2011 Philadelphia Eagles Offseason Needs
Now that the Eagles are knocked out of the playoffs, it is time to decide who stays and who goes on the current roster. Andy Reid and company have already begun retooling the team by adding four players today, including speedy wide-out Sinorice Moss.
The 2010 Eagles were a success, being that there were no high expectations coming into this season. Now that they overachieved though, there will be higher expectations for 2011, thus making this a very important off season for the Eagles Front Office.
Asante Samuel is set on one CB position. The other side is totally up for grabs this season. CB or OL should be the first priority on draft day, and I see the Eagles targeting a CB in the first round. They like to trade up and have their usual extra picks that they can use as bait.
The Eagles corners got killed as the season went on. They are too small and none of them are physical enough to handle big WRs, especially in-division rivals Dez Bryant and Hakeem Nicks. If there is one area that the Eagles need to address this offseason, it is the CB position.
Offensive Line (OL)
The Eagles offensive line was terrible this year. The only reason why they didn't seem so bad is that Mike Vick could scramble out of trouble every time. The reason Mike Vick was so lethal during his hot streak was because he wasn't being pressured. He had time in the pocket. Then, when teams started to blitz, the O line couldn't handle it and Vick was made to run.
Winston Justice had a decent all around year, but he is not the answer to Mike Vick's blind side. Jason Peters is a pro bowler on the other side, and Todd Herremans is a good starting LG. The Eagles need to sure up the right side of their line. C Jamaal Jackson and Nick Cole will be coming off injuries, and the Eagles need to find depth for those positions as well. The Eagles should take a OL very high on draft day, and they usually do. Last year was an exception.
Stewart Bradley is the heart of the Eagles D, and he was surely missed when he was out of the lineup. OLB is where the team needs to improve on. Ernie Sims did a decent job filling in the whole on one side, and Moise Fokou did the best he could do. Not one LB on the team can cover an opponent's TE. TEs always kill the Eagles. The Eagles need to add a big physical LB that can play the pass as well as the run. Perhaps a veteran FA would be the best place to find that kind of player.
The Eagles have Mike Vick and Kevin Kolb, so why do they need a QB? If you saw Kolb's post game press conference, he was pretty adamant on being a starting QB somewhere next year. The Eagles signed him to a small extension last offseason, but they go into the 2011 season with Mike Vick as their QB and Kolb as the backup.
Kolb does not want to be a backup any longer. Expect the Eagles to explore all trade opportunities for Kolb because it doesn't seem like it's going to work for both of them. Kolb has some value and should possibly get a second rounder in return.
Backup QB is a very important position when your starter is as injury prone as a scrambler like Vick. Expect the Eagles to sign a veteran QB to back up Vick, assuming they let Kolb go.
Has David Akers kicked his last FG with the Eagles? After a post game interview, it sounds like it might be. The Eagles will certainly welcome back Akers if he wants to play again, but it's all up to Akers. Although Akers had a terrible playoff game missing two FGs, he had another great season. Since the Eagles are so bad in the red zone, it's essential they have a kicker who can put up a guaranteed three points if they fail to score. Akers has been that guy for over 10 years.
David Akers will go down as the Eagles best kicker in the history of the franchise. Does he have what it takes to go through another season or two?