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The Philadelphia Eagles have signed 49ers NT Isaac Sopoaga to a 3 year, $11 million deal. It is reportedly front loaded and will pay out $3.75 million in the first year. After that, there are little to no guarantees.
The 31 year old Sopaga has played 8 seasons in the NFL after being a 4th round pick out of Hawaii in 2004. He's started 71 games over the past 5 seasons for the 49ers.
His role in the Eagles defense is very clear. The 330 pounder will be plopped straight into the middle at NT, a position the Eagles had really no one at as they make the transition from 4-3 to 3-4. Getting players to fit that new system was important this offseason and bringing Sopaga certainly does that.
It's also worth noting that the Eagles probably had an inside track with former 49ers personnel man Tom Gamble now in the Eagles front office.
Sopoaga only played in about 30% of the 49ers snaps last season. He was part of their base 3-4 only, so when they played nickel he'd come off the field. In some games where they played nickel 80% of the time, he didn't play a lot. I would expect he'll play a little more often in Philadelphia given the money he's making, but he'll still mostly be a base defense only type guy.
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