 yards for 516 yards, with one touchdown and one interception for an 89.9 passer rating. Kessler has just one touchdown and one interception on passes that went 10-plus yards, going 12 for 31 for 193 yards, finishing with a 57.8 passer rating.

No doubt Kessler has a clear edge over rookie Clayton Thorson, who struggled mightily in his preseason debut. Thorson went 2 of 9 for seven yards and one interception for a 0.0 passer rating, missing wide open receivers and sailing deep throws across the middle of the field. Thorson was a developmental project for 2019, so the Eagles weren’t really counting on him to contribute this year. Could they waste a 53-man roster spot on Thorson? They need more depth at quarterback and can easily get the 2019 fifth-round pick to pass through waivers at this point.


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