Heading into Training Camp, one of my biggest concerns for the team is the secondary. They traded away Sheldon Brown which opened up a big hole at the cornerback position. There will be a number of players trying to fill that hole, but I can’t see any standouts right now.
Also, the Eagles continue trying to fill the hole that Brian Dawkins left after leaving the team. Dawkins’ importance became more apparent then ever last season as three different players failed to play at a high enough level to fill the spot.
The Eagles brought in Marlin Jackson and drafted Nate Allen as the next two heirs to the throne. Jackson has already been placed on injured reserve, which leaves a huge task ahead of the young rookie.
Despite all of this adversity, Jason Cole has ranked the Eagles secondary much higher than I thought they would be. Here is what he said:
In 2008, a lot of people thought the Eagles overspent on CB Asante Samuel. Well, he had nine picks last year, has 13 in two years with Philly and 35 in his seven-year career. Those are impressive numbers. Sure, he has flaws, but hardly anything you would call an exploitable weakness. With Ellis Hobbs on the other side, the Eagles are OK, not great. The safety play of Quintin Mikell is solid and Macho Harris was OK for a rookie, but hardly a lock to hold the job long-term.
Personally, I think it’s hard for a national writer to be really on his game when making rankings like this. It’s hard to follow every team in the league to an extent that you can accurately speak of all of them.
I agree with his comments on Asante and the fact that Hobbs isn’t a standout corner but probably good enough to get by.
When it comes to the safety position, I think he gave Quintin Mikell way too much credit. In a year where Mikell needed to be better than every, he let a lot of people down. Despite being a Pro Bowl selection, it was not his best season. I am a fan of Mikell and I look for him to bounce back in 2010. He has been very critical of himself and knows he needs to pick his game up.
The X-factor to the success of the Eagles secondary will be Nate Allen. Expectations couldn’t be higher for him, and the Eagles desperately need him to make an immediate impact.
I am worried about the status of the Eagles secondary, but hopefully they can change my mind during Training Camp.
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