We all agree that the Eagles have holes on the roster. You do need to understand that some of those holes will be there in January.
It would be great if Howie Roseman and Chip Kelly could magically drive down to the Player Store, wheel on over to the Safety aisle and shop away, but that doesn’t exist. They can only deal with available players. The guys who are available now or who will be available next weekend are on the street for a reason. Someone else rejected them.
Occasionally you can find a player who was cut and he’s the right fit for your team, but mostly you’re dealing with players whose flaws will limit them to being backups and role players. The Eagles have had scouts studying the other 31 teams. They focus on players who are 3rd year or younger. They also check out select veterans who might be cut and of interest.
I would prefer that Roseman and Kelly err on the side of youth. I don’t see the Eagles as a Super Bowl contender this year so let’s focus on finding young players that might be a solution in the future as much as now. They might not, but this is the year to take some chances. You want to build up some youth and see if players pan out.
I really like ILB right now. You have a vet in DeMeco Ryans. You then have young players in Mychal Kendricks, Casey Matthews, Emmanuel Acho and Jake Knott. I would be fine if the Eagles kept all 5. Not all will pan out, but that is a good group of players to have in a year like this. See who plays well on D. See which guys stand out on STs.
Let’s also be straight as we talk about DBs. The Eagles are okay with their starting CB trio of Cary Williams, Bradley Fletcher and Brandon Boykin. That group isn’t a long term solution, but the team thinks they can be good enough this year. Boykin is the one player who they do see as a long term fit. If Fletcher stays healthy and plays well, maybe him too. He’s got to prove himself.
The Eagles need depth at CB. There are going to be some players cut that will be of interest. Seattle is deep at CB. They have some bigger guys that could be of interest. Davis and Kelly seem to like bigger DBs. The Seahawks are trying to trade some of their DBs so they will hold onto them as long as possible.
Safety is the one position where if the right veteran got cut, you might sign him to compete for a starting job. I’m not done reviewing the JAX tape yet so I don’t know how Nate Allen did. It looked like he played okay, but it sure would be nice to have someone you really were comfortable with playing beside Patrick Chung. I will be okay if the Eagles go with Nate as the starter. If playing in the new system brings out the best in him, you’ve got you’re own reclamation project. If the guy has a bad year, you know for sure you’re done with him. Safety then becomes a priority target next offseason. This is the year to find out who can play and who can’t.
Earl Wolff will get his chance to play if he keeps working hard and doing the little things right. It would be great to see him start at some point to get a feel for whether he could be a starter in the future or if he looks more like a role player.
The next 7 to 10 days will feature a lot of moves. Some will be head-scratchers. There will be new Eagles that most people haven’t heard of. I love this time of the year.
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My only concern is what the coaches think. Curry was the #3 LDE. Why is he still there? Are the coaches telling him to shoot gaps and get into the backfield or are they mad at him for doing that? It is possible the coaches are more curious about Geathers and Square and that’s why they’re playing those guys ahead of Curry, but that’s not likely.
Curry should be a key role player this year because of his ability to be disruptive. I just hope he’s not ignoring the instructions of the coaches. Some players do that and rely on their instincts. That gets them in trouble and costs them playing time. We’ll find out what the coaches think of Curry in the season opener when we see exactly how they use him.