Understanding Dion Jordan To The Eagles

Posted: March 4th, 2013 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 80 Comments »

LB Dion Jordan is the player most associated with the Eagles right now.  There is some confusion about what his role would be so let’s address that to make sure we’re all on the same page.

Part of this ties into what defense the Eagles will run in 2013 and the future.  If the team goes to a pure 3-4, then Jordan isn’t a player you need.  In that situation Brandon Graham and Trent Cole would be the OLBs short term and then Vinny Curry would take over for Cole in 2014 or 2015.  Jordan could still get picked, but it would not bode well for the future of either Graham or Curry.  Some have asked if Curry could play DE in the 3-4.  That’s possible, but not real likely.  Most 3-4 DEs are in the 6-4, 300 range.  Curry is 6-3, 266.  He would need to pack on 25 pounds to be a small DE.  Doesn’t make a lot of sense to me, but I’ve learned that with Chip Kelly at the helm…never say never.  A note on Trent Cole…as much as I love him you don’t make him part of any long term plans.  He’ll turn 31 in October and is coming off his worst season.

Bill Davis ran the 4-3 Under while in Arizona.  I wrote some about this previously.  Here is how that would look:

* Predator (RDE)
* 3-tech DT
……………………….WILB (playmaker)
* NT
……………………….SILB (thumper)
* 5-tech DE
* SAM (LB/DE hybrid)

Because the Predator is in a 2-point stance, the defense looks like a 3-4.  It isn’t a 3-4 because the roles are different.

The 3-tech DT is supposed to get upfield and be disruptive.

The NT is actually called a “nose shade”.  He gets on one side of the C and is supposed to get penetration, not just eat up blocks.

The alignment keeps the WILB clean.  His job is to get to the ball and make plays.  This was Karlos Dansby in Arizona.  The SILB needs to be able to take on blockers and shed them.  He’s more of a run defender.

The SAM is going to rush 70 percent of the time and cover 30 percent of the time.  He’s not just a DE.  He must be athletic and solid in coverage.  Dion Jordan would be perfect for the SAM role.  He is outstanding in coverage and has the skills to be a special pass rusher.  At the Combine you could see his ability to fly off the edge and bend and turn fluidly.  He didn’t post great sack numbers at Oregon because they took advantage of his skill set and used him all over the field.

No current player on the roster is a natural fit for the SAM.  Again, don’t think of this as a normal 3-4 OLB role.  This isn’t something that Woodley or Harrison run in PIT.  Graham and Curry can rush the passer.  I’m not sure about them playing a role where they would drop back 30 percent of the time.  That’s a bit much.  Curry does have the right build for the job, but isn’t a great athlete.

This is all the base defense.

The Eagles could go 2-4-5, 3-3-5, or 4-2-5 in the Nickel.  I’m guessing the 4-2-5 would be used a lot.  This would allow them to put Cole and Graham down in a 3-point stance and have them fire off the edge like conventional DEs.  Curry would be the top backup at both spots.  Jordan could be used as a pass rusher or you could put him at ILB and let he and Kendricks cover.  That would be one fast set of ILBs.  There really are a lot of possibilities.  Davis would find out which group of players worked best together and would stick with them.

If you strictly think of Jordan as a pass rusher, then drafting him doesn’t make as much sense.  You’ve already got Cole, Graham, and Curry in place.  You have to think of Jordan as a chess piece that can be moved around.  You also have to think that the front seven needs guys like him to chase down RGIII for the next decade, not to mention Wilson, Kaepernick, and the other mobile QBs of the NFC.

The Eagles have been vague about defensive plans so we’re all guessing.  Jordan just makes a lot of sense.  He’s tall.  He’s fast.  He’s versatile.  This is the kind of weapon the defense could use.  Jordan can be moved around and offers impact in a variety of ways.  He has big potential and there is the added bonus that Chip Kelly coached him for 4 years.

Dion Jordan to the Eagles makes a ton of sense to me.  As defenses get multiple and complex, you wants some guys you can have do different things and do them well.

* * * * *

The Titans will not place the franchise tag on TE Jared Cook, making him a UFA.  I’m sure the Eagles will have interest, assuming they want to be active in FA.

