Philadelphia Eagles: Stephen Tulloch Remains the No.1 Target

Giorgos KassakosAnalyst IMarch 6, 2012

Stephen Tulloch is the most desirable free agent for the Eagles' fans.
Stephen Tulloch is the most desirable free agent for the Eagles' fans.Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

It’s no secret that the Philadelphia Eagles will be on the hunt for a linebacker of proven worth in free agency. Their struggles against the run in 2011 demands more efficient play from the linebackers, and the current options on the roster don’t inspire much confidence.

Stephen Tulloch was not franchised by the Detroit Lions and still hasn’t signed a new contract. Unless that changes, he will be a free agent in a week’s time.

Tulloch has been behind a wide-nine defensive line both as a Titan and as a Lion. That didn’t stop him from emerging as an explosive and dynamic tackling machine. His total of 111 tackles last season is a solid proof of what an accomplished player he is.

The latest rumors want the Eagles being interested in Dan Connor of the Carolina Panthers. Connor has yet to agree on a new contract with Carolina.

That’s what makes him instantly an Eagles target. The need of upgrading the middle linebacker position is so massive and so obvious that Philly will target any free-agent inebacker whose contract is up.

Of course, the Eagles need more than Connor can offer, and I believe they know it too. They need a playmaker, and Tulloch is the best they can get—as long as he becomes a free agent.

The Eagles haven’t re-signed any of their own free agents. Only Evan Mathis had a crucial role, and he is the only one that will most likely receive a new deal. Derek Landri, Trevor Laws and Owen Schmitt are the rest that may return—everyone else looks expendable.

Since DeSean Jackson was placed under the franchise tag, the Eagles have only two big needs: linebacker and safety. They have almost $20 million of cap space, so if you consider that half of that will be used for signing draft picks and some of their free agents, they can spend $10 million to sign a player at each position.

Tulloch is certainly a player they can attract with their money and hopefully with their ambitious plans for the next season. Tulloch himself might also be aware of that and interested in exploring that option. We just have to wait to find out.