On Tuesday afternoon the Eagles signed two veterans to add depth and competition on the defensive side of the ball. The team signed Chris Long who is fresh off of a Superbowl with the Patriots seems to be the replacement for former Eagle Connor Barwin. With a two-year deal, Long will add a strong veteran presence as well some much need competition in the defensive line room. Brandon Graham and Vinny Curry are the projected starters going into the season and with the addition of Long, it lessens the burden for the Eagles to force a draft pick. Former 2014 first round draft pick Marcus Smith will need to have a good offseason and show more signs of improvement if he wants to make the team. Chris Long will have an opportunity to compete for playing time because defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz believes in rotating his defensive line so that everyone can stay fresh.
The team also signed veteran corner Patrick Robinson to a one year deal to come in and compete for playing time. The former first round pick has played for 3 teams and is going into his 8th season in the league. Robinson adds some experience with 49 career starts to a cornerback group that has very few players returning with any significant NFL snaps. Roseman and the Eagles have stressed the importance of finding long-term solutions at the position, so this move should not be seen as a “band-aid” type move, but rather getting some value out of the free agent market that has dried up. Eagles fans should still expect the team to attack the draft heavy in regards to the cornerback position and with the quality of corners in this draft, it is imperative that they select the right player.