Tim McManus did a piece today on Chip Kelly and TEs.  Cook has the size and speed that Kelly would love.  He averaged 15.5 yards per catch in 2011, a very impressive total for a TE.  Usually that’s down in the 10 to 11 range.  16 yards per catch shows playmaking ability.  Cook won’t be mistaken for a good blocker anytime soon, but you know when you sign him that he’s an athletic weapon.  He spent most of his time in TEN split out.  That could work in Kelly’s offense.  He’ll turn 26 in April so his best years are ahead of him.

* * * * *

Brent Grimes did not get tagged today.  Last year he did and he lost money because of that.  NFL Gimpy explains why in his new MAQB column.  Gimpy also explained why Joe Flacco was on the bench at Pitt.  Good stuff from him today.

Tomorrow I’ll talk more about KCs moves, FA, and who did/didn’t get tagged and how that affects the Eagles.


80 Comments on “Understanding Dion Jordan To The Eagles”

  1. 1 SleepingDuck said at 8:59 PM on March 4th, 2013:

    Hypothetical question: If the Eagles were to move back to the 4-3 in the future, what position would Jordan play? DE?

  2. 2 ICDogg said at 9:33 PM on March 4th, 2013:

    I think he’d still be a SAM. Just not as much of a pass rusher.

  3. 3 TommyLawlor said at 10:29 PM on March 4th, 2013:

    Nickel / Dime…DE.
    Think about the way Denver uses Von Miller. He’s WLB in base, DE in sub-packages.

  4. 4 Mark Sitko said at 9:13 PM on March 4th, 2013:

    Tommy – my concern with Dion (even though I agree with everything you like about him mentioned above) is that his shoulder surgery would make him unavailable until Training Camp. I know he knows Chip’s defensive “style” and everything, but Bill Davis’s 3-4 under system will be new to Don, right? I assume his role will be quite different (as in he won’t be used all over the field like you say he was in Oregon).

    Aren’t you concerned about taking a guy at #4 that will not be there in the spring for OTAs when the new coaching staff installs all of their basic concepts? Wouldn’t this mean someone else – and I do not see another player on the roster that has the same skill set – would have to cover that role until the first day of training camp, and then Dion would try to catch up with the rest of the front seven?

    And what if Dion’s surgery has complications? Or even worse – what if Dion’s shoulder makes it difficult for him to deal with the size and physical impact of NFL offensive lineman? I am not trying be the pessimist but all of these concerns seem feasible, and I just want this pick to be a winner…but I trust Chip, (and you) he knows Dion better than anyone so if he pulls that trigger I will be happy.

  5. 5 TommyLawlor said at 10:28 PM on March 4th, 2013:

    You draft Dion Jordan thinking about the next 5 years, not the next 5 months. Him missing some mini-camp reps is not a big deal. That’s a speed bump.

    You can only take him early if you think his shoulder will be good to go. He was able to do virtually a full workout so I’m assuming a simple surgery will get it back to normal. He had a torn labrum. That’s common. That’s fixable. If there were any signs of arthritis or other degenerative issues, then you downgrade him.

  6. 6 Mark Sitko said at 9:16 PM on March 4th, 2013:

    PS – I do not fully understand the 3-4, nor the differences it has from the 4-3 under. Was very interested to learn the OLB in the 4-3 under has a different role – I assumed they would be similar. In the traditional 3-4 is the SILB usually covering the TE? Or the safety? In the 4-3 under, when the TE rushes who takes the TE – one of those 2 players? Just curious – wanted to see if you could elaborate on that distinction.

  7. 7 Mark Sitko said at 9:19 PM on March 4th, 2013:

    Not the TE rushing – when the OLB rushes, who takes the TE…

  8. 8 TommyLawlor said at 10:25 PM on March 4th, 2013:

    Coverage responsibilities are hard to discuss in general terms. Players now do some much creatively on offense and defense that it’s hard to say. Back in 2008 JJ had Gocong covering TEs half the year and then switched to let Jordan do it. The SAM will cover the TE some of the time. The SILB and WILB will cover him at times. Both Safeties as well. You mix things up.

