Philadelphia Eagles News

State Of The Cornerback Position

As the Eagles sit back on their bye week Saturday and watch some college football, let's take a look at one of the positions that was most under the microscope entering the season - cornerback. The Eagles currently have the 11th-ranked pass defense and are second in the league with 11 interceptions. What else do you need to know?

What They've Accomplished: Asante Samuel has held his Pro Bowl form for the most part, hauling in three interceptions thus far in his six games played (he missed one game with a concussion). Samuel's ball-hawking abilities have never been questioned, but his tackling has often been a talking point for fans and media alike. While Samuel will never be Jeremiah Trotter, he's shown to be a willing and improved tackler this season.

The right cornerback position might have been the biggest question mark entering the season. For the most part, Ellis Hobbs has proved a capable starter, providing some physicality at the position. Save for one play in the season-opening loss to the Green Bay Packers, Hobbs was outstanding in the first six games. But he has had a full off-week to let the loss to the Tennessee Titans, in which Hobbs, among others, allowed Kenny Britt to total 225 receiving yards and three touchdowns, simmer.

After a sometimes rough preseason, nickel cornerback Joselio Hanson has stepped up his game and played very well thus far. Defensive coordinator Sean McDermott has a lot of confidence in Hanson surveying the middle of the field, and with the team playing nickel a lot, Hanson is essentially a starter himself.

Veteran journeyman Dimitri Patterson has once again provided solid depth at the cornerback position, notching an interception against the San Francisco 49ers, but his biggest value comes on special teams. Rookie fourth-round pick Trevard Lindley has only been active for three games, but he also had an interception, the game-ender, against the 49ers. Lindley, 6-0, 183, is the second-team right cornerback, and he could be in line for more playing time on defense in the second half of the season.

Jorrick Calvin hasn't seen any time on defense this season, but he has established himself as a very solid returner of both punts and kickoffs.

What Lies Ahead: Samuel should continue to hold down the left side and make game-changing plays. With Hanson ensconced in the nickel role, the only position that could see a shakeup barring injury is the right side. Hobbs will continue to get the majority of the time, but don't be surprised if Lindley begins to see some time in special situations.

-- Posted by Bo Wulf, 7:30 p.m., October 30

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