What To Do With Tulloch

Posted: August 22nd, 2016 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | 78 Comments »

The move came later than expected, but it is official.

Doug Pederson was asked what Tulloch’s role with the team will be. He responded that Tulloch is here to compete for the MLB job with Jordan Hicks. Understand what that means. This has nothing to do with Hicks underachieving or being a disappointment. But you don’t get a proven veteran like Tulloch to sign a deal unless he feels like he can compete for the starting job.

Hicks had a terrific rookie season and has played well this summer. If Tulloch is to win the job from him, Tulloch will be playing at an elite level and will deserve the job. Anything less than that and Hicks keeps his job. He is young and cheap. He is talented, smart and athletic. He can play 3 downs. Hicks is someone you absolutely want on the field.

Tulloch was a 2-down LB for the Lions last year. In the past he stayed on the field the whole game. If he’s 100 percent healthy, he might be back to the level where he can stay on the field. Last year he struggled with the passing game. In today’s NFL, it is hard to have someone on the field just on run downs.

Pederson was asked about Tulloch being the MLB and possibly moving Hicks. He said that was possible, but not part of any current plans. I think the coaches see Tulloch as an important backup and insurance policy. They were impressed with Joe Walker, but his ACL injury completely changed the LB situation. With the regular season just a few weeks away, it was important for the team to find a veteran backup. And finding one who knew the scheme was a big help. Tulloch will have minimal learning to do compared to other players.

Giving a $1.75M guarantee to a backup LB is a lot. The Eagles will need to find ways to use Tulloch. Pederson is going to use him some on STs, although Tulloch hasn’t done much of that in recent years. Do remember that when Jeremiah Trotter “came home” in 2004, he played on STs until midseason when he won back the starting MLB job.

I think Tulloch will be part of the goal line defense. I’ve mentioned before that he could be rotated in at MLB every few series. That would ease the wear and tear on Hicks and would get Tulloch on the field.

I don’t know if Tulloch would play any OLB. Mychal Kendricks has never played all 16 games in a season. Nigel Bradham is dealing with a legal situation and could possibly miss time due to that at some point. But the Eagles already have Najee Goode and he’s having a terrific summer. He is a good athlete and has played both WLB and SAM in practices and games. I’m just not sure if Tulloch has the athleticism to play outside these days.

While we don’t know exactly how he’ll be used, we do know the Eagles are better at LB. They have 3 good starters and a quality backup at OLB (Goode) and MLB (Tulloch). That’s a pretty solid set of LBs.

The team did make one change.

I thought Skinner had played okay as a backup WLB and STer. You could see he had some coverage issues, but was tough and physical. You could argue that this opens the door for UDFAs Quentin Gause and Myke Tavarres, but I don’t think either has played well enough to seriously push for a roster spot. I would guess the Eagles will either go with only 5 on the roster or they will look for outside help.

There haven’t been any cuts that put obvious targets on the street that I’ve seen. We’ll see what happens between now and the 30th, which is the first cutdown day. Those will mainly be camp body type players, but there could be some potential targets.

I’d love for Gause or Tavarres to take a step forward and win the job. I’m just not counting on that.


78 Comments on “What To Do With Tulloch”

  1. 1 What To Do With Tulloch - said at 11:49 PM on August 22nd, 2016:

    […] Tommy Lawlor The move came later than expected, but it is official. Stephen Tulloch will sign with the Eagles, […]

  2. 2 Greg Tulino said at 12:11 AM on August 23rd, 2016:

    I like that the team is still doing everything they can to “Win” now . We could have gone with a rookie at LB. Also, we could have saved cap space that would roll over into 2017. Instead we identified a hole on our defense with a lack of true LB depth and we addressed it quickly with someone who could help us this season.

    The team is clearly sticking to their plan of trying to win this year while still preparing for the future. I bet there will be a few more people added to the Eagles 53 man roster that are currently on other teams that eventually get released. It wouldn’t surprise me if Howie pulled off another player for player trade if he feels we can upgrade our squad for both this season and beyond.

