Eagles Regular-Season Awards
Though the Eagles might not have found their true identity during the season, they still got some things accomplished, en route to finishing 7-9. They got off to a great 3-0 start, had problems closing games out throughout the season and ended the season on a high note, winning two straight against division opponents.
The seemingly found their franchise quarterback, a tremendous middle linebacker, and learned that Lane Johnson is a pretty darn good right tackle.
While the common assumption is that the Eagles are far away from contending for a Super Bowl, it’s not out of the question to think they can make the playoffs next season if they have a solid offseason.
In the meantime, let’s look at some the regular-season awards for the team:
Most Valuable Player: RT Lane Johnson. This might seemed far-fetched, but there really wasn’t a stand-out candidate on either side of the ball, so we went outside the box and went with Johnson, who showed how much he meant to the Eagles offense by missing 10 games. If you want to look at candidates, Malcolm Jenkins and Carson Wentz could be considered, but their record might not much different if those guys missed 10 games like Johnson, who was 5-1 when he was in the line-up.
Comeback Player: MLB Jordan Hicks. Hicks was having a great rookie season before being injured and missing the final eight games of the 2015 season with a torn pectoral muscle. This year, he stepped up and became the leader and face of the defense.
Most Improved Player: DE Brandon Graham. Graham moved back to his natural defensive end position and had 5.5 sacks and applied constant pressure on quarterbacks. He was named the No. 2 edge rusher in the NFL by Pro Football Focus, and at times was the best player on the Eagles defense.
Breakout Player: TE Zach Ertz. Everyone predicted Ertz would have a breakout season, while it didn’t happen right away, he finished the season strong, catching at least six passes in four of his final five games with 443 yards and three touchdowns over that span.
Best Minor Signing: OLB Nigel Bradham. The Eagles a steal when they picked up Bradham. He’s value was felt in the Eagles loss to the Lions where he missed the first half of the game and the Lions picked on Mychal Kendricks in the flats. He finished the year with 102 tackles most on the team, two sacks and interception and two forced fumbles.
Worst Injury Award: CB Ron Brooks. Who knew when Brooks was carted off Week 7 against the Vikings with a right knee injury that it would have such an effect on the Eagles secondary. However, the domino effect was huge, shifting Malcolm Jenkins into the slot at times and rookie seventh-round pick Jalen Mills into more duty.