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Eagles' offseason activities began this week, and many defensive linemen are changing their bodies in order to fit into a base 3-4 scheme.
After a massive spending spree in free agency, the Miami Dolphins have addressed most of their needs. Except one. After losing Pro Bowl left tackle Jake Long to the Rams, Miami's glaring weakness is at tackle. Former scout and current NFL Network analyst Daniel Jeremiah wrote on Twitter: "Wouldn't be shocked if they trade up for an elite [left tackle] in the draft."
Most fans and general managers prescribe to the famed "best player available" drafting philosophy, or at least claim to. In practice, teams usually opt to take a player who can help out in a position of need. Part of the BPA philosophy is anticipating value in later rounds in order to maximize the talent of a draft class. In this way, teams can take a lot of good football players while filling roster holes along the way. While the draft is unpredictable and could unfold in many ways, here one set of areas the Eagles could target.
The offensive line is widely considered to be one of the Eagles' most pressing needs heading into the draft. The unit is aging as three starters are on the wrong side of 30, and Jason Kelce, Todd Herremans, and Jason Peters are all coming back from season-ending injuries. If all come back at full strength, I think the line will be a strength for the Eagles. They cannot assume they will be so fortunate, though
Nobody knows what the Eagles offense will look like on opening day 2013, and that excitement and uncertainty has been a welcome change from the Andy Reid offense that was starting to grow stale in Philadelphia. Chip Kelly's new system will mean that Reid's old players will have to adjust to new roles. After studying elements of the Oregon offense, I thought of some Eagles who could be in line for bigger, more creative roles than they've seen in the past.
For the most part, I like what the Eagles have done so far in free agency. They added a lot of defensive starters for a reasonable price. Their work isn't done yet, though. The Eagles should be looking to add free agents for close to the veteran minimum to provide competition in training camp and potentially for starting jobs. Here are some players the Eagles should check out...
After making some major moves in free agency, the Eagles' roster holes are more clearly defined, and mock drafters have a much better idea of where the team will go in the draft. However, the Eagles could still go in a number of directions. I myself am torn, and will make a case for and against drafting a quarterback, offensive lineman, and defensive lineman.
Every team likes to think they draft the best player available regardless of need, but in reality, teams look for immediate help in the draft with few exceptions. The Eagles went out and signed as many as 7 likely starters in free agency, which narrows down the glaring needs that they will have to address in April. What hints have the Eagles left us as to what direction they will go at the top of the draft?
Now a lot of fans will write this move off as irrelevant and consider Benn a camp body. I'm very excited about the move and had previously thought that Benn would be a great addition since I heard he was on the trading block.