  9. 9 Norman Haupt said at 11:45 PM on March 4th, 2013:

    To add to that, this is the strength (and weakness) the of the 3-4. The coverage assignments are much less predictable. Harder on the players, but when it clicks it’s hard on QBs.

    The new Under defense would generate the same effect, but i think is less of a leap than a pure 3-4. Which few teams run any more anyway.

    I like the idea of Jordan. I think it provides the defense a real versatile weapon if he pans out. SOLB is so key. It would be nice having a wolf pack linebacker mentality.

  10. 10 ICDogg said at 9:22 PM on March 4th, 2013:

    If we go to a 3-4, as opposed to a 4-3 Under, would Ziggy be a better pick than Jordan?

  11. 11 TommyLawlor said at 10:23 PM on March 4th, 2013:

    Maybe. Ziggy could play the 5-tech DE in both schemes. He lacks ideal size, but would be a much better pass rusher than most DEs. Could play rush LB in the 3-4. He’s one of the rare freaks who can do both. Does he play at 265 or 285? He’s 275 now and can adjust his body. I know I said 300 pounds is goal for 3-4 DE, but Ziggy is the kind of freak you make exceptions for if you want to try that. Let him play light and see if he can handle it. OLB would be pretty natural spot for him.

  12. 12 bubqr said at 10:49 PM on March 4th, 2013:

    I am really not impressed by what I saw of him as a pass rusher int the cut-ups – vs USC, he just goes wiiiiiiiiide all the time, and without much success. I’d like to think that he could develop in Aldon Smith part 2, but don’t have much hope. Also, while he was “the talk of the combine”, judging by pure numbers I m more impressed by Ansah who posted up similar numbers while 20 pounds heavier.
    While I do think you are 100% right when saying we need versatile players nowadays and he fits the bill, and also reassured by the fact Chip knows him, I m not a huge fan of him at 4th.

    Priority number 1 to me is still trading down.

  13. 13 TommyLawlor said at 11:17 PM on March 4th, 2013:

    I think you’re being too harsh. Jordan is new to pass rushing. He was a WR/TE in high school. He was on offense his R and RS-Fr years. He’s been a full time defensive player since 2010. That’s not a ton of experience.

    Also, he’s not a DE. He’s a LB. He rushes the QB 20 times a game, maybe less. His practice time is split between rushing and covering. This isn’t the same as watching Moore or Werner or Mingo. Those guys have many more pass rushing attempts in practice and games and they’re more polished.

    Jordan is a weapon…not just a rusher. There is no great pure pass rusher in this draft. Ansah is more raw than Jordan. Moore isn’t an athlete. Mingo lacks strength. And so on.

  14. 14 bubqr said at 2:43 AM on March 5th, 2013:

    Thanks for your answers Tommy. I understand the “chess piece” part, and I like the way he flies on the field, I’m just not confident with any DE I’ve seen so far, apart from Carradine that I found really, really good on tape (I like how we all say “on tape” now, like experts, while we have only seen 3/4 game cut-ups…). Right now Dion reminds me more of Jarvis Moss than Aldon Smith, but it’s true that taking into consideration his injury and usage, I might be too harsh.

    Note on Jarvis Moss: I could have spent 1,000$ on him being a bust, I thought he was soooo overrated: while some were seing The Freak v2 I could see only a tall DE running 10 yards into the backfield. that’s what I see at times in Dion.

    But at the same time, I could have spent the same amount of money on Derrick Harvey becoming a real force in the NFL watching Moss’ tape, I thought he was the one making Jarvis looks good. (I can’t remember your opinion of both, I gotta have a look!).

    Ultimately, I do trust your opinion a lot more than mine, so if you are comfortable with him, I will be as well in time. Just not yet.

  15. 15 austinfan said at 9:20 AM on March 5th, 2013:

    Sorry, Tommy, too many excuses have been made for Jordan, as if he looks like a player therefore he must be a player.

    1) lack of strength, SLB has to set the edge at times, and has to be able to handle a TE against the run and pass, or why you don’t leave a TE on Spencer. Jordan at his college weight or even 248 isn’t that strong (the shoulder injury kept him from lifting, that would have been interesting). He’s a fluid athlete, but not a powerful one, if he can and does bulk up to 260 lbs or so, is he still a fast, fluid athlete?