    I am looking forward to the Colts game this weekend. I want to see if our defense can play well against Andrew Luck and would love to see our offense take another step forward.

  3. 3 BobSmith77 said at 1:26 AM on August 23rd, 2016:

    More and more I get this imperative to ‘be competitive’ this year is being driven by Lurie.

    Not a fan of this signing but I’d bet Tulluch will be the starting MLB Week 1. Turns out some of the media guys getting ripped about how the Eagles were either going to trade Kendricks or possibly bench him might turn out to be pretty apt.

  4. 4 Mr. Magee said at 1:45 AM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Yeah, looks like Kendricks would be the odd man out in that scenario… Depending on how Tulloch plays, would not surprise me at all to see MH coming off the bench

  5. 5 Ben said at 11:16 AM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Who is MH? I assume you mean MK.
    I think you can sub Tulloch in for 1st downs, third and short and goal line and play Hicks on all remaining downs and have less wear and tear on both players.
    This could extend Tullochs career and allow for Hicks to be fresh all game.
    This way you don’t have to trade MK or move players around and it might be the best way to utilize both them during a game.

  6. 6 Koy: The Legend of Neckbeard said at 11:59 AM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Of course he meant MK. Don’t be a prick.

  7. 7 DJH said at 7:59 AM on August 23rd, 2016:

    When Kempski said Desean was gone people laughed, when Kempski said last year’s OL group was gonna be a problem people scoffed, and now Kempski is saying Kendricks may sit the bench… He’s been pretty good at reading the tea leaves so I won’t be surprised if Tulloch is the starter.

  8. 8 ChoTime said at 2:06 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Lotsa killing the messenger about that one.

  9. 9 anon said at 4:21 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Also mentioned Sammy being a goner/ not starting. But agree he’s connected on the personnel side.

  10. 10 BobSmith77 said at 5:42 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Kempski seems to be a pretty popular punching bag by fans and even other media guys but he has been right about several things & was willing to speculate much earlier on it than most.

  11. 11 anon said at 6:36 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    that’s because he says what we don’t want to hear.

  12. 12 Gian GEAGLE said at 4:35 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    As the Eagles should,., we would be morons to concede such a winniable division just because media thinks our rivals are a lot better than they really are, while grossly under rating Us because we lack big name superstars
    I’d rather have a team of solid players across the board with few glaring weakness then to have a team like the cowboys who are hyped because they have big name players so much that media completely ignores glaring holes and weakness at multiple key positions.
    Tired of hearing about the dallas hype when they have only two defenders who would start for the Eagles defense, Sean Lee before he gets hurt, and orlando Scandrick is a better slot corner than RON Brooks. Tony Romo has the most beat up body with the most wear and tear out all NFL QBs, factor in his age and that’s a bad combo
    Bradford should also have a better year than people think

  13. 13 Cafone said at 6:01 AM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Fight at Chiefs/Rams preseason game:

    and they say Philly fans are bad

  14. 14 Stephen E. said at 10:33 AM on August 23rd, 2016:

    If you keep fighting while two cops are in your face…

    you might be an idiot.

    Of course, we’ll never hear about these incidents on ESPN or NFL Network. Everyone knows there are only fights and nasty fans in Philly.

  15. 15 Tumtum said at 1:51 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    This doesn’t happen in every NFL stadium? I stopped going to the Redskins-Eagles game every year here in DC after 3 consecutive years oh drunken morons trying to bait me into a fight.

    I enjoy being employed and paying the bank for my house to much to risk an assault charge at those games..sad but just not worth it.

