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Philadelphia Eagles free-agent acquisitions who will start this season


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Philadelphia Eagles free-agent acquisitions who will start this season

by Geoffrey Knox2 days ago

The Philadelphia Eagles made three acquisitions who will contribute immediately.

If you’re looking for reasons as to why the Philadelphia Eagles went from the NFL’s penthouse in February of 2018 to its outhouse a little over three years later (not to mention a last-place finish in the league’s worst division), look no further than this as one of the key reasons. This team had a ton of money tied up in older players that they weren’t getting anything out of.

That happens on every NFL roster, but there’s typically one surefire way to fix it. Get younger in the NFL Draft.

Well, you know how that’s been working out. The Philadelphia Eagles took eight players in the draft that preceded their Super Bowl-winning season. The only one that’s still on the team is Derek Barnett (and he’s hanging on by a thread).

Year after year, Philly has swung and missed on draft picks, and they’ve had to cover for the roster holes that have been created by signing expensive talent. Sidney Jones and Rasul Douglas not working out led us eventually to Darius Slay. Concerns about Shelton Gibson and Mack Hollins are why DeSean Jackson was brought back for a second, and aside from the season opener in 2019, unsuccessful return.

Eventually, this team must win in the draft, but there must be a healthy mix of veteran talent as well. It might sound like it’s being mentioned as a death sentence here, but free agency definitely has its advantages. Find a few of the right cogs, and that can help a team in the outhouse back to the penthouse. That’s what Philly is hoping three of their recent offseason additions can do.

They’ve brought some optimism back to Birds fans. Here are three of the Philadelphia Eagles’ acquisitions that should start for its defense come Week 1 in Atlanta.


ERIC WILSON, LINEBACKER https%3A%2F%2Fcdn.fansided.com%2Flogos%2Fnfl%2Feagles.png

Philadelphia Eagles

Eric Wilson should help elevate the Philadelphia Eagles LB corps immediately.

It isn’t often that the Philadelphia Eagles are mentioned and the conversation evolves into a discussion about the Cincinnati Bearcats program, but every die-hard Birds fan knows Cincy produced one of the greatest Eagles of all time, four-time Pro Bowl nod and three-time First-team All-Pro Jason Kelce.

Perhaps he and Eric Wilson have shared some stories about what the program used to be and what it is now. Wilson was a Second-team All-AAC nod in 2015 and a First-team All-AAC nod in 2016 before joining the Minnesota Vikings as an undrafted rookie in 2017.

A little over four years later, he’s heading into his fifth season and has 1749 defensive snaps, another 956 special teams snaps, 234 total tackles, eight sacks, an additional 19 quarterback hits, three interceptions, eight pass breakups, and two forced fumbles on his resume.

Add him to what the Birds already have with T.J. Edwards, Alex Singleton, and a couple of promising second-year players in Shaun Bradley and Davion Taylor, and the Birds may have something brewing at the second level of their defense.


ANTHONY HARRIS, SAFETY https%3A%2F%2Fcdn.fansided.com%2Flogos%2Fnfl%2Feagles.png

Philadelphia Eagles


The Philadelphia Eagles’ most underrated acquisition might be at safety.

When the Philadelphia Eagles added Anthony Harris as their first major addition of the free agency period on March 20th, there wasn’t a ton of enthusiasm, but everyone knew it was solid. Now that three months have gone by and we’ve gotten an opportunity to slow down and refocus, this is one of those additions that may go down as one of those sneaky signings that paid huge dividends.

We’re talking Patrick Robinson-level stuff here. After losing Malcolm Jenkins and experimenting with Jalen Mills at the safety position for a season in 2020, Harris gives the Birds, along with Rodney McLeod as good a starting safety duo as you’ll see in the National Football League this season.

As is the case with Eric Wilson, the assist for Harris’ addition has to be given to the Minnesota Vikings and new Eagles defensive coordinator Jonathan Gannon. He’s familiar with both Harris and Wilson from his days with the Vikes on their coaching staff. Like Wilson, Harris entered the league as an undrafted free agent.

The Vikes hit that one out of the park as well. Credit Anthony Harris with 3,184 defensive snaps, 284 total tackles, nine interceptions, a defensive touchdown, 28 pass breakups, and a forced fumble over the course of 81 games in six seasons.


RYAN KERRIGAN  https%3A%2F%2Fcdn.fansided.com%2Flogos%2Fnfl%2Feagles.png

Philadelphia Eagles

The Philadelphia Eagles have a nice rotation at the defensive end position.

From adversary to ally, the only thing to complain about with the Philadelphia Eagles’ addition of Ryan Kerrigan is the fact that it would have been nice if the Birds had added him sooner. Greatness was obvious with the veteran a long time ago.

A Unanimous All-American, Bill Willis Trophy winner, Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year, Smith-Brown Defensive Lineman of the Year, and First-team All-Big Ten standout in 2010 from the Purdue, Kerrigan’s NFL career got off to a scorching start as he landed on the Pro Football Writers of America’s All-Rookie Team in 2011. 159 games later, Kerrigan has over 450 total tackles, 95.5 sacks, and 26 forced fumbles on his resume.

63 of those tackles, 13.5 of those sacks, and six of those forced fumbles have come versus the Birds over the course of 19 games. He’s even scored a defensive touchdown. Did you see that part about being glad that this guy was out of the division? That wasn’t an exaggeration.

At 32 years of age (he turns 33 in August), the only question is how much he has left, but starting him opposite Brandon Graham and rotating guys like Josh Sweat and Tarron Jackson in and out of the lineup means there will be some long afternoons and nights for the opposing offenses on the Philadelphia Eagles’sechedule.


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It isn’t often that the Philadelphia Eagles are mentioned and the conversation evolves into a discussion about the Cincinnati Bearcats program, but every die-hard Birds fan knows Cincy produced one of the greatest Eagles of all time

Cough* Trent Cole* Cough*


excuse me

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