By signing long snapper Jon Dorenbos to a four-year contract and keeping safety/special teams ace Colt Anderson off the restricted free agent market with a one-year deal on Monday, the Eagles took care of the business they wanted done before free agency started.
It appears, barring an unforeseen circumstance, that the other six potential unrestricted free agents will hit the market. Good luck, then, to cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, offensive tackle King Dunlap, defensive tackle Derek Landri, linebacker Akeem Jordan, defensive end Darryl Tapp and offensive guard Jake Scott. May they find employment and good situations elsewhere.
For the Eagles, free agency represents a grand opportunity to improve a roster that, from this perspective, was a heckuva lot better than the 4-12 record of 2012. There are holes here, and we all acknowledge that, but there is also some talent. The offense is an answer at quarterback and one starter on the offensive line away from being good enough to score big points in any scheme.
The defense, though, needs some help, and that is where the Eagles may very well expend many of their salary-cap resources -- as well as their draft picks -- in the coming weeks. The secondary is in the midst of a major transition with Rodgers-Cromartie on his way to free agency and with a decision due soon on Nnamdi Asomugha regarding his future here. We could find something out with Asomugha early in the new business year, which, as you know, begins at 4 p.m.
There are a lot of different ways the Eagles could play free agency. They have the means to come right out of the box and sign some players immediately. The team, as has the rest of the NFL, spent part of the last few days contacting agents and discussing players and contracts and working within the parameters of the league's rules, so it's possible they've come to terms with a player or two and will make a big splash at 4 o'clock.
Then again, even with all of that money available within the salary cap, the Eagles could wade slowly into the process, see how the market settles, and find value later in the week.
Nobody knows, except those few who make the personnel decisions within the walls of the NovaCare Complex. The guessing game provides some answers when the gates to free agency open at 4 p.m. Stay tuned for the action ...
NEWS, NOTES AND A LITTLE BIT OF THIS AND THAT
- Good to have both Dorenbos and Anderson signed and ready for 2013. Both will be integral pieces in Dave Fipp's special teams plan and the Eagles are fortunate to have some stability there. I'm really interested to see how Fipp's teaching methods and the areas that he stresses differ from the recent Eagles special teams. I know that Dorenbos had other opportunities, but part of the reason he is staying in Philadelphia is the coaching staff that Chip Kelly has put together.
- What to make of the private workout the Eagles held on Monday in Morgantown, WV for West Virginia quarterback Geno Smith? It meant something, because Chairman/CEO Jeffrey Lurie was there along with Kelly and general manager Howie Roseman. The Eagles are looking for a franchise quarterback. They've got five on the roster right now, and maybe they don't think there is a franchise quarterback among the bunch, so they are leaving no stone unturned to find their franchise man. Does it mean they are going to use the No. 4 pick in April's draft on Smith? No, it does not. But it shows the team is doing its homework on every prospect, including the draft's top-rated quarterback.
- A guess on which position the Eagles address first in free agency? No clue, but I'll say someone on defense. I think the Eagles will sign 3-4 free agents, and maybe even one on the first day. But I truly don't know the plan. I, like you, can't wait to get this party started!!!