  16. 16 Gian GEAGLE said at 4:27 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    I don’t wear Eagles gear at away stadium. I can enjoy the game regardless of what im wearing, and I have too much to lose by inviting trouble over a friggin game. If I wanted to fight over the color of my clothes Id join the bloods or crips

  17. 17 GermanEagle said at 6:58 AM on August 23rd, 2016:

    I’ve asked this in the other thread:

    What are the chances that Dillon Gordon becomes a top tackle in this league, especially given his below-average height of 6’4”?!

    What is the average height of the top tackles in the NFL?

  18. 18 Anders said at 7:29 AM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Jason Peters is 6’4, Tyron Smith is 6’5 (but has long arms), where Joe Thomas is 6’7 but has T-rex arms.

    This has the list of arm length of All-pros and pro bowlers from 2011 to 2015 http://www.milehighreport.com/2015/4/9/8353255/broncos-2015-draft-arm-length-and-the-offensive-line

  19. 19 GermanEagle said at 8:34 AM on August 23rd, 2016:

    What’s Gordon’s arm length?!

  20. 20 D3FB said at 8:41 AM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Didn’t do an allstar game or combine or even the pro day because he thought he was going to get approved for an extra year of eligibility. It’s not listed anywhere.

    Kelvin Beachum is only 6’2 w/ 33″ arms. He’s the one major size outlier. Generally the smaller tackles are 6’4 with 34″ arms, so he’s probably right at the edge of viability.

    The odds he becomes a top tackle in the league are very very low. He’s probably 2 years away from being up to snuff to be comfortable playing him as an actual OL.

    It’s a nice story and all but even if he only becomes a dependable reserve OL it’s already a massive W for the scouting staff.

  21. 21 GermanEagle said at 9:51 AM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Thanks, mate.

  22. 22 Insomniac said at 11:38 AM on August 23rd, 2016:

    JP and Smith also also freaks

  23. 23 A_T_G said at 2:27 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Given: Dillon Gordon is is 6’4″.
    1. Jason Peters is 6’4″, Tyrod Smith is 6’5″.
    2. JP and TS are freaks.
    3. Therefore, DG will be as freakish as JP and slightly more of a freak than TS.

  24. 24 RobNE said at 12:27 PM on August 23rd, 2016:


  25. 25 bill said at 8:22 AM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Tulloch is the equivalent of the Chase Daniel signing, just for the defense. When you’re developing young talent, it’s nice to have a player who knows the scheme well and the coach can trust to keep things running well, even if just in practice. Just like Daniel, he’s expensive for a backup, but the signing is just as much about the intangibles as it is the tangibles.

    No idea how it works out, but I can’t fault the thought process.

  26. 26 eagleyankfan said at 11:01 AM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Not sure I agree with all that. Chase is here for the next few years for that reasons you stated. Tulloch is signed as depth because of injury, otherwise, he wouldn’t be here. I’m sure LB’s can learn from Tulloch but he’s late in the game(getting here) and he’s only a rental. Not to mention Hicks has been pretty darn good without him already….

  27. 27 bill said at 12:58 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Walker’s injury certainly had a lot to do with it, but I think the money involved speaks to other considerations. Certainly there’s a difference of magnitude of this consideration between Tulloch and Daniel, but I think it’s a consideration.

  28. 28 eagleyankfan said at 1:45 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    you’re not getting Tulloch here for peanuts. He’s being paid based on past talent, not for current/future teachings that hopefully Chase will be providing.

  29. 29 D3FB said at 8:45 AM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Some perspective from a Lions Blogger:


  30. 30 GermanEagle said at 9:50 AM on August 23rd, 2016:

    It’s nice to see that after all the wife-beaters, thugs, druggies and young wanna-be gangstas to finally sign one who wrote a children’s book.

  31. 31 Insomniac said at 11:37 AM on August 23rd, 2016:

    But but he knows Schwartz!

  32. 32 Tumtum said at 1:44 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Probably time for you or Tommy to watch a bit of film and fill us dummies in! Can’t trust some Detroit guy.

  33. 33 D3FB said at 9:30 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Jeff’s pretty well respected, I’ve seen other people I respect say similar things.

