Weighing the Pros and Cons of Eagles' Top Free Agent Targets
With free agency fast approaching, the Philadelphia Eagles can make themselves fast Super Bowl favorites with just a few moves. But, as we can tell by teams like the Washington Redskins to splurge frequently, big signings don't always pan out.
No player acquisition comes without risk. Here are three free agents who are likely on the Eagles' radar, as well as the pros and cons for taking each of them.
1. Jason Worilds (OLB)
Jason Worilds has been transition tagged by the Pittsburgh Steelers, which guarantees him a one-year contract worth $9.754 million. However, there is no compensation for the Steelers if he signs elsewhere, although the Steelers would have seven days to match his offer.
Worilds is an incredible athlete. He started the 2013 season slowly but amassed seven sacks in his final eight games.
Worilds success in 2013 came in a small sample size. He was not a full-time starter last season. The Steelers also placed a transition tag on him, so the Eagles may have to offer him a large enough contract to discourage Pittsburgh from matching.
2. T.J. Ward (SS)
Despite being a Pro Bowl player, Ward has not yet been franchise tagged by the Cleveland Browns, while center Alex Mack has been transition tagged (per ESPN). The lack of activity so far could signal a willingness to let Ward test the market.
Ward is a very physical safety who punishes ball-carriers. He would provide physicality to the safety position and be the hardest hitter in the Eagles secondary since Brian Dawkins.
Ward is great against the run but has had issues in the past with pass coverage (though his numbers defending the pass were very good in 2013). Getting a top-flight pass defender could fill a greater area of need, since the Eagles had one of the worst pass defenses in the NFL last season.
3. Vontae Davis (CB)
The Indanapolis Colts are hopeful that they can get a deal done with Vontae Davis, but they reportedly will not use the franchise tag on him. It is very possible that other NFL teams will get a shot to court him.
Davis is a great press corner. He has the ability to lock down the opposing team's number one receiver and allow safeties to tend to other areas.
Davis does not have the best ball skills. He occasionally can be beaten for big plays in jump-ball situations.