Christmas is a time of giving and receiving. For the Eagles, it’s a distant six weeks away.
By now, all of us have opened our Christmas presents, chugged eggnog, and enjoined our families during this festive time of year. The Eagles will have to wait for such festivities, especially after collapsing from 3-1 down the well to 4-11.
Fans are in the mood of receiving this time of year, so why not scout an early free-agency wish list? Surely they cannot afford to throw the vault at two or three players. They must distribute money to one, maybe two pieces to build a strong foundation for 2013. The Eagles will be on the nice list this offseason with a credible cap figure Nnamdi Asomugha has publicized his willingness to take a pay cut. Michael Vick’s colossal cap number may be crossed out, as he has been a turnover factory not even Henry Ford would be proud of. The Eagles will have some flexibility here under the cap. Without further ado, here’s all I want for Free Agency Christmas.
The Eagles have been ridiculed for poor safety play this season, and may not be able to toss marbles into the draft. They already wasted two 2nd round picks on Safeties Nate Allen and Jaiquawn Jarrett. It’s time to reach out to a former rival for some help. Injuries have bugged Giants safety Kenny Phillips often this season, and that makes him a good value signing come March, since it would lower his asking price. None of his injuries have been very serious, and the Eagles would be wise to dish out a two-year deal for Phillips. A policeman in coverage, Phillips is also part of a solid tackling secondary, and is a sure thing when wrapping guys up.
With injuries to three starting lineman, and the Danny Watkins whimpering season, the Eagles may need some veteran assurance. While many have chronicled the troubles of Bengals tackle Andre Smith, none can argue the fact that he has had a breakout season. Smith has been a pile-driver in the running game for BenJarvus Green-Ellis this season. He would be a nice piece at RT to help out LeSean McCoy and Bryce Brown. He would, however, command a huge payday, something that may not be worth the risk.
This is a bit greedy, but would add a new dimension for the offense. Should the coach be changed, a new-look Eagle offense could feature more two TE sets. The Patriots have ravaged defenses with two TEs, especially in the red zone. Signing Jared Cook could finally cure the red zone virus. Cook is a tall 6-5, and would haunt opposing linebackers inside the 20. Cook has landed on IR this season with a torn rotator cuff, but this injury isn’t severe in football. The injury could lower the price range for Cook, which would allow the Eagles to add him without paying too much. This pair of Cook and Celek has the potential to become as good as Aaron Hernandez and Rob Gronkowski.
This is a huge roll of the dice, and could backfire on potentially a new, young Head Coach. The secondary will need reassuring after the probable non-tender of Dominique-Rogers Cromartie, but this is the pendulum of all signings. Troubled Aqib Talib has emerged under Bill Bellichick to put his career back on track. The Eagles will need serious renovations to a secondary at the bottom of the NFL well. IF the team decides to take a chance on Talib, they could do so with a one year contract. Howie Roseman may be better served to draft a high prospect, either in the first or second round.
Ideally, the team should sign both Kenny Phillips and Jared Cook. The team is in desperate need of tackling and red zone efficiency and these guys would doctor that up. The decision will reside with the new Head Coach-if there is one-especially in Cook’s case.
Sit back and relax, Eagles fans. Free Agency is still six miserable weeks away..