If there is one thing that hasn’t change through multiple Philadelphia Eagles regimes it’s the lack of importance placed on the linebacker position. Yes, no matter the coach or the scheme Philly has ignored the need to draft and develop a franchise player for the middle of their defense. It’s been a long time coming and should be addressed as soon as possible.
A Dozen Years Of Mediocrity
Not since Jeremiah Trotter was taken in the 3rd round in 1998 have the Eagles drafted a linebacker that has made a Pro Bowl. The pride of Hooks, Texas was 4x Pro Bowler and 1x All-Pro. And in the 12 years since Trotter’s final departure, they have yet to find an adequate successor. Sure there have been some decent ones and a few brought in via trade and free agency but none of them became a household name, like the “Axe Man,” or stayed for very long.
Hitting Rock Bottom
While the fan base has been clamoring for the front office to draft a stud linebacker for years. Their pleas have been much louder in recent years. None more deafening than during the 2020 season. While the team struggled through a season that would see them post a putrid 4-11-1 record. The Philly faithful were treated to a comedy of errors from the linebacking core. The biggest culprit of all being one Nathan Gerry. Week after week Gerry would give up a big play or miss an assignment. It got to the point petitions were constructed to kindly ask that he be jettisoned from the lineup.
While there were some bright spots like Alex Singleton who recorded 120 total tackles. The middle of the Birds defense was abused on a weekly basis. But that can all change if the new brain trust does the right thing.
A Glimmer Of Hope
One thing that should give Eagles fans some hope is that not only do they have a new head coach in Nick Sirianni, who wants to put his imprint on this team, but their GM Howie Roseman is also on the hot seat and could be pressured into changing his drafting philosophy. Showing interest in a promising linebacker could help Roseman’s chances of staying around past this season. But alas time will only tell. Until then we’ll have to wait and see.