    2) for a guy spending so much time in coverage, he had a grand total of 0 interceptions and 1 pass defended the last two years – now college stats may be misleading, but the lack of said stats is usually a red flag – I doubt QBs never threw his way, heck, they throw at Revis, rather, it suggests a lack of instincts and ball skills in that he can’t locate or react to the ball in the air.

    When you’re talking #4, you don’t want potential, you want someone who’s already a “man among boys” in college. Jordan to me is the kind of guy you take #11-20, downside is a good SLB with limited pass rush skills and strength deficiencies who gets dinged a lot, upside is he’s a great SOLB who can pass rush (though he’ll never be a Von Miller) and drop into coverage and fills out to the point where he can handle NFL TEs and be respectable against RTs.

  16. 16 ICDogg said at 12:06 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    Who do you like, A-fan? I’m liking Ziggy more and more but obviously he doesn’t meet your qualifications because he’s so raw.

  17. 17 austinfan said at 12:44 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    Ansah is also a big risk/return gamble, but I think he’s actually better suited to the SLB role similar to Arizona than Jordan, because Davis pass rushes his SLB so much (different that blitzing a LB, who often has a clean lane and only has to beat a RB, if you send the SLB 70% of the time, teams will put a big TE or the RT on him, they’re usually not stupid enough to give him a clean rushing lane).

    Jordan would be much better in coverage, but if you’re only dropping the SLB into coverage 30% of the time, and into underneath zone much of that time, Jordan’s coverage skills go underutilized.

    On the other hand, Davis would probably use Jordan differently than Ansah at SLB, dropping him into coverage more and maybe moving him around.

    Tale of the tape:

    Jordan (248 lbs, 6’6, 34″ arms):

    Ansah (271 lbs, 6’5, 35″ arms


    What jumps out at you is than Ansah tests as well as Jordan despite weighing an additional 23 lbs. You don’t have to project Ansah’s body, you do have to project his ability to develop pass rushing and coverage techniques.

    To me, Ansah has more upside than Jordan, he’s an exceptional athlete who could play Predator, “5” or SLB. He’s not as fluid as Jordan but more explosive.

  18. 18 Ark87 said at 12:19 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    Good points, I really like Jordan, but there is mega-potential for bust in this pick, which is unacceptable at 4. Don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t be super mad or even terribly disappointed if we took him, just uneasy. It’s a rough #4 this year

  19. 19 deg0ey said at 2:22 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    ‘When you’re talking #4, you don’t want potential, you want someone who’s already a “man among boys” in college.’

    That may be true, but (assuming that everybody’s looking for the same thing) there aren’t four of those guys in the draft this year. To be honest, one could probably make a reasonable argument that there aren’t any. When you take that into account, you probably need to refine your criteria a little.

  20. 20 Phils Goodman said at 3:45 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    Joeckel, Fisher, Warmack, Cooper, Tavon Austin, Geno Smith, Jarvis Jones, Sheldon Richardson, Dee Milliner and Xavier Rhodes were all dominant in college. The numbers won’t show as much for interior linemen, but so were Floyd, Lotulelei and Slylvester Williams. This draft may be missing productive and toolsy skill position players, but not every early prospect is an unpolished upside guy.

  21. 21 Phils Goodman said at 4:02 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    I was reading up on Connor Barwin because he’s a FA to be and I found something pertinent. Turns out he is a converted TE too:

    In 2007 Barwin was just a tight end and not a basketball player, but by 2008 he was moved to defensive end. It took a while, but Cincinnati finally found him a good spot. During his lone year on the defensive line, Barwin tallied 53 tackles, 16.0 tackles-for-loss and 11 sacks.

    His combine measurables weren’t too far off from Jordan’s either (and some better).

    I can’t say much about him in coverage, but I was able to find one extremely limited video:


    So I know he was asked to cover at least twice in 2011! I am not sure if much else can be divined from those clips.

