Philadelphia Eagles News

And They're Off! To Do What, Exactly?

Welcome to Frantic Friday. In some circles, free agency is already a scene. Washington has signed defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth. Big-name players are moving from one city to another. The early-morning hi-jinks continue ... and we wait -- patiently, I hope -- to see what the Eagles have in mind.

There is a lot of work to do here, but for the moment, the Eagles are silent. That can change at any moment. Things are fluid. The Eagles have six players who are unrestricted free agents and one of them, running back Correll Buckhalter, is a done deal in Denver to join the Broncos (per a text message from his agent).

Two of the players on the list, safety Brian Dawkins and offensive tackle Tra Thomas, are the players you most care about, and there is no news. Both are able to talk to other teams. Those are the rules.

Otherwise, there haven't even been very good rumors about the Eagles. They have reportedly shown an interest in Arizona defensive end Antonio Smith. They are reportedly high on the list of wide receiver T.J. Housmandzadeh, who has made a public plea to play for the Eagles. The Eagles have not and will not comment on their interests in him.

Clearly, the team has its needs and has its ammunition lined up and is going to make a series of plays at some point, but we just don't know when. Fascinating stuff. Frustrating for the fans, yeah, because you want the Eagles to come roaring out of the gates and keep firing until all the bullets are gone.

But you have to have trust that the Eagles have their plan and they have their methods and the discipline needed to execute the plan. Whether or not Hayneworth works out for the Redskins really has no bearing on the Eagles. Washington went for the grand slam, as it has done unsuccessfully in the past. Haynesworth is an enormously talented player and he joins a locker room and a culture in Washington that just hasn't gotten it right for many years.

For the Eagles, there is business ahead. Buckhalter's departure means the Eagles have a hole to fill at running back. It is no surprise that Buckhalter left. Had the Eagles really wanted to keep him, they would have made a play to do so. Now that he is gone, the Eagles have to upgrade the running back position, but we've been talking about that through the entire off-season. How much sense does an early draft pick on a running back make now? It is an exciting prospect given the good group of running backs in this draft.

Then again, the Eagles could still reach out and sign a veteran free agent, because there are still some out there. But with Brian Westbrook around, a veteran knows he would be coming here as a reserve, and that isn't appealing to the players who have been starters in this league for a long time.

The offensive line right now has holes at left tackle and right tackle. Gaping holes. Must-haves. We'll see where that goes.

The defense is solid, for the most part, although with both Dawkins and Sean Considine on the market, there will be a need there. Dawkins is an important subject, gang. He wants to be an Eagle. The Eagles have said in the past that they want him to be here. Stay tuned. It has happened in the past where players have tested the market and returned to the Eagles. We shall see if that is what happens here.

Otherwise, I'm all ears and eyes and I'm staying on my toes today. This weekend is the appetizer to a long series of moves ahead. At the moment, it is quiet. That could change at any time for the Eagles, so stay with us all day.

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