Let the race for Jason Babin begin.
In a bit of a shocking development, the struggling—understatement of all the understatements ever—Philadelphia Eagles decided to release the veteran defensive end on Tuesday.
One team's trash is about to be another's gold.
In what has so far been a disappointing year, Babin has recorded "only" 5.5 sacks. But in 2010, he recorded 12.5, and in a reunion with the Eagles last year, he was absolutely unstoppable, racking up 18.5 quarterback takedowns. That number was not only third in the NFL, but 18th-most for a single season ever.
Over his nine-year career, Babin has 53.5 sacks and nine forced fumbles.
So, even though he's 32, you can bet teams will be bending over backwards to claim him off waivers.
NFL.com's Albert Breer has the official order:
RT @rliunfl Current NFL claiming priority: 1. KC, 2. JAX, 3. PHI, 4. OAK, 5. CLE, 6. CAR, 7. SD, 8. BUF, 9. TEN, 10. DET, 11. AZ, 12. NYJ— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) November 27, 2012
The Kansas City Chiefs, who rank 27th in the NFL with just 19 sacks on the season, could certainly use an additional weapon in the pass rush behind Justin Houston and Tamba Hali. But they generally play a 3-4 defense, while Babin is more of a 4-3 defensive end.
Don't be surprised if he slips to No. 2, where the Jaguars will almost certainly pounce.
Jacksonville not only ranks last in the NFL with 13 sacks and last with a 3.0 sack percentage, but it also plays a 4-3 defense. Babin would be a welcomed addition to a team that currently has no one with more than 2.0 sacks.
Still, though, Babin is 32, and the Jags are in rebuild mode. They could easily decide he doesn't fit their future plans.
Should that happen, the Raiders, who also boast almost no pass rush, would likely have a strong interest.
If Babin slips by Oakland, then it's anyone's guess who will take a chance on him.