  22. 22 TommyLawlor said at 11:19 PM on March 4th, 2013:

    Also of note…Jordan first hurt his shoulder vs Colorado and that was the game prior to USC. Not sure how much that affected him.

  23. 23 Andrew said at 10:52 PM on March 4th, 2013:

    If we go with Jordan in round 1 and Hunt is still available in Round 2, would he be a potential target there as a 5-technique DE? Thornton could then play as a one-gap NT or back up at both end positions if we get someone else in FA to play with Dixon. Or would this just be inefficient with so many needs in the secondary?

  24. 24 TommyLawlor said at 10:58 PM on March 4th, 2013:

    Hunt is a bit of a workout warrior. I’d pass in the 2nd round. We could add a DE. I like Datone Jones. Not sure if he’s on the board then.

  25. 25 D3FB said at 12:32 AM on March 5th, 2013:

    One thing that bothers me is specifically in the Stanford game, he seems to completely forget that he has arms. Just no use of the hands at all. Are we seeing different things?

  26. 26 TommyLawlor said at 3:15 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    If Jordan…had an injured shoulder in that game.

  27. 27 D3FB said at 6:21 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    No I’m talking Datone Jones.

  28. 28 D-von said at 11:18 PM on March 4th, 2013:

    Jordan scares me a little. Back in December I really wanted him on the Eagles so I started watching his tape. What I saw was an occasional playmaker that got bullied by tackles an TEs if they got their hands on him. But of course he could get better. Do you see him in a Von Miller type role?

  29. 29 Jeppe Elmelund van Ee said at 11:25 PM on March 4th, 2013:

    I can’t wait until FA frenzy is over, and we get a better feel of the depth chart, and of course Chip Kellys preferences. Right now we have no idea weather we’ll add Bryant to play 5-tech or Kruger to play SAM, making it that much harder to narrow down prospects that suits us. Even though I’m a big advocate for picking BPA no matter what, I guess depth chart plays a role to some extend.

  30. 30 D3Keith said at 11:30 PM on March 4th, 2013:

    Over? I can’t wait til it begins!

  31. 31 Jeppe Elmelund van Ee said at 11:33 PM on March 4th, 2013:

    Ha, me neither. There’s just so much to look forward to I guess

  32. 32 Jeppe Elmelund van Ee said at 11:32 PM on March 4th, 2013:

    Players of interest in the second/third round for me.

    NT Sylvester Williams
    DE Datone Jones
    SILB Kevin Minter
    S Eric Reid

    DE William Gholston
    OLB Jamie Collins

  33. 33 Phils Goodman said at 3:35 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    I’m with all of those except Minter and Gholston (unless he falls far).

  34. 34 Arby1 said at 11:46 PM on March 4th, 2013:

    I’d love to sign Jared Cook because I don’t see us getting one of the top 5 TE’s in the draft. For pick #4, I can’t help but think it’s gonna be a OT or DT. But maybe I’ve been too conditioned by AR…

  35. 35 limodriver27 said at 3:38 AM on March 5th, 2013:

    Trust me…we’ve been in Andy mode for way too long. Things are gonna be different.

  36. 36 Mac said at 12:12 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    I agree 100% on Cook. I believe Chip will want to add 2 TEs to the roster and I think Cook is the way to make sure one of them can impact the team. The other guy can be a mid-late round prospect.

  37. 37 Chris Lloyd said at 1:27 AM on March 5th, 2013:

    I don’t know if you have heard this, but Howard Eskin reported on Fox 29 (Philly) news at night of the new practice schedules for the eagles. He said the birds would practice monday and saturday (GAMEWEEKS), walkthrough fridays, and practice in the morning instead of afternoon like Reid did with eagles during TC. I thought it was pretty interesting wondering if you think thats better or what. A lot diff than Reid’s practices so conditioning will be huge.

  38. 38 limodriver27 said at 3:35 AM on March 5th, 2013:

    Boys, all I can advise is: be in top shape when you get there. “Toto, we’re not in Kansas anymore”. CK’s gonna run you ragged.

  39. 39 T_S_O_P said at 3:45 AM on March 5th, 2013:

    He didn’t post great sack numbers at Oregon because they took advantage of his skill set and used him all over the field.

