We all have heard the “defense wins championships” motto, haven’t we? It might not be like that anymore, but it’s true that a very good defensive unit can take you far enough in the playoffs. The San Francisco 49ers fielded an average offense last season and got a breath away from the Super Bowl, mostly due to their strong, unbent defense.
The Philadelphia Eagles had a lot of defensive issues in 2011 and, while their defense is not the only one responsible for their woes, things must be different this time in order to reestablish themselves as the NFC East champions.
Juan Castillo, the defensive coordinator, struggled to fit all the pieces together. Many key players looked lost on the pitch and the wide-9 scheme of the defensive line was creating more problems that it was solving. It wasn’t until too late that the Philly defense looked competent.
Apparently, the Eagles didn’t have the right players to play the kind of defense they wanted to. That looks like it has changed with the additions of DeMeco Ryans, O.J. Atogwe, Fletcher Cox, Mychal Kendricks, Vinny Curry and Brandon Boykin.
Improvement is expected and these are the three key areas that Castillo, his staff and his players should focus on.