  34. 34 P_P_K said at 2:07 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Even if it’s a fair assessment, Eagles needed depth and Tulloch should be an asset if used wisely.

  35. 35 anon said at 3:25 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Both on the field and in the lockerroom – defense was way better organized w/ Mufasa + not sure Hicks needs to play 100% of snaps anyway

  36. 36 Insomniac said at 11:37 AM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Obligatory Josh Gordon trade discussion in the off season.

  37. 37 anon said at 12:52 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Does anyone else think there’s something to the al Jazeera rumors? Nfl is taking a pretty aggressive stance. Peyton made the quick decision to retire after that happened .

  38. 38 Sean Stott said at 12:54 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    100% yes. Aljazeera is a legitimate news source.

  39. 39 Tumtum said at 1:41 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Not sure if you are being facetious but they are. Though I don’t know how much stock I put into that report. Targeting some of the Mt. Rushmore guys with a couple lesser knowns to make it seem fully legit…seems convenient.

    Not to mention how quickly it was retracted. He sure stood by the report.

  40. 40 Sean Stott said at 3:53 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Not being facetious, it’s a real company that isn’t tainted by big business interests in USA. You think NBC, ABC, FOX, or CBS would insult NFL? No chance.

    I’m not saying there will ever be enough evidence to convict anyone, but I’m extremely confident that these players doped, especially Peyton, Clay, and James Harrison. James Harrison is obvious. He should be 5 years retired by now. Clay Matthews looks like a completely different player than just a few years ago. Peyton Manning had HGH delivered to his door, but it was for his wife? k.

  41. 41 Bert's Bells said at 4:56 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    al Jazeera is generally a pretty good newsagency. This report is garbage, though.

  42. 42 anon said at 5:22 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Peyton on HGH 2013/2014; Peyton off HGH 2015?

    The change between the 2014/2015 is so dramatic that it makes you think something is fishy.

    But now he’s retired, so no harm no foul.

  43. 43 Bert's Bells said at 5:48 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    The “informant” recanted. Whether Manning was juicing might be another story (though I don’t think his last hurrah/decline is out of line with most great athletes). If he was it was just a lucky shot in the dark.

  44. 44 peteike said at 6:10 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    it was a shot alright, just not in the dark. Ask Canseco

  45. 45 FairOaks said at 9:18 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    His game turned on a dime partway through the 2014 season. He was his record-setting self through about 12 or 13 games that year, then poof — he couldn’t throw anymore and was pretty bad. And he never got it back — the guy at the end of the 2014 season was the same one during 2015. That happened so fast I really don’t think it was PEDs — it had to be an injury.

    It would not surprise me in the least if it took HGH to get over whatever his neck thing was. But his degrading play I absolutely believe was an injury.

  46. 46 peteike said at 6:08 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    exactly per Mannings wife. They are apparently unwilling to report on any significant Saudi news is what Ive heard about their integrity. Everywhere else though, legit, so take that with a grain of salt I guess.

  47. 47 Tumtum said at 7:54 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    I work for one of those outlets and I can assure that they would release that story. Aljazeera came here to compete with those big guys. They spent enormous amounts of money, and paid people substantially more than what they would make at a competitor in a top market. Many of the guys they were able to get came from much smaller markets so the percentage increase was much more. They were failing in the U.S (and no longer operate here).

    Not saying the guy was lying. Just saying that he probably had motivation to try and save his job. Convicting someone on a media report is pretty crazy anyway. Sure the media broke Watergate, but then again Brian Williams is practically a combat vet, right?

    Let the investigation results tell the tale is all I’m saying.

  48. 48 Cafone said at 6:47 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    This was Al Jazeera America, and while they were a much more credible source of information than American news stations, this report came out as they were getting ready to close down and it’s reasonable to wonder if they were still working to the same standards at that point.

