Eagles Free Agency Recap

The Eagles not only shocked their fans but shocked the football world with some of the moves they were able to pull off.  I’ve voiced my concerns with Howie Roseman and how he handled personnel moves in the past.  By the work Roseman did during Free Agency and subsequent trades he is proving he might be up to the task.  Here is my write up on the 2 block buster trades Roseman made.  Since legal tampering began the Eagles have made 13 moves to shape and reconstruct this roster.  It was almost 12 moves due to the Dolphins trade almost falling apart.  News broke early last week the Dolphins might be getting cold feet.  That news didn’t totally shock me after we found out what they were giving up.  The trade went through as proposed and the Eagles moved up 5 spots in this years draft.  The Dolphins organization is a joke.  How they made this trade baffles me.  5 coveted spots for one over-paid corner and broken down linebacker who had 1 tackle in a game in which the opposing team ran the ball 40 times (Bucs game).  Oh well, their loss our gain.

On the night of the 7th the Eagles moved DeMarco Murray a 4th round pick to the Titans for their 4th round pick.  The Eagles sent the 113th selection and received the 100th selection.  Moving up 13 spots will serve the Eagles well.  The signing of Murray was very un-Eagles like but not totally surprising as Chip Kelly and his guys were doing things their way.  In my opinion the RB position should be a mid to low cap hit on every roster.  Gone are the days of having a work horse back.  Their are exceptions like Todd Gurley and Adrain Peterson but there’s no need to have all that money tied up in the RB spot.  This was the right move for the Eagles.

The Eagles have always been players in the CB market.  Whether it’s FA or the draft they always add talent or so they think (Nnamdi/Byron).  Joining this years team is Leodis McKelvin.  McKelvin got a 2 year 6.2 million dollar deal.  At 30 years old McKelvin has ties to Jim Schwartz and will compete to start opposite Eric Rowe.  I fully expect McKelvin to start come next fall.

Chase Daniel was long rumored to be an Eagles target.  It was fairly easy to make the connection giving Doug Pederson.  The Eagles signed Daniel to a 3 year 21 million dollar deal.  Incentives and total earnings could increase to over 36 million.  Bradford’s deal caps out at 35 million.  Daniel was told he will be giving a chance to compete for the starting job.  I view that as coach speak.  Bradford will start.  When Bradford starts Daniel won’t be eligible to recoup the full 36 million.  It’s tied to incentives.

The Eagles upgraded the safety position by added Rodney McLeod.  McLeod gets 5 years and 35 million.  Paired with Malcom Jenkins the Eagles will have a formidable duo.  McLeod just 25 years old is one of the hardest hitting safeties in the league.  During our podcast we rattled off a few guys and what tier they would fall in financially.  McLeod was guy we thought would net 4-6 million year.  He got 7.

Chip Kelly neglected the offensive line for 3 years.  Not one OL was drafted during his tenure.  He jettisoned more players than he brought in.  Good teams are built inside out.  the last few years the Eagles were built outside in.  Brandon Brooks was signed from the Houston Texans for 5 years and 40 million.  He will start at LG and give the Eagles nice boost.  I fully expect the Eagles to add between 1-3 OL during the draft in April.

Roseman helped the offense and defense.  Ron Brooks was signed for 3 years at 5.5 million to help the special teams.  Brooks also has ties Schwartz with his time in Buffalo.  Brooks is primarily a special teamer but will help in dime and certain sub packages.  If anything he gives the Eagles depth.

The 5th signing of the day (March 9th) netted the Eagles Nigel Bradham.  Bradham is an OLB that will come in and compete for a starting spot.  Like McKelvin and Brooks he also has ties to Buffalo and understands Schwartz defense.  Bradham signed a 2 year 7 million dollar deal.

Howie Roseman has gotten rid of a lot of Chip Kelly’s players.  He did bring one player back.  A move that surprised me honestly, Nolan Carroll is back on a 1 year deal worth 2.36 million.  The market wasn’t as lucrative as Carroll had I thought.  I didn’t think he had a particularly good year but nonetheless he’s back.  He did visit with the Dallas Cowboys but was not able to strike a deal.  Former teammate and Eagle Cedric Thornton did.

We’ve heard for weeks the Eagles wanted to strengthen their WR core.  They did that yesterday with the signing of Chris Givens.  Givens comes straight up I95 north from the Baltimore Ravens.  Givens will come in and compete for playing time.  This is a low risk high reward move as he signs a 1 year 840K deal.  I still expect the Eagles to draft a WR or two come draft time.

This seems to be a collaborative approach with Chip Kelly gone.  Roseman has done a nice job of listening to his coaching staff and scouting department (what’s left of it) by bringing in players this coaching staff is comfortable with.  I’m not a big fan of FA and high volume spending because it’s been proven it doesn’t net the returns it should.  I think the Eagles did a nice job getting 2nd and 3rd tier guys with reasonable contracts.

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