Four Players to Target This Off-Season for the Eagles
While the Eagles have two weeks left in the 2012 NFL season, many fans are already looking ahead to what should be a very interesting off-season.
The birds have quite a few areas to fix, some more than others, but here are two names I think the Eagles should target in free agency and two names they need to target in the draft. While I don't like the free agency route to fix problems, I think there are two guys that would fit what the Eagles need.
Nate Allen and Kurt Coleman have been a problem at safety, which one is a free safety, which one is a strong safety? I think Allen is a free safety and Coleman is a special teams player and needs to be replaced.
One player who could come in and play strong safety and won't cost a lot of money is Miami Dolphins safety Chris Clemons. Clemons, 27, is 6-1, 210 and has 86 tackles, three tackles for loss, four passes defensed and two interceptions this season.
Another guy the Eagles should take a look at in free agency is Clemons teammate in Miami, Jake Long. I know he seems to be a player on the decline in Miami, but he reminds me a lot of Jon Ruynan, and we all know what the signing did for the Eagles offensive line. I would take a shot on Long as the right tackle and have Herremans compete at either left guard or right guard with Evan Mathis and Jake Scott. Like Ruynan, Long is a big Michigan boy who is not exceptional athletically but has great tenacity, toughness and technique at the point of attack.
Signing a 27-year-old tackle allows the Eagles to focus on other areas in the draft that they need and having Herremans around has the back-up at both guard spots and both tackle spots makes the Eagles line look much better and gives them much more flexibility.
As for the draft, currently the Eagles stand to have a top five selection. If that remains the case the guy I would pick is Utah defensive tackle Star Lotulelei. Lotulelei is a quick, athletic tackle who could be disruptive in both the run game and passing game. While he might not rack up a ton of sacks, he will give guys like Brandon Graham, Vinny Curry, Trent Cole and Fletcher Cox more one-on-one looks and chances to get to the quarterback.
The Eagles lack an identity on defense Lotulelei is one guy in this draft that could give them one.
Another guy that the Eagles should look to in the second round if he is available, is BYU linebacker Kyle Van Noy. Van Noy, 6-3, 235, reminds me of a Seth Joyner type of linebacker who has a knack of disrupting the backfield, going back into coverage and making plays - something the current crop of linebackers does not do.
He is the kind of player Eagles fans would love, a relentless rusher off the edge who wins with technique and a motor, can drop into coverage and make plays behind the line-of-scrimmage. He made headlines during the bowl season with a dominating performance against San Diego State, registering 3.5 tackles for loss, including 1.5 sacks, an interception for a touchdown, a forced fumble for a touchdown, and a blocked kick.
Four areas of need, four players to fix them and change the look of this team right away.
Who are some players you like in free agnecy and the draft?