Pro Football Focus has been doing a series on the top three needs for every team and surprise, surprise they found that the Eagles need LBs. Their #1 need is middle linebacker, which is the spot pretty much everyone has focused on. However, as I've pointed out every time someone from the national media does one of these "team needs" articles, the Eagles don't need "a" linebacker, they need linebackers. PFF agrees and have SAM as the #2 need.
I’ve already mentioned the struggles of Chaney in the middle, but it’s worth noting he wasn’t much better on the outside (-4.3). It’s clear he’s a functional player if allowed to play in space (+1.5 against the run in 2010), but is unable to consistently shed blocks. We had high hopes for Moise Fokou when he was given the starting job (considering he’d finished in the Top 10 against the run among4-3 OLBs just a year ago) but he too struggled when asked to read and react, instead of just being allowed to attack. In the end, Akeem Jordan came in and did a solid job (+4.8 in just 250 snaps), but he’s better served on the weakside or as a backup.
If the Eagles seek a solution in free agency, Baltimore’s Jarret Johnson would make a lot of sense. He would provide the kind of physical presence Philadelphia hasn’t had since Carlos Emmons left. The options thin out a little after that, although Erin Henderson might have the flexibility to play on that side.
I'm in favor of just loading up on LBs. At least one guy in free agency is a must, preferably in the middle. Then adding another guy from the first couple rounds in the draft.