The Eagles didn't make many high profile moves in free agency this offseason, not anything like years passed at least, but they have been very active. With so many players being released, the switch in scheme on defense and the nearly $40 million in cap space, the team really had no choice but to add in bulk.
So how did they do? According to ESPN's Matt Williamson, really well. He graded them an "A."
I love what the Eagles have done. By adding Barwin and Sopoaga, Philadelphia's front seven now looks complete -- and the Eagles will be incorporating much more 3-4 than we have seen in recent years. Their secondary, which was just dreadful in 2012, looks substantially better, especially at safety -- a huge position of weakness last year. How Chip Kelly will employ Casey is a situation that really intrigues me. There are few players in the league like Casey, who can line up all over the formation, block, catch and act as a running back with the ball in his hands. I don't think it was an accident that innovative Kelly was aggressive in the infantile stages of free agency to land Casey. After what lines up to be an impact draft class, don't be surprised if the Eagles are substantially better in 2013. Plus, they have plenty more to spend before threatening their current salary-cap situation.
The Eagles were the only NFC team to draw an "A" grade from Williamson.
It's been interesting how the free agency splurge of 2011 and the subsequent failure of that team has colored the way us Eagles fans see free agency. Of course we like seeing new players come in, but I think had the Eagles went after a big name with huge money, that move would have been met with skepticism.
So when the team went out and grabbed more mid tier, solid starter types to fill out the roster, fans and pundits alike seem to have responded to that approach. The team has risked very little going forward and at least in the case of guys like Casey, Barwin and even the 2 safeties, they've bought themselves a lot of upside.