    I’ve worked at places that have shut down and by the end most people are just wandering around stealing stuff.

  49. 49 RobNE said at 2:31 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    I think it’s BS. Setting aside whether it’s true, the NFL has agreed via the CBA on narrow enforcement actions for drug/enhancement use. This is specifically negotiated. If there is a failed test, etc., then this happens. Roger has instead used “conduct detrimental” or whatever, where he has super broad powers, and ordered players to come talk to him. It’s really a power grab.

    Man I know it’s the owners working thru Roger but I really don’t like the guy (moreso than the owners).

  50. 50 anon said at 3:20 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Has nothing to do with the truth of the allegations. Think everyone shares your feelings on RG

  51. 51 Gian GEAGLE said at 4:00 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    The NFL is taking it more serious than the one game suspension they gave to The Giants kicker for being accused of over 20 domestic violence incidents by His Girl, even tho they implemented that “Mandatory” 6’game suspension for domestic violence after the ray rice scandal
    Kind of absurd that the NFL can bring playërs in just because of what someone else says. Even worse considering the website no longer exists and the accuser recanted his statement…

  52. 52 anon said at 4:20 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Think NFL dug in and found fire under that smoke.

  53. 53 peteike said at 6:06 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    oh there was fire. It just lame how they are letting Peyton skate and getting into it with the other guys. I think they may just let it go if they agree to talk, we’ll see. I thought Peyton sent a team of lawyers to shake that guy down and recant, so Im not buying his recanting story. The timeline with Peyton getting them sent to his house and under his wifes name or whatever, cmon. It was already easy to kill that guys character and everyone bought it but I just didnt think he was making this stuff up. I tend to believe its usually true unfortunately, all thanks to our hero Lance Armstrong lol

  54. 54 anon said at 6:34 PM on August 23rd, 2016:


  55. 55 RogerPodacter said at 6:01 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    the league’s response to the Brown stuff has been ridiculous too.
    something along the lines of “well, our investigations didn’t find all that stuff that youre talking about now. we don’t know anything about any of that. we already decided on a one game suspension and we’re sticking to that. no, we’re not looking into it anymore, why do you ask?”

  56. 56 anon said at 6:35 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    hopefully there’s no video…we’ve seen that before.

  57. 57 P_P_K said at 2:10 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    No reason Hicks won’t be the starter. My bet is Doug talks about competition for the benefit of Tulloch, the media, and to set a tone that jobs are earned not gifted.

  58. 58 Gian GEAGLE said at 4:17 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Tulloch solidifies are grip on having the best Group of LB in the NFCEast. Heck Tulloch and Goode would be in the mix to start for the Cowboys and Giants
    This is the most depth I could ever expect to have at LB, a backüp who had like 100 tackles coming off an injury while only playing on two downs.
    This addition probably makes our run defense a little better.
    He could contribute to goal line and short yardage situations
    Eskin tweeted that he played 40 snaps on ST last year
    It also doesn’t suck to expose our prized young LB (Hicks) to two quality veterans Mustafa and Tully who had a lot of NFL success during hicks first two NFL seasons
    I’d like to see us use all 5 linebackers in games. Mix and Match Linebackers to best take advantage of all their strengths in different situations and keep guys fresh over the course of the season, Najee Goode has earned that right to be more than injury insurance on the bench, He has gotten a little better each year since arriving in philly and after how he played this summer, he deserves a chance to contribute to the defense in a limited role of course
    Best Of all, when you have 5 Linebackers who all have game experience, playing time can really be based on Merrit, where as you are more inclined to ride with a starter while he is playing bad if their is a big drop off between that starter and your bench options.
    While all 5 are healthy, I’d go with something similar to what Tom proposed, rotating Tully into the game every three drives or something. Actually might be a good idea to play the 3 starters for two drives, and bring Tully and Goode off The bench for The 3rd drive, and then back with the starters for the next two drives….. But we know that are 3’starters won’t all be healthy for 16 games, so Tullocks chance to play extended snaps will come at some point This season. if a starters struggles or gets injured, nice to know we have quality contingency plans

