Every NFL fan is not just concerned with the team from September to February, we are in it for 365 days a year. The NFL offseason is the most important part of the rebuilding process, and unfortunately the Eagles are in that mode. After firing Andy Reid the Eagles are still looking for their coach. Chip Kelly is back to Oregon, Bill O’Brien is back to Penn State. This is GOOD news for Eagles fans. The Eagles, in my opinion, need a coach who has been around the NFL for a while, and has full commitment to the NFL. Greg Roman, Gus Bradley and Mike McCoy are my top three choices. I think Roman and Bradley are going to be fine NFL coaches this year, and Mike McCoy is a QB guru. Any of these coaches would be good for Philly.
It is hard to project what the Eagles will do before hiring a coach, but if I were the coach and/or GM, here is how I would approach the offseason. First and foremost, this is a must hit draft. Meaning there is no reaches or no taking chances, this needs to be a good pick. At number 4 overall, I believe one of Jarvis Jones, Manti Te’O, or Luke Joeckel will be available. All three of theses guys are impact players, and can takeover a game at times. The Eagles need to get one of these guys in the first round. Personally, I would take Manti Teo just because he is the best player in a position of need for the Eagles. The first round is a key element in having a successful football program, but teams become great with their 2nd through 4th round selections. The Eagles HAVE to take a safety earlier in the second round this year. The safety class is relatively deep, and I know the woes the Eagles have had with 2nd round safeties, but that was under Andy Reid. So the past is irrelevant here. Matt Elam, Eric Reid, or Kenny Vaccaro should be available when the Eagles pick in the second round, and it would be a mistake to not take one of these guys. From rounds 3 through 7 the Eagles need to take some depth offensive lineman, and a physical corner, such as David Amerson from NC State or Tharold Simon from LSU. Also, if he is available in the 4th round, the Eagle should take a flier on Tyrann Mathieu. He is good, really good, and if he can shape up (which he will in the NFL) he can be a steal in the late rounds.
After the draft, I would expect to sign a few free agents to fill some needs. After drafting a safety in the second round, the Eagles would still need to fill the other slot. Luckily for us, this is a great year for free agent safeties. William Moore, Louis Delmas, Jairus Byrd, and Dashon Goldson are all available. Pairing one of these with Elam, Reid or Vaccaro would be a very good secondary and would immediately fill two needs.
I know Nnamdi Asomugha is a disappointment, and you could say the same with Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, but with good safeties, I believe they will be terrific. If you do not believe me, think about how good they were in Oakland and Arizona, now think about the safeties behind them. Michael Huff, Adrian Wilson were Pro Bowl safeties behind these two corners. I would be ecstatic if DRC and Nnamdi were back, ONLY if we sign or draft two quality safeties.
On offense the Eagles are MUCH closer than people think. The entire offensive line will be healthy next year, and it will be a good one. Jason Peters, Evan Mathis, Jason Kelce, Danny Watkins (he has improved) and Todd Herremans is a very good line, especially when they get to run block, which the Eagles will definitely do more of next year. The priority for me on offense this offseason is the same as it has been since Terrell Owens left. Sign a big receiver. There are plenty available in free agency. Dwayne Bowe obviously is the best choice, but he would command a lot of money. I recommend going after Ramses Barden, Brian Robiskie or Jerome Simpson. I know these are not the biggest names, but the Eagles would benefit tremendously from one of these guys. I have been a huge Ramses Barden fan ever since he was at Cal Poly. He is 6 feet 6 inches and weighs 230 pounds. The reason for his lack of production is playing time. He is stuck behind Hakeem Nicks, Victor Cruz and Domenik Hixon. When Barden started this season, he had 9 catches on 10 targets for 138 yards. With his height and jumping ability (34 inch vertical) he is 10 to 12 feet in the air when he needs to catch a ball. There is no stopping him in the red zone. Not to mention, paired with Riley Cooper, they could both be great special teamers.
If the Eagles do the right things this offseason, there is no reason why we can not expect 10 wins next year, that sounds crazy, but this team is not as far off as one might think.Tags: Andy Reid, Brian Robiskie, Danny Watkins, Dashon Goldson, David Amerson, Domnique Rodgers-Cromartie, Dwayne Bowe, Eric Reid, Evan Mathis, Greg Roman, Gus Bradley, Jairus Byrd, Jarvis Jones, Jason Kelce, Jason Peters, Jerome Simpson, Kenny Vaccaro, Louis Delmas, Luke Joeckel, Manti Te'o, Matt Elam, Mike McCoy, NFL, NFL Draft, Nnamdi Asomugha, Philadelphia Eagles, Ramses Barden, Riley Cooper, Todd Herremans, Tyrann Mathieu, William Moore