Philadelphia Eagles LB Mychal Kendricks Coming of Age

By Bob Francis
Mychal Kendricks
Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

After a dreadful 4-12 last place finish in the NFC East, the Philadelphia Eagles are in some serious need of a recovery effort.

One of the biggest problems they dealt with a year ago was a defense that had trouble stopping anyone. However, one of the bright spots of the less-than-mediocre Philadelphia defense was rookie second-round draft pick, Mychal Kendricks.

The hiring of Chip Kelly as the new head coach and a change in defensive philosophy have continued to brighten the outlook on Kendricks, who is making the move to inside linebacker in the new 3-4 system.

Beginning his second season in the NFL, Kendricks has displayed the ability to be an impact player on a young defense. The move inside creates a more comfortable look for Kendricks, and allows the Eagles to highlight his talents and take full advantage of his assets.

Kendricks’ closing speed, which allows him to pursue sideline to sideline, will be revealed along with his strong ability to cover a variety of receivers. In addition, after two preseason games, he has shown the ability to get into the backfield and create havoc.

His tackling ability, as demonstrated a year ago when he finished third on the team with 88 tackles, comes with his youth in a bottle full of energy that, if harnessed in the right way, could work wonders for the Eagles.

Going forward, Kendricks will take on a larger role in an upgraded defense from 2012. His production will have a huge effect on the improvement of the Eagles defense from a year ago, as well as their overall achievement in 2013.

Look for Kendricks to begin to take a leadership role as the year progresses and to be given many different roles under new defensive coordinator Bill Davis. The Eagles will have a major upgrade in a new system than what they ran one year ago, and Kendricks will be a major part of their success.

Bob Francis is a Philadelphia Eagles contributor for  Follow him on Twitter @rfrancisjr, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google

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