    Many Jordanites want him for the exact reason he could be all over the field.

    Do you envisage him needing to add weight? What is the SAM responsibility against the run? In Seattle’s 4-3 under, Wright sets the edge.

  40. 40 ohitsdom said at 7:14 AM on March 5th, 2013:

    Do you see DeMeco being the WILB, Tommy?

    Also, these “diagrams” hurt my eyes… Next time just sketch out the alignment on some toilet paper and take a picture.

  41. 41 ICDogg said at 12:02 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    I think you want Jimmy’s blog for that 🙂

  42. 42 TommyLawlor said at 4:37 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    Kendricks is the WILB. Ryans is SILB.

  43. 43 DanJ3645 said at 8:04 AM on March 5th, 2013:

    If we stay at 4 Jordan appears to be the player with the best chance to be an impact player. With the current crop of top TE’s in the league he would provide a real weapon to help combat them.

    Tommy, what are the chances Jordan would be available at 7 or 8 if we did trade back?

  44. 44 TommyLawlor said at 4:38 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    I think there is a definite possibility Jordan is on the board as far back as 8. He’s not a player that every team will be after.

  45. 45 Ark87 said at 8:40 AM on March 5th, 2013:

    Jordan seems like a guy who can be special, if he is, you build your scheme and personnel packages around him. The shoulder surgery does concern me a little. Anyone know the scoop on that? Is it a slam dunk that he comes back 100%?

  46. 46 Mac said at 12:10 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    My concern is the same. I’m leery of taking a player who suffered injury in the college game… I feel confident that the Eagles will be all over whatever info they can get on his injury and prospects of recovery. To be honest, if I’m another team considering Jordan and the Eagles pass I may very well wonder if I’m about to make a good pick.

  47. 47 Skeptic_Eagle said at 9:36 AM on March 5th, 2013:

    It certainly seems that they are leaning towards Jordan. The point has been made that if Kelly and Azzinaro are comfortable taking him that high, we should be as well–and I think that’s valid.

    To play Devil’s Advocate: is Dion Jordan excellent at any one aspect of the game? Yes, maybe he can dip and rip the edge, but does he have the kind of hand violence that someone like Aldon Smith does, to be able to stunt, and proceed through trash to the QB? Is he stout enough in run defense? Does putting Jordan on a TE give you a better matchup than just putting an extra DB on the field in a sub package?

    Moreover, can you get a player with a diverse skill set, but without the eye-popping measurables and athletic testing numbers later in the draft? KJ Wright is the standard for SAM LB in the 4-3 under front, and the Seahawks scooped him up in the 4th round. Could you bring in a guy like Phillip Wheeler, Thomas Davis, or Erin Henderson in free agency to be the SAM, and use the #4 pick on a guy that is a blue-chip player in one critical area, rather than a guy that’s good to very-good in several?

  48. 48 Kushan Patel said at 10:07 AM on March 5th, 2013:

    The more we talk about this, the LESS I like this pick at 4. When you say “fluid athlete”, it just sounds like a euphemism for “finesse” to me. I’m sick of Andy’s finesse teams. I want a powerful, violent front seven and this guy doesn’t seem to fit the bill. I’m all for it if we trade back to 8-10 and he’s still there, but definitely not at 4. I’d like one of the OTs at 4. Joeckel or Fisher should be there.

  49. 49 ACViking said at 11:25 AM on March 5th, 2013:

    If the Eagles draft Jordan, you can be sure he’s *violent* . . . in the way new DL coach Jerry Azzinaro from Oregon likes his troops to be.

  50. 50 PeterAkkies said at 11:31 AM on March 5th, 2013:


    (This is the Eagles’ new defensive line coach.)

  51. 51 Phils Goodman said at 3:29 PM on March 5th, 2013:


    That’s what I think to myself every time I watch Dion Jordan during a game.

  52. 52 A_T_G said at 3:06 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    Anyone living on the East Coast can verify that just because something is fluid does not prevent it from also being hard-hitting.

  53. 53 tball_man said at 10:37 AM on March 5th, 2013:

    These last few posts mr. Lawlor are your best yet. Any mid round/FA thumpers you like.

