5 Philadelphia Eagles Players Who Need to Perform Well in 2013
5 Philadelphia Eagles Who Need to Produce
Many teams have garnered a lot of attention so far this offseason and the Philadelphia Eagles would be one of the teams who have received the most.
Questions are being raised due to recent events with the franchise. Is Michael Vick going to be able to prove the doubters wrong with a solid 2013 season? Will LeSean McCoy return to full health and not let the running back shelf life reach its end for the young star? Will Chip Kelly be a better coach than Andy Reid was as an Eagle?
All of these questions will be answered with time. But for now, we can only speculate what can and will happen. For instance, the new offensive scheme looks to benefit Vick as the system could emphasize dual-threat quarterbacks.
The Eagles offense ranked in the middle of the pack in both rushing and passing. Vick got replaced by Nick Foles near the end of the 2012 season, making for some controversy for the team that finished with one of the worst records in the NFL.
Philadelphia could be in for one of the more interesting and media-ridden seasons of any team in the league next year. However, Kelly knows what it's like to be in the center of attention, seemingly making his team a title contender year after year at Oregon.
Vick had one of his worst seasons as a pro while McCoy spent the final four games of the season benched with an injured knee. Bryce Brown stepped in and played better than expected, yet the Eagles still missed the playoffs — by a large margin.
Here are five Eagles who need to play well in 2013 in order to keep their job.
Brent Celek has been a solid tight end in the NFL for six years. His 57 catches for 684 yards last season made him one of the more targeted tight ends in the league. However, the Eagles may want to add a younger weapon at the tight end position with the drafting of Zach Ertz from Stanford. It's happened before that one poor season costed a player his job.
The Eagles defensive front seven were not the best last season. In fact, they ranked 23rd against the run in the league and looked really bad trying to stop opposing running backs. Isaac Sopoaga was brought in from the San Francisco 49ers with the hope that he can plug the gaps up the middle. He did a solid job with the 49ers last year, but Eagle fans are hoping for more than one sack out of the big man.
Jeremy Maclin is currently listed as the No. 2 receiver on the Eagles roster behind DeSean Jackson. However, I would not be surprised if he was bumped to No. 1 as he had better numbers than Jackson last season. Maclin was brought in four years ago to be that go-to receiver, but has yet to reach 1,000 yards in any season. He may need to do so in 2013 or his time in Philadelphia is nearly up.
I am not saying, by any means, that if McCoy doesn't have a great season in 2013, he's a goner. However, he was injured in 2012 and missed the last fourth of the season, staking concern in the Eagles organization. Some running backs are only in the NFL for a couple of seasons because of the short life of that position. Let's hope this isn't the start of McCoy's demise.
There's no doubt that Matt Barkley was drafted in order to send a message to Michael Vick. That message: step up your game or get out. Much to everyone's surprise, Vick is back in Philadelphia for his fifth season in 2013 after two rough seasons with the franchise. It will be interesting to see how he performs under Kelly's system and, with a solid season, he could be with this team for the long-run.