When the Philadelphia Eagles season ended in the 2009 Wild Card Playoff game against the Dallas Cowboys, it was the second time in consecutive weeks the Eagles lost to the same team and they really didn't waste time attending to some areas of need.
In the weeks following that loss in the playoffs, Philadelphia went out and signed two big names to their squad. Although they were coaches and not players, they are still some huge names in the NFL.
Beginning with the signing of Bobby April as the organization's special teams coach, that is something us Eagles fans can really get excited about. April has been named the NFL's special teams Coach of the Year multiple times over the last five years, so he is definitely one of the best in the business.
April is going to have a field day coaching players like DeSean Jackson, who as we already know is a phenomenal threat anytime he touches the ball.
He'll also have a player like Quinten Demps, who has an uncanning ability to stop the ball within the five yard line on a punt as he's done so many times in his short career.
One player you might not think about is the Eagles punter, Sav Rocca . Sav has a dynamic leg on him, there is no question about that, but we've all seen that one punt in 2009 that netted under twenty yards, so he has much room for improvement. April could help there also.
Next the Eagles signed a highly regarded individual in the NFL, Dick Jauron, as their defensive backs coach. This is probably one of the bigger if not the biggest move the Eagles have made to date.
By bringing in Jauron the Eagles have acquired a man who was once a safety in this league and has also pretty much done everything on the coaching side of the ball too.
From there he went on to become a defensive assistant to the Buffalo Bills (1985), defensive backs coach for the Green Bay Packers (1986-94), defensive coordinator of the Jacksonville Jaguars (1995-98), defensive coordinator/interim head coach for the Detroit Lions (2004-05), and also head coach of the Buffalo Bills (2006-09).
This man has a resume that can't be denied, it speaks for itself.
He is coming in to coach a position that many Eagles fans are screaming needs to be drafted in this year's draft.
I'm still on board for drafting a safety with a second or third round, but when you have such a proven coach with such an extensive record you have to wonder if the guys the Eagles have on board already can actually work.
Those two men will make this team obviously better in 2010 compared to the prior year. Like I said, those two are probably the biggest names the Eagles have added so far in the free agency period.
The Eagles have added some players to the roster, however, and they are relatively big signings as well. They just weren't signed by the team when the free agency bell rang for opening.
Make no mistake though, the players they did add have a real chance of becoming starters here in Philly like DE Darryl Tapp and another player like RB Mike Bell, who is going to contribute and complement LeSean "Shady" McCoy.
They've added a promising, but injury-plagued player in DB Marlin Jackson and with Dick Jauron working on him he could become lethal.
In between those deals there were smaller deals signed like the homecoming of WR Hank Baskett and also the signing of WR Chad Hall.
Is there more to follow leading up to and into the draft?
There are rumors of the Eagles' historic quarterback Donovan McNabb being traded, a Sheldon Brown trade rumor has surfaced saying he still wants out of Philly, going public about his situation in Philadelphia, and there were even rumors out there saying that QB Donovan McNabb and CB Asante Samuel were headed to the Raiders in exchange for a top pick and a defensive back.
I don't believe the Eagles would send two of their Pro Bowl players to a single team in a trade, but I'm not Andy Reid, so I suppose anything really is possible.
I, however, will not hold my breath on that one.
So far the Eagles have made some moves bringing in both proven talent and unknown, but promising talent. They have also cut ties with many of their aging non producing talent, making a youth oriented statement in the process.
Stay tuned Philly faithful: Draft day is rapidly approaching now and this is the time of year when trade rumors start flying, some of which happen, most of which do not!
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