  54. 54 TommyLawlor said at 4:41 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    I’m working on that list. Kevin Reddick from UNC is good, but could go in the 2nd round. There aren’t a ton of good, tough ILBs.

  55. 55 Kevin_aka_RC said at 11:37 AM on March 5th, 2013:

    You guys need to be nicer to Dion Jordan. It’s his birthday today!

  56. 56 CalSFro said at 11:55 AM on March 5th, 2013:

    I know I’m a couple posts late to the party on this (Knee surgery #3 has kept me a bit too groggy for legitimate commenting the last several days), but just wanted to say thanks, Tommy for all you do. Your analysis is fantastic and you’ve managed to create a great atmosphere for intelligent discussion.

    It’s a really exciting time to be an Eagles fan what with all the changes this offseason, and we’re all lucky to have a place like this to come and read about our boys and talk things out. It truly is much appreciated. Here’s to hoping you can keep up the awesome work for many more years.

  57. 57 Ark87 said at 12:01 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    Get well soon, hope the recovery is a slam dunk so you won’t have to do a #4.

  58. 58 CalSFro said at 2:02 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    Thanks, man!

  59. 59 A_T_G said at 3:02 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    But no slam dunks for at least 2 weeks!

  60. 60 GermanEagle said at 1:49 PM on March 5th, 2013:


    Since you’ve been mulling over the Free Agency road for the Eagles, here is some food for thoughts:

    1. Sign S LaRon Landry
    2. Sign CB Sean Smith
    3. Sign TE Jared Cook
    4. Sign DE/DT Ricky Jean-Francois
    5. Sign NT Shaun Cody

    Then my dream scenario for the draft would be the following:

    1. Round: SAM Dion Jordan
    2. Round: OT Kyle Long
    3. Round: S Bacarri Rambo
    4. Round: CB Tyrann aka the Honey Badger Mathieu

    As a result of this offseason the Eagles would field 6 new starting players on D while 2 on O. Probably not a SB contending roster but surely a heckuva overhaul which should make the Eagles competitive in the first year under CK!

  61. 61 deg0ey said at 2:27 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    You’ve got Mathieu as a starter? I don’t know a great deal about DBs, but I thought the consensus was that he’s a slot-CB at best.

  62. 62 GermanEagle said at 3:13 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    I never said he was one of our 6 new starters, though he would be starting at nickel CB while pushing Boykin to the outside.

    The 6 new starters would be:

  63. 63 Mac said at 3:15 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    He’s got 7 defensive players on the list mate.

  64. 64 GermanEagle said at 3:48 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    ‘Mate’?! Don’t tell me you also live in the UK?! Besides your German roots…

  65. 65 Mac said at 4:05 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    Haha… nope. US born Irish/German mix. Been to Ireland 2x, haven’t made it to German yet, but I’d love to someday! I enjoy European history (when I have the time for such things). Though I wouldn’t even consider myself an amateur scholar in the area.

  66. 66 GermanEagle said at 3:20 AM on March 6th, 2013:

    That’s a good mix. You defo need to visit Germany one day. And thanks to your Irish roots I am guessing you will love the beer over there, mate. 😉

  67. 67 Mac said at 2:57 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    Must be my German roots showing… but I like the way you think, especially RE: Cook, Smith, Jordan, Long… good with the other stuff too, but those 4 are high on my list.

  68. 68 GermanEagle said at 3:14 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    I lik your German roots! 🙂

  69. 69 TommyLawlor said at 4:42 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    There is logic to the scenario, but that’s way too aggressive. Won’t happen. Eagles are going to be cautious shoppers.

  70. 70 GermanEagle said at 3:18 AM on March 6th, 2013:


    I don’t necessarily agree that aforementioned scenario is ‘way too aggressive’. If you look at those names maybe only two (Smith, Landry) would be big ticket signings, with Cook being a runner up. With cutting Nnamdi the Eagles will be 44 Mio under the cap, so all these signings would be a) reasonable and b) definitely possible.