  59. 59 anon said at 4:21 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Also Schwartz isn’t going to run guys into the ground running 1,000 plays a game

  60. 60 Gian GEAGLE said at 4:47 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    It blows my mind that the Chargers can get away with the mess they made with Joey Bosa, Can you imagine how Eagle Fans would be killing the team If the season was about to start and they were still playing chicken with our top 5 pick, we would burn Novacare to The ground if they were making such absurd demands that kept a top pick from signing with us. Chargers are lucky, they could never get away with some BS like that in this city

  61. 61 Sean Stott said at 5:29 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Really have to agree about Bosa. When you pick someone 3rd overall, you don’t get cheap about signing bonuses. If you can’t afford the third overall pick, then give it to someone else. No other team is having the issue of paying their 1st rounder. Sad.

  62. 62 Cafone said at 6:41 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    It is reminiscent of a Joe Banner attitude, the “we don’t want to set precedents” thing.

  63. 63 FairOaks said at 9:09 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    It’s not even the money. This is all about precedent. Players at the top of the draft have been avoiding offset language, and the Chargers have generally gotten that (for non-top draft picks and free agents). Sounds like some draft picks accepted deferred bonuses, and Bosa is OK with either deferment or offset language, but not both. Chargers want to get their way. Wentz and Elliott accepted both, but in recent years the top draft picks have not. Has nothing to do with “afford”; it’s a GM trying to get his way, and willing to hurt his team to do it. Chargers have a long history of doing that, too. Holdouts were constant with them, until the new CBA. Figures they’d be the first team to really have an extended holdout under the new CBA.

  64. 64 GermanEagle said at 5:32 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    I say it over and over again: this Eagles D has all the potential to be as good as Jimmy Johnson’s defense in the early 2000s. Paired with good special teams and an average offense there ain’t no reason to not believe in winning this crappy NFCE!

    Let’s go birds!!!

  65. 65 P_P_K said at 7:58 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    If they can get the Offense up to average.

  66. 66 GermanEagle said at 9:55 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    What if the O struggles to be around #20?! Won’t that be enough? Provided our D finishes in the top 5 and the special teams in the top 10?

  67. 67 P_P_K said at 7:27 AM on August 24th, 2016:

    I’m right with you. If that’s the case, the Eagles finish 9-7, maybe 10-6, and win the Division.

  68. 68 Tumtum said at 8:34 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Feels good but lets not get carried away. Preseason results seem to translate less often than they don’t.

  69. 69 GermanEagle said at 5:21 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    If Howie somehow brings Josh Gordon to Philly I will cream my pants!!!

  70. 70 anon said at 5:23 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    what makes you think that would happen? Kendricks for Gordon straight up?

  71. 71 GermanEagle said at 5:29 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Just having wet day dreams sorry. But I would do that deal actually.

  72. 72 GermanEagle said at 8:18 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    What if Tulloch becomes a second Troterzzzz?!

  73. 73 P_P_K said at 8:43 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Doug becomes a second Andy.

  74. 74 since1961 said at 9:19 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Seems likely: fills the wrong hole half the time, can’t cover backs.

  75. 75 GermanEagle said at 9:54 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    I was talking about that Trotter in his first season after returning from the Redskins who probably had one the best LB performances as an Eagle ever against Michael Vick and the Falcons in the playoffs that year…

  76. 76 Anders said at 1:43 AM on August 24th, 2016:

    You mean the game where it was Kearse who shut down Vick and not trotter?

  77. 77 GermanEagle said at 5:58 AM on August 24th, 2016:

    No. Please re-watch that game. Trotter was a monster.

  78. 78 Insomniac said at 10:42 PM on August 23rd, 2016:

    Huff is going to get cut after the 3rd preseason game.