    Furthermore apart from Cody – who would come on a one or two year contract in that scenario – no player will be older than 28 when the season starts. Again you cannot compare this with the Eagles signing every big name from the streets a couple of years ago. Some (Jean-Francois) have not even been full time starters on their current team, yet they have – thanks to their young age and skill set – their best football ahead of them.

    Honestly I will be gutted if the Eagles miss out on potential FA starters for their team for years to come simply due to the fact they want to be ‘cautious spenders’ in Free Agency this year.

  71. 71 deg0ey said at 2:32 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    I’m finding something a little confusing about your description of a ‘traditional 3-4’, Tommy. You seem to be suggesting that a 3-4 OLB will pass rush more often, which is why Graham and Cole/Curry would be the guys to play there in such a system. Assuming that it’s relatively uncommon for such a team to drop one of their DL into coverage, does that suggest that most 3-4 teams bring 5 rushers on almost every snap?

    That doesn’t sound quite right to me. Not trying to say you’re wrong, per se (you watch a lot more football than I do) but I just feel like I haven’t seen teams bringing 5 on quite such a regular basis.

  72. 72 Phils Goodman said at 3:12 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    Oh no, here I go beating this drum again.

    At the Combine you could see his ability to fly off the edge and bend and turn fluidly.

    There are no blockers at the combine. Don’t get seduced by what Jordan can do in a pair of gym shorts.

    He didn’t post great sack numbers at Oregon because they took advantage of his skill set and used him all over the field.

    You make it seem as if this was the only limiting variable. It’s hard to say Jordan made the most of his opportunities to get after the QB when you look at his one dimensional pass-rush strategy in the games.

  73. 73 Iskar36 said at 4:31 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    Dion Jordan definitely has me intrigued, but I have seen way to many comments like this questioning his ability as a pass rusher to be fully confident in him. The more I read about him, the more I hope at the very least, if we go after him, we trade down to get him. I guess the issue with that is, if you can’t trade down, who is better?

  74. 74 Phils Goodman said at 4:36 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    I am hoping Joeckel or Floyd will be there if they can’t trade the pick. The Chiefs just tagged Albert.

  75. 75 Iskar36 said at 5:25 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    Floyd sounds like a good player, but I hate the idea of taking him to put Cox in a less than ideal position or vice-versa. To me, they are too similar and either reduces the value of Cox or Floyd long-term.

  76. 76 Phils Goodman said at 5:38 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    I don’t see that. I think Floyd and Cox could be a nightmare tandem for opponents that gives the Eagles an upper hand matching up against offensive lines.

  77. 77 eagles2zc said at 3:26 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    If the SAM rushes 70% and covers 30%, wouldn’t you rather have a pass rusher LB who can maybe cover instead of a coverage LB who can maybe pass rush? Jordan fits into the latter category for me. If Chip loved an attacking D so much, why didn’t Jordan rush more while on Ducks?

  78. 78 ceedubya9 said at 4:25 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    I think that this is what Tommy was trying to say (in regards to why he didn’t rush Jordan as much); because of Jordan’s unique ability to be able to cover better than most at his position, they decided to take advantage of that instead of relying on him to rush so much.

    Looking at some of his tape, it is obvious that he still needs work in that area, but that is something that can be coached. And like Tommy says, you are more so looking at him as future impact player at the position, and not so much in year one. He could still be a solid starter this year, but later on he could be a star player.

    There are probably safer picks to be had, but safe doesn’t always result in a great player. Although, I understand the nervousness a lot of us have with drafting a mistake at 4. We just have to hope that whoever is chosen at that spot, that the organization has done their homework.

  79. 79 D-von said at 4:39 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    Also Tommy wrote a couple of weeks back that in Arizona Davis had the predator and SAM as interchageable postions. Sam becoming the player who was on the strongside. In that case Ansah makes more sense. Furthermore, in nickle defense Ansah would move into the DE position along with either Graham or Cole allowing for Ryans to stay on the field as opposed to being replaced by Jordan

  80. 80 Malcolm Jones said at 4:43 PM on March 5th, 2013:

    I like Keenan Lewis, Jared Cook, William Moore, Rickey, for FA….. Then draft Floyd, Eric Reid, E J Manuel, Honey Badger,OLB, Kwame Gaethers and Oline depth